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STS 200A: Food and Society: Politics, Culture and Technology

This course will examine how politics, culture, and technology intersect in our food practices. Through a survey of academic, journalistic, and artistic works on food and eating, the course will explore a set of key analytical frameworks and conceptual tools in STS, such as the politics of technology, classification and identity, and nature/culture boundaries. The topics covered include: the industrialization of agriculture; technology and the modes of eating (e.g., the rise of restaurants); food taboos; globalization and local foodways; food and environmentalism; and new technologies in production (e.g., genetically modified food). Through food as a window, the course intends to achieve two broad intellectual goals. First, students will explore various theoretical and methodological approaches in STS. In particular, they will pay particular attention to the ways in which politics, culture, and technology intersect in food practices. Second, student will develop a set of basic skills and tools for their own critical thinking and empirical research, and design and conduct independent research on a topic related to food. First class attendance mandatory. STS majors must have Senior status to enroll in this Senior Capstone course.
Last offered: Winter 2019 | UG Reqs: WAY-ED, WAY-SI

TAPS 12N: To Die For: Antigone and Political Dissent (CLASSICS 17N)

(Formerly CLASSGEN 6N.) Preference to freshmen. Tensions inherent in the democracy of ancient Athens; how the character of Antigone emerges in later drama, film, and political thought as a figure of resistance against illegitimate authority; and her relevance to contemporary struggles for women's and workers' rights and national liberation. Readings and screenings include versions of Antigone by Sophocles, Anouilh, Brecht, Fugard/Kani/Ntshona, Paulin, Glowacki, Gurney, and von Trotta.
Terms: Aut | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-Gender, WAY-ED, WAY-ER
Instructors: Rehm, R. (PI)

TAPS 20N: Prisons and Performance

Preference to Freshmen. This seminar starts with the unlikely question of what can the performing arts, particularly dance and theater, illuminate about the situation of mass incarceration in America. Part seminar, part immersive context building, students will read and view a cross-section of dance and theater works where the subject, performers, choreographers or authors, belong to part of the 2.4 million people currently behind bars in US prisons. Class includes conversations with formerly incarcerated youth, prison staff, juvenile justice lawyers and artists working in juvenile and adult prisons as well as those who are part of the 7.3 million people currently on parole or probation. Using performance as our lens we will investigate the unique kinds of understanding the arts make possible as well as the growing use of theater and dance to affect social change and personal transformation among prison inmates. Class trips will include visits to locked facilities and meetings with artists and inmates working behind bars.
Terms: Aut | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED
Instructors: Ross, J. (PI)

TAPS 108: Introduction to Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (AMSTUD 107, CSRE 108, FEMGEN 101)

Introduction to interdisciplinary approaches to gender, sexuality, queer, trans and feminist studies. Topics include the emergence of sexuality studies in the academy, social justice and new subjects, science and technology, art and activism, history, film and memory, the documentation and performance of difference, and relevant socio-economic and political formations such as work and the family. Students learn to think critically about race, gender, and sexuality from local and global perspectives.
Terms: Aut | Units: 4-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-SocSci, GER:EC-Gender, WAY-ED, WAY-SI

TAPS 150G: Performing Race, Gender, and Sexuality (CSRE 150G, FEMGEN 150G)

This theory and practice-based course will examine performances by and scholarly texts about artists who critically and mindfully engage race, gender, and sexuality. Students will cultivate their skills as artist-scholars through written assignments and the creation of performance-based works in response to the assigned material. Attendance and written reflection on the TAPS Vital Signs: Performance Art in the 21st Century performance art series are required. The practical component of the class will also incorporate meditation into the process of preparing for, making, and critiquing performance. We will approach mindfulness as method and theory in our own practice, as well in relation to the works studied, while attending to the ethics and current debates concerning its use. Examples of artists studied include James Luna, Nao Bustamante, William Pope.L, Yoko Ono, Cassils, Adrian Piper, Guillermo Gomez-Peña, Nikki S. Lee, and Ana Mendieta.
Last offered: Spring 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-CE, WAY-ED

TAPS 154G: Black Magic: Ethnicity, Race, and Identity in Performance Cultures (AFRICAAM 154G, CSRE 154D, FEMGEN 154G)

In 2013, CaShawn Thompson devised a Twitter hashtag, #blackgirlmagic, to celebrate the beauty and intelligence of black women. Twitter users quickly adopted the slogan, using the hashtag to celebrate everyday moments of beauty, accomplishment, and magic. The slogan offered a contemporary iteration of an historical alignment: namely, the concept of "magic" with both Black people as well as "blackness." This course explores the legacy of Black magic--and black magic--through performance texts including plays, poetry, films, and novels. We will investigate the creation of magical worlds, the discursive alignment of magic with blackness, and the contemporary manifestation of a historical phenomenon. We will cover, through lecture and discussion, the history of black magic representation as well as the relationship between magic and religion. Our goal will be to understand the impact and history of discursive alignments: what relationship does "black magic" have to and for "black bodies"? H more »
In 2013, CaShawn Thompson devised a Twitter hashtag, #blackgirlmagic, to celebrate the beauty and intelligence of black women. Twitter users quickly adopted the slogan, using the hashtag to celebrate everyday moments of beauty, accomplishment, and magic. The slogan offered a contemporary iteration of an historical alignment: namely, the concept of "magic" with both Black people as well as "blackness." This course explores the legacy of Black magic--and black magic--through performance texts including plays, poetry, films, and novels. We will investigate the creation of magical worlds, the discursive alignment of magic with blackness, and the contemporary manifestation of a historical phenomenon. We will cover, through lecture and discussion, the history of black magic representation as well as the relationship between magic and religion. Our goal will be to understand the impact and history of discursive alignments: what relationship does "black magic" have to and for "black bodies"? How do we understand a history of performance practice as being caught up in complicated legacies of suspicion, celebration, self-definition? The course will give participants a grounding in black performance texts, plays, and theoretical writings. *This course will also satisfy the TAPS department WIM requirement.*
Terms: Aut | Units: 3-4 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED
Instructors: Robinson, A. (PI)

TAPS 156: Performing History: Race, Politics, and Staging the Plays of August Wilson (AFRICAAM 156, CSRE 156T, TAPS 356)

This course purposefully and explicitly mixes theory and practice. Students will read and discuss the plays of August Wilson, the most celebrated and most produced contemporary American playwright, that comprise his 20th Century History Cycle. Class stages scenes from each of these plays, culminating in a final showcase of longer scenes from his work as a final project.
Last offered: Winter 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-CE, WAY-ED

TAPS 157: World Drama and Performance (TAPS 357)

This course takes up a geographically expansive conversation by looking at modern and contemporary drama from nations including Ghana, Egypt, India, Argentina, among others. Considering influential texts from the Global South will also enable us to explore a range of themes and methodologies that are radically re-shaping the field of Performance Studies. We will examine the relationship between colonialism and globalization, empire and capital, cosmopolitanism and neoliberalism. Re-situating our perspective from the Global South and the non-western world, we will ¿provincialize Europe¿ and probe the limits of its universalizing discourses.
Last offered: Spring 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED

TAPS 160: Performance and History: Rethinking the Ballerina (FEMGEN 160, TAPS 260)

The ballerina occupies a unique place in popular imagination as an object of over-determined femininity as well as an emblem of extreme physical accomplishment for the female dancer. This seminar is designed as an investigation into histories of the ballerina as an iconographic symbol and cultural reference point for challenges to political and gender ideals. Through readings, videos, discussions and viewings of live performances this class investigates pivotal works, artists and eras in the global histories of ballet from its origins as a symbol of patronage and power in the 15th century through to its radical experiments as a site of cultural obedience and disobedience in the 20th and 21st centuries.
Last offered: Winter 2017 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-Gender, WAY-A-II, WAY-ED

TAPS 160M: Introduction to Representations of the Middle East in Dance, Performance, & Popular Culture (CSRE 160M, DANCE 160M, FEMGEN 160M)

This course will introduce students to the ways in which the Middle East has been represented and performed by/in the 'West' through dance, performance, and popular culture in both historical and contemporary contexts. A brief look through today's media sources exposes a wide range of racialized and gendered representations of the Middle East that shape the way the world imagines the Middle East to be. As postcolonial theorist Edward Said explains, the framework we call Orientalism establishes the ontological character of the Orient and the Oriental as inherently `Other'. Starting with 19th century colonialism and continuing into the post-9/11 era, this course will trace the Western production, circulation, and consumption of representations of the Middle East as 'Other' in relation to global geopolitics. We will further examine dance forms produced in mid-twentieth century Iran and Egypt, with particular attention to nation-state building and constructions of gender. Finally, we will more »
This course will introduce students to the ways in which the Middle East has been represented and performed by/in the 'West' through dance, performance, and popular culture in both historical and contemporary contexts. A brief look through today's media sources exposes a wide range of racialized and gendered representations of the Middle East that shape the way the world imagines the Middle East to be. As postcolonial theorist Edward Said explains, the framework we call Orientalism establishes the ontological character of the Orient and the Oriental as inherently `Other'. Starting with 19th century colonialism and continuing into the post-9/11 era, this course will trace the Western production, circulation, and consumption of representations of the Middle East as 'Other' in relation to global geopolitics. We will further examine dance forms produced in mid-twentieth century Iran and Egypt, with particular attention to nation-state building and constructions of gender. Finally, we will examine artistic productions and practices from the Middle East and Middle Eastern diasporic communities that respond to colonialism, war, displacement, secularism, and Euro-American Empire. Using dance studies, postcolonial feminist, and critical race theoretical frameworks, we will consider the gender, racial, political, and cultural implications of selected performance works and practices in order to analyze how bodies produce meaning in dance, performance art, theater, film, photography, and new media. Students will engage in multiple modes of learning; the course will include lectures, engaged group discussions, viewing of live and recorded performance, embodied participation in dance practice, student oral presentations, and a variety of writing exercises. Course assignments will culminate in a final research project related to class themes and methods.
Last offered: Spring 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED
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