Spotlight on special topics

As students register for next semester’s classes, here is a look at those only offered this coming fall.

Spring may be slow to arrive, but registration season is fast upon us. While graduating seniors figure out what their future plans hold, the rest of the Hamline student body must grapple with a plethora of choices for fall course selections.

“I’m taking Stage Direction, and I’m really excited to work with the new theatre faculty and to compose some really interesting scenes,” sophomore Hannah Coleman said.

Junior Bashir Imady voiced his excitement for Hebrew, soon to be offered at Hamline for the first time.

“I’m happy that Hamline decided to expand our languages department,” Imady said. “I think Hebrew is a beautiful step forward in Hamline’s mission to have a diverse and intellectually stimulating faculty.”

With so many possibilities to choose from, it is only fitting to mention a few of the special topics courses which will only be one-time offers, such as Neurobiology with incoming Professor Bridget Jacques-Fricke.

“It’s going to be a biological perspective on nerve and brain function,” Jacques-Fricke said, explaining that various units of the course would dwell on topics such electrical signals within the nervous system and the basics of learning and memory. She hopes to see in her students excitement about neuroscience and the opportunity to see how the brain works in a biological, rather than psychological sense. Neurobiology requires a prerequisite of BIO 3060.

Professor Davu Seru will be teaching an English course entitled “1968 in U.S. Imagination,” which explores through literature the pivotal year of MLK’s murder as a cultural milestone.

“This course will explore history as a text, and literary representations of history,” Seru said. “I hope we’ll read a bunch of really cool stuff, and we’re going to be watching a lot of film and taking in pop culture.”

In the creative writing department, Professor Chris Martin will be teaching Ekphrastic Writing. Ekphrasis is defined as a verbal description of an artwork, and Martin says the class will be “a workshop/seminar hybrid where students are asked to read contemporary literature that takes its impetus from works of art ranging from painting to music to fashion and beyond”, but will mainly center around the creation of original literary works.

Another offering is Anthropology of Violence, taught by Professor Matt Sumera.

“[The course is about] looking at violence anthropologically, trying to understand both the manifestations of violence but also their cultural meanings,” Sumera said. “I think so often we use terms around violence or to describe violence in very politically oriented ways… we use words like precision, bombing or drone warfare and we might condone that, but we’ll talk about the illegality of other forms of violence in relation to, say, suicide bombing.” The class has a prerequisite of Intro to Anthropology.

While there are certainly a multitude of options for any student to consider, they must remember to meet with their faculty adviser before registering in order to obtain their required PIN.