Students flock to new courses analyzing war, violence
22 August 2002
as new classes last spring examined the aftermath of Sept. 11,
the continued unfolding of terrorism in our world has spawned
more than a few new classes this fall to help broaden students’
understanding of violence on a mass scale.
really wanted to push beyond the day-to-day news coverage of
that (Sept. 11) tragedy and try to offer a deeper understanding
of violence on a mass scale," said Darren Zook, a lecturer
in the Department of Political Science, whose new course, "Selected
Topics in Comparative Politics: War, Violence and Terrorism,"
examines acts of war and terrorism throughout history. "What
drives individuals, groups, cultures and nations to commit such
acts of violence? How do they justify it, and how can we evaluate,
understand or condemn such justifications?"
said his department is looking for a larger room for his class,
since he has 150 students and 80 more on a waiting list.
interest in courses on war crimes, human rights, genocide,
and tribunals has been growing considerably over the past
few years," added rhetoric professor David Cohen,
who is co-teaching a graduate seminar on war crime trials
with Eric Stover, director of UC Berkeley’s Human
Crime Trials: Pre-Trial Investigation to Judgment" will
explore the inner workings of the International Criminal Tribunal
for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia through the lens of eight
trials and selected readings. Guests speakers have worked for
or provided testimony to the tribunals.
war-related courses this fall include:
"War and Peace in the 20th and 21st Centuries,"
an upper division history class that includes an exploration
of the Sept. 11 attacks and U.S. military operations in Afghanistan
Terrorism," a Freshman Seminar about reporters’
efforts to cover terrorism amid increased obstacles to obtaining
information and heightened personal risks.
War on Terrorism: The West, Islam and the Arab World,"
a journalism class taught by Arab reporter Lamis Andoni on
how the "War on Terrorism" affects media coverage
of conflicts, wars and the relationship between the United
States and Arabs and Muslims.
Genocide," a Freshman Seminar that will look at national
and international legal responses to threats to peace and
Cinema of War," a film studies class, will explore American
war movies set during World War II and the Vietnam War. Students
will examine the representation of combat and how film-makers
may have been shaped by reporting, photojournalism, TV or
classes of note this fall:
U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Hass will co-teach a course that
uses literature to highlight environmental issues.
Walter Alvarez, known for his theory that an asteroid killed
off the dinosaurs, is teaching a Freshman Seminar on what
geologic maps say about earth history.