Faculty: Abir Bazaz
Course Description: Sufism, or Islamic mysticism, has had a deep and enduring impact on history and culture in Africa, Middle East, South Asia and South East Asia. The course will situate Sufi poetry in a wider social, historical and intellectual context of the Islamic and Indo-Islamic worlds, and includes selections from the love poetry of Jalaluddin Rumi, the Hindavi Sufi kavya of Manjhan and Jayasi, the dohas of Kabir, the Punjabi and Sindhi kafis of Bulleh Shah and Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai, the ghazals of Khwaja Mir Dard and Mirza Ghalib, songs of Sahir Ludhianvi, the nazms of Iqbal and Faiz, etc
Critical Thinking Seminar in Psychology
Faculty: Kaveri Rajaraman
Course Description:This course introduces what it means to think like a psychologist. We will focus on the nature of evidence from which we construct psychological theories, and the inferential errors we make when faced with these evidence. This course will be taught by different instructors in different semesters, with each instructor bringing in his or her own specializations into the course. This course is not required for a major/minor, but can count towards a major/minor.
Critical Concepts in Islam
Faculty: Ali Khan
Course Description: This course will offer students the chance to tackle individual concepts within Islam and then go into an in-depth analysis of their origins, changes in meaning and their relevance to the everyday lives of Muslims by using a longue durée approach. Furthermore, there will be a constant effort to underscore how these issues remain deeply relevant today and thereby introduce students to currents debates as well.
Studying Indian Culture and Society
Faculty: Ravindran Sriramachandran
Course Description: South Asia provides us with an archive that is exceptionally useful for tracking the changes that colonialism ushers in and changes in the field of studying culture because of a combination of many factors. Every major phase in the development of anthropology and every anthropological theory has had its lively encounter and engagement in and through South Asian ethnographies. As a result, in reading a range of representative ethnographies of South Asia, we will also discuss the evolution and range of anthropological theory more generally.
Faculty: Mitul Baruah
Course Description: This course is intended to help students understand the broader politicization of nature through processes of environmental governance, development politics, and struggles over resources and livelihoods. We will pay close attention to the role of political economic processes in shaping environmental transformations and interpretations of ecological change, as well as to the ways in which understandings of nature are materially and discursively bound up with social processes and multiple axes of differentiation (e.g. gender, caste, class, etc.). Overall, the course will help students engage critically with a broad range of theories and themes related to questions of nature, culture, power, and their interactions.
A History of the Future: Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
Faculty: Simon Green
Course Description: With the passing of the Communist era, it is becoming ever clearer that Tocqueville’s Democracy in America, rather than Marx’s Capital, represents the truly prophetic work of nineteenth-century political sociology.
This course invites students to consider why Tocqueville chose the United States, not Europe, as his model for the future, how he was able to predict developments in the advanced societies so accurately and the degree to which his insights remain applicable to the wider world today.
Media Studies: Globalized News and Beyond
Faculty: Vaiju Naravane
Course Description: Why is it that almost every news media in our globalised world sounds the same? With a growing crisis in the media industry, newspapers and broadcast media are curtailing their budgets, relying increasingly on national and international agencies to provide news coverage.
As a result, in-depth reporting, once the mainstay of many publications, has been reduced to a trickle. This seminar will examine the changing concepts of news and attempt to go beyond the common news story to build deeper, more meaningful reports from multiple sources.
Faculty: K. Hariharan
Course Description: What is the basic language of film and film-making? This course will teach students how to study cinema as text and context through the four major forms of filmic narration: the Analytic Dramatic, the Lyric, the Epic and the Didactic or Melodramatic.
It will enable students to see how a language emerges in the triangular confluence of visual/ audio grammar, technology and spectatorship. Students will study the essentials of film language – shots, scenes, sequence and composition.
Language of Math
Faculty: M. Krishna
Course Description: This course aims to make you conversant with the language of mathematics. This means being able to read and write proofs, which are simply careful expressions of reasoning.
You will learn how to do so while learning actual mathematics, of course. Topics will be determined by the instructor.
Animal Histories (cross listed with Environmental Studies ES 201-01)
Faculty: Mahesh Rangarajan
Course Description: It is impossible to disentangle the way we look at animals from how we look at people. Mainly but not wholly focused on the modern world, the paper examines the way animal-human relations have changed over time.
The paper ranges over hunting and museums, animal science and empire, nation making and nature protection, gender and nature. The ethical and political issue of how we define animals is critical to how we define the human condition in our times.
Probability and Statistics
Faculty: Mahabir Jhanwar
Course Description: Compulsory for all likely Computer Science Majors
Philosophy of Film
Faculty: Roy Perrett
Course Description: Selected topics in analytical philosophy of film, including film as art, the nature of film, documentary films, narration and emotion in film, film criticism, and film's relations to knowledge and morality.
Early Modern Philosophy
Faculty: Aditi Chaturvedi
Course description: The Scientific Revolution profoundly changed how philosophers in the Early Modern period thought of the nature and task of philosophy.
This course will survey some of the central topics in the works of John Locke, George Berkeley, and David Hume, who thought that all ideas and knowledge must be derived from experience. Opposed to them were Rene Descartes, Baruch Spinoza, and G.W. Leibniz who privileged reason over experience.
Globalization and its Discontents
Faculty: Nayan Chanda
Course description: This course aims to explain the reasons behind the rising anti-globalization sentiment especially in developed countries. While analyzing the present, the course will also dive back into history to explore how the increasing interconnectedness of the world came about.
The course will be divided into two broad parts: (1) Origins of globalization and (2) the growing discontent wrought by the process of globalization.
Finally, the course will assess the impact of globalization and its future: Is globalization on its last legs or is the news of its demise exaggerated?