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Fall 2014

Fall 2014 HRI Minor electives


Social Sciences 


History 125B

Soul Power: African American History 1861-1980

This course will examine the history of African Americans and race relations from the Civil War and Emancipation (1861-1865) through the modern African American Freedom Struggle (1954-1980), concluding with the post-Civil Rights-Black Power era (1980-2008). Social, cultural, and Social Change; the Harlem Renaissance; Civil Rights; Black Power; and, Beyond Civil Rights-Black Power. Possible texts: W.E.B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk; Booker T. Washington, Up From Slavery; Jacqueline Royster, Ida B. Wells; James Weldon Johnson, The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man; Assata, An Autobiography; Barack Obama, Dreams From My Father. There will be two exams -- a mid-term and a final -- and two short response papers.


History C139C

From the Civil Rights Era to the New Gilded Age: Struggles for Racial and Economic Equality from "Double Victory" to "Occupy"

World War II lifted the United States from the Great Depression, launching it on a course of economic expansion that would endure for a quarter century afterwards. This long economic boom, in turn, helped underwrite and propel efforts on behalf of greater racial and economic equality. By the late 1960s, however, as the long economic boom fizzled out, America's march toward greater racial equality began to founder, while its march toward greater economic equality began to reverse course. The Civil Rights Era gave way to the New Gilded Age, a period marked by an increasing concentration of income and wealth in the hands of a decreasing percentage of the overall population. The course will explore the political, legal, and economic history of America's struggles for racial and economic equality - and the relationship between them - from the World War II-inspired "Double Victory" campaign roots of the Civil Rights Era to the "Occupy Wall Street" protests of 2011 that finally brought national attention to the growing income and wealth polarization that defined the then decades-old New Gilded Age.


History 178

History of the Holocaust

This course will survey the historical events and intellectual developments leading up to and surrounding the destruction of European Jewry during World War II.  By reading a mixture of primary and secondary sources we will examine the Shoah (the Hebrew word for the Holocaust) against the backdrop of modern Jewish and modern German history.  The course is divided into two main parts: (1) the historical background up to 1933; and (2) the destruction of European Jewry, 1933-1945.


Peace and Conflict Studies 126

International Human Rights

This course provides an overview to the historical, theoretical, political, and legal underpinnings that have shaped and continue to shape the development of human rights. Students are introduced to substantive topics within human rights and provided an opportunity to develop critical thinking, oral presentation, and writing skills. We discuss where the concept of human rights originates, how these ideas have been memorialized in international declarations and treaties, how they develop over time, and how they are enforced and monitored. We examine a variety of issues and encourage students to think differently--to analyze world and community events through a human rights framework utilizing some of the necessary tools to investigate, research, and think critically about human rights and the roles that we may assume within this arena.


Political Science 124C

Ethics and Justice in International Affairs

Should nations intervene in other countries to prevent human rights abuses or famine? On what principles should immigration be based? Should wealthy states aid poorer states, and if so, how much? Is it ever right to go to war? And if so, when, and with what means? We will examine different traditions in moral thought and use these tools to make reasoned judgments about these and similar difficult moral problems such as these in world politics.


Political Science 149W

Dictatorship and Its Discontents

The overwhelming majority of governments throughout history have been dictatorial. Even the recent spread of democracy has not extirpated authoritarian rule: as of 2012 roughly one quarter of all countries are considered full-blown autocracies. Whatever the benefits of democracy, it seems dictatorship is here to stay. This course explores the characteristics and dynamics of non-democratic regimes: how and why they come about, what sustains them, why some people resist them and others do not, and how and why they decline and fall. We will explore a variety of examples from Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Using films and novels in addition to political science literature, we will investigate how dictators maintain their power, how ordinary people react to repression, and the links between dictatorship and security and economic development.


Political Science 191

Transitional Justice

This interdisciplinary course explores the different approaches taken by individual countries and the international community to violations of international human rights. It focuses in particular on the challenges raised by the demand for accountability during periods of political transition, as countries move from authoritarian regimes and civil wars to societies based on democracy and the rule of law. It examines current principles of accountability as well as the various mechanisms for enforcing these principles, including truth and reconciliation commissions, international criminal tribunals, legal actions by third-party countries under the theory of universal jurisdiction, “lustration” laws that bar perpetrators of human rights abuses from holding public office, and reparations for victims of human rights violations. The course also considers the obstacles to achieving accountability for international human rights violations, including domestic political instability, national amnesty laws, institutional weaknesses, and geopolitical concerns.


Political Science 191

Human Rights, Global Politics and International Law

This course examines the interplay among domestic politics, international relations and international law in the creation, diffusion and enforcement of human rights norms. It considers the theories, principles and concepts related to human rights and their role in global politics and international law, the role of national and international institutions and actors in the current international human rights regime, recent developments in human rights law and their impact on the relations among states.  We will also discuss current debates about how to enforce human rights norms, including whether military intervention is justified.





English 174

The French Revolution and Human Rights

This course is designed to consider that literature of and about the French Revolution is peculiarly adapted to illuminate the problem of historical eventfulness (and human freedom) insofar as it yokes the temporality of revolution to fictive (dramatic, poetic, and novelistic) utterance.  Texts will include “eye-witness” accounts and documents of the French Revolution; its representation in poetry, drama, novel, letters, painting, film, and “history”; philosophies of history (Rousseau, Marx, Arendt) and theories of writing (Derrida, Barthes) in which the French Revolution operates as a central (if absent) figure.  Because the discourse of civil rights will figure prominently in our discussion, it's a course of particular relevance to students considering a human rights minor.


English 165

Freedom and the University: The 1960s and Its Afterlives

The sixties represent a period in which the university became for the first time a central locus of struggles for freedom—for civil rights, Black Power, Third World self-determination, and women’s and gay liberation, and against imperialism and colonialism, militarism and war, capitalism and heterosexist patriarchy. The result was that conceptions of what higher education should be and whom it should be for were also profoundly changed. This course is being offered in coordination with next Fall’s commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Free Speech Movement (FSM), which in 1964 put Berkeley on the “World Sixties” map. Instead of dichotomizing the “good” early sixties from the “bad” late sixties, this course will be interested in locating productive encounters between liberal ideals and radical quests for freedom and equality. Examining the intellectual and material legacies of that era in light of today’s precarious public university, this course will trace the historical dialectic between “Cultural Revolution” and Ethnic Studies, and between the counterculture and cyberculture. The course will geographically emphasize the San Francisco Bay Area, so that students may pursue final research projects if they choose on topics rich in local archives. Course readings will include a wide range of media and genres: biography, history, memoir, poetry, manifesto, fiction, anthology, theory, film, drama. As such, students should expect that though this is an English-listed course, it will be taught as an interdisciplinary cultural studies, history and theory course. Students should attend the first day of class before purchasing any books, as there may be adjustments to the book list.


English 190

The Asian American Sixties

Though the Asian American Movement 1968-1976 is an oft-forgotten dimension of the sixties’ era of social ferment, in fact it gave rise to Asian American identity in ways that remain salient. It may be for this reason that the historical period of the sixties is increasingly an object of imaginative recovery by present day Asian American authors in search of a literary tradition. Beyond the question of Asian American identity, what we might refer to as the “Asian American sixties” offers a different way of looking at the political aims of the sixties in general, in which Third World liberation movements in the U.S., including Black Power, were an important episode of global Maoism. In this course, we will explore together the following questions: What was the theory and history of the Asian American Movement and what was its impact on other social movements? How has Asian American literature remembered the sixties? What is the impact of that literary memory on Asian American identity? This is a course in political theory, history, and literature, and is ideal for students who want to engage in thinking with and about all three kinds of writing. The rich archival resources of the Berkeley campus and the Bay Area will provide an opportunity for students to define and pursue some original research questions on the connections between literature and sixties’ political movements. Students should attend the first day of class before purchasing any books, as there may be some adjustments to the book list. There will also be a course packet of readings in relevant ’68 French Theory, including essays by Louis Althusser, Roland Barthes, Julia Kristeva and Alain Badiou.


French 120B

Twentieth-Century Literature — Wars, Revolts, Literature. Midnight in the Twentieth Century “R”

In this course, we will explore the (plural and not always direct) relationships between literary creation and socio-poloitical contexts as these relationships unfold in France between WW2 and the contemporary era. We will do so through the lens of a publishing house, “Les Éditions de Minuit,” which was founded clandestinely during the Occupation and has since then hosted the publications of many major (as well as lesser known) writers and intellectuals. We will proceed chronologically, starting with Minuit’s tradition of “résistance littéraire” during WW2, entering the Post-War era with Samuel Beckett’s absurd/existentialist theater and leaving it with the theorization and practices of the “Nouveau Roman.” We will then move to novels, theoretical texts and documents that engage with some of the major political and social conflicts of the 1960s and 1970s in France, in particular the decolonization of Algeria, and the workers’, students’ and feminist movements. We’ll end our semester reading contemporary novels and plays written by the most recent generations of “Minuit authors” and consider what becomes of formal innovation and literary engagement when wars, revolutions and vanguard movements have seemingly disappeared altogether from the French contemporary landscape. Course taught in French. Additional texts will be made available through bCourses.


French 162A

Perspectives on History — Histoire et mémoires de l’Occupation

An inquiry into the history and memory of wartime France through a range of cultural production: novels, essays, poetry, theatre and cinema. We will focus on representations of the Occupation; the literature of Resistance; art under Nazi censorship; Vichy France and collaboration; war and the colonies; antisemitism and the Holocaust. Our explorations will seek to understand why France continues to be haunted by this “past that refuses to pass.”


French 183B

Configurations of Crisis — la guerre de libération en Algérie (1954-1962)

Dans ce cours nous analyserons les faits importants qui ont marqué la guerre de libération en Algérie (1954-1962). Nous discuterons de l’importance politique de cette crise unique dans l’histoire du vingtième siècle français selon une double perspective : historique et littéraire. Nous dégagerons des notions clés : l’usage de la torture par l’armée, le terrorisme des rebelles algériens, la relation entre l’immigration et la guerre, le statut des femmes pendant la guerre et enfin, la configuration politique de cette crise. En conclusion, nous nous interrogerons sur le retour de la mémoire de la guerre dans les années 2000 en France.


Tibetan 115

Contemporary Tibet

This course seeks to develop a critical understanding of contemporary Tibet, characterized as it is by modernity, invasion, Maoism, liberalization, exile, and diaspora. It explores the cultural dynamism of the Tibetans over the last 100 years as expressed in literature, film, music, modern art, and political protest. The core topics include intra-Tibetan arguments regarding the preservation and "modernization" of traditional cultural forms, the development of new aesthetic creations and values, the constraints and opportunities on cultural life under colonialism and in the diaspora, and the religious nationalism of the recent political protests.


Theater, Dance, and Performance St 119 P

Performance Theory: Performance and Human Rights