Sheetal Chhabria (Ph.D. Columbia University) is a historian of South Asia with interests in the global histories of capitalism, urban studies, governmentality, and postcolonial theory.
The Global Capitalism Integrative Pathway will cultivate critical thinking on the topic of capitalism as a social, economic, and cultural form. Students will explore the historical origins and dynamics, social structures, lived experiences of, challenges to, and power of capitalism in a broad range of global and local contexts and across multiple media. The Pathway provides opportunities for students to explore the ways in which capitalism influences cultural representations and contestations, political institutions and movements, social inclusions and exclusions, technological and scientific advancements, and the dynamics of production, commerce and exchange. Themes include the environment, sustainability, the production and consumption of knowledge, dispossession, ecology, gender, identity, imperialism, labor, migration, representation, race, and social movements.
While students will construct their own animating questions, some possible examples might be:
- How do various forms of knowledge and ways of knowing (artistic, scientific, humanistic, and technological) represent, sustain, or critique global capitalism?
- How does global capitalism provide the conditions by which various forms of knowledge and ways of knowing (artistic, scientific, humanistic, and technological) come to be?
- How do peoples within capitalist societies, at the local and global level, endeavor to reform capitalism, either to propose sustainable solutions to the problems generated by capitalist production, or to make capitalism operate more equitably or more productively
- What is the impact of capitalism on the distribution of wealth and the dynamics of poverty and inequality, and how does this map on to the world in dynamic ways?
An historian of early modern Germany (1500-1800), Marc Forster's last fifteen years of research has focused on the development of Catholic identity, primarily in southern and western Germany.
As a teacher and scholar, Sandy Grande centers her work in the belief that education is the heart of a critical democracy. She asserts that questions about education cannot be reduced to disciplinary parameters, but must include issues of power, history, self-identity and the possibility of collective agency and revolutionary struggle. Thus, rather than reject the language of politics, Professor Grande constructs teaching as the link between public education and the imperatives of democracy.
Sarah Queen's primary research examines China's philosophical and religious foundations as it was expressed in early texts written by practitioners of the Confucian and Daoist traditions. Her research focuses on the ways in which these two traditions shaped early ethical and spiritual norms, conceptions of the body, state, and cosmos as well as Confucian and Daoist self-cultivation as distinctive forms of religious experience.
Elizabeth Reich teaches and writes about race and cinema. Her first monograph, "Militant Visions: Black Soldiers, Internationalism and the Transformation of American Cinema," will be out from Rutgers University Press in August 2016.
As an English professor, Julie Rivkin works on American literature and literary theory, and recently turned her attention to issues raised by gender studies and contemporary literature. She is probably best known for her work on Henry James: her book False Positions: The Representational Logics of Henry James's Fiction (Stanford University Press, 1996) offers approachable yet theoretical readings of James's novels.
Doug Thompson's research falls within the discipline of geology and the sub-discipline of fluvial geomorphology. Geomorphology is best defined as the study of the landforms and the natural processes responsible for their formation. Many of the geomorphic topics of interest include the landforms and processes associated with rivers, glaciers, landslides, beaches and arid regions.
The Thematic Inquiry course will be offered each spring as a single four-credit course taught by the Pathway coordinator and core faculty of the Pathway on a rotating basis. The first half of the course will introduce students to global capitalism as a historical and theoretical field of study as well as an arena of contestation and engagement. Topics include theories of capitalism, imperialism, colonialism, communism, forms of resistance, neo-liberalism, globalization, urbanization, reparations, restorative justice, and the future of capitalism. In the second half of the course, students will develop an animating question, map itinerary courses, create a global-local engagement plan, and fashion some preliminary ideas for a capstone project.
All students in the Pathway will complete at least three Curricular Itinerary courses, based on their specific interests and animating questions. The following courses have been approved in advance by the core faculty of the Pathway. Students may also petition to have additional courses counted toward the Curricular Itinerary, as appropriate.
Suggested Global-Local Engagement
Since the Pathway aims to provide opportunities for students to consider questions relating to global capitalism, students will ideally pursue opportunities to study abroad in various locales across the globe that creates the optimum environment to pursue their animating question. In consultation with Pathway Faculty, students will work with the Study Away Office to identify and pursue College-approved study away programs as well as the College’s own Study Away-Teach Away programs such as SATA Cuba, SATA Vietnam, SATA Peru, SATA Italy, SIT South Africa, SIT India, and SIT Kenya.
Students will work with Pathway Faculty to identify potential internships in the context of the Thematic Inquiry. Some possible student internships include the Coalition for Inclusive Capitalism, Buffett International Summer Internships (SIGP), Natural Capitalism Internships, Clinton Global Initiative (GCI) America Internships, Center for Global Justice Internships, Eugene O’Neill Theatre Internships, and Lyman Allyn Art Museum Internships.
Students will work with Pathway Faculty and Community Partnerships to identify local community-based learning opportunities in the context of the Thematic Inquiry. Connecticut College theater, art, and dance productions, performances, and installations will provide opportunities for local engagement. A number of local venues such as Mystic Seaport Museum, Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center, Lyman Allyn Art Museum, Custom House Maritime Museum, New London Food Pantry, and New London Main Street Revitalization Program are all potential sites for community-based engagement.
For more information, please contact Sarah Queen or any other member of the core faculty.