University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

Curriculum Associated with the University Symposium, Spring 2007

These three coursesare associated with the University Symposium on Time: Who’s Got the Story? Memoir as History/History as MemoirAsian America Through Arts and Culture: Still Present Pasts; and Matters of Time.

Who’s Got the Story? Memoir as History/History as Memoir

AMST 3920-002/ENGL 3090-006/HIST 3910-002
Thursdays 6:20-8:50 pm, 3 credits
B10 Ford Hall
Instructor: Matt Becker

Who’s Got the Story?” That is the question at the center of this course, which is offered in conjunction with an exciting series on Memoir and History to be held throughout spring semester. In this series, distinguished writers will come to campus to discuss how their craft is informed by the intersection of personal memory with history. How is the memoirist’s interpretation of personal memories similar to the historian’s struggle to make meaning from artifacts, documents, and oral histories? How do their approaches and methods differ? How can we understand each craft—memoir and history—as storytelling? This course will incorporate the speakers’ series to explore such questions. We will read and discuss several works in the series and will have the unique opportunity to see, hear, and engage with the authors of these works.

Asian America Through Arts and Culture: Still Present Pasts

AAS 3501
Wednesdays, 6:20-8:50 pm, 4 credits
219 Appleby Hall
Instructor: Ed Bok Lee

This course will introduce students to the richness of contemporary Asian American culture and arts, such as literature, music, photography, film, dance, and theater, as well as further knowledge of how artists working in these forms and other media express their individual and communal experiences and concerns in a variety of ways. In order to encourage students to critique and interpret historical and contemporary artistic expression in light of the historical and sociocultural contexts in which it was produced, its aesthetic form, and its impact on individuals and communities, the course has a service-learning component. This research project will focus on Still Present Pasts: Korean Americans and the “Forgotten War,” a nationally touring visual art exhibit created in modern response to the Korean War (1950-1953), and will allow students to work with a wealth of local community resources to gain hands-on insights into the notions of home, identity, the interplay of personal and public history, the role of art in society, and community formation. Students will in general be expected to explore their own cultural contradictions through both critical and creative writing and expression, catalyzed by in-class exercises and assignments, as well as attendance at and participation in local arts events.

Matters of Time

HSCI 8950/HIST 8960/GEO 8990
Wednesdays, 3:30-5:30 pm, 3 credits
Instructors: David Fox, Sally Gregory Kohlstedt, Ann Waltner

This seminar operates at the intersection of science, history, and culture with attention to the idea and praxis of using time as a human demarcation for ordering ordinary life and for conceptualizing its cosmological possibilities. A major goal of the course is to think in comparative terms about the importance of time with special attention to both western culture and Chinese culture over an extended historical period and with reference to time in scientific as well as social practice. Seminar participants will read assignments in common and attend some activities sponsored by the Institute for Advanced Study as part of the activities of the University Symposium on Time. Students will also complete a short independent project related to their own work or field of study.

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