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RUSSA 1103 : Conversation Practice
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Reinforces the speaking skills learned in RUSSA 1121. Homework includes assignments that must be done in the language lab or on the students' own computer. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 1104 : Conversation Practice
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Reinforces the speaking skills learned in RUSSA 1122.
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COML 1104 : FWS: Reading Films
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Van Le
We live in an image-saturated world. How do we make sense of the moving image and its powerful roles in shaping culture and mediating our relationship with the world? This course will equip students with the tools to understand and decipher film language. It introduces and interrogates the basic notions, technologies, terminologies, and theories of film analysis. We will study visual and compositional elements, like mise-en-scène, cinematography, editing, and sound. Films we discuss will include different geographies, genres, major directors, schools, and film movements, such as [X, Y, Z]. Through writing, students will learn to analyze films with accurate, medium-specific vocabulary, develop informed and nuanced arguments, and critically reflect on the position of the viewer.
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COML 1105 : FWS: Books with Big Ideas
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
John Un
Hannah Karmin
Vinh Pham
What do Frankenstein and Things Fall Apart have in common? What lies behind the fantastical stories of Aladdin? Do we have to like Garcia Márquez and Shakespeare? These texts and authors re-imagine the human experience at its most intriguing level. In this course, we will discuss human rights, intimacy, joy, isolation, and other controversies at the heart of these books. Throughout the semester, students will learn how to articulate an informed and nuanced position on these issues via formal practices in analytical readings, drafting, peer review, and self-editing. Actual selection of readings may vary depending on the instructor's focus.
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COML 1106 : FWS: Robots
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Jorge Cartaya
Marie Lambert
Hannah Cole
In 2015, Japan's SoftBank Robotics Corporation announced the world's first robot with feelings. Many people were excited, many more disturbed. If robots are simply, as the dictionary suggests, machines "designed to function in the place of a living agent," then what is so disturbing about them? Since robots are designed to replace human labor (first economic, and now also emotional), do they represent a threat as much as they do an aid? What happens when robots exceed their purpose, and become more humanlike? How do robots read, write, and feel? How do the activities of coding and writing, or decoding and reading differ? Students will be equipped with the vocabulary and writing strategies to rigorously analyze, compare, and debate the meaning of robots in the human imagination from different epochs, countries, languages, and media. In doing so, they will write in a variety of registers about plays such as R.U.R. by Karel Capek, who invented the term "robot". Other materials may include philosophical texts, fiction, videogames, films, graphic novels, and hip-hop concept albums.
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COML 1113 : FWS: Poetry's Image
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Jonathan Monroe
Where do we get our images of poetry, and of poets? Along with the images we find in poems themselves, how do poetry and poets figure in fiction and film, in philosophy and popular culture? How do such figures inform the images in poems, poetry's image? In what senses is poetry a "liberal art"? What is its relation to "self," to language, history, and politics, to other disciplines and discourses? This course will explore such issues in a wide range of short texts in both verse and prose, in fiction, film, and other media. The course's focus on "poetry image" will encourage students to make the connection between such self-reflexive practices in the texts they're reading and viewing and the texts they themselves produce in their own writing. Authors that we will study include Plato, Wordsworth, Poe, Dickinson, Baudelaire, Whitman, Rimbaud, Stein, Breton, Stevens, Neruda, Borges, Wittgenstein, Celan, Rich, Brathwaite, Waldrop, Collins, Swenson, and Bolaño.
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COML 1115 : FWS: On Alienation and Empathy
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Nitzan Tal
Have you ever been frustrated with only existing inside your own mind? In this course we will read what authors and thinkers have written about differences between groups of people – like race and gender – and about the difference between any two people, which makes it hard to feel like we "really know" someone. We will write about how these differences relate to each other, and what we would want to change about them. We will read stories that allow us to reach across distance and know something, but also how, in the information age, they demonstrate what we cannot know.
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COML 1119 : FWS: A Taste of Russian Literature
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Explore the culinary tradition and culture of Russia in broad historical, geopolitical and socioeconomic context through the lens of Russian folklore, short stories of Gogol, Chekhov, and Bulgakov, works of contemporary Russian-American writers, visual art, and international film. The literary journey will take you from the lavish tables of the XVIII century aristocracy, to the hardship and austerity of GULAG prison, to the colorful and savory regional fare of the former Russian Empire and Soviet Union, to the fridge and pantry staples in the everyday life of Russian family. Your writing assignments will help you develop critical thinking and argumentative skills, precision and clarity of expression, ability to write with discipline, creativity, and sense of style.
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RUSSA 1121 : Elementary Russian through Film
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Gives a thorough grounding in all the language skills; listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Course materials include clips from original Russian films and televisions programs. Homework includes assignments that must be done in the language lab or on the students' own computers. Note the RUSSA 1103 option. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 1122 : Elementary Russian through Film
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Gives a thorough grounding in all the language skills: listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Course materials include clips from original Russian films and television programs. Homework includes assignments that must be done in the language lab or on the students' own computers. Note the RUSSA 1104 option. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 1125 : Reading Russian Press
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
The emphasis is on reading unabridged articles on a variety of topics from current Russian web pages and translating them into English; a certain amount of discussion (in Russian) may also be undertaken. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 1126 : Reading Russian Press
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Viktoria Tsimberov
The emphasis is on reading unabridged articles on a variety of topics from current Russian web pages and translating them into English; a certain amount of discussion (in Russian) may also be undertaken. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 1131 : Self-Paced Elementary Russian I
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Slava Paperno
RUSSA 1131 and RUSSA 1132 cover the standard Cornell first-year Russian language curriculum at a slower (or faster) pace than RUSSA 1103 -RUSSA 1104 and RUSSA 1121 -RUSSA 1122, the pace to be chosen by each individual student in consultation with the instructor. Somewhat larger homework reading, writing, and online assignments with fewer and shorter meetings with the instructors, one-on-one or in very small groups.
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RUSSA 1132 : Self-Paced Elementary Russian II
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Viktoria Tsimberov
RUSSA 1131 and RUSSA 1132 cover the standard Cornell first-year Russian language curriculum at a slower (or faster) pace than RUSSA 1103 -RUSSA 1104 and RUSSA 1121 -RUSSA 1122, the pace to be chosen by each individual student in consultation with the instructor. Somewhat larger homework reading, writing, and online assignments with fewer and shorter meetings with the instructors, one-on-one or in very small groups.
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COML 2000 : Introduction to Visual Studies
Crosslisted as: AMST 2000, ARTH 2000, VISST 2000 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Andrew Moisey
This course introduces the field of Visual Studies.  Visual Studies seeks to define and improve our visual relationship to nature and culture after the modern surge in technology and knowledge.  It contains objects, images, and problems that lie beyond the Art History and experimental science, yet is grown from both cultures.  It teaches the physical and legal limits of human, animal, and machine vision, how knowledge and power get into images, how spectacle drives the economy, and techniques of analysis that can deliver fresh perspectives across disciplines.
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COML 2030 : Introduction to Comparative Literature
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Debra Castillo
Natalie Melas
Take your love for literature into uncharted waters. "Introduction to Comparative Literature" journeys beyond national and disciplinary borders to explore the far-reaching implications of our increasingly globalized world. In this fast-paced survey of the field, you'll be exposed to the cutting-edge of the discipline as we survey debates in world literature, literary theory and philosophy. Exploring a range of literatures from across the globe, we'll read authors including Ovid, Aimé Césaire, Jorge Luis Borges, Franz Kafka, and Kazuo Ishiguro. Punctuated by special guest lectures by innovative scholars in the field, this course will expose you to a wide array of topics: postcolonial literature, literary theory, animal studies, ecocriticism, and media studies.  Students will emerge from this course with new awareness of the global literary scene and with the ability to read critically and write with clarity.
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COML 2035 : Science Fiction
Crosslisted as: BSOC 2131, ENGL 2035, STS 2131 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Anindita Banerjee
Science fiction is not merely a literary genre but a whole way of being, thinking, and acting in the modern world. This course explores classic and contemporary science fiction from Frankenstein to The Hunger Games alongside a rich array of fiction and films from Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America. Our discussions will position these works vis-à-vis seminal thinkers, ranging from Plato to Descartes and Donna Haraway to Paul Crutzen, who ask the same questions as science fiction does about our selves, our world, and our future.
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COML 2036 : Literature and the Elements of Nature
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Anindita Banerjee
Literature has long been understood as a window into the human condition, with nature serving as its mere backdrop. How would our relationship with literature change if we reversed this hierarchy? In an age when human activity has irreversibly transformed all four elements of nature -- air, water, earth, and fire – how do we rediscover the active role that the elements have always played in the constitution of the literary imagination? Through a journey with texts from six continents, this course offers a new model of world literature, one predicated not on social actors and cultural forces alone but on the configurations, flows, and disruptions of the elements. In the process, it addresses the place and work of literature in an increasingly threatened planet.
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COML 2041 : World Literature in Question
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Natalie Melas
This course will explore the question: What is world literature?  Is it all the literature ever written everywhere in the world?  All the world's greatest books? All the books a person needs to read to become a true citizen or denizen of the world?   But then, what is a world?  How does the labor of the imagination construct a world or the world? How can we relate the world of literature to other worlds such as that of history and historical experience?  Readings will range widely across time and world space and will include attention to contemporary theories of world literature.
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COML 2050 : Introduction to Poetry
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Nancy Pollak
Could a meter have a meaning?  Could there be a reason for a rhyme?  And what is lost and gained in translation?  We'll think about these and other questions in this introduction to poetry.  We'll see how poems are put together and we'll learn how to figure them out.  Poets may include Herbert, Hardy, Hopkins, Housman, Dickinson, Frost, W. C. Williams, Gw. Brooks, Heine, Pushkin, Lermontov, Akhmatova.  All reading is in English; we'll make use of non-English originals when possible.
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RUSSA 2203 : Intermediate Composition and Conversation
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Guided conversation, translation, reading, pronunciation, and grammar review, emphasizing the development of accurate and idiomatic expression in the language. Course materials include video clips from an original Russian feature film and work with Russian web sites, in addition to the textbook. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 2204 : Intermediate Composition and Conversation
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Guided conversation, translation, reading, pronunciation, and grammar review, emphasizing the development of accurate and idiomatic expression in the language. Course materials include video clips from an original Russian feature film and work with Russian web sites, in addition to the textbook. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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COML 2235 : New Visions in African Cinema
Crosslisted as: ASRC 2235, ENGL 2935 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Naminata Diabate
This undergraduate course introduces the formal and topical innovations that African cinema has experienced since its inception in the 1960s. Sections will explore, among others, Nollywood, sci-fi, and ideological cinema. Films include: Abderrahmane Sissako's Bamako, Mohamed Camara's Dakan, Djibril Diop Mambéty's Touki-Bouki, Cheikh Oumar Sissoko's Finzan, Anne-Laure Folly's Women with Open Eyes, Ousmane Sembène's Camp de Thiaroye, Jean-Pierre Bekolo's Quartier Mozart.
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COML 2241 : Games of Thrones: Multi-Media Fantasies
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Andrea Bachner
In this course we will use the Game of Thrones series as a way of familiarizing ourselves with different tools of cultural analysis and approaches in literary theory (such as narratology, psychoanalysis, media studies, queer theory, disability studies, animal studies etc.). A strong emphasis will be placed on the different media "avatars" of the series: novels, TV series, graphic novels, spin-offs, fan fiction, blogs, fan art, etc.
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COML 2251 : Poetry's Image
Crosslisted as: ENGL 2951 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Jonathan Monroe
Where do we get our images of poets, and of poetry? Along with the images we find in poems themselves, how do poetry and poets figure in fiction and film, in music and popular culture? How do such figures inform both the images we find in poems and poetry's own image? What is poetry's relation to other genres and discourses, to self and language, history and politics? Exploring such issues in verse and prose, in fiction, film, and other media, including among others Blake, Wordsworth, Keats, Dickinson, Poe, Baudelaire, Pound, Williams, Neruda, Parra, Bolaño, and Dylan, the course will arc toward impactful recent interventions by such contemporary intermedial artists as Lin-Manuel Miranda, Beyoncé, and Kendrick Lamar.
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COML 2290 : Introduction to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies
Crosslisted as: FGSS 2290, LGBT 2290 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Naminata Diabate
This course offers an introduction to the questions, topics, approaches, and theories that characterize the field of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Studies. Using an interdisciplinary approach (literature, history, anthropology, media, law, and science), we will explore categories such as sexual norms, human rights, power, feminism, queerness, gender/sex, censorship/ moral panic, and identity in Euro-American as well as in postcolonial and global terms. Through a variety of films, primary and secondary sources, you will formulate questions and provide answers to the relationship of these categories with organizing structures, including race, ethnicity, religion, family, marriage, reproduction, the economy, and the state. While we investigate how sexual identities in African, South American, and Asian contexts converge with or challenge Euro-American discourses, we will look at the tools LGBT studies offers for understanding power and culture.
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COML 2293 : Middle Eastern Cinema
Crosslisted as: JWST 2793, NES 2793, PMA 2493, VISST 2193 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Deborah Starr
Film industries in the Middle East, as in much of the rest of the world, emerged out of efforts at the national level. In the Arab world and Israel, the film industries reflect upon struggles of self-determination. The Iranian film industry underwent significant changes following the Islamic Revolution of 1979. By viewing a range of films from the Arab world, including North Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean, as well as from Turkey, Israel, and Iran, we will consider the significance of these national rubrics and how they have shaped the work of filmmakers throughout the Middle East.   Films also reach beyond the boundaries of the nation, and so, we will consider how these films transcend national borders. On the one hand we will consider limit factors, like censorship, and the role of language and dialect on film viewership and distribution. And, on the other hand, we will consider the influence of external forces, such as the influence of foreign film markets in Europe and North America on filmmakers in the Middle East, as well as the effects of foreign financing—both from Europe and the Gulf States.  All films will be screened with English subtitles.
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COML 2350 : The Medieval Book: Objects and Texts
Crosslisted as: FREN 2350, ITAL 2350, MEDVL 2350 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Laurent Ferri
The course provides a survey of the book from ca. 1100 to 1500, with emphasis on the development of the book in Western Europe, especially France, Germany, Italy, the Low Countries, and Spain.  It focuses on the many roles of the book in medieval societies, with special attention paid to production, dissemination, and reading practices. The collection of manuscripts and incunabula in Kroch Library allows a "hands-on" approach to learning.  Along the way, we will read excerpts from some of the most influential texts of the Middle Ages, such as the Song of the Nibelungs: The Romance of Alexander; the Scvias of St. Hildegard of Bingen: Dante's Divine Comedy; Jacobus de Varagine's Golden Legend; and the travel narratives of Marco Polo or Bernhard von Breydenbach.
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COML 2523 : Islamophobia and Judeophobia
Crosslisted as: GOVT 2523, JWST 2523, NES 2523, RELST 2523 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Ross Brann
Islamophobia and Judeophobia are ideas and like all ideas they have a history of their own. Although today many might think of Islamophobia or Judeophobia as unchangeable---fear of and hatred for Islam and Muslims or Judaism and Jews---these ideas and the social and political practices informed by them have varied greatly over time and place. They even intersected during the Middle Age and in Ottoman times when "the Jew" was frequently represented as allied with "The Muslim". The first part of this course traces the history, trajectory, and political agency of Judeophobia and Islamophobia in texts and other forms of culture from late antiquity through the present. The second part of the course is devoted to modernity and the present especially in Europe and the United States focusing on representational practices---how Muslims/Islam and Jews/Judaism are portrayed in various discourses including the media, film and on the internet. We will investigate how these figures (the Muslim, the Jew) serve as a prism through which we can understand various social, political and cultural processes and the interests of those who produce and consume them.
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COML 2580 : Imagining the Holocaust
Crosslisted as: ENGL 2580, JWST 2580 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Daniel Schwarz
How is the memory of the Holocaust kept alive by means of the literary and visual imagination? Within the historical context of the Holocaust and how and why it occurred, we shall examine major and widely read Holocaust narratives that have shaped the way we understand and respond to the Holocaust. We also study ethical and psychological issues about how and why people behave in dire circumstances. We shall begin with first-person reminiscences—Wiesel's Night, Levi's Survival at Auschwitz, and The Diary of Anne Frank—before turning to realistic fictions such as Kineally's Schindler's List (and Spielberg's film), Kertesz's Fateless, Kosinski's The Painted Bird, and Ozick's "The Shawl." We shall also read the mythopoeic vision of Schwarz-Bart's The Last of the Just, the illuminating distortions of Epstein's King of the Jews, the Kafkaesque parable of Appelfeld's Badenheim 1939, and the fantastic cartoons of Spiegelman's Maus books.
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COML 2700 : Forbidden Sex: Arabian Nights
Crosslisted as: NES 2700 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Parisa Vaziri
This course explores the millenia-long history of remediation of this ancient Perso-Arabic text, with specific attention to the transmission of phobic tropes about miscegenation. We will track the history of the Nights' translation and dissemination throughout the Middle East and Europe, attending to its adaptations in various media.
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COML 2703 : Thinking Media
Crosslisted as: ENGL 2703, MUSIC 2703, PMA 2703 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Roger Moseley
From hieroglyphs to HTML, ancient poetry to audiotape, and Plato's cave to virtual reality, "Thinking Media" offers a multidisciplinary introduction to the most influential media formats of the last three millennia. Featuring an array of guests from across Cornell, including faculty from Communication, Comparative Literature, English, German Studies, Information Science, Music, and Performing & Media Arts, the course will present diverse perspectives on how to think with, against, and about media in relation to the public sphere and private life, archaeology and science fiction, ethics and aesthetics, identity and difference, labor and play, knowledge and power, expression and surveillance, and the generation and analysis of data.
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COML 2760 : Desire
Crosslisted as: ENGL 2760, FGSS 2760, LGBT 2760, PMA 2680 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Ellis Hanson
"Language is a skin," the critic Roland Barthes once wrote: "I rub my language against the other. It is as if I had words instead of fingers, or fingers at the tip of my words. My language trembles with desire." Sexual desire has a history, even a literary history, which we will examine through an introductory survey of European dramatic literature from the Ancient Greeks to the present, as well as classic readings in sexual theory, including Plato, Freud, Foucault, and contemporary feminist and queer theory.
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COML 3010 : Hispanic Theatre Production
Crosslisted as: LATA 3010, LSP 3010 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Debra Castillo
Students develop a specific dramatic text for full-scale production. The course involves selection of an appropriate text, close analysis of the literary aspects of the play, and group evaluation of its representational value and effectiveness. All students in the course are involved in some aspects of production of the play, and write a final paper as a course requirement. Credit is variable depending upon the student's role in play production: a minimum of 50 hours of work is required for 1 credit; a maximum of 3 credits are awarded for 100 hours or more of work.
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COML 3021 : Literary Theory on the Edge
Crosslisted as: COML 6159, ENGL 3021, ENGL 6021, PMA 3421 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Cathy Caruth
Philip Lorenz
Without literary theory, there is no idea of literature, of criticism, of culture. While exciting theoretical paradigms emerged in the late 20th century, including structuralism and poststructuralism, this course extends theoretical inquiry into its most exciting current developments, including performance studies, media theory and cinema/media studies, the digital humanities, trauma theory, trangender studies, and studies of the Anthropocene. Taught by two Cornell professors active in the field, along with occasional invited guests, lectures and class discussions will provide students with a facility for close textual analysis, a knowledge of major currents of thought in the humanities, and an appreciation for the uniqueness and complexity of language and media. This course may involve presentation of performance art.  Course open to all levels; no previous knowledge of literary or cultural theory required.
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COML 3041 : Modern Primitives
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Natalie Melas
What is "modern"? What is "primitive"? Through the lens of contemporary debates, this course will examine the complex conjuncture of  art, literature, anthropology and colonial racism in the early decades of the twentieth century, from Cubist painting to surrealism.  Of central concern will be the figure of the "fetish" in its artifactual, economic and psychic dimensions and also the richly paradoxical position of  artists and thinkers of color caught in the nexus of "primitivism" and "modernism."   Authors may include Pablo Picasso, Jospehine Baker, Lydia Cabrera, Claude McKay, Lucien Levy-Bruhl, James Clifford, Sigmund Freud, Joseph Conrad, Langston Hugues, Karl Marx, André Breton, Pierre Mabille, Wifreo Lam, Leopold Sédar Senghor.
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COML 3115 : Video and New Media: Art, Theory, Politics
Crosslisted as: ENGL 3115, PMA 3515, ROMS 3115, VISST 3115 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Timothy Murray
The course will offer an overview of video art, alternative documentary video, and digital installation and networked art. It will analyze four phases of video and new media: (1) the development of video from its earliest turn away from television; (2) video's relation to art and installation; (3) video's migration into digital art; (4) the relation of video and new media to visual theory and social movements. Screenings will include early political and feminist video (Ant Farm, Rosler, Paper Tiger TV, Jones), conceptual video of the '80s and '90s (Vasulka, Lucier, Viola, Hill), gay and multicultural video of the '90s (Muntadas, Riggs, Piper, Fung, Parmar), networked and activist new media of the 21st century (Critical Art Ensemble, Electronic Disturbance Theater, SubRosa, Preemptive Media). Secondary theoretical readings on postmodernism, video theory, multicultural theory, and digital culture will provide students with a cultural and political context for the discussion of video and new media style, dissemination, and reception.
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COML 3261 : Global Cinema I
Crosslisted as: PMA 3550, PMA 6550, VISST 3175 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Veronica Fitzpatrick
Global Cinema I and II together offer an overview of international film history from the late nineteenth century to today. Through a focus on key films and significant epochs, the course traces the evolution of form, style and genre, the medium's changing technologies and business models, as well as film's relation to broader cultural, social and political contexts. Screenings of narrative, documentary and experimental films will be accompanied by readings in film theory and history. Global Cinema I covers the period from 1895 to 1960. Precise topics will vary from year to year, but may include: early silent cinema; the emergence of Hollywood as industry and a "classical" narrative form; Soviet, German, French and Chinese film cultures; the coming of sound; interwar documentary and avant-garde movements; American cinema in the age of the studio system; Italian Neorealism; the post-war avant-garde.
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RUSSA 3300 : Directed Studies
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Viktoria Tsimberov
Slava Paperno
Taught on a specialized basis for students with special projects (e.g., to supplement a non-language course or thesis work).
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RUSSA 3300 : Directed Studies
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Slava Paperno
E Browne
Viktoria Tsimberov
Raissa Krivitsky
Taught on a specialized basis for students with special projects (e.g., to supplement a non-language course or thesis work).
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RUSSA 3303 : Advanced Composition and Conversation
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Reading, writing, and conversation: current Russian films (feature and documentary), newspapers, television programs, Russian web sites, and other materials are used. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 3304 : Advanced Composition and Conversation
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Reading, writing, and conversation: current Russian films (feature and documentary), newspapers, television programs, Russian web sites, and other materials are used. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 3305 : Reading and Writing for Heritage Speakers of Russian
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Raissa Krivitsky
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Intended for students who speak grammatically correct Russian but do not know Russian grammar and have not learned to read or write Russian well (or have not learned written Russian at all). May be taught slightly faster or slower in a given year, depending on the needs and interests of the students. Two classes a week teach writing and grammar and include related reading. These classes are required, and the students who take them receive 2 credit hours. The third (optional) class teaches reading and discussion, and grants an additional credit hour. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 3306 : Creative Writing for Heritage Speakers
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Slava Paperno
Viktoria Tsimberov
Creative writing for heritage speakers of Russian. Writing short (one page for each class) texts in Russian in a variety of genres: personal letters, blog entries, news articles, technical descriptions, official documents, short stories, and the like. Two meetings per week if taken for 2 credits hours. An optional third weekly meeting when taken for 3 credit hours has short reading assignments from contemporary literary and non-literary texts. The course is a continuation of RUSSA 3305 but may also be taken by qualified students who have not completed RUSSA 3305. Issues of style and grammar are discussed in every class. The course is primarily for students who learned to speak Russian at home, but students with other backgrounds may be eligible as well. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 3309 : Advanced Reading
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Viktoria Tsimberov
Designed to teach advanced reading and discussion skills. In seminar 101, weekly reading assignments include 20-40 pages of unabridged Russian, fiction or non-fiction. In seminar 102, the weekly assignments are 80-100 pages. Discussion of the reading is conducted entirely in Russian and centered on the content and analysis of the assigned selection.
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RUSSA 3310 : Advanced Reading
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Viktoria Tsimberov
Designed to teach advanced reading and discussion skills. In seminar 101, weekly reading assignments include 20-40 pages of unabridged Russian, fiction or non-fiction. In seminar 102, the weekly assignments are 80-100 pages. This course may be taken as a continuation of RUSSA 3309, but it may also be taken by itself. Discussion of the reading is conducted entirely in Russian and centered on the content and analysis of the assigned selection. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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COML 3338 : Border Theory/Border Practice
Crosslisted as: COML 6338, LSP 3338, LSP 6338 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Anindita Banerjee
Debra Castillo
As human migration around the world reaches a crisis unseen since WWII and as fences and walls once again dominate political rhetoric, how do we reckon with borders – not just as a metaphor but as a way of life? By examining how ideas and practices of borders interact and collide with their physical and embodied realities, this course approaches one of the most urgent questions of our time in a comparative, transnational framework. Starting with the U.S.-Mexico border and human flows across the Indian subcontinent, we will venture into numerous other zones to develop conceptual frameworks and critical vocabularies for borders in the twenty-first century.
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COML 3485 : Cinematic Cities
Crosslisted as: FREN 3485, ITAL 3485, PMA 3485, SPAN 3485 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Patricia Keller
Cecelia Lawless
Description
COML 3541 : Introduction to Critical Theory
Crosslisted as: ENGL 3920, GERST 3620, GOVT 3636 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Paul Fleming
Shortly after the last election, The New Yorker published an article entitled "The Frankfurt School Knew Trump was Coming." This course examines what the Frankfurt School knew by introducing students to Critical Theory, beginning with its roots in the 19th century (i.e., Kant, Hegel, Marx, and Nietzsche) and then focusing on its most prominent manifestation in the 20th century, the Frankfurt School (e.g., Kracauer, Adorno, Benjamin, Horkheimer, Marcuse), particularly in its engagement with politics, society, culture, and literature (e.g. Brecht, Kafka, and Beckett).  Established in 1920s at the Institute for Social Research, the assorted circle of scholars comprising the Frankfurt School played a pivotal role in the intellectual developments of post-war American and European social, political, and aesthetic theory: from analyses of authoritarianism and democracy to commentaries on the entertainment industry, high art, commodity fetishism, and mass society. This introduction to Critical Theory explores both the prescience of these diverse thinkers for today's world ("what they knew") as well as what they perhaps could not anticipate in the 21st century (e.g., developments in technology, economy, political orders), and thus how to critically address these changes today.
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COML 3580 : Imagining Migration in Film and Literature
Crosslisted as: AMST 3581, GERST 3581, PMA 3481, VISST 3581 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Leslie Adelson
Sabine Haenni
What role should imaginative arts play in debates about transnational migration, one of the principal factors re-shaping community and communication today?  Focusing on literature and film from the late 20th and early 21st centuries, with primary examples drawn from Germany, France and the United States—in relation to Turkey, Hungary, Tunisia, Iran, Nigeria, China, Mexico, and Japan—this course explores how creative arts rework the fabric of social life affected by migration.  Seminar-style discussion of assigned readings and viewings, with occasional lectures on other arts and regions.  Thematic units organized around key concepts such as borders and movement, ethnoscapes and citizenship, reading and viewing, labor and leisure, cityscapes and place-making, mediascapes and personhood, lawfulness and illegality, language and speech, art and perception.   
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COML 3681 : Slavery and Visual Culture
Crosslisted as: AMST 3506, ARTH 3506, ASRC 3506, VISST 3506 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Cheryl Finley
This interdisciplinary undergraduate lecture examines the visual culture of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade from the 16th century to the present. Lectures present artifacts, prints, paintings, photographs, sculpture, film and installation art that images the history of slavery and its profound contemporary resonance. Lectures and assignments consider the following themes: how does the gaze structure vision and influence the control of historical narratives? Which themes dominate the visual culture of slavery? How does visual culture encode memory, violence or racism? How did the visual culture of slavery produce and circulate new technologies of vison? Where is the history of slavery visible in the built environment or the local landscape? Students study artifacts in the May Anti-Slavery Collection at Kroch Library and artworks at the Johnson Museum. Field trip to nearby anti-slavery sites of memory.
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COML 3743 : Minorities of the Middle East
Crosslisted as: JWST 3655, NES 3655, NES 6655 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Deborah Starr
This course examines the historic diversity of the modern Middle East, exploring histories of inter-communal contact and conflict. We begin by investigating the legacy of the Ottoman Empire and the impact of its dissolution. We will focus our attention on commercial centers that fostered inter-communal relations, as well as investigating sites of strife and cases of minority repression. We will read histories, memoirs, and fiction, and view films that help us better understand inter-communal relations, tensions, and conflict. We will also interrogate the terms for exploring a range distinctions among majority and minority populations including: religious difference (Muslims, Christians, and Jews); divisions of religious rite (Sunni and Shi'a); entho-linguistic minorities (Armenians and Kurds); national identities (Israelis and Palestinians); cultures of origin (Mizrahi, Sephardi, and Ashkenazi Jews). We will explore how these divisions inform urgent current conflicts: the civil war in Syria and the refugee crisis; the civil war in Iraq and the campaign by ISIS against minorities; as well as tensions between Saudi Arabia and Iran.
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COML 3780 : What is a People? The Social Contract and its Discontents
Crosslisted as: FREN 3780, GOVT 3786 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Tracy McNulty
Description
COML 3781 : Freud and the Invention of Psychoanalysis
Crosslisted as: FGSS 3651, FREN 3560, GERST 3561, ROMS 3560, STS 3651 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Tracy McNulty
Psychoanalysis considers the human being not as an object of treatment, but as a subject who is called upon to elaborate an unconscious knowledge about what is disrupting her life, through analysis of dreams, symptoms, bungled actions, slips of the tongue, and repetitive behaviors.  Freud finds that these apparently irrational acts and behavior are ordered by the logic of the fantasy, which provides a mental representation of a traumatic childhood experience and the effects it unleashes in the mind and body-effects he called drives.  As "unbound" energies, the drives give rise to symptoms, repetitive acts, and fantasmatic stagings that menace our health and sometimes threaten social coexistence, but that also rise to the desires, creative acts, and social projects we identify as the essence of human life.  Readings will include fundamental texts on the unconscious, repression, fantasy, and the death drive, as well as case studies and speculative essays on mythology, art, religion, and group psychology.  Students will be asked to keep a dream journal and to work on their unconscious formations, and will have the chance to produce creative projects as well as analytic essays.
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COML 3800 : Poetry and Poetics of the Americas
Crosslisted as: AMST 3820, ENGL 3910, LATA 3800, SPAN 3800 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Jonathan Monroe
As globalization draws the Americas ever closer together, reshaping our sense of a common and uncommon American culture, what claims might be made for a distinctive, diverse poetry and poetics of the America? How might we characterize its dominant forms and alternative practices? What shared influences, affiliations, concerns and approaches might we find and what differences emerge? Ranging across North and South America, Central America and the Caribbean, this course will place in conversation such figures as Poe, Stein, Eliot, Pound, Williams, Neruda, Vallejo, Borges, Parra, Césaire, Walcott, Bolaño, Espada, Waldrop, Vicuña, Hong, and Rankine.
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COML 3811 : Theory and Practice of Translation
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Nancy Pollak
The modern field of translation studies overlaps most closely with literary studies, but it intersects also with fields such as linguistics and politics.  The intense work in translation studies in the last few decades follows a long history of thinking about translation.  The activity of translation has been viewed over many centuries as betrayal, as an inferior form of literary production, as extending the life of the literary work, as a creative process equal to the original.  In this course we will examine various approaches to the translation of literary texts, both prose and verse.  We will read texts by theorists and by translators, possibly including Cicero, Schleiermacher, Benjamin, Nabokov, Jakobson, Nida, Toury, Venuti, Bassnett and others.  We will also read and analyze translations of literary works, with a focus on classics of Russian literature.  Practical translation work will illuminate theoretical readings.
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COML 3815 : Reading Nabokov
Crosslisted as: ENGL 3790, RUSSL 3385 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Gavriel Shapiro
This course offers an exciting trip to the intricate world of Nabokov's fiction. After establishing himself in Europe as a distinguished Russian writer, Nabokov, at the outbreak of World War II, came to the United States where he reestablished himself, this time as an American writer of world renown. In our analysis of Nabokov's fictional universe, we shall focus on his Russian corpus of works, from Mary (1926) to The Enchanter (writ. 1939), all in English translation, and then shall examine the two widely read novels which he wrote in English in Ithaca while teaching literature at Cornell: Lolita (1955) and Pnin (1957).
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COML 3891 : Occupied France Through Film
Crosslisted as: FREN 3840 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Mitchell Greenberg
Description
COML 3985 : Literature of Leaving China
Crosslisted as: ASIAN 3329, CAPS 3329 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Nick Admussen
Ever since the creation of the concept of a culturally and geographically stable center in China, people have been intentionally excluded from that center. Disgraced officials are sent to far-flung provinces, loyalists to past regimes hide out across China's borders, and dissidents have their entry visas revoked, making it impossible for them to return home. The experiences of these people, and the poems and stories they write, tell us a great deal about what it means and how it feels to be included and excluded. What is the difference between the way China looks from the inside and the way it looks from the outside? Who has the power to decide who gets to live in China, and how and why do they use it? What is the relationship between our identities and our homes? Texts studied will range from 300 BCE to the present; all will be read and discussed in English. 
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COML 4090 : Spinoza and the New Spinozism
Crosslisted as: GERST 4290, GOVT 4769, JWST 4790 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Geoffrey Waite
Spinoza was excommunicated, wrote under death threats, and has remained a scandal to philosophy, psychoanalysis, politics, ethics, literature. "Every philosopher has two philosophies, his own and Spinoza's" (Bergson); and "the savage anomaly" (Negri) exerted profound influence on Marx, Nietzsche, Freud. We will introduce Spinoza and his legacy, from the "atheism controversy" in the eighteenth century to today's "New Spinozists," who have been developing anti-Kantian and anti-Hegelian formulations of burning contemporary questions. With Spinoza, we ask: "What is freedom, and whose power does it serve?" (Leo Strauss)-especially if "The new world system, the ultimate third stage of capitalism is for us the absent totality, Spinoza's God or Nature, the ultimate (indeed perhaps the only) referent, the true ground of Being in our time" (Jameson).
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COML 4190 : Independent Study
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Tracy McNulty
COML 4190 and COML 4200 may be taken independently of each other. Undergraduate student and faculty advisor to determine course of study and credit hours.
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COML 4200 : Independent Study
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Karen Pinkus
Frederick Ahl
Andrea Bachner
Cathy Caruth
Debra Castillo
Naminata Diabate
Laurent Dubreuil
Natalie Melas
Jonathan Monroe
Nancy Pollak
Shalom Shoer
Geoffrey Waite
COML 4190 and COML 4200 may be taken independently of each other. Undergraduate student and faculty advisor to determine course of study and credit hours.
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COML 4211 : Beyond the Limits of the Human: Exploration in German Literature
Crosslisted as: ENGL 4972, GERST 4211 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Peter Gilgen
This course focuses on literature as a model and harbinger of posthumanism. The German tradition in particular is rich in literary texts that offer posthuman constellations and experiences avant la lettre. Other texts, which often show a significant German literary or philosophical influence, will also be included. In addition to analyzing specific historical contexts and developments that encouraged literary sorties beyond the limits of the human, we will closely examine literature as a privileged medium of such transgression.
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COML 4229 : Culture, Cognition, Humanities
Crosslisted as: COGST 4150, COGST 6150, PSYCH 4150 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Morten Christiansen
Description
COML 4240 : The Animal
Crosslisted as: ENGL 4260, GERST 4260, GOVT 4279 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Peter Gilgen
In recent years literary representations and philosophical discussions of the status of the animal vis-à-vis the human have abounded.  In this course, we will track the literary phenomenology of animality.  In addition we will read philosophical texts that deal with the questions of animal rights and of the metaphysical implications of the "animal."  Readings may include, among others, Agamben, Aristotle, Berger, the Bible, Calvino, Coetzee, Darwin, Derrida, Descartes, Donhauser, Gorey, Haraway, Hegel, Heidegger, Herzog, Kafka, Kant, La Mettrie, de Mandeville, Montaigne, Nietzsche, Ozeki, Rilke, Schopenhauer, Singer, Sorabji, Sterchi, Stevens, de Waal, Wittgenstein, Wolfe.  A reading knowledge of German and French would be helpful.
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COML 4250 : Marx, Nietzsche, Freud
Crosslisted as: GERST 4250, GOVT 4735 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Geoffrey Waite
This is an introduction to the three 'master thinkers' who have helped determine the discourses of modernity and post-modernity. We consider basic aspects of their work: (a) specific critical and historical analyses; (b) theoretical and methodological writings; (c) programs and manifestos; and (d) styles of argumentation, documentation, and persuasion. This also entails an introduction, for non-specialists, to essential problems of political economy, continental philosophy, psychology, and literary and cultural criticism. Second, we compare the underlying assumptions and the interpretive yields of the various disciplines and practices founded by Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud: historical materialism and communism, existentialism and power-knowledge analysis, and psychoanalysis, respectively. We also consider how these three writers have been fused into a single constellation, 'Marx-Nietzsche-Freud,' and how they have been interpreted by others, including L. Althusser, A. Badiou, A. Camus, H. Cixous, G. Deleuze, J. Derrida, M. Foucault, H.-G. Gadamer, M. Heidegger, L. Irigaray, K. Karatani, J. Lacan, P. Ricoeur, L. Strauss, S. Zizek.
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COML 4351 : Antagonism
Crosslisted as: COML 6351, ENGL 4991 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Parisa Vaziri
In contemporary scholarship on race, temporality mediates the relationship between historicity and human difference by way of alignments and affiliations between time and interiority; immediacy and transparency; and complementarily, exteriority and opacity. In contrast to its popular denotations, race scholarship thus recognizes "mediation" as antagonistic, rather than conciliatory. We map the discursive lines shaping contemporary scholarship which grasps for the philosophical grounds of race and racialization at the infrastructural levels of time, space, and ontology. In tandem, we consider media that reflect and engage questions raised by the antagonistic mediation of racial difference. Readings may include works by Denise Ferreira da Silva, Sylvia Wynter, David Marriott, Fred Moten, Nahum Dimitri Chandler, David Llloyd, Michelle Wright, Calvin Warren, Martin Heidegger, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida. 
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COML 4368 : Reading Édouard Glissant
Crosslisted as: ASRC 4368, ASRC 6368, COML 6368, FREN 4368, FREN 6368 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Natalie Melas
This seminar will focus on the writings of the polymorphous Martinican poet and thinker, Édouard Glissant (1928-2011).  We will attend to the historical context of French colonialism, particularly in the Caribbean, that gives his writing part of its impetus and to the anticolonial intellectuals with whom he engages (chiefly Aimé Césaire and Frantz Fanon) as well as to his major self-professed influences (William Faulkner, Saint-John Perse, Hegel) and to an array of interlocutors and fellow-travelers as well as a few dissenters. The seminar will examine the main preoccupations of Glissant's writing (world histories of dispossession and plantation slavery, creolization, Relation, opacity, flux, transversality, Caribbean landscapes as figures of thought, the All-World, etc.) but our focus will be on reading Glissant and attending carefully to the implications of his poetics and of his language for decolonial thought.
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RUSSA 4414 : Advanced Conversation and Stylistics
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Viktoria Tsimberov
Involves discussion, in Russian, of authentic Russian texts and films (feature or documentary) in a variety of non-literary styles and genres. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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COML 4415 : The Holocaust in Postwar Culture (1945-1961)
Crosslisted as: COML 6415, FREN 4415, FREN 6415, GERST 4411, GERST 6411, GOVT 4786, GOVT 6786, HIST 4233, HIST 6233, JWST 4410, JWST 6415, ROMS 4410, ROMS 6410 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Enzo Traverso
There is an astonishing discrepancy between our perception of the Holocaust as a central event of the twentieth century and its marginal place in postwar culture.  It is during those years, nevertheless, that the destruction of European Jews aroused an intellectual debate whose philosophical, political, and literary contributions constitute landmarks for contemporary culture and criticism.  The course will explore the reasons for such a discrepancy, reconstructing the steps of the integration of the Holocaust into our historical consciousness.  It will analyze some of the most significant attempts to think such a trauma made by German-Jewish exiles (Arendt, Adorno, Anders), the survivors of the Nazi camps (Améry, Levi, Celan, Antelme), as well as the public intellectuals on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean (Sartre, Bataille, MacDonald, etc).
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COML 4471 : Premodern/Postmodern
Crosslisted as: GERST 4471, GERST 6471, MEDVL 4471, MEDVL 6471 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Erik Born
Description
RUSSA 4491 : Reading Course: Russian Literature in the Original Language
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Viktoria Tsimberov
Slava Paperno
Raissa Krivitsky
To be taken in conjunction with any Russian literature course at the advanced level. Students receive 1 credit for reading and discussing works in Russian in addition to their normal course work. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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RUSSA 4491 : Reading Course: Russian Literature in the Original Language
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Viktoria Tsimberov
Slava Paperno
Raissa Krivitsky
To be taken in conjunction with any Russian literature course at the advanced level. Students receive 1 credit for reading and discussing works in Russian in addition to their normal course work. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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COML 4575 : Migration in the Americas: Engaged Research Methods and Practice
Crosslisted as: COML 6375, DSOC 4312, DSOC 6312, ILRIC 4312, ILRIC 6312, LSP 4312, LSP 6312 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Debra Castillo
Maria Cook
For description, see ILRIC 4312. 
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COML 4622 : Authority and Anti-Authority: Kafka and Genet
Crosslisted as: GERST 4635, ROMS 4635, ROMS 6635, SHUM 4635, SHUM 6635 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Aaron Schuster
A far-reaching distrust and crisis of authority seems to be coextensive with the European Enlightenment and modernity—but what is authority? Amidst the different attempts at definition and classification, at least one thing is certain: our relation to authority is never simple and straightforward, but is the site of intense fantasmatic activity, mixing guilt, defiance, respect, resentment, terror, justice, and love. The word itself is highly evocative, and part of its power lies in the halo of images and meanings it conjures. Our investigation of the problem of authority will be guided by two great writers of the twentieth century, rarely read together, Franz Kafka and Jean Genet.
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COML 4640 : Racial Ecologies of Transpacific Nuclearism
Crosslisted as: AAS 4640, AMST 4640, FGSS 4641, FGSS 6641, SHUM 4640, SHUM 6640 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
This course examines the emergence of nuclear energy in Asia and the Pacific after World War Two as a transpacific settler colonial institution and discourse. Building on current environmental humanities scholarship on the nuclear Pacific, this course uses transpacific nuclearism as an anchoring point to explore ways that theories of biopolitics, necropolitics, and comparative racialization can productively inform scholarly approaches to contemporary ecological crises. For longer description and instructor bio visit http://societyhumanities.as.cornell.edu/courses.
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COML 4642 : Energetic Expression, Manic Defense, Psychotic Foreclosure: Psychoanalytic and Literary Portraits
Crosslisted as: ENGL 4962, SHUM 4642, SHUM 6642 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
This course addresses psychoanalytic understandings of psychic energy, its sources and functions, and its manifestations as mania or psychosis. Students will be introduced to the work of foundational psychoanalysts: Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung, Melanie Klein, Wilfred Bion, Jacques Lacan, Hortense Spillers, Christopher Bollas. We will also study literary portraits of madness, considering how these portraits correspond or diverge from psychoanalytic frameworks. We will discuss how to apply psychoanalytic theory to literature, but also how to challenge the theory with a literary lens. Through collective dialogue and private reading, we will think about the energy of own minds, our constitutions and possibilities and breaking points. These investigations will be both intellectual and intimate, both troubling and reparative. For longer description and instructor bio visit http://societyhumanities.as.cornell.edu/courses.
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COML 4709 : Thinking Sameness
Crosslisted as: COML 6709, GERST 6709 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Andrea Bachner
Recent theory has tended to focused on difference. What if we looked at its complementary or supplementary others instead? This course will analyze a range of theoretical concepts that hinge on sameness in a range of different discourses and disciplines (literature, theory, economy, art, biology, computing etc.), such as mimesis, mimicry, equivalence, passing, fake, shanzhai, clone, twin, similarity, commensurability, simulacrum, copy, analog/y and more. Readings include texts by Foucault, Benjamin, Derrida, Deleuze, Didi-Huberman, Caillois, Baudrillard, Han, Irigaray, Butler and others.
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COML 4798 : Labor and the Arts
Crosslisted as: COML 6798, ITAL 4710, ITAL 6710 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Karen Pinkus
This course, offered entirely in English, is open to advanced undergraduates and graduates who want to learn more about the relations of politics to art in general and the cultural politic of "autonomia" more specifically.  This movement, primarily associated with Italy, continues to have widespread influence around the globe.  During the 1960s and 70s in Italy and elsewhere, workers, and intellectuals began to think collectively about a social terrain outside of dominant structures such as the State, the political party or the trade union.  How does their "refusal to work" shape culture and vice versa?  What kinds of cultural productions can come "outside of the State" or from constituent power?  We will begin the course by tracing the term autonomy (self-rule) from antiquity to the modern period with emphasis on its relation to culture.  We will then focus on the period of the 1960s and 70s, with experimental and mainstream cinema of Antonioni, Bertolucci, Pasolini, Petri and others; with writers such as Italo Calvino, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Nanni Balestrini; with arte povera as one "origin" of contemporary conceptual art; architecture and the reformation of public space in the wake of the situationism; and critics or theorists including Giorgio Agamben, Hannah Arendt, Franco Berardi (Bifo), Michael Hardt, Antonio Negri, Mario Tronti, Paolo Virno and so on.  We will conclude with the potential relevance of autonomist-or-some might say post autonomist-thought for the present and future.
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COML 4902 : Environmental Humanities: Theories and Methods
Crosslisted as: COML 6902, STS 4902, STS 6902 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Anindita Banerjee
Description
COML 4930 : Senior Essay
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Cathy Caruth
Times TBA individually in consultation with director of Senior Essay Colloquium. Approximately 50 pages to be written over the course of two semesters in the student's senior year under the direction of the student's advisor. An R grade is assigned on the basis of research and a preliminary draft completed in the first semester. A letter grade is awarded on completion of the second semester, COML 4940.
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COML 4930 : Senior Essay
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Tracy McNulty
Frederick Ahl
Andrea Bachner
Anindita Banerjee
Cathy Caruth
Debra Castillo
Cynthia Chase
Brett de Bary
Naminata Diabate
Laurent Dubreuil
Parisa Vaziri
Natalie Melas
Jonathan Monroe
Timothy Murray
Karen Pinkus
Nancy Pollak
Gavriel Shapiro
Patricia Keller
Times TBA individually in consultation with director of Senior Essay Colloquium. Approximately 50 pages to be written over the course of two semesters in the student's senior year under the direction of the student's advisor. An R grade is assigned on the basis of research and a preliminary draft completed in the first semester. A letter grade is awarded on completion of the second semester, COML 4940.
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COML 4940 : Senior Essay
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Karen Pinkus
Frederick Ahl
Andrea Bachner
Anindita Banerjee
Cathy Caruth
Debra Castillo
Naminata Diabate
Laurent Dubreuil
Natalie Melas
Jonathan Monroe
Nancy Pollak
Satya Mohanty
P. Suber
Patricia Keller
Patrizia McBride
Daniel Schwarz
Roger Gilbert
Times TBA individually in consultation with director of Senior Essay Colloquium. Approximately 50 pages to be written over the course of two semesters in the student's senior year under the direction of the student's advisor. An R grade is assigned on the basis of research and a preliminary draft completed in the first semester.
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COML 4940 : Senior Essay
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Tracy McNulty
Times TBA individually in consultation with director of Senior Essay Colloquium. Approximately 50 pages to be written over the course of two semesters in the student's senior year under the direction of the student's advisor. An R grade is assigned on the basis of research and a preliminary draft completed in the first semester.
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COML 4944 : Biopolitics
Crosslisted as: AMST 4944, COML 6944, GOVT 6946, ROMS 4944, ROMS 6944 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Naminata Diabate
Description
COML 4948 : Pleasure and Neoliberalism
Crosslisted as: FGSS 4948, ROMS 4948 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Naminata Diabate
The comparative seminar explores pleasure and its relationship with neoliberalism. We will follow adopt an interdisciplinary approach and a historical trajectory, starting with the Ancient world though to the contemporary. Our investigation of philosophical reflections on pleasure and neoliberalism will engage important concepts such as the market, subjectivity, pornography, culture, movie viewing, gender and queerness. We will rethink and theorize how new/old media, literary, and other artistic productions facilitate the expression, the search for, and the achievement of pleasure. Through public speaking (class discussions, student presentation) and deep attention to writing (weekly reaction papers, and a final paper), the students will refine their theoretical, conceptual, and artistic accounts of pleasure and neoliberalism and their mutual imbrication.
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COML 4995 : Critical Thinking and Literary Methods
Crosslisted as: GERST 4245, GERST 6245, ROMS 4245 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Paul Fleming
This seminar offers a systematic introduction to methods of literary interpretation from Romanticism to the present, with a particular emphasis on the German roots of hermeneutics and critical thought. At stake is the formation and development of literary criticism around 1800 with Schleiermacher's "universal hermeneutics" and Friedrich Schlegel's notions of the fragment and irony. The two main trajectories the seminar follows are: the hermeneutic-interpretative tradition beginning with Schleiermacher, proceeding through Dilthey, Nietzsche, and Freud, and ending with Gadamer's epochal work Truth and Method. The second trajectory addresses the Critical Theory in the guise of Marx, Lukacs, Kracauer, Adorno, and Benjamin. Finally, we will look at critical thought today in Germany and its two most influential representatives: Kittler and Luhmann.
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COML 6130 : Spaces of Literature
Crosslisted as: GERST 6160 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Anette Schwarz
The seminar will examine how space is represented in literary texts and pursue the question whether literary language can be connected to spatial features that are unique to prose, poetry and other poetic discourses. We shall review the tradition of literary representations of space by discussing topics such as "the aesthetics of space," "landscape-and garden architecture," "the sublime," "the relationship between corporeality and external worlds," "space and memory/commemoration," "distinctions between space, place, locale, psychic and physical spaces." Ranging from antiquity to contemporary literary and theoretical texts the seminar will approach "space" as a phenomenon that changes its shape with changing analytical or poetic approaches while simultaneously changing the shape of the inquiring or representing discourse. Other guiding questions will be: does literature take on spatial forms? Is poetic language dependent on spatial orientation? Does literature create space? Literature, philosophy, psychoanalysis will be the disciplinary spaces under discussion. Readings include Aristotle, Plato, Longinus, Kant, Goethe, Hölderlin, Novalis, E.T.A. Hoffmann, Stifter, Nietzsche, Benn, Heidegger, Freud, Rilke, Bernhard, Bachelard, Blanchot.
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COML 6159 : Literary Theory on the Edge
Crosslisted as: COML 3021, ENGL 3021, ENGL 6021, PMA 3421 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Cathy Caruth
Philip Lorenz
Without literary theory, there is no idea of literature, of criticism, of culture. While exciting theoretical paradigms emerged in the late 20th century, including structuralism and poststructuralism, this course extends theoretical inquiry into its most exciting current developments, including performance studies, media theory and cinema/media studies, the digital humanities, trauma theory, trangender studies, and studies of the Anthropocene. Taught by two Cornell professors active in the field, along with occasional invited guests, lectures and class discussions will provide students with a facility for close textual analysis, a knowledge of major currents of thought in the humanities, and an appreciation for the uniqueness and complexity of language and media. This course may involve presentation of performance art.  Course open to all levels; no previous knowledge of literary or cultural theory required.
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COML 6190 : Independent Study
Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Cathy Caruth
Tracy McNulty
Natalie Melas
Timothy Murray
Graduate Students: please bring your faculty signed proposal to 240 Goldwin Smith Hall.
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COML 6200 : Independent Study
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Andrea Bachner
Anindita Banerjee
Cathy Caruth
Debra Castillo
Naminata Diabate
Laurent Dubreuil
Natalie Melas
Jonathan Monroe
Jonathan Boyarin
Graduate Students: please bring your faculty signed proposal to 240 Goldwin Smith Hall.
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COML 6226 : Poetry and Mind
Crosslisted as: FREN 6180 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Laurent Dubreuil
This interdisciplinary seminar would like to offer new hypotheses on the ways poetry is understood and experienced by a reader's mind. Our methodology, while non-reductionist, will take into account the current state of cognitive science, and also build on literary theory and philosophy (both "analytic" and "Continental"). Poetry makes use of cognitive structures and paths, of formal repetitions and algorithms-but it also alters and challenges the usual boundaries of thought. Thus, we need to consider both the ordinary and the extraordinary, if we ever want to explain the mental performance of the poetic. A comparative corpus of poems (written in European languages, from Antiquity to the 20th century) will be used throughout the semester. Students from very diverse backgrounds but with an interest in mind and/or language and poetry are welcome.
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COML 6285 : Early Modern Translations
Crosslisted as: ENGL 6285 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Philip Lorenz
Translation is a cultural, conceptual, and political problem. It lies at the heart of the literary itself. Methodological discussions of "world" literature hinge on it, and Renaissance culture is unthinkable apart from it. The Renaissance—defined in terms of transmission and reception of ancient texts—is itself, in a way, translation. Tied to philosophical and theo-political problems of origin and copy, Truth and falsehood, fidelity, heresy and betrayal (as the Italian maxim traduttore, traditore attests), translation raises questions of sameness and identity, originality, authority, property, sacredness and evil. The seminar explores these questions in texts from Luther, Cervantes and Montaigne, through Benjamin, Derrida and Agamben. Particular focus is on the early modern as template and groundwork for the complexity and centrality of translation to life.
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COML 6338 : Border Theory/Border Practice
Crosslisted as: COML 3338, LSP 3338, LSP 6338 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Anindita Banerjee
Debra Castillo
As human migration around the world reaches a crisis unseen since WWII and as fences and walls once again dominate political rhetoric, how do we reckon with borders – not just as a metaphor but as a way of life? By examining how ideas and practices of borders interact and collide with their physical and embodied realities, this course approaches one of the most urgent questions of our time in a comparative, transnational framework. Starting with the U.S.-Mexico border and human flows across the Indian subcontinent, we will venture into numerous other zones to develop conceptual frameworks and critical vocabularies for borders in the twenty-first century.
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COML 6351 : Antagonism
Crosslisted as: COML 4351, ENGL 4991 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Parisa Vaziri
In contemporary scholarship on race, temporality mediates the relationship between historicity and human difference by way of alignments and affiliations between time and interiority; immediacy and transparency; and complementarily, exteriority and opacity. In contrast to its popular denotations, race scholarship thus recognizes "mediation" as antagonistic, rather than conciliatory. We map the discursive lines shaping contemporary scholarship which grasps for the philosophical grounds of race and racialization at the infrastructural levels of time, space, and ontology. In tandem, we consider media that reflect and engage questions raised by the antagonistic mediation of racial difference. Readings may include works by Denise Ferreira da Silva, Sylvia Wynter, David Marriott, Fred Moten, Nahum Dimitri Chandler, David Llloyd, Michelle Wright, Calvin Warren, Martin Heidegger, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida. 
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COML 6368 : Reading Édouard Glissant
Crosslisted as: ASRC 4368, ASRC 6368, COML 4368, FREN 4368, FREN 6368 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Natalie Melas
This seminar will focus on the writings of the polymorphous Martinican poet and thinker, Édouard Glissant (1928-2011).  We will attend to the historical context of French colonialism, particularly in the Caribbean, that gives his writing part of its impetus and to the anticolonial intellectuals with whom he engages (chiefly Aimé Césaire and Frantz Fanon) as well as to his major self-professed influences (William Faulkner, Saint-John Perse, Hegel) and to an array of interlocutors and fellow-travelers as well as a few dissenters. The seminar will examine the main preoccupations of Glissant's writing (world histories of dispossession and plantation slavery, creolization, Relation, opacity, flux, transversality, Caribbean landscapes as figures of thought, the All-World, etc.) but our focus will be on reading Glissant and attending carefully to the implications of his poetics and of his language for decolonial thought. 
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COML 6375 : Migration in the Americas: Engaged Research Methods and Practice
Crosslisted as: COML 4575, DSOC 4312, DSOC 6312, ILRIC 4312, ILRIC 6312, LSP 4312, LSP 6312 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Debra Castillo
Maria Cook
For description, see ILRIC 6312. 
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COML 6415 : The Holocaust in Postwar Culture (1945-1961)
Crosslisted as: COML 4415, FREN 4415, FREN 6415, GERST 4411, GERST 6411, GOVT 4786, GOVT 6786, HIST 4233, HIST 6233, JWST 4410, JWST 6415, ROMS 4410, ROMS 6410 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Enzo Traverso
There is an astonishing discrepancy between our perception of the Holocaust as a central event of the twentieth century and its marginal place in postwar culture.  It is during those years, nevertheless, that the destruction of European Jews aroused an intellectual debate whose philosophical, political, and literary contributions constitute landmarks for contemporary culture and criticism.  The course will explore the reasons for such a discrepancy, reconstructing the steps of the integration of the Holocaust into our historical consciousness.  It will analyze some of the most significant attempts to think such a trauma made by German-Jewish exiles (Arendt, Adorno, Anders), the survivors of the Nazi camps (Améry, Levi, Celan, Antelme), as well as the public intellectuals on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean (Sartre, Bataille, MacDonald, etc).
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COML 6465 : Black Feminist Theories: Sexuality, Creativity, and Power
Crosslisted as: ASRC 6207, ENGL 6207, FGSS 6207 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Carole Boyce Davies
This course examines black feminist theories as they are articulated in the cross-cultural experiences of women across the African Diaspora. We will explore a variety of theories, texts and creative encounters within their socio-political and geographical frames and locations, analyzing these against, or in relation to, a range of feminist activisms and movements. Some key categories of discussion will include Black Left Feminism, Feminist Movements in Latin America and the Caribbean and African feminisms. Texts like the Combahee River Collective statement and a variety of US Black feminist positions and the related literature as well as earlier black feminist articulations such as the Sojourners for Truth and Justice will also be engaged. Students will have the opportunity to develop their own research projects from a range of possibilities.
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COML 6481 : Literature, Media, Form
Crosslisted as: GERST 6481, PMA 6481, ROMS 6481 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Patrizia McBride
This seminar investigates the productive relationship that ties literary criticism to media studies in the North-American and European humanities—for the latter we will especially focus on the German-language context. We will trace the exchange that in recent decades has drawn on literature as a heuristic point of reference for appraising the rhetorical performativity and ideological effects of communication in both analog and digital media. In so doing we will develop a cross-disciplinary framework for examining the evolving relation between literary practices, technological developments, and conceptions of media within significant historical junctures and by drawing on influential methodological paradigms. Topics include reading and writing as cultural techniques and as spatialized processing of text/image dynamics; literary practice, materiality, and embodiment; Critical Theory and the digital humanities.
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COML 6600 : Visual Ideology
Crosslisted as: ARTH 6060, GERST 6600 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Geoffrey Waite
Some of the most powerful approaches to visual practices have come from outside or from the peripheries of the institution of art history and criticism. This seminar will analyze the interactions between academically sanctioned disciplines (such as iconography and connoisseurship) and innovations coming from philosophy, psychoanalysis, historiography, sociology, literary theory, mass media criticism, feminism, and Marxism. We will try especially to develop: (1) a general theory of "visual ideology" (the gender, social, racial, and class determinations on the production, consumption, and appropriation of visual artifacts under modern and postmodern conditions); and (2) contemporary theoretical practices that articulate these determinations. Examples will be drawn from the history of oil painting, architecture, city planning, photography, film, and other mass media.
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RUSSA 6634 : Russian for Russian Specialists
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Slava Paperno
Designed for students whose areas of study require advanced active control of the language. Fine points of translation, usage, and style are discussed and practiced. Syllabus varies from year to year. Detailed description at russian.cornell.edu.
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COML 6708 : Complex Narratives
Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Andrea Bachner
Why don't we tell it straight? Instead of abiding by sequential order and linearity, narratives tend to branch out, loop into paradox, double back on themselves, invent new restraints. This is increasingly true for mainstream texts, no longer only the terrain of experimental literature and film. With the help of a range of narrative and media theories, we will work through different complex narrative forms, such as episodic (or networked) narratives, frames, forking paths and reverse narratives in this course. We will cover examples that range from "high" literature and art film to mainstream media, from Calvino's and Perec's experiments to Westworld (TV series), from Miike's "Box" to Bellot's Sexual Dependency, from Nolan's Inception and Memento to Pavic's Dictionary of the Khazars, among others.
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COML 6709 : Thinking Sameness
Crosslisted as: COML 4709, GERST 6709 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Andrea Bachner
Recent theory has tended to focused on difference. What if we looked at its complementary or supplementary others instead? This course will analyze a range of theoretical concepts that hinge on sameness in a range of different discourses and disciplines (literature, theory, economy, art, biology, computing etc.), such as mimesis, mimicry, equivalence, passing, fake, shanzhai, clone, twin, similarity, commensurability, simulacrum, copy, analog/y and more. Readings include texts by Foucault, Benjamin, Derrida, Deleuze, Didi-Huberman, Caillois, Baudrillard, Han, Irigaray, Butler and others.
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COML 6778 : Psychoanalysis and Historical Transmission
Crosslisted as: FREN 6240, GOVT 6246 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Tracy McNulty
This seminar will study the problem of transmission in psychoanalysis, with an emphasis on its stakes for political history and theory. Freud's Moses and Monotheism addresses the unconscious and intersubjective dimensions of the act that founds a people, which "imprints" itself on the people in ways that exceed the framework of allegiance. "How," he asks of Moses, "did one single man come to stamp his people with its definite character and determine its fate for millennia to come?" This transmission is further remarkable in being non-linear, discontinuous, distorted by repression, skipping many generations and crossing continents, but imposing itself nonetheless. My hypothesis is that Freud's argument might shed light on one of the central problems of political theory: the status of what Rousseau calls "the act by which a people is a people." The act as psychoanalysis understands it is not something we can know, interpret, or anticipate, but something by which we are "struck" both psychically and in the body, where it leaves its traces or impressions. What then is involved in being "struck" by the act of another, and how might it help us to understand the stakes of the act for those who receive it? What role do the unconscious and the body play in the subjectivation of the people and the transmission of its legacy? We will read psychoanalytic texts alongside works of political theory by Rousseau, Marx, CLR James, Du Bois, Arendt, Derrida, Rancière, Zizek, and Badiou.
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COML 6791 : Acoustic Horizons
Crosslisted as: ENGL 6791 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Timothy Murray
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COML 6793 : Theory and Analysis of Narrative
Crosslisted as: ENGL 6155 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Jonathan Culler
Description
COML 6798 : Labor and the Arts
Crosslisted as: COML 4798, ITAL 4710, ITAL 6710 Semester offered: Spring 2019 Instructor:
Karen Pinkus
This course, offered entirely in English, is open to advanced undergraduates and graduates who want to learn more about the relation of politics to art in general and the cultural politics of "autonomia" more specifically.  This movement, primarily associated with Italy, continues to have widespread influence around the globe.  During the 1960s and 70s in Italy and elsewhere, workers and intellectuals began to think collectively about a social terrain outside of dominant structures such as the State, the political party or the trade union.  How does their "refusal to work" shape cultural and vice versa?  What kinds of cultural productions can come "outside of the State" or from constituent power?  We will begin the course by tracing the term autonomy (self-rude) from antiquity to the modern period with emphasis on its relation to culture.  We will then focus on the period of the 1960s and 70s, with experimental and mainstream cinema of Antonioni, Bertolucci, Pasolini, Petri and others: with writers such as Italo Calvino, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Nanni Balestrini; with arte povera as one "origin" of contemporary conceptual art; architecture and the reformation of public space in the wake of situationism; and critics or theorists including Giorgio Agamben, Hannah Arendt, Franco Berardi (Bifo), Michael Hardt, Antonio Negri, Mario Tronti, Paolo Virno and so on.  We will conclude with the potential relevance of autonomist-or-some might say postautonomist-thought for the present and future.
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COML 6902 : Environmental Humanities: Theories and Methods
Crosslisted as: COML 4902, STS 4902, STS 6902 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Anindita Banerjee
Designed for an interdisciplinary audience, this seminar explores the theoretical and methodological potentials of a broad range of scholarship in the environmental humanities. Together we will discuss a number of foundational texts in this rapidly emerging field, which will in turn facilitate and develop students' own research projects. The course will feature visits from prominent scholars and end with a mini-symposium.
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COML 6944 : Biopolitics
Crosslisted as: AMST 4944, COML 4944, GOVT 6946, ROMS 4944, ROMS 6944 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Naminata Diabate
Description
COML 6970 : Cosmopolitanism and Post-Enlightenment
Crosslisted as: ENGL 6970, GOVT 6779 Semester offered: Fall 2019 Instructor:
Neil Saccamano
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