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Course Descriptions

The University of Wyoming
The Honors College
Course Descriptions:

HP 2151-01: NW: Native American Literature and the West: 3 cr, Instructor: Kenneth Thompson 

Living and going to school in Wyoming, most people assume that they live in the West. This course, by using a combination of primary and secondary sources of literature from a wide range of writers, historical documents, and perspectives, will explore what the West and the Western really are. By placing more “traditional” examples of the Western in conversation with the writings of important American Indian writers, we will explore the polyvocal nature of history, myth, place, and identity within one of the systematically mythologized concepts of America.

HP 2151-02: NW: Empire Writes Back: 3 cr, Instructor: Diane Panozzo

This course is an introduction to Postcolonial literature and studies with the focus on African
writers and writers who have written about the “postcolonial period” in Africa. This seminar
will take an episodic approach that avoids both a linear narrative of the field and the survey
tendency with its claim to an “overview.” The course is conceived as a series of loosely connected excursions into a vast field of inquiry, asking more questions than it answers. What does the term “post colonialism” mean? When exactly does the postcolonial begin? What are the theoretical and political implications of using such an umbrella term to designate the ensemble of writings by those subjects whose identities and histories have been shaped by the colonial encounter? Some of the important African writers we will read; Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka, Ngugiwa Thiong’o, J.M. Coetzee, Nadine Gordimer, Athol Fugard, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and others.

HP 2151-03: Modes: Christians and Muslims: 3 cr, CRN: 25121, Instructor: Dr. Carolyn

This course is an introduction to some popular literature of the medieval West, focusing on texts
by or about Christians and Muslims. We will trace some of the literary, political and religious ideas that made the European medieval world into part of the modern one. We will read a variety of texts, such as triumphalist crusader narratives, chronicles, medieval romances of the East, Arabic views of Christian crusaders, Arthurian romance, Hebrew travelogues, theological materials, novels, and films by writers and filmmakers from Western and non-Western perspectives. These texts will serve as a basis for historical and cultural discussion, and provide a starting point for a variety of writing assignments. By the end of the semester, you should be able to discuss the major literary genres and conventions authors employ, place these works within their social, historical, and cultural context, employ various research techniques, and write about literature clearly and analytically. Assignments will include class discussion, at least 1 class presentation, a paper, a midterm and final. All these literary materials will be in translation.

HP 2153-01: NW: Bali Life and Art: 3cr, Gamelan Room (BCFA) Instructor: Jordan Hayes

Students will participate in the process of learning and performing gamelan music and dance under the direction of Balinese teachers. Working closely with gamelan master I Made Lasmawan and master dancer Ni Kethut Marni will allow students to experience an intense introduction to Balinese life and art. Readings assigned by the professor will include broad descriptive overviews of history, language, religion, arts, and life in Bali.

HP 3151-01: Love one of the most powerful forces in human life, Instructor: Dr. Timothy Nichols

Love, one of the most powerful forces in human life. We will examine the concept and phenomenon of love in its various forms through research, theory, reflection, and practice. Influences and insights from a range of academic disciplines and voices will contribute to and enrich our evolving definition and understanding of love.

HP 3152 -01: Disney Discourse, 3 cr, Instructor: James Creel

A two part course evaluating Disney film, television, merchandise, and theme parks as cultural
phenomena. In the first part of the course, students view early Disney film, and television to
determine how they help construct and re-tell American history and identity. The second part of
the course is focused on Disneyland as a persuasive entity, culminating with a trip to the park during which students perform independent research that incorporates a reading of the park
through the lens ofmaterial and cultural rhetoric.

HP 3152-02: Marketing Manhattan: 3cr, CRN: 26403, Blocked Class, Instructor: Dr. Kent Drummond

After the tragedy of 9-11, many pundits predicted the (continued) demise of New York City.
After the fall of the twin towers, who would want to live in, visit, or even think about New York
except with pity, anger, or regret? Thirteen years, later, Manhattan has emerged triumphantly
from the rubble: clean, bright, safe, heavily and (mostly) healthfully consumed. How did this drastic change take place in so short a time? Our class will answer this question by exploring the ways in which the sites, monuments (literal and figurative) and experiences of Manhattan have been marketed, from Madison Square Garden to Lincoln Center, from Wall Street to Central Park. The course concludes with an optional trip to Manhattan, to witness first-hand how the city has reinvented itself once again.
HP 3153-02: Inv. Cultural Diversity: Writing the New American West through Post frontier Writing: 3 cr, Instructor: Nina McConigley

This course will explore the craft of fiction, poetry, and creative nonfiction through the analysis
of various stories, poems, novel excerpts, and essays that are tied to the American West–as we,
living here in Wyoming, have an intimate link with this place and landscape. This class is for students who wish to explore, study, and research how individuals form cultural identities through the expression of creative writing. We will also look at other art as well (painting, writing, sculpture, photography, theater, etc.). Students will explore and experiment with their own personal and cultural identities through the making of a writing project of their choosing.

Note-no prior creative writing classes are necessary.
This class will be run partially as a creative writing workshop, as well as a literature based
discussion class. We will read texts by several “Western” writers – from Annie Proulx, Gretel Ehrlich, Claire Vaye Watkins, Craig Johnson, James Galvin, Laura Bell, Ben Percy, etc. and talk about how the American West is portrayed in these texts. Then, we will work on our own fiction and essays. Even if you are not from the American West, by going to UW, the landscape makes its mark on all of us.

HP3153-01: Modes: Wyoming Walkabout; 3 cr; Blocked Course, Instructor: Paul Taylor

A unique experiential exposure to the "world's oldest living culture." Students will explore
Australia's 50,000 year old Aboriginal culture lead by educator/artist Paul Taylor.
Mentored by elder Yidumduma Bill Harney, senior custodian of the Wardaman culture, students will be guided by video material collected over 15 years by Paul's Yubulyawan Dreaming Project. Students will study the 10 video chapters on this site and be participants in this continuing research. We will explore what it is to be indigenous, participate in song, dance, painting and ceremony. We will learn the Warda man Creation Story; apply storytelling in class; make, play and decorate a didgeridoo. We will work together on a class mural, teaching to “Care for our Country” and depicting our personal "Walkabouts" or "Songlines", our ceremonial life journeys.

HP 4151-01: Religion, Unbelief and the Human Condition; 3 cr; Instructor: Tyler Fall

This course ranges across academic disciplines and examines and questions some of the dominant ideas western civilization has produced about religion, skepticism, unbelief, morality, society, and the ideal human life. We will read authors from antiquity to the present. They have divergent perspectives: some are militant atheists; others are deeply religious. Some are optimistic about human potential and progress; others are starkly pessimistic. The course readings are drawn from a variety of literary genres--philosophical treatises, poetry, memoirs, drama, and fiction--but they all circle back to one fundamental question: what should we humans do?"

HP 4151-02: Seminar: We are What We Eat; 3 cr; Instructor: Karagh Murphy

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1200 Ivinson St.

Laramie, WY 82070

Phone: 307-766-4110

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