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Course Descriptions

ANTH 101-6-21 – First-Year Seminar: Natives Beyond Nations

No description available.

ANTH 101-6-24 – First-Year Seminar: Wrestling

No description available.

ANTH 215 – Study of Culture Through Language

No description available.

ANTH 390-0-29/LATIN_AM 391-0-20 – Pop Culture in Latin America

Popular culture is an arena in which Latin Americans make cultural offerings their own through creativity and reappropriation, and functions as a resource in the practices of everyday life. Pop culture forms can be key sites for the formation of identities, for the ways in which people make sense of the world, and understand their location within it. This course looks at a variety of pop culture forms from Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America, including music, dance, sport, television and film, social media, art, beauty, and consumer products. Taking an anthropological approach to this subject, we will interrogate the ways that pop culture draws from, comments upon, and at times resists political issues, notions of authenticity, social problems, and inequalities. In the context of Latin America, race, gender, and class are important conceptual frameworks from which to begin. In this course we will ask the following questions: How do understandings of gender, class, and race shape the ways they are represented and experienced in popular culture forms? Why are gender and race such frequent themes in popular culture? and How does comparison between different contexts enrich our understanding of the key concepts of this course? We will read both theoretical discussions of pop culture as well as ethnographic and historical examples, following these readings with careful discussion. Students will explore these relationships by way of individual research projects, culminating in both an academic paper as well as a creative project that translates the student's conclusions for an audience of non-academics. Students will leave the course with an increased understanding of the concepts of spectacle, popular politics, race/ethnicity, and gender/sexuality that exceed “normative” definitions, and the ways in which they articulate with discussions of popular culture representations and identifications.

ANTH 390-2-28 – Language & Sexuality

Sexuality may be understood as desire, practice, or identity. In each of these conceptions, both cultural context and language play a key role. Linguistic anthropology offers important ways of understanding the concept of sexuality as related to phenomena such as globalization, politics, normativity, violence, intersectionality, and even the ways we think of sexuality in our everyday lives. Using ethnographic examples from the United States, Latin America, Africa, Oceania, and Asia, this course looks at homosexuality, heterosexuality, bisexuality, pansexuality, queerness, kink, polyamory, and other various understandings of sexual identities, practices, and desires. Students will engage with gender and queer theory, as well as learning methods of analysis from linguistic anthropology to understand the variation and meanings of sexuality in a comparative context.

Anthro 328-0-20 – The Maya

The archaeology of the Maya in Latin America; life and society in pre-Columbian Maya civilization.

ANTHRO 389-0-20 – Ethnographic Methods and Analysis

This course is designed to prepare students to design and carry out an independent ethnographic research project. Students will complete several in-class and field exercises related to a collaborative ethnographic project, culminating in a final ethnographic report and oral presentation of findings. Weekly reading and listening assignments will complement fieldwork and form the basis for in-class discussions about ongoing research. Course activities center around the experience of collecting, analyzing, and presenting behavioral data using a variety of ethnographic techniques such as participant-observation, interviews, and more experimental methods

anthro-390-0-23 – Ancient Cities of the Americas, Topics In Anthropology

"When colonial empires invaded the Americas in the 16th century, Europeans marveled at the Indigenous cities distributed across the continent. This course examines the ancient cities of the Americas: their origins, their configurations, their operations, and their representations. It considers how archaeologists define urbanism among ancient societies, and why not every human settlement qualifies as a city.
We will begin this course by studying the earliest experiments with settlement nucleation in the world. Then, we will review scholarship on ancient cities in North, Central, and South America. Topics will include urban configurations, everyday life in ancient cities, how inequality was built into urban space, and providing for city dwellers. We will discuss the characteristics of ancient Indigenous cities such as Cahokia in Illinois, Tenochtitlan in Mexico, Tikal in Guatemala, and Machu Pichu in Peru, among others. This class will provide you a general understanding of the ancient civilizations of the Americas through the characteristics of their major cities."

anthro-390-0-30 – Indigenous Resilience in Latin America after 1492, Topics In Anthropology

When Columbus' first expedition to Asia fortuitously reached the Americas in 1492, various native peoples with different cultures and languages, started to be called with the blanket term "Indians." In this course, you will learn about the diverse and complex experiences of Latin American Indigenous groups since the European invasions that started in the 16th century. Through readings and seminar-style discussions, we will trace the long history of conflicts between Indigenous peoples and the groups that have attempted to dominate, assimilate, and "modernize" them in the past five centuries. Through case studies, we will examine issues of race, ethnicity, and identity that have been crucial to these struggles. In this course we will focus on Indigenous agency, and how it is expressed through Indigenous resurgence, revitalization, resistance, and activism in Latin America. This course will highlight that, while Indigenous peoples in the Americas have endured marginalization, domination, and exploitation since the 16th century, being Indigenous in Latin America after Columbus is defined by a remarkable resilience against these forces.

ENVR-POL 390-0 – Land, Identity, and the Sacred: American Indian Religious and Sacred Sites

This class involves the intersection of religion, law, cultural preservation, land management, and ethnoecology. We will focus on Native American sacred sites and cultural landscapes and their relationship to land, ceremony, history, and tribal/ethnic identity. Central to the class will be a focus on the sacred aspects of tribal identity and the role that landscape plays in the creation and maintenance of these identities. The class will cover laws pertaining to religious freedoms and how they are applied to Native and non-Native contexts throughout U.S. history, along with the histories and philosophies that have, and still influences these policies. 

The class will cover both Federal and Tribal management of sacred sites, ceremonial sites, and religious/spiritual traditions. Important to this discuss, will be the role of oral history in the preservation of culture and relationships to landscapes and how it has/is being utilized the U.S. legal system pertaining to Native American Tribes. The role of treaties and the conflicts that arise between Tribal/U.S. government to government relations and responsibilities will also be covered.


ART_HIST 390-0-3 / HUM 370-6-10 – Who is an Object?: Ancestors, Gods and Intermediaries

Formerly called primitive art and also known as the, Non-Western art is a geographically-expansive category connected by the histories of colonialism and imperialism that brought the art and artifacts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas into Western museums. In fact, many of the objects that comprise this canon are oftentimes not “objects” at all. Taking a decolonial approach to study the canon of Non-Western art, this course addresses the animacies and ontologies of different categories of “objects” in museum collections, including materially-embodied deities such as Katsina dolls (Hopi) and Orishas (Yoruba diaspora); ancestors that take form as seeds (Pueblo) and ceramics (Mimbres), and materials such as feathers (Aztec, Tupinamba, Hawaiian) and pipestone (Lakota, Dakota and Yankton Sioux) that mediate different realms of existence. The class will also consider the remains of humans, plants, and animals housed in anthropology and natural history museums. The question of objecthood also applies to people conceptualized as property, sold as commodities and displayed within ethnographic and World’s Fair contexts as well as the land upon which museums are built. We will learn about some of the ways that these “objects” entered into museums as we compare the Western epistemologies by which they are organized there to the indigenous ontologies they occupy within their cultures of origin.

asam-303-0-1 – Black Studies, Native Studies, and Asian Settler, Advanced Topics in Social and Cultural Analysis

This course examines the conversations between, within, and across Ethnic Studies and Native American and Indigenous Studies. What are the central paradigms of Black Studies, Native Studies, and Asian American Studies and how do they conceptualize relationships among race, indigeneity, diaspora, immigration, White supremacy, and settler colonialism? This course prioritizes writing that addresses these questions relationally through sections on Black and Native histories of exchange in the US, theories of Asian/Indigenous relationships and land, race and indigeneity in the Pacific, and current debates across Black and Native Studies and on the question of slavery, settler colonialism, and non-Black people of color in North America.

Course Number – Course Title

ENVR POL 390-0-26 – Special Topics in Environmental Policy and Culture: Environmental Justice in Black & Indigenous W.Lit

While ecocriticism has not always considered the lived experience of women of color, literary texts by African American and Native American women have found ways of theorizing their own versions of environmental and spatial justice. Reading leading theorists like Rob Nixon and Edward Soja side by side with Jesmyn Ward's post-Katrina novel Salvage the Bones (2011), Toni Jensen's stories about oil and fracking on Indigenous lands, and poetry by Nikky Finney and Heid E. Erdrich, this class interrogates how literature can inform our understanding of environmental injustice and different types of violence. It grounds the discussion in a longer history of colonial extraction and Indigenous dispossession, racism, structural neglect, and ongoing residential segregation by discussing Zora Neale Hurston's 1937 hurricane novel, Their Eyes Were Watching God, and looking at Zitkala-?a's influential 1924 report on the settler defrauding of Osage Indians for their oil-rich lands.

ENVR-POL 390-0/POLI-SCI 329 – U.S. Environmental Politics

Designing and implementing effective environmental policies demands detailed attention to the complex nature of environmental challenges as well as a commitment to reflexivity and adaptation. This course considers the political, economic, ethical, legal, and institutional issues involved in environmental decision-making. We begin with an introduction to the foundations of environmental politics and policy We then examine the political and institutional landscapes that shape the emergence and uptake of environmental agendas.

Next, drawing from US cases, we will consider the formation and implementation of different environmental policies across a range of topics, which may include natural resources, coastal and marine resources, endangered species, air and water pollution, energy, climate change, public lands, endangered species, hazardous waste, toxics, and fisheries, among others. We conclude with a look towards the future of environmental policy. This is an introductory level course designed to give students an understanding of important conceptual issues in environmental policy-making, as well as an overview of core policies related to the US.

ENVR-POL 390-0-23 – Land, Identity, and the Sacred: Native American Sacred Site Protection and Religious Rights

This class involves the intersection of religion, cultural preservation, ethnoecology, and law. We will focus on Native American concepts of the sacred, language, and how they create relationships to land, ceremony, history, and tribal/ethnic identity. Central to the class will be a focus on the sacred aspects of tribal identity and the role that landscape plays in the creation and maintenance of these identities.

gbhl-390-0-24 – Native Nations, Healthcare Systems, and U.S. Policy, Special Topics in Global Health

In the territory currently called the United States of America, healthcare for Native populations is often experienced as a tension between settler colonial domination and activism among Native nations to uphold Indigenous sovereignty. This reading-intensive, discussion-based seminar will provide students with a complex and in-depth understanding of the historical and contemporary policies and systems created for, by, and in collaboration with Native nations. In order to understand the U.S. government's role and responsibility towards Native nations, we will delve into legal foundations of the trust responsibility and fiduciary obligation of the federal government as outlined in the U.S. Constitution and Supreme Court decisions. To understand how Native nations have worked within colonial settler systems to maintain or expand their sovereignty, students will examine notable federal and state policies that affect Native health, wellbeing, and (lack of) access to meaningful care.

GBL-HLTH 390-0 – Community Based Participatory Research

This course is an introduction to community-based participatory research (CBPR). The W.K. Kellogg Foundation states CBPR is a collaborative research approach that “begins with a research topic of importance to the community and has the aim of combining knowledge with action and achieving social change to improve health outcomes and eliminate health disparities.” We will explore the historical and theoretical foundations, and the key principles of CBPR. Students will be introduced to methodological approaches to building community partnerships; community assessment; research planning; and data sharing. Real-world applications of CBPR in health will be studied to illustrate issues and challenges. Further, this course will address culturally appropriate interventions; working with diverse communities; and ethical considerations in CBPR.

HIST 102-6-22 – First Year Seminar: Native Americans in Film

In 1893, Thomas Edison unveiled the kinetoscope and allowed audience members to glimpse the Hopi Snake Dance by peeking into the device's viewing window. Since the birth of the motion picture, films portraying Native Americans (often with non-Native actors in redface) have drawn upon earlier frontier mythology, art, literature, and Wild West performances. These depictions in film have embedded romanticized and stereotyped ideas about American Indians in the imaginations of audiences throughout the United States and around the world. In this course, we will critically examine representations of Native Americans in film, ranging from the origins of the motion picture industry to the works of contemporary Indigenous filmmakers. We will reflect upon revisionist narratives, the use of film as a form of activism, Indigenous aesthetics and storytelling techniques, reflexivity, and parody. Throughout the quarter, we will discuss ethnographic, documentary, and narrative films.

292-0-25 – Settler Colonialism on Campus, Introduction to Topics in History

This seminar explores histories of the "campus" as a central geography of US settler colonialism. We will study the historical construction and histories of anticolonial movements on many forms of the campus - educational institutions (PWIs, HBCUs, Tribal colleges, boarding schools), military bases, religious institutes, museums, and corporate landholdings. By engaging with Indigenous Studies, Black Studies, Asian American Studies, and Queer theoretical scholarship, we will study how structures of power and possibility are embedded in the landscape. Students will be encouraged to create a research project based on a campus of their choice, producing either a traditional paper, a digital project, a performance, or a public event. Class meetings will center on discussions of texts, films, and other documentary material but will also include trips to sites around Evanston and Chicago, collaborative research sessions, and project workshops.

hist-393-0-20 – Indigenous Health and Healing

This course examines the historical, political, economic, and social forces that have shaped the health of Indigenous peoples living within the borders of settler colonial states. This class interprets health and healing broadly and, as such, we will be considering histories of colonialism and state violence, struggles for sovereignty and self-governance, environmental justice, food and nutrition, biomedical research, and biopolitics in both reservation and urban settings. We will ask questions like: How have doctors and scientists and explained the health disparities that Indigenous peoples experience? How has medicine produced definitions of indigeneity? How have Indigenous healing practices persisted and transformed? Can medicine be decolonized and what role might it play in Indigenous sovereignty? In our effort to explore complex historiographical and methodological issues, we will be reading literature from a range of fields—including the history of science and medicine, Indigenous studies, anthropology, science and technology studies, Native American history, and environmental history—and discussing how scholars across disciplines have grappled with the complex relationships that exist between indigeneity, health, and settler colonialism. Finally, we will turn our analytical lens back on ourselves and consider the ethics and politics of various forms of historical inquiry.

HISTORY 393-0-20 – Indigenous Resistance to U.S. Colonialism

No description available.

HISTORY 492-0-20 – Native American History

No description available.

HUM 210-0 – Genocide, Resistance, Resurgence: Native Peoples

Note: This course is only open to first-year students accepted into the Kaplan Humanities Scholars Program.

 In this course, we will traverse the Americas to ask a series of big questions that resonate across national boundaries: What does it mean to be Indigenous? What is genocide, and can Native American communities recover from such trauma and loss? What role might tradition, literature, and art play in healing? Can Indigenous and settler-colonial societies ever reconcile? What does it mean to be an "American," and how have Native people, past and present, shaped that identity? To answer these questions, we will move from the ancient past to present-day political struggles. We will draw upon a variety of tools, ranging from archaeology to literature and law. Throughout the course, we will analyze persistent myths, reframe colonialism as a set of ongoing processes, account for differing outcomes, and reflect upon our interrelationships with the forces that have shaped nations and communities throughout North and South America, including here at Northwestern. Finally, our work will extend beyond the classroom, including field trips to the Art Institute of Chicago, the Newberry Library, and the American Indian Center of Chicago.

HUM 370 ASAM 303/AFAM 380 – Race and Indigeneity in the Pacific

Note: applications and registration for this course have closed

 Since the so-called Age of Discovery, the Pacific has been conceptualized as a crossroads between the East and the West. By the twentieth century, places like Hawaiʻi came to be idealized as a harmonious multicultural society. This class examines how race and indigeneity are constructed within the Pacific using an interdisciplinary approach. Drawing from works within indigenous studies, ethnic studies, and critical race studies, students will address themes of sovereignty, settler colonialism, diaspora, and migration in order to interrogate and problematize the concept of the multicultural ‘melting pot’ across time. We focus on the impacts of U.S. plantation economies, militarism, and tourism in shaping the triangulation of indigenous, Black, and Asian groups in Hawai‘i and across the Pacific.

iepc – International Environmental Politics, Special Topics in Environmental Policy and Culture

Environmental problems that transcend national borders are amongst the most intractable challenges facing our global community. Collective action problems are pervasive in negotiations and attempts to address, monitor, and enforce international environmental agreements are often weak. Yet, despite these constraints, international actors have designed and secured agreement in a variety of policy arenas, aiming to improve global environmental governance. Through a team-based approach to learning, we will explore how, why, and when the international community is able to overcome collective action problems and effectively address global environmental challenges. The course is divided into three parts. In the first part of the course, we will focus on the problems, institutions, and politics in global environmental governance. The second part of the course focuses on key concepts or themes in global environmental politics that shape our understanding of international cooperation in solving environmental problems, such as science, justice, markets, and security. In the third part of the course, students will participate in an extended negotiation simulation to examine the diverse actors and modes of engagement that define the politics around a particular issue.

Jour 367 – Native American Environmental Issues and Media

This course introduces students to Native American environmental issues, such as treaty-based hunting, fishing, and gathering rights; air and water quality issues; mining; land-to-trust issues; and sacred sites. We focus on how the media cover these issues and how that coverage contributes to the formation of public opinion and public policy. Students read and analyze newspaper and on-line news reports and view broadcast news stories and documentaries about Native environmental issues. We pay particular attention to tribal sovereignty, which often is at the cultural, political, and legal core of these disputes.

JOUR 367-0-20 – Native American Environmental Issues and the Media

Native American Environmental Issues and the Media introduces students to indigenous issues, such as treaty-based hunting, fishing, and gathering rights; air and water quality issues; mining; land-to-trust issues; and sacred sites. These issues have contributed to tension between Native and non-Native communities and have become the subject of news reports, in both mainstream and tribal media. We will focus on how the media cover these issues and how that coverage contributes to the formation of public opinion and public policy. Students will read and analyze newspaper and on-line news reports and view and critique broadcast news stories and documentaries about Native environmental topics. ​

jour-367-0-20 – Native American Environmental Issues and the Media

This course introduces you to Native American environmental issues, such as treaty-based hunting, fishing, and gathering rights; air and water quality issues; mining; land-to-trust issues; and sacred sites with a particular emphasis on the First Nations in the Great Lakes region. In addition, it will also provide connections to corresponding international Indigenous environmental issues, and the responses and debates across science research, news and international policy contexts.

The seminar focuses on how the media cover Native American environmental issues and how that coverage contributes to the formation of public opinion and public policy. The seminar provides the critical tools to analyze current environmental struggles; to understand the controversies within a cultural context; and to make informed decisions about issues that affect us all. The central case study of the seminar will be water and fishing rights for Indigenous Peoples, and how they are part of larger land rights issues.

Over the past two decades the issue of tribal sovereignty has become front-page news. From major confrontations over pipelines affecting Tribal Reservations mobilizing Indigenous people and their allies around the world, to battles over whaling rights and mining of tar sands, to sulfide mining adjacent to Tribal Reservations, to disputed land claims in the Northeast and battles in the West over water, fracking, and grazing, the rights of Native governments to exercise their sovereignty remains in the new century at the cultural, political, and legal core of American contemporary history.

These and many more issues—air and water quality standards, treaty rights, and land-into-trust—have contributed to tension between Native and non-Native communities, and have become the subject of news reports, in both mainstream and tribal media. The goals of this seminar are to understand how tribal sovereignty and treaty rights inform contemporary environmental issues; to identify source selection, bias, and framing in mainstream and tribal media accounts; to analyze and critique mainstream and tribal media accounts for accuracy and bias; and finally gain intercultural knowledge and competence through a final project that explores the intersection of Native environmental issues and the media.

JOUR 390-0 – Native American Environmental Issues and the Media

Native American Environmental Issues and the Media introduces students to indigenous issues, such as treaty-based hunting, fishing, and gathering rights; air and water quality issues; mining; land-to-trust issues; and sacred sites. These issues have contributed to tension between Native and non-Native communities and have become the subject of news reports, in both mainstream and tribal media. We will focus on how the media cover these issues and how that coverage contributes to the formation of public opinion and public policy. Students will read and analyze newspaper and on-line news reports and view and critique broadcast news stories and documentaries about Native environmental topics.

POLI-SCI 101-6 – First-Year Seminar: Global Environmental Politics

Environmental problems like deforestation, biodiversity loss, climate change, and ocean and marine resource degradation have emerged as some of the most intractable problems that society faces. They transcend international borders, are scientifically complex, and generally involve large sets of diverse actors and power dynamics from global to local scales. In this first year seminar we will examine how policies, actions, and behaviors impact the environment and how these politics of the environment play out on a global scale. This collaborative seminar will introduce students to the diverse ways in which different social science disciplines, epistemologies, and methodologies shape the ways in which we understand global environmental problems and solutions. While our primary assigned reading materials approach the topics through a political science lens, through individual research assignments and integrated peer assessments, students will be exposed to variety of approaches that will help us think about other ways of understanding a problem. By the end of the course, students will have a broad understanding of the nature of global environmental politics as well as specific knowledge related to a topic of their choosing.

POLI-SCI 349 – International Environmental Politics

No description available.

POLI-SCI 395 – Global Environmental Justice

Note: cap 15

REL 260 – Introduction to Native American Religion

No description available.

sesp-251-0-20 – Community Research Methods: Educational Justice, Special Topics

In this course, Evanston Township High School students, Northwestern students, and local Evanston youth workers will collectively study educational injustice as well as historical, current, and future struggles for justice. This space will be one of healing, dreaming, and imagining, as we continue to navigate our world. We will also engage in critical reading and writing, community-based research and design, artmaking, outdoor activities, and collective care in ways that nourish our minds and well-being in this time.

The course will be co-taught by Professor Megan Bang, Learning Sciences PhD students Alejandra Frausto, Miguel Ovies-Bocanegra, and Corey Winchester (also an ETHS History Teacher); ETHS Teachers, Paula Katrina Camaya (History/SS), Ilma Lodhi (Math) and TaRhonda Woods (Science); and Samuel Carroll (McGaw YMCA). The course meets during NU's Spring Quarter Every Wednesday from 5PM-8PM with dinner served at 4:30PM.

Contact Dr. Bang if you have questions: To apply, complete the questionnaire by Thursday Feb. 9th at 9pm:

SESP 351-0-23 – Indigeneity, Race & Place in Education, Topics in Learning Sciences

SOCIOL 201 – Social Inequality: Race, Class, and Power

No description available.

SOCIOL 345-0 – Class and Culture

The role that culture plays in the formation and reproduction of social classes. Class socialization, culture and class boundaries, class identities and class consciousness, culture and class action.

SOCIOL 476 – Designing Survey Questionnaires

No description available.

span-340-0-2 – Colonial Latin American Literature

This course focuses on colonial Latin America in the late 16th and early 17th century. Within this period, we will examine narrative and poetic works by Indigenous and European authors in which the nature and implications of the recent history of the "New World" (in particular, the arrival of the Spanish and Portuguese) is contested, rewritten, and reimagined. We will be especially interested in the different ways that these works engage with both local and transatlantic influences. Key terms and questions to be explored include polemics, prophecy, hybridity, plurality, extirpation, preservation, and translation. While the primary language of the class will be Spanish, sources will include texts originally written in multiple Indigenous and European languages (provided in translation in Spanish or English).

SPANISH 105-6 – Spanish: First-Year Seminar

No description available.

SPANISH 220-0 – Introduction to Literary Analysis

No description available.

SPANISH 340-0-1 – Colonial Latin American Literature

Major texts and writers of the early colonial period, including chronicles of discovery and conquest from both indigenous and Hispanic sources. Works by authors such as Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca, Hernan Cortes, Bernal Diaz del Castillo, Inca Garcilaso de la Vega, Felipe Guaman Poma de Ayala, Bartolome de las Casas, Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, and Carlos de Siguenza y Gongora.

SPANISH 361-0 – Latin America: Studies in Culture and Society

No description available.

SPANPORT 570-0 – Teaching Assistantship and Methodologies


usepc-390-0-22 – U.S. Environmental Politics, Special Topics in Environmental Policy and Culture

This course explores the ongoing socio-political challenges of addressing environmental problems. Drawing primarily on research in political science and political ecology, we will analyze the diverse types of social dilemmas that produce environmental problems and the social effects of environmental politics. We focus on contemporary environmental politics to consider emerging frontiers in US environmental politics. We will examine the nature of environmental problems through different theoretical frameworks, including collective action, distributive, and ideational explanations of environmental problems. We will explore core debates in environmental politics that interrogate the role of science, ethics, and economics in shaping environmental policy. We will also consider different approaches and institutions for addressing environmental problems. Throughout the course, we will pay particular attention to the values conflicts that constitute environmental politics, with a particular emphasis on Indigenous and underrepresented communities. The course is designed to give students an understanding of important conceptual issues in environmental politics.