HTY 432: The History of Modern Ideas

Instructor: Professor Michael Lang

Days/Time: TTh, 11:00am-12:15pm

Course number: 85991

Location: Stevens Hall 155

Description: This course is a survey of some of the major North Atlantic currents of modern intellectual history. Its particular focus this semester is the place of self within society. In the nineteenth century, with the rise of industrial capitalism, much political and social thought emphasized individual rights and responsibilities, what came to be called “liberalism.” Throughout the twentieth century, such individualism was intensely questioned in various ways. Using this as our focal point, we will address major ideas concerning democracy, war, animals, women’s rights, race, media, ecology, and gender. We will conclude with reflection on self and society in the contemporary world. When time allows, attention to the history of art will supplement the discussion of texts. Significant course time will be reserved for discussion. 

Prerequisites:  Three credits of History or permission.

General Education Requirements:  This course does not satisfy any of the General Education requirements.