Course Detail
Course Components:
Enrollment Information
Course Attribute:
Honors Course
Sustainability - Complete
This is a yearlong course intended for First-Year students. How are our understandings of Nature shaped and constructed, and to what ends? What is the role of Nature in society? Likewise, is Nature distinct from human civilization or an inherently “social” part of our world? In this course, we will endeavor to answer these questions, exploring and interrogating varied conceptions of Nature and their current relevance. Using a range of academic, literary, non-fiction, and primary texts, we will cover: how understandings of Nature have changed over time; normative framings of the environment (how should Nature be?); the role of aesthetics, class, race, gender, and culture in social relations with Nature; and how perspectives of Nature and society as either distinct or mutually constitutive might re-organize our understandings of the world around us and reposition us within it. In this colloquium, students will articulate, critically engage, and refine these ideas through in-class discussion and written analyses. Ultimately, the course aims to both complicate students’ assumptions of Nature and expand their understanding of our relationships to the material world around us.