Classes to Consider for Fall 2021

Attention rising seniors! Are you interested in applied, experiential, and engaged learning? Have you decided not to pursue a thesis but you want to have a meaningful capstone experience during your last year at Wes? You might consider these classes for Fall 2021:

CSPL239 Startup Incubator: The Art and Science of Launching Your Idea
Tu 8:50-11:40

A one-semester, experiential learning program designed to teach and enable student entrepreneurs to develop sustainable business models from their ideas. The program will bring together an ambitious, committed, and diverse group of individuals from all classes and majors who are passionate about developing successful solutions to challenges; identify as entrepreneurs, disruptors, and thought leaders; and have the tenacity, work ethic, and ability to succeed. It is completely fine if you have not yet launched your own business / non-profit etc. You will learn mindsets, critical thinking skills, and practical skills that you can use in any part of your life.

If you would like to enroll in CSPL 239, complete this form- Questions can be emailed to Rosemary Ostfeld (

CSPL262 Patricelli Center Fellowship
Tu/Th 10:20-11:40

In this project-based, cohort-style class, students will learn strategies for understanding social and environmental problems, and they will design interventions to create impact. Each student will select a topic to work on individually or as part of a team throughout the semester. Topics will include root cause analysis, ecosystem mapping, theory of change, human-centered design, business models, leadership and teamwork, impact metrics, storytelling, and more. Some students will develop entrepreneurial projects and ventures while others will find pathways to impact as activists, community organizers, coalition builders, artists, or researchers.

To be considered for this course, meet with the instructor ( to discuss the enrollment process, course content, expectations, and learning goals.

CSPL480 Engaged Projects
Asynchronous / No mandatory class time

EPs are one-semester, 1.0-credit, mostly-independent educational endeavors. Students who enroll will start with a topic or question that has some connection to their academic pursuits and to the world at large. They will recruit a “Sponsor” with lived or scholarly expertise related to their topic, and they will be matched with two other EP students (their “Cohort”) who will provide peer advising and accountability. Over the course of one semester, EP students will research and analyze their topic, produce a project intended for a public (not academic) audience, and complete reflection essays to document their learning along the way.

Details are at

News & Announcements for the Class of 2022

Friday, Feb 28 Deadlines:

  • 2/28/2020 at 5:00 – deadline for withdraw from third-quarter courses

Note: Do not confuse with the last day to withdraw from full semester courses which will be Wednesday, 04/29/2020
Last day to withdraw from full semester & 4th quarter classes

Employment/Leadership/Internship Opportunities:

Health Concerns:

Remember to take good care during this cold and flu season which coincides with midterm exams, research papers, and projects.

Review the email sent earlier this month from Wesleyan’s medical director in which reminds the community members that there is still time to get a flu vaccine and encourages the use of the Davison Health Center and the DHC’s online information about flu prevention and self-care.

Dean Wood’s 5 Steps to Organization:

  1. Plan out your time wisely.
  2. Break down big assignments into smaller, manageable chunks
  3. Make study guides for tests/using flash cards and/or quizlets. Try to predict the questions.
  4. Study in groups so that you can help/quiz each other.
  5. Take time out to decompress and practicing self-care.

(shared by Dean Jennifer Wood, Dean for Class of 2023, 2/27/20))

Summer Program in Mexico Led by Professor Anu Sharma: Other Worlds Are Possible

Other Worlds Are Possible: Life Against and Beyond Neoliberal Logics
Middletown, CT, United States; Oaxaca, Mexico

A Wesleyan faculty-led program with Professor Anu Sharma ( and Gustavo Esteva, Universidad de la Tierra (

This four-week intensive course examines radical challenges, in theory and on the ground, to mainstream neoliberal capitalism and development strategies promoted by international organizations such as World Bank and the IMF. After the 1980s, considered by many as “the lost decade” of development, some scholars and practitioners declared the development enterprise as fundamentally wrong: It was a misguided and violent neocolonial project that could never provide the answer to inequality and poverty. These radical critics argued for building a “post-development” era. In this course, we look at the conceptual history of the term “post-development” and also examine what post-development life looks like on the ground, among dispossessed communities. We will focus on lived and imagined challenges to neoliberal capitalism. We spend the first week at Wesleyan, brushing up on the critical ideas and movements that have emerged out of Mexico (and Latin America, broadly) over the past four decades in reaction to mainstream development discourse. We will then explore these ideas and lived alternatives in Oaxaca, Mexico. We will spend three weeks learning about and working with marginalized communities that are rejecting capitalist development and building and experimenting with living a “good life” (buen vivir) on their own terms.

Application and deposit due by March 8. Current sophomores and juniors may apply. Limited financial aid is available for this program.

Time to Confirm Schedules!!!

“Student Option” Courses:

  • Students enrolled in a student option course can change the grading mode through 5pm on Wednesday, February 20th via WesPortal>Courses>Class Schedule.

Schedule Confirmation:

  • All students must confirm their schedule’s accuracy by 5pm on Wednesday, February 20th.

If your schedule is incorrect, goto online instructions and come in to meet with your class dean.

Writing Workshop

Working on your writing? Don’t go it alone! Instead, make a free one-on-one appointment with peer writing tutors at the Writing Workshop. Trained to help Wesleyan writers at any stage of the writing process, writing tutors are available, by appointment, Sunday from 2-11 and M-Th from 7-11 in locations across campus.


Make an appointment by going to Wesportal→ Academics–>Writing Workshop Account. You’ll be asked to make an account before being brought to our online scheduler.


Want semester long support? Apply for a writing mentor who will work with you for an hour every week. Focus on specific writing tasks like organization and time management with the help of a trained peer!


Learn more at or email the Ford Fellow, Dache Rogers at




Dr. Lauren Silber (she/her/hers)

Assistant Director of Academic Writing

Assistant Professor of the Practice in English

Shapiro Center for Writing, 301

Wesleyan University

Courses with available seats

HIST 318, The Politics of Death: The Living, the Dead, and the State, T 1:20 PM-4:10 PM

This course will explore the intersections between the living, the dead, and the state, focusing on the ways that death and the dead body raise particular questions and problems for different kinds of political regimes. The course will examine the collisions between the state and the dead, both symbolic and material, by investigating spaces where the state and death intersect in revealing ways: cemeteries, cremation, monuments, rituals, and religious institutions and cultures. The course will also follow, borrowing anthropologist Katherine Verdery’s term, “the political lives of dead bodies,” the ways in which states mobilize dead bodies to reconfigure the political order.!wesmaps_page.html?stuid=&facid=NONE&crse=014928&term=1191


HIST/REES 219, Russian and Soviet History, 1881 to the Present, MW 1:20-2:40 PM


Reversals of fortune have defined Russian history perhaps more so than for any other nation. Though the Russian Empire began the 19th century as an emerging European superpower that defeated Napoleon, it ended that same century as a backward state plagued by political, economic, and social strife that ultimately brought the Romanov dynasty to a revolutionary collapse. A similar trajectory describes the “short” Soviet 20th century that began with the promise of a qualitatively new political order that sought to transform social relations and human nature and concluded with a spectacular implosion that some heralded as the end of history itself. This course will follow the story of how the Soviet Union emerged from the ruins of the Russian imperial order to become the world’s first socialist society, the most serious challenge to imperialism, liberalism, and capitalism, and, arguably, modernity’s greatest political experiment. We will cover the following topics: the emergence and fate of Russian national identity; the origins and dynamics of Russia’s revolutions; the political, economic, and cultural challenges of the Soviet project; the role of the party and ideology in politics and everyday life; the nationalities question and the challenges of governing a socialist empire; Soviet victory in the Great Patriotic War and the rebirth of the nation (and nationalism); the emergence of the Soviet Union as a Cold War superpower; the country’s historic attempts to reform (and the frequent failure of these attempts); and the dynamics of the system’s collapse.!wesmaps_page.html?stuid=&facid=NONE&crse=004837&term=1191


And if you have advisees who are interested in literature, there are seats available in my course on the Central and East European novel, in which we read some of the greatest works of the 20th century. No prior knowledge of the area or its history is required or presumed.


REES 255, Prague, Vienna, Sarajevo: 20th-Century Novels from Central and Eastern Europe, MW 2:50-4:10 PM


This course is a survey of 20th-century prose fiction of Central and Eastern Europe, with an emphasis on the Czech novel. The novels we will read make history come alive through the eyes of vividly individual characters. In Joseph Roth’s RADETZKY MARCH, the collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire is viewed through the lens of a single heartbroken family; in Bohumil Hrabal’s I SERVED THE KING OF ENGLAND, the Czech experience in World War II and postwar Stalinization is embodied in the figure of a diminutive hotel waiter; Milan Kundera’s THE UNBEARABLE LIGHTNESS OF BEING refracts the Soviet domination of Czechoslovakia through the traumas and love affairs of a quartet of characters; in Witold Gombrowicz’s TRANS-ATLANTYK and Aleksandar Hemon’s THE QUESTION OF BRUNO, the main characters find themselves in a foreign land when their home countries (Poland and Yugoslavia, respectively) are torn apart by war. All the works we will read exemplify the high level of narrative sophistication, in realist, absurdist, and experimental modes, that is a hallmark of Central and Eastern European literature.!wesmaps_page.html?stuid=&facid=NONE&crse=006721&term=1191

CJST 249 Course has available seats

If you “are looking for an interesting class about Israeli cinema taught by an energetic and lively instructor, there are seats available in the new course  CJST 249: From Black and White to Colors: Israeli Cinema a Melting Pot Fragmented.  The course is taught by the Center for Jewish Studies Scholar in Residence, Amir Bogen who is a long time journalist and film critic.

Here is the link on Wes map:!wesmaps_page.html?crse=015404&term=1191

In addition, I am also enclosing a course description and the instructor’s short bio (written by the instructor).

From Black Panther to Wind River, from Dear White People to Crazy Rich Asians, and from How To Be A Latin Lover to Menashe – in the last couple of years Hollywood hails diversity as a prominent value of contemporary American society. In the fantastic realm of fictional narratives, the USA is seen as a nation for all where there is a space for every culture to express itself freely, and being genuinely represented at least on screen.

In the course From Black & White to Colors, we will take a critical look at Israeli Cinema and delve into it as a case study of a “melting pot” that was dissolved into fragments. Through a variety of films in different genres – dramas, comedies, musicals, and thrillers – we would follow the issues of representation on the screen and real life, then and now, and we will ask how does an immigrant-based society evolved from the national towards multi-ethnicity and diversity. Is it still the case of a culture that is bigger than the sum of its parts, or maybe it was always a story of particles trying to be particular while being edited in history books, scripts, and movies. Israeli, and American.

Amir Bogen is an Israeli film journalist and a scholar. He covered American, International and Israeli cinema for over a decade. He also hold an MA in film theory from Tel Aviv University. His thesis deals with fascist models in Star Wars and Superhero movies, a topic he expends in his current dissertation as a PhD candidate.”

Many thanks, Dalit

Dalit Katz

Adj. Associate Professor of Religion

Seats Available in Korean Drumming & Creative Music (MUSC 413/CEAS 413)

Seats Available in Korean Drumming & Creative Music (MUSC 413/CEAS 413)


Course Description:

This course, directed by Adjunct Assistant Professor of Music Jin Hi Kim, is an experiential, hands-on percussion ensemble with the predominant instrument in Korean music, the two-headed janggodrum. Students will learn to play a range of percussion instruments including janggo, barrel drum (buk), hand gong (kwenggari), and suspending gong (jing). Through the janggo drumming students gain first hand experience with the role music plays in meditation and the benefits it offers to develop a calm, focused group experience. In the end they integrate their focused mind, physical body energy and breathing through a stream of repetitive rhythmic cycles.

They will be introduced to traditional folk and court styles as well as creative collaborations with a dancer(s) or musicians from other cultures, if there is an opportunity comes in during the semester. The ensemble plays pieces derived from tradition and new ideas and creates new work exploring imaginative sounds on those instruments. The ensemble will experience a deep respect for the diverse cultural backgrounds of the students developed from the efforts of teamwork and creating music together through Korean drumming. The semester will end with a live performance for the public.

For more information, please contact

Korean Drumming and Creative Music

WRCT 135 – Writing about Research: US Style.

I still have a few spots left in WRCT 135 – Writing about Research: US Style….This course is designed to prepare international students and non-native speakers of English to write about research in U.S. academia. Students will focus on the structure, cohesive devices, citation styles, and academic vocabulary commonly used in literature reviews, theoretical papers, and primary research studies. As a topic of common interest, example readings will focus on language research including statistical analyses of language learners; the civil rights of international students, multilingual landscapes, social media’s effect on language, and the advantages of being bilingual. Throughout this course, students will learn skills for organizing longer papers and practice the mechanics of good writing.

Elizabeth Hepford, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of the Practice in English/ESL

Shapiro Center for Writing, 305

116 Mt. Vernon St.

Wesleyan University

Middletown, CT 06416