A&S logo

A few First-Year Seminars give preference during the first round of enrolment to students with membership in the college offering the course - if this is the case, the college name will be listed beside the course title. During the second round of enrolment, first-year students at any college may enroll if space is available.

Refer to the 2016-17 Arts & Science Timetable for the schedule information of each offering.

CCR 199H1F: Cultural and Creative Representations (Category 1): 2016 Fall Offerings | View All

Section Number Title College
L0021 Introduction to Digital Humanities University
L0101 The Anthropology of Brands  
L0141 You've Got Mail: Letters from Ancient Literature and Life  
L0142 Image and Desire: Statue Love in Antiquity and Beyond  
L0143 The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire  
L0171 Chinese Aesthetics and Art Criticism  
L0191 The Coming –Out Novel  
L0211 Public Art in Toronto  
L0212 Visual Culture in the Ancient World  
L0251 Our Vampires, Ourselves  
L0301 Iranian Women Write Their Lives: The First Generation  
L0321 Multiculturalism, Philosophy, and Film  
L0331 Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice in Her Time and Ours Woodsworth
L0381 The Cossacks  

CCR 199H1S: Cultural and Creative Representations (Category 1): 2017 Winter Offerings | View All

Section Number Title College
L0021 The "New" Visual Culture University
L0091 Hoboes, Geniuses, and Immigrants: Otherness in Contemporary Culture Innis
L0141 Homer and Derek Walcott  
L0191 The CanLit Boom of the 1960s  
L0211 The World of Heroes  
L0221 Pleasure, Pain and Nostalgia in Belle Époque  
L0251 Cities, Real and Imagined  
L0301 Iranian Women Write Their Lives: The Young Generation  
L0302 Transmissions of the Knowledge in the Ancient World  
L0303 Ancient Egyptian Story-Telling  
L0331 Roll Over, Beethoven: The Experience of Music in the Age of Recording Woodsworth
L0332 Introduction to Spatial Digital Humanities Woodsworth
L0381 The Slavic Grecian Formula: From Ancient Rhapsode to Modern Rap Song  

 

CCR 199H1F: Cultural and Creative Representations (Category 1): 2016 Fall Offerings

CCR 199H1F | Section L0021 | University College

Introduction to Digital Humanities
This course will introduce students to quantitative research tools and Digital Humanities research methodologies that can usefully inform Canadian Studies. By exploring innovative Canadian digital academic archives, Digital Humanities community hubs, and online resources, students will reflect critically on the impact, advantages and limitations of the shift to digital texts and tools and how digital tools, techniques, and media forms are altering how knowledge is produced and disseminated in the humanities and social sciences. We will work with online text analytics tools in order to understand how quantitative methods can support critical academic research in a range of disciplines, including but not limited to literary, historical, and cultural studies. Guest speakers will discuss their projects and design strategies. Students will create individual and group works, both of which may contribute to an online course website open to the public the seminar’s topics or approaches and should arouse their interest and curiosity.

Instructor: S. O'Flynn, University College
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0101

The Anthropology of Brands
This course will look at the phenomenon of brands from the perspective of their meaning, symbolism, and overall connection to culture. Specifically it will examine the origins of brands and logos as a strategy for imparting a personality to products and a particular type of symbolism. It will also look at the system of advertising, placement, and campaigning that brands use to spread their particular type of meanings and lifestyle ideas to society at large. The overall goal of the seminar is to determine the cultural implications of brands and brand advertising.

Instructor: M. Danesi, Anthropology
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0141

You’ve Got Mail: Letters from Ancient Literature and Life
This course will introduce students to one of the most crucial and wide-spread forms of written communication in the ancient world, the letter. We will sample the whole range of epistolography, from “real” letters bound to a specific occasion and composed with a pragmatic purpose (be they official or private), to multiple forms of literary epistles, including semi-private letters (such as those by Cicero, Seneca, and St. Paul), texts of various content (e.g. didactic or scholarly) cast into epistolary form, verse epistles (Ovid’s Heroides) and fictional letters (Alciphron and Aristaenetus).

Instructor: P. Bing, Classics
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0142

Image and Desire: Statue Love in Antiquity and Beyond
The story of Pygmalion, the sculptor who fell in love with the ivory image of a woman he had fashioned with his own hand, is one of Ovid’s most famous tales. Recounting the wondrous metamorphosis of an inanimate statue into a living being, it has undergone countless transformations of its own, fuelling for millennia the phantasy of writers and artists alike. Recent adaptations include Zoe Kazan’s 2012 film “Ruby Sparks”, in which a young novelist inadvertently writes a girl into being, and Spike Jonze’s 2013 movie “Her”, whose protagonist becomes infatuated with an artificially intelligent operating system, a disembodied voice in lieu of a voiceless image. Though unique in its enduring and multifaceted afterlife, the story of Pygmalion is far from the only tale of statue-love to have come down to us from Antiquity. Indeed, numerous ancient authors mention instances of erotic desire for, or even sexual intercourse with, actual works of art, not just poetic fabrications. In this course we will contemplate these ancient tales in their literary-cultural context and examine later versions of the topos from the Middle Ages to the present.

Instructor: R. Höschele, Classics
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0143

The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
Why did the Roman Empire decline and fall? In the eighteenth century, Edward Gibbon famously set out to answer this question in six volumes (The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire). Although Gibbon’s analysis was hugely influential at the time and continues to inform popular opinion, it has been largely rejected in the scholarship of the last 200 years. However, while scholars have produced more sophisticated answers to the question, this is not to say that there is general agreement (or even that the newer answers are necessarily better). Indeed, some have wondered whether the question is even an appropriate one to ask. This seminar will explore the transformation of Mediterranean society between the third and seventh centuries and its underlying causes. As it turns out, the relevant issues tend to be the same ones that are relevant to assessing nearly any complex society in any age: the costs of war, environmental and demographic factors, including immigration and refugee crises, the flow of money, negotiating religious and cultural differences, and so on. Participants will be expected to contribute to group discussions, to complete small writing assignments, and to compose one longer final paper.

Instructor: K. Wilkinson, Classics
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0171

Chinese Aesthetics and Art Criticism
This seminar focuses on different visions and methods leading to the sense of beauty in Chinese arts by examining various theoretical texts on music, painting, calligraphy, and literature, in the form of special treatises and as recorded in the Classics. The purpose of the theoretical discussion and textual analysis is to provide students with knowledge of Chinese arts and research skills on the aesthetic values in Chinese culture and their development along Chinese intellectual history. Questions to be addressed include: How should we understand the concepts of art and Chinese art? What is the role of the art and the artist in Chinese culture? What are the criteria of classification and evaluation of art? How to become a Master Painter? What are the political and social functions of art education? We will discuss the aesthetic meaning of Chinese poetry, calligraphy, music, and ritual, Chinese Garden and the beauty of landscape (shanshui, or Mountain and Water).

Instructor: J. Liu, East Asian Studies
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0191

The Coming-Out Novel
The narrative of sexual self-discovery and self-revelation has long been a staple of lesbian/gay/queer literature. Yet momentous changes in the visibility and enfranchisment of sexual minorities over the last decades mean that the cultural context of such narratives has shifted dramatically. In this course, we'll read a selection of novels and plays from the 1950's through the early years of the new century. Our discussion will also include film versions of several of these works. We'll map a history of cultural and political struggles that inform the texts. We'll discuss historic changes in the rhetoric by which members of sexual minorities make sense of their experience.

Instructor: D. Townsend, English
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0211

Public Art in Toronto
We are surrounded by public art that covers the spectrum from official commemorative monuments to illegal street art. We will examine the history and current practice of this form internationally and in Toronto. The focus will be on discussing the nature and issues pertaining to original works in situ.

Instructor: M. Cheetham, Department of Art
Breadth categories: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0212

Visual Culture in the Ancient World
Much of what we know about life in the ancient world comes not from texts but from tangible historical documents in the realm of art and architecture. This seminar course will examine the ways that people in Ancient Greece and Rome expressed their ideas through art objects and buildings, and the degree to which such material will help us reconstruct life in the ancient world. Of particular interest is the way that many of the artistic and intellectual solutions devised by ancient artists and architects have become the models for modern thought and practice, a topic also to be addressed in this seminar.

Instructor: C. Katsougiannopoulou, Art
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0251

Our Vampires, Ourselves
Vampires is among the most fascinating figures of popular culture. Since Stoker’s Dracula – in fact well before that – they have been haunting the human imagination in various shapes and forms. This course examines the figure of the vampire as a potent cultural metaphor showing how every age embraces the vampires it needs and gets the vampires it deserves. The goal is to teach students to reflect critically and independently on issues of self and society and to develop a structured approach to critical thinking in general.

Instructor: E. Boran, Germanic Languages and Literatures
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0301

Iranian Women Write Their Lives: The First Generation
The story of women writing about their lives begins in Iran in the early decades of the 20th century. This course examines the lives of women from various backgrounds, born in different decades of a century of significant social and cultural change. We will refer primarily to memoirs written by the women themselves which are records of women’s hardship and accomplishment, in a changing culture. One memoirist writes of social programs she initiated in a Persian village in the 1950s, another reveals family relationships, another is a social activist for human rights after the 1979 revolution, another, a recording artist. Seminar discussion is based on assigned readings from the memoirs. Class participation, written assignments, and an oral presentation provide opportunities for students to develop speaking and writing skills as well as engage with the course materials.

Instructor: R. Sandler, Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0321

Multiculturalism, Philosophy, and Film
This seminar will critically examine the role of cinema in the construction and exploration of the figure of the racial, ethnic, cultural and social “other.” Our topics will include (1) racial, ethnic and cultural identity and its reciprocal relationship with cinema, (2) the notion of realism in relation to the representation of race and ethnicity in film, (3) the cinematic representation of inter-ethnic and intra-ethnic conflict, (4) the position of cinema in the debate between assimilation and multiculturalism, and (5) the ways in which cinema can help illuminate a cluster of relevant notions in political philosophy including citizenship, communitarianism, cosmopolitanism, and the relation between individual rights and group rights. Films will be screened in class and discussed against the background of focused critical readings.

Instructor: F. Gagliardi, Philosophy
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0331 | Woodsworth College

Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice in Her Time and Ours
Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen’s 1813 novel about spirited Elizabeth Bennet and forbidding Mr. Darcy, has been admired by critics and readers since its publication. The novel rewards study both for its own sake—a model of English prose fiction and a revealing image of England on the threshold of modernity—and for what its contemporary popularity reveals about our time, which has witnessed an outpouring of retellings and adaptations of the novel since a highly successful 1995 BBC television production starring Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth. The principal question explored in the seminar is the extent to which Austen’s original story survives in contemporary versions. Works studied will include Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, screen adaptations of the novel, and text and screen works based on Pride and Prejudice, including Bridget Jones’s Diary.

Instructor: T. Moritz, Woodsworth College
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1F | Section L0381

The Cossacks
The Cossacks were any number of things in fact--indeed, the term can be applied to different groups of people--but they were even more in fiction. This course surveys the representation of Cossacks in literary works ranging across a wide variety of cultures and eras. Were the Cossacks Russian, Polish, Ukrainian or all of the above? Were they the agents of a repressive Russian government, the hirelings of Polish kings, the tormentors of East European Jews, the protectors of Europe from the Ottomans, or the liberators of the Ukrainian nation? Were they East European cowboys, legendary warriors, defenders of Orthodox Christianity, or a motley collection of drunken mercenaries? We will survey depictions of Cossacks in works of folklore, and in literary works by Russian, Polish, Jewish, and Ukrainian writers.

Instructor: M. Tarnawsky, Slavic Languages and Literatures
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S: Cultural and Creative Representations (Category 1): 2017 Winter Offerings

CCR 199H1S | Section L0021 | University College

The “New” Visual Culture
Comics, graphic novels, and other forms of visual culture (such as video and anime) are now considered objects for serious study. In this course, we will examine the various genres of visual art which combine the visual and the textual. We will examine the rhetorical uses of visual culture in order to think through important questions within various subgenres: short narratives, auto/biography, the superhero, multimedia, and film (wherever possible). In particular, we will explore the following questions: To what rhetorical purposes are the things that comprise visual culture used? What is the relationship in these texts between the writer and his or her social context, and how is that represented by the visual codes of these texts? In pursuing these questions, we will delve into the history of visual culture, look at how both history and current events are represented in the comics medium, and consider the intertextual interplay of literature and various visual arts.

Instructor: A. Lesk, University College
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0091 | Innis College

Hoboes, Geniuses, and Immigrants: Otherness in Contemporary Culture
Hoboes, geniuses, and immigrants all share a sense of Otherness in terms of their identity because they are different from the norm. This course analyzes the factors that create the sense of Otherness in an individual. Can Otherness be chosen as an identity or is it imposed by society? What conditions make Otherness a positive or negative experience? Instances of Otherness are analyzed in contemporary novels and films. The course focuses on the immigrant experience and on the issue of sexual identity.

Instructor: J. Paterson, Innis College
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0141

Homer and Derek Walcott
The Iliad and Odyssey by Homer powerfully inform the poetry of Nobel Prize winner Derek Walcott, notably in his stage version of the Odyssey and in his great epic poem Omeros (the modern Greek name for Homer). In this course we will compare the work of these two great poets. Of particular interest will be how the modern Caribbean author re-imagines the ancient Homeric world. Readings will concentrate on the beautiful and profound verse of these two monumental poets, with some secondary readings to guide our reading of the complex Omeros. Shakespeare's Tempest will be employed as illustrative of post-colonial and multi-cultural issues central to Walcott's work. Writing skills will be practiced; brief weekly essays on the readings are required, along with a longer research essay. Small group and whole class discussion will be the dominant class activity. There are no tests or exams.

Instructor: J. Burgess, Classics
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0191

The CanLit Boom of the 1960s
Canada saw a literary explosion in the 1960s unlike anything this country has ever experienced before or will again. The long decade between the late 1950s and the mid-1970s saw the emergence of the best known, most respected names in Canadian literature, names like Margaret Atwood, Marie-Claire Blais, George Bowering, Leonard Cohen, Mavis Gallant, Margaret Laurence, Dennis Lee, Alice Munro, Michael Ondaatje, Al Purdy, Mordecai Richler, and Michel Tremblay. An outgrowth of my forthcoming book The Rise and Fall of CanLit (Anansi, 2017), this introductory seminar explores the principal causes, products, and legacies of the CanLit Boom of the 1960s. Besides their reading (novels, essays, poetry), students will visit some Toronto landmarks of the CanLit Boom, including Coach House Press, the House of Anansi, and the CanLit collections at the Fisher Rare Book Library.

Instructor: N. Mount, English
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0211

The World of Heroes
The course examines both the literature and the visual evidence surrounding ancient Greek heroes (and heroines) and their mythological narratives, through which we explore ancient culture, art and religion. The course material is drawn from a variety of primary sources including the Iliad and the Odyssey, Greek tragedies, as well as Greek vase painting, sculpture and architecture. It also touches upon critical and theoretical issues regarding the notion of the hero. In doing so, students will learn how the liminal status of heroes, bridging humans and the divine, plays a crucial role in self-identity, culture and politics of the ancient Greece world. This leads into exploring how the long tradition of heroes continue to play a role in our contemporary western society—both on popular cultural, as well as socio-political levels—which will be achieved through critical examinations of visual media and films.

Instructor: S.J. Kim, Department of Art
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0221

Pleasure, Pain and Nostalgia in Belle Époque
The delightfully simple “joie de vivre” of Parisian music-halls and cabarets fascinated the Western world and art took new forms with Impressionism and Art Nouveau during “La belle époque”, a period in European history that began during the late 19th century and lasted until World War I. This course will explore ideas and cultural representations through examples of French art, philosophy, and literature with an emphasis on the critical discussion of two literary narratives that challenged tradition and authority: Gustave Flaubert, “Madame Bovary”; Guy de Maupassant, “Bel-ami”. The literary themes of “guilt” and “self-quest” as well as the inherent philosophical tension between “pleasure” and “guilt” will be analyzed in the context of the bohemian culture of “La belle époque”. Multimedia presentations and selections from Fernando Trueba’s 1992 film “Belle époque” will supplement the reading material in the course.
Required texts: Flaubert -“Madame Bovary”, Maupassant - “Bel-ami”, Film: “Belle époque” (Fernando Trueba, 1992).
A selection of course notes and multimedia presentations will be available via Blackboard.
In-class test (35%); Take-home essay (30%); Final in-class essay (25%); Overall assessment (10%).

Instructor: M. A. Visoi, French
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0251

Cities, Real and Imagined
Cities have been described as places of desire and places of fear. They pulse with life, bringing together people from different class, gender, and ethnic backgrounds, simultaneously giving rise to a sense of freedom and oppression, a sense of belonging and alienation. This course will explore the city as a physical reality that shapes our lives, but is also a projection of our deepest imaginings. Through readings of philosophical and sociological texts by influential theorists of the city, we will consider various ancient and modern conceptions of urban space and subjectivity. Alongside these theoretical readings, we will also examine literary and filmic representations of the city as a space of desire, memory and power.

Instructor: H. Kim, Germanic Languages and Literatures
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0301

Iranian Women Write Their Lives: The Young Generation
The focus of this course is a generation of Iranian women who were born in Iran but who moved with their families to North America as a consequence of the 1979 Revolution. The course relies on memoirs written by this generation, in the English language to describe the trauma of dislocation for parents and children alike. Many of these young women try to satisfy a longing for the world of their childhood by returning to Iran. The young women use the medium of the memoir to explore feelings of who they are and where they belong. Seminar discussions are based on assigned readings from the memoirs. Written assignments, an oral presentation and seminar discussion provide opportunities to practice writing and speaking skills and to engage with the course materials.

Instructor: R. Sandler, Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
Breadth Category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0302

Transmissions of Knowledge in the Ancient World
This course investigates how scribal and intellectual knowledge may have been transmitted in the ancient Near East. Looking at archival and library records it examines the role of the scribes in palace and temple economies and tries to determine to what extent their multilingualism contributed to a transmission of knowledge. As a diachronic study the course identifies overarching information, or metadata, which demonstrate the transfer of knowledge in a process of adoption and adaptation of scribal practices across social, linguistic, and political boundaries in a historical continuum. It demonstrates the need of any given political entity for an ethnic identity, expressed in the need for one’s own language and script, via the initial adoption of a foreign language and/or script. The vehicle to find that political and cultural voice are professionally trained scribes, attested throughout ancient civilizations from fourth millennium B.C. Uruk to seventh century AD Bactra.

Instructor: M. Brosius, Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0303

Ancient Egyptian Story-telling
Ancient Egyptian literature is full of wonderful stories that touch upon such universal themes as cowardice that must be subsequently redeemed, the importance of home and country, travel abroad, and overcoming one's destiny. Other tales weave magical and mythical motifs into what first appear to be simple funny stories.
We’ll read the tales in English translations and we’ll examine the various levels of comprehension that the ancient audiences may have been expected to get upon hearing such tales, and try to look at the context of the performances of the stories. You’ll also be encouraged to bring in your own experience with fictional literature in the class discussions. We’ll be reading the texts together in class and discuss as we go along.

Instructor: R. Leprohon, Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0331 | Woodsworth College

Roll Over, Beethoven: The Experience of Music in the Age of Recording
The invention of recording in the late 19th century caused profound changes in the world of music, changes so fundamental that we can easily overlook them today. Before recording, listening to music was always social, requiring the presence of other people playing and singing; now, in Robert Philips' words, "most of the music we hear comes out of black boxes." How has this affected the experience and meaning of music over the past hundred years? How do the effects of recording technology influence music making today and shape our tastes as listeners? Readings in media and cultural theory plus various kinds of music criticism will help us explore these questions from an interdisciplinary perspective; assignments will encourage students to reflect on their own experience of music. Developing strong research, writing, and presentation skills is an important goal of the course. No technical knowledge of music is required.

Instructor: W.B. MacDonald, Woodsworth College
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0332 | Woodsworth College

Introduction to Spatial Digital Humanities
From Facebook and Pokémon to digital museum archives, medical files, and climate research records, the data deluge of the twenty-first century presents many new challenges. How do we distil stories and insights from the deluge of data? How do we preserve our digital cultural heritage as its size and diversity grow? How do we participate in and understand digital cultures with rigour, nuance, and ethics? In this course, you will learn about digital humanities (DH), an emerging discipline at the intersections of the humanities with computing. DH investigates culture—literature, philosophy, history, art, music—through digital tools and platforms. At the same time, DH investigates digital tools and cultures through humanist lenses, examining how the digital shapes, and is shaped by, its wider cultural context. Besides learning about the history and intellectual landscape of DH, you will learn best practices in data curation, project management, and digital development. And in hands-on, instructor-led workshops, you will learn to use digital technologies to create your own projects, from multimedia narratives and video games to 3D printed objects and digital archives.

Instructor: A. Bolintineau, Woodsworth College
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations

CCR 199H1S | Section L0381

The Slavic Grecian Formula: From Ancient Rhapsode to Modern Rap Song
Slavic singers of oral epics about war, lust, honour and revenge have made a special contribution to our appreciation of classical literature and mythology. We will read heroic tales from Russia, Bosnia, Croatia, and Serbia. Recent research shows that they share much, in melody and message, with the songs of today's hip-hop artists, whose roots of rap "flowing" reach back to the beginnings of Western literature and the rhapsodes of ancient Greece. This connection is based on performance theory about modern-day Slavic "Homers." As we read Homer's Iliad closely, we will study Slavic epics and listen to African-American rap songs to learn how and why they were composed. Students will experience a multimedia, hyperlinked eEdition of an oral performance by a traditional Slavic epic singer. No knowledge of languages other than English is required.

Instructor: R. Bogert, Slavic Languages and Literatures
Breadth category: 1 Creative and Cultural Representations