Students walking through the quad at the UW.

Cool Courses for Autumn 2022

Back to All Stories
04/28/2022

As you start thinking about autumn quarter 2022 course registration, check out these unique Arts & Sciences offerings. They’re open to all students, have no prerequisites, and fulfill Areas of Knowledge requirements as noted.

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Style & Culture

ITAL 260 A / ART H 260 A / JSIS A 260 A: Fashion, Nation, and Culture
Delve into Italian culture, focusing on fashion and manners from the late Middle Ages to today. Learn about the development of corsets, the invention of the three-piece suit, stiletto heels, makeup, beauty pageants, and much more, while exploring common assumptions about nation, gender, clothes, and manners.
Susan Gaylard (French & Italian Studies)
5 credits, I&S, VLPA

JAPAN 380: Contemporary Japanese Art and Society
Explore Japanese avant-garde and contemporary culture, with particular focus on performance, the visual arts, literature, and film.             
Justin Jesty (Asian Languages & Literature)
5 credits, VLPA

DRAMA 416: The History of Style
Discover the role of the functional arts in the cultural identity of Western Civilization from Ancient Egypt to the present day, and the ways that concepts of gender, religion, status, and place have informed visual arts in the west.
Kira Franz-Knight (Drama)
5 credits, VLPA

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Identity

GWSS 374: Introduction to Transgender Studies
This course looks beyond the simple binary of "man" and "woman" and explores definitions of sex and gender through lenses of sexuality, race, class, ability, history, and location.
Amanda Swarr (Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies)
5 credits, DIV, I&S

AAS 250: Asian American Oral Histories
Using oral history as method and theory, we will read and produce narratives of immigrants to the United States, focusing specifically on key historical moments in Asian American identity formation. From early migration and Chinese Exclusion to Japanese Internment and Asian American community activism, we will explore what determines who counts as Asian in America.
Linh Thủy Nguyễn (American Ethnic Studies)
5 credits, DIV, I&S

GWSS 272: Gender & Fandom
This course will look at fandoms across a wide variety of media, and how they reflect and explore various identities including gender, race, and sexuality in domestic and transnational contexts.
Regina Lee (Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies)
5 credits, DIV, I&S, VLPA

AES 461 / SOC 461: Comparative Ethnic Race Relations in the Americas
How do we understand race and ethnicity — their meanings, formation, and practice — in a contemporary US? We will explore the intersection of race and ethnicity with structures of gender, class, and migration to evaluate how they shape identity consciousness and their consequential impact on social, economic, political, and cultural life.
Carolyn Pinedo-Turnovsky (American Ethnic Studies)
5 credits, I&S

CHSTU 330 / C LIT 321C  Chicano/Chicana Autobiography
Examine the Chicana/o experience as portrayed in autobiographical texts. This course will cover the history, antecedents, formal aspects, and development of autobiographical expression, with Chicano literature and culture as the theoretical framework. 
Lauro Flores (American Ethnic Studies)
5 credits, I&S

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Art Meets STEM

PHYS 207: The Physics of Music
(MyPlan course link coming soon)
There is a large overlap between physics and music, with physics playing a pivotal role in instrument design and acoustics. The perception of sounds by the ear and brain is also a fascinating process.  Examine how sound waves produced by instruments — and their detection by the ear — gives rise to our favorite sounds. This course is for avid music fans, science enthusiasts, or both.
David Smith (Physics) 
3 credits, NW

ART 255 / MATH 180: Making Meaning: Art and Mathematics as Embodied Practices
Explore mathematical ideas through mathematically inspired interdisciplinary art projects, then further develop one project as your final project, reflecting your specific interests. No prior experience of art or math is needed in this studio course.
Timea Tihanyi (School of Art + Art History + Design)
Jayadev Athreya (Mathematics)
              
5 credits, VLPA

DXARTS 485 /HCDE 485: Material and Cultural Bias in Algorithmic Systems
This project-based course examines the merging of data science and arts & design practices, to understand how machine learning algorithms can cause systemic harm. The course emphasizes the mingling of ideas, multiple interpretations, and translations to critically represent, express, and challenge biased datasets and skewed machine learning systems.              
Afroditi Psarra (Digital Arts & Experimental Media)
Daniela Rosner (Human Centered Design & Engineering)

5 credits, VLPA

CHID 444 A: Eye + Mind: Art, Science, and Perception
Investigate life as an emergent phenomenon across the disciplines of bio-philosophy, art, art history, literary criticism, and information studies. This class addresses key issues in phenomenology, social theory, contemporary bio-art, and complexity studies.
Phillip Thurtle (Comparative History of Ideas)
5 credits, I&S, NW, VLPA

TXTDS 414 / FRENCH 420: Digital Editing and Text Processing for Publication
Study historical perspectives on editing and factors shaping access to and circulation of texts, including politics, religion, censorship, copyright, technology, and commerce. There will be an emphasis on digital editing, text encoding, database building, and techniques for processing, querying, and publishing texts and textual databases.
Geoffrey Turnovsky (French & Italian Studies)
5 credits, I&S, VLPA

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Religion

ASIAN 223 / C LIT 322L: Buddhist Literature
This introduction to Buddhist literature in South Asia, China, and Japan will focus on early sutras attributed to the Buddha. Students will explore enduring questions about the nature of the mind and the human predicament while learning about the historical impact of Buddhism across Asia and the West.       
Joseph Marino (Asian Languages & Literature)
5 credits, I&S, VLPA       

RELIG 145 / JEW ST 145: Introduction to Judaism
What stories do we tell? Why do they matter? How do stories bring people together and create identity? How do holidays, laws, and rituals retell stories? This course invites students to explore the foundational stories, holidays, and rituals of the Jewish people and engage with universal questions for a deeper understanding of the category of religion.
Mika Ahuvia (International Studies)
5 credits, I&S

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Literature

SLAVIC 200 A / C LIT 251 A: War Literature
(Listed as “Introduction to Slavic Literature”)
Learn how social, political, and cultural contexts have impacted the works of writers from around the world during times of war, and what wisdom may be gleaned from their writings. The class will analyze the works of writers from France, East Germany, Ukraine, Russia, Poland, Bangladesh, Korea, Yugoslavia/Croatia/Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the United States. 
Piotr Florczyk (Slavic Languages & Literatures)
5 credits, VLPA 

CLAS 424 / C LIT 424: Epic Tradition
Enter the world of traditional heroic epics from ancient Greece and India. These very old tales continue to move, puzzle, entertain, and speak to the present moment. In what other course do you get to read the Iliad and the Odyssey next to the Mahābhārata and Rāmāyana?
Olga Levaniouk (Classics)
5 credits, VLPA

FRENCH 225: Dealing with Death in Francophone Literature and Media
This course will consider a broad range of French/Francophone cultural media and how authors and their characters understand, approach, rationalize, engage with, and are emotionally involved with death. The course will also connect the themes of these texts with our experiences living during COVID times.
Maya Smith (French & Italian Studies)
5 credits, VLPA

CHID 250 A / C LIT 250 A: Underworld Poetics
(Listed as “Special Topics”)
Examine how contemporary works of poetry imagine “freedom dreams” — alternatives to the existing social and political orders of our world. We will explore how poems grapple with race, gender, sexuality, history, violence, love, law, death, the self, the universe, and more.
AM Weatherford  (Cinema & Media Studies)
5 credits, VLPA, W          

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The Environment

AIS 385 Indigenous Ecologies and Climate Change
Learn about the diverse ways in which Indigenous peoples around the world understand, experience, and are responding to contemporary global climate change, with examples of work being done in the Pacific Northwest and the highly affected Arctic region.
P. Joshua Griffin (American Indian Studies)
5 credits, DIV, I&S

GEOG 272: Geographies of Environmental Justice
This course looks at the role of markers of difference — gender, race, nationality — in debates about equity and justice by exploring the places where people live, play, and work.
Sam Kay (Geography)
5 credits, DIV, I&S

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More Cool Courses

JSIS A 302: The Politics and Cultures of Europe
Learn how Europeans debate their future, including the Russia-Ukraine War, refugee crisis, Brexit, East-West tensions, the rise of rightwing reactionary parties, and the pandemic. With a focus on historical legacies and current issues, the course highlights European diversity as well as challenges to multiculturalism and inclusion. 
Sabine Lang (International Studies)
5 credits, I&S, W            

DRAMA 202: Creative Leadership: A Course in Courage
This course examines sources of fear and the obstacles that keep us from becoming our most human, most successful self, whatever one’s field. The class is aimed at developing, demonstrating, and exercising courage and leadership's other critical skills: connecting and communicating.
Valerie Curtis-Newton (Drama)
5 credits, VLPA 

ASIAN 200: Writing Systems and Calligraphy in Asia
(Listed as “Introduction to Asian Languages & Literature”)
By learning the basics about writing systems, students improve their skills as language learners. This introduction to Asian languages covers comparative linguistics, cultural study, philosophy, languages, writing systems, and Indigenous approaches to language and literature. There will be opportunities to gain hands-on skills in calligraphy through practice with brushes and ink.
Chan Lu (Asian Languages & Literature)
5 credits, VLPA

GWSS 332 / GEOG 332:  Black Feminist Geographies
Stereotypes about blackness, gender, and sexuality are enmeshed with how we think, feel, and move about the landscapes we move through — and Black people are often seen as threatening presences that "need" to be policed, contained, and completely erased. This course considers how Black feminist approaches to geographic space reveal ways that these restrictive understandings of blackness, gender, and sexuality are refused and redefined.
Kemi Adeyemi (Gender, Women & Sexuality Studies)
5 credits, DIV, I&S

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