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1 - 7 of 7 results for: THINK

THINK 12: Century of Violence

What is modern about modern mass violence? This course explores the evolution, varieties, and logic of mass violence from the early 20th century to the present day. You will engage with and analyze primary accounts of such violence by victims, observers, perpetrators, and courts. We will then consider the effectiveness of various efforts to confront genocides and crimes against humanity in international courts and institutions, past and present. We start with the emergence of genocide as a modern, international issue; proceed with colonial massacres in early 20th century Africa; move to the Armenian genocide in the Ottoman Empire and WWI; Nazi and Nazi-inspired racial murder; communist-induced mass violence in the Soviet Union and Asia; ethnic cleansing in former Yugoslavia; and end with an examination of the recent genocides in Rwanda, Sudan, and the Middle East.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 23: The Cancer Problem: Causes, Treatments, and Prevention

How has our approach to cancer been affected by clinical observations, scientific discoveries, social norms, politics, and economic interests? Approximately one in three Americans will develop invasive cancer during their lifetime; one in five Americans will die as a result of this disease. This course will expose you to multiple ways of approaching the cancer problem, including laboratory research, clinical trials, population studies, public health interventions, and health care economics. We will start with the 18th century discovery of the relationship between coal tar and cancer, and trace the role of scientific research in revealing the genetic basis of cancer. We will then discuss the development of new treatments for cancer as well as measures to screen for and prevent cancer, including the ongoing debate over tobacco control. Using cancer as a case study, you will learn important aspects of the scientific method including experimental design, data analysis, and the difference between correlation and causation. You will learn how science can be used and misused with regard to the public good. You will also learn about ways in which social, political, and economic forces shape our knowledge about and response to disease.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-AQR, WAY-SMA | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 45: Thinking About the Universe: What do we know? How do we know it?

What is the origin and ultimate fate of the universe? Can we know what came before the universe? Are there ultimate limits to human knowledge about the universe and are we reaching them? Cosmology (the study of the universe) raises profound questions about us, our place in the universe, and about the limits of our knowledge. It was only in the 20th century that cosmology developed from metaphysical and theological speculation to become an observational science and a recognized part of physics. In this course, students will explore questions about the Universe, its beginnings, its structure, its extent, its fate, from several perspectives - philosophical, experimental, and theoretical. We will discuss current research and the ongoing debates about the laws of nature on subatomic scales and the perplexing questions they raise regarding the universe and the limits of scientific inquiry.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-SMA | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 47: Inventing Government: Ancient and Modern

How might the study of the successes and failures of democratic and republican government in ancient Greece and Rome help us to fix what is broken in our own political systems? Democracy and republic are ancient names for revolutionary approaches to government of, by, and for citizens. Today, almost every state proclaims itself to be a democracy, a republic -- or both. Democratic and republican revolutions transformed ancient Greece and Rome - and later transformed the modern world. We explore how political thinkers, from Machiavelli to Madison and Mill, used the lessons of ancient politics to design bold new systems of government. Ancient politics may still hold lessons for us. We analyze what is broken in modern government (corruption, polarization, gridlock), how it broke, and how the tool kit of ancient political history might help us to analyze and repair the damage.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-ER, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 48: Reading the Body: How Medicine and Culture Define the Self

How have our perceptions of what is considered normal/abnormal; beautiful/ugly; infected/uninfected changed over time? How do these changing medical and cultural representations of the body reflect larger societal shifts? How does illness change our perceptions of our bodies and our identities? Viewed through the lens of medicine, the body is a text that offers clues to health and illness, yet clinical readings are never entirely objective. Culture informs and distorts how we discern, accept, reject, and analyze our bodies. Looking at literary, medical, ethical, and anthropological texts, we ask how representations of the body affects the way we experience illness, embody gender and racial identities, and understand our rights (or lack of rights) to control our own bodies. We will critically examine our perceptions about the body and debate some of the most complex and sensitive issues surrounding the body, from the ethics of medical research trials to end of life decisions.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-ED | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 53: Food Talks: The Language of Food

In this course, we examine how the ways we talk about food offers us a window into history, psychology, culture and economics. We ask students to think critically about language and taste as well as explore the hidden meanings and influence of the language that surrounds us. Students will analyze the language of food through menus, recipes, Yelp reviews, TV food shows, as well as the history and etymology of food words. Some of our examples will be drawn from East Asian food and culture in addition to, and as a point of contrast with, foods and cultures that may be more familiar to students.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 57: What is Progressive about Progress?

What does it mean to be skeptical of the notion of progress? Where and when did we start believing in human progress and human perfectibility? Does progress imply that history has a particular direction? Is the idea of sustainability a viable alternative to the idea of progress? Much of our everyday thinking about politics, society, and even personal interactions depend on some concept of progress. This course challenges that basic assumption by engaging with thinkers who have cast the idea of progress into radical doubt. We ask where and when our modern idea of progress originated and why it has come to dominate Western thinking. The course engages with thinkers who argued in favor of progress as well as thinkers who attacked its presumptions. Reading and critically evaluating philosophical and literary texts, we will investigate the different consequences of our residual belief in progress, as well as the consequences of our abandonment of that belief.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
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