Fall 2008 Courses

Fall 2008, First Year Seminars

FYS 001 (crn 2931) - Creativity Workshop

FYS 002 (crn 3212 + 3385) – “The Fifties”

FYS 004 (crn 1119) – Gender Benders and Sexed Texts

FYS 005 (crn 3203) – Deconstructing Gender

FYS 006 (crn 1758) – The Language and Literature of Conflict

FYS 007 (crn 1129) - Mother Tongues

FYS 008 (crn 3050) - Lost! (and Found)

FYS 009 (crn 1760) – The American Dream/Nightmare

FYS 010 (crn 1133) – Encountering Nonhuman Minds

FYS 011 (crn 1733) – U.S. Pluralism (MW)

FYS 012 (crn 3047) - Behave Yourself: Etiquette of Writing

FYS 013 (crn 2122) - The Loop: The Ethics of Information Sharing in the 21st Century

FYS 014 (crn 2935+ 3364)– Representations of American Identity

FYS 015 (crn 2952) – Leadership Development: Finding Your Place at Drake

FYS 016 (crn 3365) – Debating Democracy: Athens on the Threshold of Democracy and India on the Eve of Independence

FYS 016 (crn 3637) – Politics of State/Nation Building: Debating Democracy in India, Turkey, Ukraine and Kosovo

FYS 016 (crn 2082) – Debating Democracy: Athens on the Threshold of Democracy and India on the Eve of Independence

FYS 018 (crn 3707) - Creativity Workshop

FYS 019 (crn3681 ) - Identity, Culture and Change

FYS 020 (crn 1833) – Student Politics

FYS 021 (crn 1923) – Educating You

FYS 022 (crn 3303) - Diversity Includes Everyone

FYS 025 (crn 1163 OR crn 1166) - Perspectives on American Character and Society (Learning Community)

FYS 026 (crn 2929) - Technology for Mathematics

FYS 027 (crn 3437) – Chemistry in the Society

FYS 028 (crn 3006) – Madness and Creativity

FYS 030 (crn 3170) – Child Health, Safety, Nutrition

FYS 031 (crn 3214 + either crn 3310 OR 3311) – Space Matters: Science Fiction, Film and Literature

FYS 032 (crn 3634) - Understanding Emotions

FYS 033 (crn 3308) – Global Threats To Public Health

FYS 034 (crn 3201) - American Racism: Language, Theory, and Behavior

FYS 035 (crn 2938) – The Da Vinci Code: Early Christian Diversity

FYS 036 (crn 3663) - Existentialism: Philosophy as Life

FYS 037 (crn 2193) - All Rivers Run to the Sea...But the Sea is Never Full

FYS 038 (crn 1916) – The Distress of Chronic Pain

FYS 039 (crn 2941) – The U.S. and the World

FYS 040 (crn 1891) – Wisdom, Education, and the Art of Living

FYS 041 (crn 2345) – Interpersonal Communication

FYS 042 (crn 1670) - Perceptions of Illness: How We View the Sick

FYS 043 (crn 3209) - Contemporary Global Issues in Context

FYS 044 (crn 1744) - Cheaper by the Dozen

FYS 045 (crn 2336) – Reading Biblical Texts

FYS 046 (crn 3213) - Public Policy in Education

FYS 047 (crn 3812) - Leadership, Drake, and YOU

FYS 049 (crn 1362) - Intellectual Maturity and Personal Development

FYS 050 (crn 3168) - Media Literacy: From Gutenberg to Gates

------------------------------------------------------------------------


FYS 001 / CRN 2931
CREATIVITY WORKSHOP

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Karen Bradway

FYS 002 / CRN 3212 AND Viewing lab
"THE FIFTIES"

MW 12:30-1:45 p.m. AND viewing lab Sunday, 7:00- 9:30 pm / CRN 3385
Dina Smith

Continually represented as America's most "dazzling" decade, the 1950s was a period of dramatic change in American culture. A period of intense economic growth, the fifties witnessed a booming consumer culture that would linger forever in the American imaginary. In the 1950s, America was introduced to "Barbie," the credit card, television, widescreen movies, and even a new type of consumer: "the teenager." In this class, we will look at the history, images and material culture that have become associated with this decade. Along the way, we will complicate popular representations of this period through a critical examination of "the other" 1950s, one not so classless, affluent and on the move.


FYS 004 / CRN 1119
GENDER BENDERS AND SEXED TEXTS

TR 12:30-1:45
Jennifer Perrine

Many of us take it for granted that there are only two sexes — male and female — and only two genders — masculine and feminine. This course will examine how each of these narratives of difference — one marking physiological distinctions between women and men, the other implying that they should and do behave in different ways — has been constructed in response to particular political, cultural, and economic pressures. We will consider, too, how other narratives about sex and gender—including a range of cross-dressing, gender-bending, transsexual, and intersex experiences and identities— challenge the stability of categories like “masculine” and “feminine,” “male” and “female.” In doing so, we will encounter a wide variety of texts that draw from the fields of history, literature, psychology, religion, film, biology, politics, sociology, and medicine, among others. Requirements for the class will include frequent reading, discussion, and informal writing assignments; group presentations; individual “field work” that investigates assumptions about gender; and several more formal writing assignments, which we will take through multiple drafts.


FYS 005 / CRN 3203
DECONSTRUCTING GENDER

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Beth Younger

In this seminar we investigate how various cultural productions define, shape, categorize and construct the concept of gender. We will examine consumer products, magazines, short stories, advertisements and film (along with texts that interrogate the same issues) to help us answer questions such as: What is femininity? What is masculinity? Who decided blue is for boys and pink is for girls? Why is it acceptable for a woman to wear men’s clothing, but unacceptable for a man to wear a skirt? How much is being “masculine” or “feminine” a result of upbringing, biology, social environment, and cultural influence? How does language itself inform our view of gender? How do the images we see and the products we buy influence our ideas of gender?

By reading a wide variety of viewpoints on these issues, we will try to understand current and historical perspectives of gender. Our collective goal will be to name and question some of the fundamental cultural assumptions that have helped to shape our ideas of what men and women “should” be like. Your personal task will be to utilize critical thinking as you read, analyze and write about various cultural productions in order to develop your own theory of gender and consumer culture.

Assignments include class presentations, weekly in class writing, several short essays and a longer final project based in part on earlier course writings.


FYS 006 / CRN 1758
THE LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE OF CONFLICT

TR 12:30-1:45
Melissa Klimaszewski

This course introduces students to college-level critical reading, writing, and inquiry. Readings are organized around the theme of how humans experience and represent conflict and suffering. We will read books that tell the stories of people in many locales, including South Africa and the United States, and that deal with several different types of conflict. We will discuss, among other things, how dominant social codes about race, sexuality, gender, and religion create conflict, how people negotiate conflict with themselves (addiction, for instance), how historical forces create persistent tensions, and how individuals manage to find humor in painful aspects of their worlds. Reading works from different time periods and cultures, we will also consider how selected texts highlight, interrogate, or critique the power of language to represent and shape difficult experiences.

Students will learn to strengthen their writing skills by paying close attention to the ways in which others write. In this way, critical reading will strengthen each student’s ability to think as well as to write clearly and critically. Critical thinking can take many forms; in this course, it will mean that we practice asking incisive questions, identifying underlying assumptions that affect the way we process information, looking past the obvious, and developing insightful claims.

In the second part of the course, students will select a current controversy to research and present to the class in the form of a dialogue model. Working in groups, students will act as participants but also be responsible for creating and justifying a dialogue format, informing and involving the class, and reflecting on the outcome.

The last part of the course asks students to initiate a campus or community dialogue on a topic of their choice using a format of their own design. Again working in groups, students will serve as facilitators for selected participants on two or more sides of a controversial issue. Students will plan, promote, and present the dialogue as a public event.

Regular research, writing (analytical, reflective, and creative), speaking, video and audio work, and active involvement are the foundation of this course.


FYS 007 / CRN 1129
MOTHER TONGUES

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Fred Arroyo

Exile, migration, and the loss of languages and ways of life are both the themes and the life-conditions of writers of the 20th and 21st Century. This First Year Seminar will take a closer look at these particulars by focusing on “mother tongues”: the complexity of writing in a new language while honoring the practices, memories, and powers of a mother tongue. To this end, we’ll begin to discern how writers imagine, compose, express, and remember what may never be lost between languages, places, or memories. On the one hand, we’ll explore the decisions writers make to feel at home in English, and thus how their writing is composed in beautiful, elegant, and powerful terms that aspire to join, remember, or invent communities. On the other hand, we’ll investigate how family, society, selfhood, and language shape their writing. Overall, we’ll create productive relations between our reading and writing, and in composing both creative and critical papers we’ll strive to make our words effective and compelling for the making of meaning.


FYS 008 / CRN 3050
LOST! (AND FOUND)

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Lisa West

This Seminar will build off of the phenomenal success of the TV show Lost! We will discuss clips of the show but most of the reading will be on related issues of what it means in today’s culture and in the past to be “lost,” either physically, spiritually or psychologically. We will also use the concept of “lost” to start thinking about interdisciplinary knowledge. We will spend some time with maps and orienteering equipment, we will think about “lost” as a concept, and we will look at art that celebrates finding things, or making discoveries. We will also read about famous instances of being lost in American history, such as the Roanoke Island mystery and early Spanish explorations. You can expect a variety of ways to think about being lost (and found) and both creative and critical writing assignments.


FYS 009 / CRN 1760
THE AMERICAN DREAM/NIGHTMARE

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Maglina Lubovich

It seems quite appropriate to use the concept of the "American Dream" as a launching point for a first year seminar. The editors of our textbook, Creating America, stress the centrality of language and the "art of persuasion" in the workings of democracy and this nation in particular. The founding fathers had a great deal at stake in the way they constructed their very important argument, "The Declaration of Independence." Ever since, Americans have used language and persuasion to critique, inquire and define what it means (for all citizens) to be an American and dream the "American Dream." Together we will help each other explore these issues, examining a wide range of texts, including F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby and Barbara Ehrenreich's Nickel and Dimed: On (Not )Getting by in America. Through the course of this semester, you will learn and feel more comfortable with writing as a process (from brainstorming, free writing, drafting)-as a communal act which happens between writers. Our class time together will include a variety of activities, all of which will help make this a student-centered class. You will not be lectured to each day but instead are asked to be an active member of this learning community. We will have presentations, large and small group discussions on both reading and writing, revision workshop sessions, conferences, etc. You must be present during class time and be prepared to devote a substantial amount of time to your own learning, both in and out of class. I look forward to working with you this semester and getting to know each of you.


FYS 010 / CRN 1133
ENCOUNTERING NONHUMAN MINDS

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Jeffrey Karnicky

Can birds think? Do dogs have emotions? Do plants have a mind? Is the earth itself alive? This seminar will focus on answering these questions, and others, as we explore the world of nonhuman consciousness and intelligence. Starting with Thomas Nagel’s famous question “What is it like to be a bat?”, we will investigate, through reading and writing, the multiple ways that minds can be understood. We will read essays and fiction and take a field trip to the Des Moines Zoo. Students are expected to participate in class discussion, and to complete a number of writing assignments over the course of the semester.


FYS 011 / CRN 1733
U.S. Pluralism
MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Marc Cadd

In a year when for the first time an African-American candidate has been nominated by a major party for president, issues of American diversity and pluralism are frequently discussed in the media. What is your understanding of pluralism in the United States? This course provides an opportunity for students to examine the lives and voices of members of groups who are underrepresented in our society. What we see on television and at the movies, what we read in our school textbooks and other print media, and what we hear in our increasingly segregated communities seldom represent the true diversity of the United States. We will be challenging the dominant paradigm of how life in the United States should be lived by examining the lives of those too poor, those not "masculine" enough (including women), and those not light-skinned enough to gain power and control. There are three major reasons for this focus: first, the "majority" knows much less about the "minority" groups than the minority groups know about the majority groups; second, demographers predict that the White majority will become a majority minority by the year 2035, if not sooner; third, learning about the diversity of our country will enhance the liberal arts education you receive. In order to become responsible citizens, students will need to both understand and work with individuals who may not resemble themselves. Students will research, write argumentative and self-reflective papers, and make in-class presentations to examine their views about the diversity of American society. You are not, of course, expected necessarily to change your views; but you will learn to develop the ability to express critically a rationale for your views on pluralism.

FYS012 / CRN 3047
BEHAVE YOURSELF! THE ETIQUETTE OF WRITING

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Craig Owens

Participants in this course will explore the relationship between what has traditionally been considered "good" writing and what has traditionally been considered "good" behavior. We will investigate the social and cultural forces that shape the values that inform both notions of "good"; we will observe these principles in action, both in the texts we read and the everyday behaviors we see around us; and we will deploy our collective experiences and insights to formulate an Etiquette Guide that addresses the social codes and demands of First-Year Living on the Drake University campus. Instead of trying to teach you a set of universal principles for good writing, this course will give you the experience necessary for you to recognize how societies, disciplines, and institutions (like businesses or universities) arrive at and establish the values that shape what we consider to be "good" writing. Thus, your writing will be primarily about writing. And about etiquette. Because rules of etiquette evolve, take hold, and get used similar to the ways rules of writing do, etiquette will serve as an analog for writing: it is a social habit, it is used as a means of representation, and it helps (or hinders) people's efforts to interpret and understand individuals around them. Moreover, we'll see that there is a great deal of overlap between what is considered "polite" in behavior and what is considered "correct" in language.


FYS 013 / CRN 2122
THE LOOP: THE ETHICS OF INFORMATION SHARING IN THE 21st CENTURY

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Mireille Djenno

This seminar will consider the current role that information technology is playing in transforming our lives, and its likely role in the coming decade. The ways we think about the world, earn our living, gain education, function as members of society and spend our leisure time will undergo profound change. We cannot predict accurately the ways information technology will develop, or what will happen as a result of those developments. But we can become more informed about the important technologies, issues and trends, as we share ideas. The course format will consist of readings and research (both library and Internet-based), classroom discussions and student presentations, and brief lectures when needed to provide a foundation for your research. There will also be an emphasis on writing essays on topics arising from discussions and your research. We will be using basic computer software (web browser, MS Word and PowerPoint, discussion boards, email) but there will be no need for skills in programming, web authoring, etc.


FYS 014 / CRN 2935
REPRESENTING AMERICAN IDENTITY IN RECENT FILM & FICTION

MW 12:30-1:45 pm AND R 7- 9:30 pm (viewing lab, CRN 3364)
Jody Swilky

In this course you will investigate through reading and writing how recent film and fiction have represented American identity--in terms of race, gender, class, and sexuality, and so on--and the effects of these cultural works on yourself and other readers and film viewers. Examining selected films and fiction from psychological and sociological perspectives, you will consider both the conditions in which these texts were produced and their impact on readers/viewers. You will explore questions such as how does a text represent individual and group identity?. How does the text serve to reinforce dominant notions of group identity? What broader social conditions does it reflect? How do your own views coincide or conflict with this representation? How does it present alternatives to prevailing perspectives on these issues in contemporary American society? Possible films include Do the Right Thing, Fight Club, Fargo, and American History X. Books may include The Color Purple, A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain, and Ceremony.


FYS 015 / CRN 2952
LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT: FINDING YOUR PLACE AT DRAKE

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Jan Wise

How do you become a leader? Is it simply by being elected or selected? Or by doing the "right thing?" This seminar takes a look at leadership for a changing world - creating a vision and developing a team. You will reflect on the key events and people that have shaped and influenced your leadership experiences.

You will interview campus leaders about their leadership style and the lessons they have learned as leaders. Your writings will reflect on the five leadership tenets at Drake - Leadership: depends on relationships, is everyone's responsibility, can be developed, is inclusive and is practiced in accordance with high standards of ethics and integrity.


FYS 016 / CRN 3365
DEBATING DEMOCRACY: ATHENS ON THE THRESHOLD OF DEMOCRACY AND INDIA ON THE EVE OF INDEPENDENCE

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Elizabeth Robertson

This course will be taught using a pedagogy known as "Reacting to the Past." Students will read major texts from the period and research the historical and philosophical backgrounds. Students will then actively debate the issues speaking not in their own voice, but in the voice of a character contemporary to the event under study. Students will seek to reach their own decisions on basic questions of political and social order, guided by what possibilities were available during the historical period under study. Thus a student might play the part of a supporter of Socrates in the Athens Assembly and speak from that perspective. The same student might enact Nehru's position in debates of the Indian National Congress. Preparation for each "game" will involve much reading and writing; the games themselves demand that students speak publicly in the assembly, argue and debate their character's ideas, and respond to the ideas and arguments of others. Among other things, we will consider the nature of democracy, how it is formed, and how multiple political and cultural contexts determine its practice. We will examine the relationship between the philosophical, theoretical and literary ideas that inform the concepts of democracy and the realities of its political practice.


FYS 016 / CRN 2082
DEBATING DEMOCRACY: ATHENS ON THE THRESHOLD OF DEMOCRACY AND INDIA ON THE EVE OF INDEPENDENCE

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
John Burney

This course will be taught using a pedagogy known as "Reacting to the Past." Students will read major texts from the period and research the historical and philosophical backgrounds. Students will then actively debate the issues speaking not in their own voice, but in the voice of a character contemporary to the event under study. Students will seek to reach their own decisions on basic questions of political and social order, guided by what possibilities were available during the historical period under study. Thus a student might play the part of a supporter of Socrates in the Athens Assembly and speak from that perspective. The same student might enact Nehru's position in debates of the Indian National Congress. Preparation for each "game" will involve much reading and writing; the games themselves demand that students speak publicly in the assembly, argue and debate their character's ideas, and respond to the ideas and arguments of others. Among other things, we will consider the nature of democracy, how it is formed, and how multiple political and cultural contexts determine its practice. We will examine the relationship between the philosophical, theoretical and literary ideas that inform the concepts of democracy and the realities of its political practice.


FYS 016 / CRN 3637
POLITICS OF STATE/NATION BUILDING: DEBATING DEMOCRACY IN INDIA, TURKEY, UKRAINE AND KOSOVO

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Eleanor Zeff

This class will discuss the theories and problems of state and nation building. It will focus in particular on four case studies: Turkey, Ukraine, Kosovo and India. Students will read major texts and research the historical, philosophical and political background of each country. There will be in-class debates on theories of state building and on the status of state building in each country. The last half of the course will center on India, using role-playing and active learning techniques and the “Reacting to the Past” India game/case study, where students actively debate the issues speaking in the voices of characters depicted in the India game. For example, a student might enact Nehru's position in both written and oral debates of the Indian National Congress. Preparation for the "game" will involve much reading and writing, and the game requires that students speak publicly, argue and debate their character's ideas, and respond to the ideas and arguments of others.


FYS 018 / CRN 3707
CREATIVITY WORKSHOP
MW 12:30-1:45pm
KAREN BRADWAY

In this course, students will focus on strengthening their creative connection to the world. They will read a variety of texts, including poems from a wide range of published poets, such as Sappho, Pablo Neruda, Jelaluddin Rumi, John Berryman, Chelsey Minnis, and others. The assigned readings will serve as examples of "diving off" points: following our discussion of the readings, students will produce writing that reflects directly on the material. Students will study text or various art forms for roughly 25% of each class period. The remaining 75% of class time will be spent discussing each student's work in detail OR in doing in-class creativity, art, or writing-related exercises.To strengthen their ability to experience the world in new ways, students will routinely engage in a number of creativity-building exercises. These should help students to develop a sense of play; to explore their subconscious; to awaken their senses; to become more connected spiritually; to learn to take risks; and to think imaginatively.

Assignments will be varied and may include but are not limited to the following: compiling and illustrating a musical CD for other students in the class; creating a comic strip that includes a personal narrative; recording and exploring your dreams; writing a lengthy analytical paper; painting or drawing; card or scrapbook making; creating a poetry chapbook; and taking photos and analyzing or working with their content.Note: We will use Julia Cameron's indispensable handbook: THe Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Highter Creativity.

FYS 019 / CRN 3681
IDENTITY, CULTURE AND CHANGE

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Denise Noble

What is the meaning and significance of identity and culture in a changing global world? Starting from your own experiences of 'identity', 'home', 'culture' and 'nation', this course will examine a range of concepts and ideas that have been central to the work of Cultural Studies and Sociology. Through exploring these as lived personal experiences, powerful cultural representations and contested political ideas, you will begin the scholarly work of critically situating your personal and local cultural experiences within complex political and global histories. You will be encouraged to think deeply about your own social location and cultural attachments and to develop the critical theoretical skills for analyzing the contradictions, inequalities, and changes in contemporary society and culture.


FYS 020 / CRN 1833
STUDENT ACTIVISM

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
David Deifell

Ready for a change? Becoming part of a university is all about change. Upon entering, all students have to adjust themselves to the conditions of college life. Some students, however, flip the script. Instead of just being impacted, they make the impact. They organize, advocate and agitate to make changes to the ideological apparatuses and political systems that surround them. They address concerns related to their universities, their communities, their nations, and their world. Do students actually make a difference? In this First Year Seminar, we'll see.

The class will explore the history and influence of student activism. We will survey past student political engagement, we will delve deeply into particular historical moments, and we will deal with contemporary student activities and issues. Some of the questions we may ask include: What compels students to speak up? What do they raise their voices about? What do students have to say about their world to their world? Who do students challenge, who do students activate, and how do those audiences respond? What difference do students make? Assignments will include reading, researching, and writing about students' activism, about public concerns, as well as about ourselves. In addition, expect individual and group work, short think-pieces, and presentations.


FYS 021 / CRN 1923
EDUCATING YOU

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Lon Larson and Joanne Brown

This seminar will explore a range of issues in higher education that directly affect college students, such as teaching and learning styles, the value of general education courses, cheating, grading procedures and inflation, admission policies, and faculty tenure. Reading materials will include essays, articles, short stories, plays and film. Students will write and revise regularly in response to assigned readings and their own educational experiences.


FYS 022 / CRN 3303
DIVERSITY INCLUDES EVERYONE

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Susan Breakenridge

As globalization increases, our population is becoming more diverse. Do you have an understanding of other cultures and customs? Do you know if you have any hidden bias? How would you react to being discriminated against based on your race, gender, or age? This course will focus on the different points of diversity (race, ethnicity, religion, culture, gender, sexual orientation, age, etc) AND will promote tolerance. Students will be introduced to guest speakers representing diverse population for the purpose of interaction and discussion. Students will be expected to fulfill frequent writing assignments; read and respond to scholarly research; and participate in class discussions.


FYS 025 / CRN 1163 AND CO-REQUISITE POLS 001 / CRN 2218
PERSPECTIVES ON AMERICAN CHARACTER AND SOCIETY (LEARNING COMMUNITY)

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
William Lewis

What are the "habits of the heart" that move Americans, the beliefs and practices that shape the character of its citizens and give form to the American social order? Beginning with de Tocqueville and continuing through Bellah et al., numerous observers have developed analyses that suggest political equality and individualism are fundamental traits of American culture. In Democracy in America, Volume II , Tocqueville argues that "Democracy has destroyed or modified the old relations of men to one another and has established new ones." How is this new social order doing in the early 21st Century? In 1985, during the height of the Ronald Reagan era, Bellah et al. published Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life. In the preface, they wrote: The central problem of our book concerns the American individualism that Tocqueville described with a mixture of admiration and anxiety. It seems to us that it is individualism, and not equality, as Tocqueville thought, that has marched inexorably through our history. We are concerned that this individualism may have grown cancerous--that it may be destroying those social instruments that Tocqueville saw as moderating its more destructive potentialities, that it may be threatening the survival of freedom itself. Bellah et al. are raising the question of "community" in the United States. And since they wrote their book 21 years ago, the growing diversity and seeming fragmentation of American society has made their concerns even more compelling. Is it possible for community to exist in a society that emphasizes radical individualism? What are the individual's responsibilities to fellow citizens, to his/her city, state, or nation? These and other questions will be explored in this course.

Students who register for Perspectives in American Character and Society must also register for POLS 001 (Debra DeLaet) The American Political System, taught by Professor Debra DeLaet. Professors McAlister, Lewis, and DeLaet will coordinate course readings and assignments to tie together themes developed in the two classes. Students signing up will also be housed on the same floor in a residence hall.


FYS 025 / CRN 1166 AND CO-REQUISITE POLS 001 / CRN2054
PERSPECTIVES ON AMERICAN CHARACTER AND SOCIETY (LEARNING COMMUNITY)

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Joan McAlister

What are the "habits of the heart" that move Americans, the beliefs and practices that shape the character of its citizens and give form to the American social order? Beginning with de Tocqueville and continuing through Bellah et al., numerous observers have developed analyses that suggest political equality and individualism are fundamental traits of American culture. In Democracy in America, Volume II , Tocqueville argues that "Democracy" has destroyed or modified the old relations of men to one another and has established new ones." How is this new social order doing in the early 21st Century? In 1985, during the height of the Ronald Reagan era, Bellah et al. published Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life. In the preface, they wrote: "The central problem of our book concerns the American individualism that Tocqueville described with a mixture of admiration and anxiety. It seems to us that it is individualism, and not equality, as Tocqueville thought, that has marched inexorably through our history. We are concerned that this individualism may have grown cancerous--that it may be destroying those social instruments that Tocqueville saw as moderating its more destructive potentialities, that it may be threatening the survival of freedom itself." Bellah et al. are raising the question of "community" in the United States. And since they wrote their book 21 years ago, the growing diversity and seeming fragmentation of American society has made their concerns even more compelling. Is it possible for community to exist in a society that emphasizes radical individualism? What are the individual's responsibilities to fellow citizens, to his/her city, state, or nation? These and other questions will be explored in this course.

Students who register for Perspectives in American Character and Society must also register for POLS 001 (Debra DeLaet) The American Political System, taught by Professor Debra DeLaet. Professors McAlister, Lewis, and DeLaet will coordinate course readings assignments to tie together themes developed in the two classes. Students signing up will also be housed on the same floor in a residence hall.


FYS 026 / CRN 2929
TECHNOLOGY FOR MATHEMATICS

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Luz DeAlba

The goals of this FYS are to introduce students to a wide variety of technology resources useful in the analysis and communication of mathematics. Specifically, the pedagogy will seek to advance students' knowledge of Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, Geometer's Sketchpad, Mathematica, and Maple, and to improve their writing skills. If time permits, an additional unit on mathematics typesetting with Latex will be introduced. The use of this technology will be based on basic mathematical topics, and will seek to promote critical thinking. The use of computer technology will allow students to experiment, and to communicate mathematics effectively.


FYS 027 / CRN 3437
CHEMISTRY IN THE SOCIETY

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
John Gitua

This course explores the impact of chemistry in our society. Chemistry is a fundamental science, a human activity and an integral aspect of our economic as well as political climate. In the process of looking at some (in)famous examples of such scientific achievements (impacts), we will explore:

a) The basic scientific issues dealt with in our daily lives, our society “environment” and on a global level.

b) Could chemistry be of more value to the society than it is today?

c) What is the future relevance of chemistry in our society?

Also new frontiers in science from current magazines, newspapers as well as “internet” will be discussed.


FYS 028 / CRN 3006
MADNESS AND CREATIVITY

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Erica Anzalone

In this course we will compare constructions of “madness” in art, literature, and film, with case studies of the mentally ill. For example, what does glossolalia, or speaking in tongues, sound like when spoken by a schizophrenic versus the way a poet might use it as a technique to achieve ecstatic utterance? Do writers and artists romanticize the notion of “madness” in order to create a persona of genius, or is there truly a link between inspiration and mental illness? Are the psychiatric labels for diseases such as manic-depression, anxiety disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder, merely another form of construction? How might these labels be used to criticize those who pose a threat to order as deviant, and thus discredit them? How do gender, race, and class influence these constructions? Class requirements include: active class participation; frequent writing assignments; scholarly research; class-led discussion; presentations and other projects. Possible writers, critics, artists, and filmmakers whose works we may address include Virginia Woolf, Anthony Burgess, Sylvia Plath, John Berryman, Michel Foucault, Sigmund Freud, Kay Redfield Jamison, Adolph Wölfli, Antonin Artaud, Stanley Kubrick, and Francis Ford Coppola.


FYS 030 / CRN 3170
CHILD HEALTH, SAFETY, AND NUTRITION

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Maria Valdovinos Loder

This course will center on ensuring overall health of young children, creating safe environments, and evaluating nutritional value of foods for young children. Specific topics to be addressed are: lead and toy recall in China; mandatory vaccinations (e.g., chicken pox, HPV, etc.); the use of pseudophedrine/cough medicine in infants and young children; competitive sports in childhood (pushing too hard injuries); television and toddlers; fast food and obesity in children; mental illness in children; fad treatments for autism; discipline (is spanking children okay?); and organic foods (are they better?).

In addition to learning general health, safety, and nutritional guidelines that will be helpful in working with and caring for young children, students will be exposed to current controversies (e.g., television and toddlers, chiropractic care for children, is organic better?) and apply what has been learned to resolving those controversies for themselves.


FYS 031 / CRN 3214 AND CO-REQUISITE VIEWING LAB
SPACE MATTERS: SCIENCE FICTION FILM AND LITERATURE

MW 12:30-1:45 pm AND one of the following film viewing labs:
CRN3310, Fridays, 4:30-6:45 pm or CRN 3311, Sundays, 2-4:15 pm
Vibs Petersen

Science fiction has only recently been admitted to academia as a genre worthy of occupying intellectual space and energies. Similarly, the fact that we negotiate our world in gender-specific ways has also been acknowledged only in the last couple of decades. In the following weeks, we shall investigate science fiction novels, short stories, and movies. We alternate watching and reading by-weekly. We shall examine the relevance the material may have to various historical contexts, and how it relates to us as men and women, and to the genre as a whole. We will be employing gender as one of the primary filters through which ideas of space and the future is sifted, both by us in the classroom and by the creators of the movies and novels on our syllabus.


FYS 032 / CRN 3634
UNDERSTANDING EMOTIONS

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Heidi Lepper

Rage, sadness, fear, elation, love, hate – it is hard to imagine life without felt and expressed emotion. While emotions can be both fulfilling and baffling, emotions are extremely important to our lives as human beings. Throughout history, philosophers, artists, and scientists have attempted to understand and depict emotions. This FYS will begin with an overview of the historical roots to the study of emotion and end with an overview of disorder of emotion. In between the beginning and end, we will look at contemporary research into the brain, the nervous system, and the psychosociocultural development of emotion. Throughout the semester we will be thinking about how our beliefs and values are related to our emotions, why different people have different emotional responses to the same events, why we respond emotionally to works of art like poetry, music, films and paintings, and what goes on in the brain when we feel the emotions, and whether, and if so how, scientists and philosophers can explain our emotions.


FYS 033 / CRN 3308
GLOBAL THREATS TO PUBLIC HEALTH

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Jane DeWitt

People around the world share the risk of many of the same global health challenges. Globalization and cultural, economic, political and societal changes have influenced the spread of disease and other threats to health worldwide. Students will explore the scope of current and future threats to public health; such as AIDS, avian flu, the emergence of new and more virulent infectious diseases, growing resistance to antibiotics, the threats of bioterrorism and the effects of climate change on health. Students will develop an awareness of the characteristics of today's world that have increased global threats to health. At the same time, students should be able to separate the facts from the fear surrounding these issues, and understand the potential for response and prevention.


FYS 034 / CRN 3201
AMERICAN RACISM: LANGUAGE, THEORY, AND BEHAVIOR

T 6:00-8:50 pm
Homer Hill

This course will offer students an opportunity to examine the history, and culture of what has been euphemistically described as "race relations" in American culture. Students will be challenged to consider their personal beliefs and prior education regarding the role of race and the legacies of slavery in shaping both American cultural attitudes and behavior. During this seminar students will interrogate language, ideas, and concepts that often influence collective and individual behavior within cultural frameworks defined by Racial exclusion (White and Everyone Else theory).

Why, for example, does the Office of Management and Budget and the Census Bureau persist in categorizing Americans by race? What does race really mean and how does it influence our individual and collective behavior? What does "Teaching Tolerance" suggest? Why is our visual media and colloquial language dominated by racial stereotypes and metaphors? Why does race "sell"? Why do we persist in dividing human beings by race? Why not a single-race theory? Why do we persist in promoting dominant-subordinate imagery? What are some of the keys to understanding one another at a human level (outside the limiting boundaries of Race)?

Students will address visual and written texts that identify and interrogate these questions. We will question whether and why American slavery serves as the basis for a number of lasting perceptions and presumptions about Black (African) Americans within American culture. Examples include texts from the American slave experience, both from slaves and slave holders, contemporary television advertisements, newsreels and footage from the American Civil Rights Era, as well as the instructor's own oral history collection and lived experience.


FYS 035 / CRN 2938
THE DA VINCI CODE, THE SEX LIFE OF JESUS, AND EARLY CHRISTIAN DIVERSITY

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Brad Crowell

Two thousand years after the origin of the world's largest religion, we tend to think of Christian diversity in terms of different institutional churches or along the lines of modern conceptions of racial diversity. Yet Dan Brown's bestseller The Da Vinci Code highlights major theological rifts in early Christianity and makes ideas once considered heresy central to the plot of his novel. This course will use The Da Vinci Code as an introduction to the diverse beliefs in early Christianity. We'll look at heresies that were crushed and the subtle art of persuasion from some of the greatest religious thinkers of all time. Join us for a tour of lost gospels, assassinated heretics, groups that valorized the betrayal of Judas, heresy, orthodoxy and the power players who made decisions that still influence global Christianity.


FYS 036 / CRN 3663 AND Viewing Lab
EXISTENTIALISM: PHILOSOPHY AS LIFE

TR 12:30-1:45 pm AND Film viewing lab W 6:00-8:30 pm / CRN 3676
Allen Scult

What is the relationship between philosophy and life? Existentialism, arguably the most important philosophical movement of the last century, faced that question head-on and essentially declared, “Philosophy IS life!” Existentialism sought to bring philosophy down out of the clouds in order to encounter life in its raw actuality— “lived experience” as they called it. Life, as the existentialists found it in the time of “post-modernity,” had been cut adrift from its moorings in religion and other traditional sources of knowledge and value. What was left was the “absurdity” of it all, to use one of the existentialists' favorite expressions. For the existentialists, the question becomes, what sort of life, what sort of philosophy, is possible in a world without god, without meaning? While you might think that a course based in such an attitude would be depressing and demoralizing, that is not the case. While existentialism does take the risk of entering some of the darker corners of life as we have it, they also saw themselves as setting out on a new adventure, in search of a different sort of truth, what they called the “truth of being.” But most importantly, the object of their quest was freedom.In this course, we will study those thinkers, writers and artists who led this search for a “new beginning.” In addition to philosophers like Jean Paul Sartre and Martin Heidegger, writers like Franz Kafka and Albert Camus; we will also examine the so-called “theater of the absurd,” as well as films that exemplify the existential quest (the recent “Into the Wild” for example). Existentialism is not a philosophy to be read passively, at a distance. Students will have the opportunity to join these thinkers, writers, and artists not only through discussion, but also through their own writing and other creative work.


FYS 037 / CRN2193
"ALL RIVERS RUN TO THE SEA...BUT THE SEA IS NEVER FULL"

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Jim Laurenzo

Our work in this FYS will center around intense discussion, research and application of ideas relating to the wisdom literature of the Bible. This literature offers a wide perspective on ourselves as human beings, our world as created and (in part) being created by us, and God. The book of Ecclesiastes calls us to question and reflect and even challenge. The book of Psalms has been called the world's greatest prayer book. The book of Proverbs offers a worldly wisdom that often surprises. And Job's long debate urges us to ask and discover life's meaning. Crucial to all these biblical texts is our interpretation and application of them. This course is intended for students who (e.g., the Jacob story in Genesis) can learn to struggle with the text through critical reading, researching, and application of these important ideas.


FYS 038 / CRN 1916
THE DISTRESS OF CHRONIC PAIN

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Raylene Rospond

Pain is one of the most common manifestations of a disease process. Although the multitude of acute aches and pain are easily treated and resolve, chronic pain is an entity that has a life of it's own. In recent years, chronic pain has become more a part of our social construct as a result of several ethical and legal controversies. An understanding of chronic pain from the view of the sufferer is vital to our improving the management of this extremely prevalent condition. This course will expose the student to individual, family and societal impact of chronic pain utilizing various forms of media and through an examination of current events.


FYS 039 / CRN2941
THE U.S. AND THE WORLD

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
David Skidmore

When should the United States use force in pursuit of its foreign policy goals? Should the U.S. act unilaterally or only in cooperation with other nations? Is the promotion of democracy abroad a legitimate foreign policy objective? Should Americans embrace globalization or seek to tame the forces of global economic integration? These are among the many difficult questions that Americans will be challenged to ponder as foreign policy issues promise to play an important role in the coming presidential election contest. With the aid of a series of visiting foreign policy experts, this FYS will examine the debate over America's global role.


FYS 040 / CRN 1891
WISDOM, EDUCATION & THE ART OF LIVING:

How to Make the Most of Your Education and Become the Person You Want to Be
TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Jennifer McCrickerd

In its mission statement, Drake University takes on the admirable task of, among other things, "provid[ing] an exceptional learning environment that prepares students for meaningful personal lives, professional accomplishments and responsible global citizenship." It is noteworthy that Drake is aspiring to provide the environment in which these other lofty goals will be accomplished. Also worth noting is that all the environment in the world isn't going to be successful in promoting anything in anyone if those in the environment aren't making the most of said environment.

In this class, we will spend our time looking, broadly, at what it means to be wise and how one might have a good life and, then, how to face one's college education so that you are more likely to actually end up, at some point in your life, more wise and more likely to have a good life.

To this end, we will read and have lots of discussion about philosophy, literature, social science and a bit of material from various other fields.


FYS 041 / CRN 2345
INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Randall Blum

What kind of price would you pay for a great personal and professional life? Ask the successful CEOs of major corporations what characteristic is most needed for success in leadership positions, and they will tell you it is the ability to work with people. Interview men or women in happy marriages and they will tell you it is the ability to understand and communicate with each other. Sit down with teachers, shop foreman, small business owners, pastors and parents, and they'll tell you that people skills make the difference between those who excel and those who don't. People skills are invaluable. It doesn't matter what you want to do. If you can win with people, you can be successful and happy!

Practical and warmly personal, this course helps you develop the skills you need to interact with others in today's complex society.You will learn methods to understand yourself better, techniques to learn how others view the world, and practical activities to improve the quality of every interpersonal encounter. Some believe the skill of developing great interpersonal relationships cannot be learned. But this course will prove quite the opposite. Every student will leave this course more eager and better equipped to develop positive relationships that will improve their personal and professional life well into the future.


FYS 042 / CRN 1670
PERCEPTIONS OF ILLNESS: HOW WE VIEW THE SICK

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
John Rovers

This course is intended for all majors, not just health science majors. In this course you will learn to:

  • Distinguish between various methods used to describe the sick and the healthy and discuss their advantages and disadvantages.
  • Discuss what society wants from the sick and what the sick want from society.
  • Articulate your personal response to disease and understand why you had the response you did.
  • Decide whether or not you believe that the common metaphors for disease are or are not useful constructs for both patients and providers.
  • Reach a personal conclusion for how you believe the "science" part of health care is best related to the "care" part of health care.

FYS 043 / CRN 3209
CONTEMPORARY GLOBAL ISSUES IN CONTEXT

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Jennifer Hogan

This course aims to engage students in a dialogue of current global events through researching various media sources including foreign newspapers, the Internet and other international publications. Students will have the opportunity to research and report upon issues and events in a country of their choice. Countries excluded from consideration include North American and Western European countries. Each week students will write a brief summary of a current event in their country or an update on an ongoing issue. Students will be expected to talk about what they have learned in their readings and how the event or issue affects other countries and also how it affects the United States.


FYS 044 / CRN 1744
CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Debra Bishop

What does it mean to be an entrepreneur? Does just anyone have what it takes to be successful as an entrepreneur? Does it require creativity, imagination, drive, luck, or some other talents? We will investigate the ups and downs in the lives of some past and present entrepreneurs. Using various methods such as readings, video, research and observation we will consider people such as Henry Ford, Frank and Lillian Gillbreth (the book Cheaper by the Dozen is based on their life) Walt Disney, Bill Gates and others. We will try and discover if there is an entrepreneur inside each of us.


FYS 045 / CRN 2336
READING BIBLICAL TEXTS

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Dale Patrick

The objective of this course is to give students the experience of reading attentively, critically, historically and meditatively. The texts of the Bible have been generative of the deepest and most interactive reading in the history of our civilization. The course will be organized around the reading of well-known and richly rewarding Biblical texts: Creation (Genesis 1-2), the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20, Deuteronomy 5) and the Passion Narrative (Mark 14-15, Matthew 26-27, Luke 22-23, and John 12-19). Students should be prepared to research and write papers frequently.


FYS 046 / CRN 3213
PUBLIC POLICY IN EDUCATION

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Rachel Boon

The American educational system is important from social, economic, and global perspectives today. From pre-kindergarten all the way to postsecondary education, federal, state and local policies shape and direct how, when, and which students learn. It is an area politicians and voters talk about often, and in this course discussions will be in the context of the current election cycle as well as the historical roots of public policy in education.


FYS 047 / CRN 3812
LEADERSHIP, DRAKE, AND YOU

TR 12:30-1:45 pm
Sentwali Bakari

This seminar is about a leadership process that can be learned with discipline and practice. Increasingly, successful leadership is less hierarchical and authoritative and more based on a process of inclusiveness and empowerment. The leader's position or status matters less than the working relationship and team s/he is able to cultivate. Students will explore traditional and contemporary leadership theories and models, and articulate the difference between leadership and management. Students will construct a personal vision through awareness of self and others, teamwork, integrity, group dynamics, and campus involvement, inclusive leadership and community service. They will also be asked to communicate their powerful vision in the context of working effectively with others in a culturally diverse and complex changing world.

A particular writing and presentation focus for the seminar will be to research a female leader from a social movement, national political party, health and human services, education, spirituality or business, and reflect on the context in which the individual rose to leadership, the individual's leadership approach/style, and lessons students can learn about leadership from this individual. A second focus of writing will be on the impact of key events that have shaped and influenced her/his own leadership experiences such as critical incidents, individuals, role models, mentors, or travel experiences.


FYS 049 / CRN 1362
INTELLECTUAL MATURITY AND PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT

MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Wanda Everage

In this seminar, intellectual (cognitive) development and psychosocial theories provide the context for examining the many challenges students encounter during their years in college. Academic and social aspects of the collegiate experience affect the changes and choices associated with intellectual and personal development. Students will review the literature and relate research findings to their current learning environment, particularly salient will be the first-year experience. The readings, class discussions, writing assignments, and attendance at selected campus events will reflect an emphasis on critical thinking. Students will also examine the distinction between intrinsic and extrinsic motivation and explore the influence and interrelationship between intrinsic motivation and quality of effort relative to the academic experience.


FYS 050 / CRN 3168
MEDIA LITERACY: FROM GUTENBERG TO GATES


MW 12:30-1:45 pm
Gary Wade

This seminar will explore the development of the mass media, concentrating on popular culture's interaction with its audience through historical, social, political, and technological advances from Johann Gutenberg (the reputed inventor of the printing press) to Bill Gates (Microsoft, Inc.)

Students will learn to effectively and efficiently interpret and deliver media messages from a cultural perspective, increasing understanding of the mass communication process. The course seeks to help students become more skilled and knowledgeable consumers of media content.

Return to the top

Today at Drake
no events have been scheduled
University News
July 15, 2014
Three Drake alumnae were honored in the Des Moines Business Record’s 2014 Women of Influence awards. The awards celebrate women who have made a difference in their community.
×