Our mission calls us to share our intellect and abilities to create a compassionate world community.

Humanities and Fine Arts Course Offerings

HUMA 100 Introduction to the Humanities through the Fine Arts – GS5 and GS9 C-EI, C-WI
This course aims to help students understand ways in which literature and the fine arts can deepen their sense of what it means to be human. The course gives students practice in appreciating masterpieces of painting, sculpture, architecture, music, poetry, prose narrative, theater, dance and film. Required for Humanities majors; open to all interested students.

HUMA 110 / WMGS 110 Introduction to Women’s and Gender Studies – C-DD
This introduction to the discipline of Women’s and Gender Studies will focus on one central question: what difference does gender make? By examining a variety of texts (articles, novels, films, popular culture), we will learn not only how to analyze issues of power, gender and identity, but we will also relate those issues to the wider world around us. Specific thematic units include socialization, violence, work, the female body, language, sexuality, motherhood and the family, race, globalization and voices from the third wave of feminism.

HUMA 240 Classic American Novels – GS 6 C-WT
This course is designed for the general student to provide her/him with in-depth knowledge of some of the great novels that make up the American literary tradition. Seven or eight novels are selected each time it is offered from a list that might include such works as Hawthorne’s “The Scarlet Letter,” Twain’s “Huckleberry Finn,” James’ “The American,” Crane’s “The Red Badge of Courage,” Wharton’s “The Age of Innocence,” Gather’s “My Antonia,” Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby,” Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises,” Faulkner’s “As I Lay Dying,” Hurston’s “Their Eyes Were Watching God,” Silko’s “Ceremony” and Guterson’s “Snow Falling On Cedars.” Such works help the student understand the distinctive American culture and how it developed in all its diversity.

HUMA 261 / AMER 261 Introduction to American Studies – GS6 C-DD 
This course explores what it means to define oneself as an American — historically, socially, spiritually and aesthetically. Readings are arranged both chronologically and topically and range from Puritan history and poetry to contemporary politics, art and philosophy. Topics include American work, play, religion, education, gender, race and ethnicity, and media. Spring semester.

HUMA 280 Japanese Culture and Society – GS7 C-BB
See Infrequently Offered Courses.

HUMA 313 Stories of War – GS11 and GS12 C-EI
Every armed conflict generates stories. Governments tell stories about the cause, justifications, and progress of a war. Soldiers and civilians tell stories about fear, pain, death, ethical and moral struggles, and all the other elements that make up a suddenly dangerous life. Writers and film-makers, either during a war or long after it ends, translate these accounts into works of literature and film. This course will focus on how 20th-century literature and film represents war. We’ll consider the wide range of experiences depicted in these texts, the narrative conventions used to impact their audiences, and the difficult questions that are often at the heart of a narrative about war.

HUMA 337 Communio and the Norbertines Across the Centuries – GS10 C-CI
This course will explore the concept of communio (koinonia) as the theological grounding of creation and its concrete expression in the common life of the early Jerusalem community described in the Acts of the Apostles. We will explore both the genesis of the ideal of communio and St. Augustine’s model of life for his religious communities set out in the rule which Norbert of Xanten accepted as a core element in his reform of 12th century Catholic life. We will gain a greater appreciation for the origins of the order Norbert founded. This will provide grounding for an understanding for the life of the Norbertines today. We will do a close study of Norbert’s life, the early growth of the Norbertine Order and then the order’s decline, eventual revival in 19th century Europe, and its missionary activity with a special focus on the establishment of the order in the United States. We will study the retrieval of the concept of communio in the Second Vatican Council and how from that Council communio became the key concept in the shaping the Norbertine Constitutions after Vatican II. This will provide a strong base for understanding the College’s Catholic, liberal arts and Norbertine mission.

HUMA 389 Special Topics
This course concentrates on a topic pertinent to the current needs and interests of students. Primarily the focus will be placed on topics which cross disciplinary lines and involve two or more Humanities disciplines. Topics will vary and will be announced in the course listings.

HUMA 403 Ideal Societies – GS12 C-WT
This course addresses the fundamental question: What political and social system best provides for the common welfare? Various answers (and warnings) are considered through readings from political philosophy, social commentary, and utopian and anti-utopian literature ranging from classical times to the 20th century with the intention of stimulating reflection on issues and events in contemporary society.

HUMA 411 Vietnam in the Western Imagination – GS10 and GS12 C-WT
An examination of the American involvement in Vietnam through its symbolic history, the finest novels, personal memoirs, and films on the war. Primary texts — appraised as both aesthetic responses and cultural documents — will include the written works of Grahame Greene, Philip Caputo, Tim O’Brien, Bobbie Ann Mason and others. Films by directors such as Francis Coppola, Michael Cimino, Oliver Stone and Stanley Kubrick will also be examined.

HUMA 422 Slavery in Antebellum America – GS12 C-WT
This course begins with the institution of slavery as it existed in the ancient Western world, then shifts to the legacy of slavery as it played out during the mid-19th century, primarily in the United States. At this point in our nation’s history, slavery had coexisted with Christianity and democracy for more than 1,000 years, yet emancipated slaves and leaders of the abolition movement crafted non-fiction testimonials and novels designed to eradicate slavery. Emancipated slaves such as Frederick Douglass, Solomon Northup and Harriet Jacobs published slave narratives graphically depicting the gross injustices that slaves suffered. They argued that this suffering affected all Americans regardless of their residence in the free or slave states, and they invoked democratic ideals and Christian doctrines to win their readers to the abolitionist cause.

HUMA 490 Independent Study
A course allowing instructors and students to explore together topics of special interest.

HUMA 494 Internship
An academic internship for credit involves the application of disciplinary or interdisciplinary concepts to work experience and includes a very specific academic component, which is detailed and agreed to by all parties in advance of the internship experience. The academic focus of the internship for credit should be woven through the internship experience in a meaningful way under the expert guidance of the faculty member. Prerequsite: junior/senior standing.