Humanities CollegeExplore the relationship between abstract ideas and life as we live it through a variety of courses that relate the classical tradition to the modern world; the sacred to the political; and the artistic to the technological. Think across the boundaries between visual, art, science, literature, philosophy, popular culture, and music.

RESC 098 25 CRN: 17830
Neuroethics: Bridging Science and the Humanities

Prof. Judy Grisel, Psychology

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Writing Level 1

As scientists have made rapid progress in the brain sciences, our ability to understand, predict, and change behavior confronts us with profound questions about human existence. What does it mean to be the same person over time? What does it mean to be normal? Is it right or wrong to modify our brains? What is the good life, and how should technology be used to foster it? What makes an experience or a memory authentic? Are we really no more than our physical brains? Are we responsible for our actions if they are all physically caused? In this class we will consider a range of philosophical, scientific and literary sources, including novels and films, to inform our consideration of the expanding intersection between brain and society.

RESC 098 26 CRN: 1616
One Nation, Under God(s)

Prof. Brantley Gasaway, Religion

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Engineering Humanities, Writing Level 1

This interdisciplinary course will analyze both the practical and philosophical dimensions of religious pluralism in the United States. As a result of both the legal promise of religious freedom and the influx of various immigrants, America has become one of the most religiously diverse nations in the world. While this religious diversity offers numerous benefits, it also creates certain challenges.

On a practical level, religious pluralism in the United States enhances freedom for religious minorities; offers opportunities for citizens to deepen their understanding and respect for members of different religious traditions; and minimizes violent conflict along religious lines. But, as our sociological and historical analyses will demonstrate, religious diversity can also cause dominant religious groups to distrust and oppress minorities as perceived threats.

On a philosophical level, religious pluralism raises a host of issues regarding human experience. What does religious diversity indicate about human conceptions of the sacred and the quest for meaning? What does pluralism mean for exclusivist claims to religious truth? We will discuss and analyze different ways that leading thinkers have responded to these questions.

RESC 098 27 CRN: 17218
6 Ideas that Changed the World

Prof. Roger Rothman, Art & Art History

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Engineering Humanities, Writing Level 1

Ideas are immaterial: they have no mass, no surface, no density. And yet they are tremendously powerful. Some ideas are as tough as steel, others as destructive as dynamite. And just as it is crucial that we understand how to manufacture iron and deploy dynamite, it is crucial that we understand how to manufacture and deploy ideas. In this foundation seminar we will spend the semester examining six ideas that changed the world. Some will be old, some new. Some will come from Europe and the U.S., some from Asia and Africa. With the aid of colleagues in other departments, we will explore six world-changing ideas (for example, the concept of reason and the idea of the unconscious) that have shaped centuries of philosophy, religion, history, literature, art, and music.

RESC 098 28 CRN: 17747
Love and Sex on the Silk Road

Prof. James Shields, Comparative Humanities

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Engineering Humanities, Writing Level 1

The primary goal of this seminar is to have students engage critically with cultural products 'both foreign and familiar' in a way that recognizes the reality of cultural diversity as well as the possibility of a shared human nature. The narrative frame for our tale of the history of love and sex will be the Silk Road or Silk Route, the 5000-mile series of overland and maritime trade routes that once connected Europe to West, Central, South and East Asia. Themes include: theories of love and sex, cultural taboos on love and sex, cultural conceptions of beauty, body image, misogyny and sexual politics. Topics include: classical Greek perspectives on the male body, Roman and Persian love poetry, Lilith, Adam's 'first wife,' fertility goddesses in Indian sculpture, the"Kama Sutra, conceptions of the body in Hinduism and Buddhism, Islamic perspectives on women, tantra, asceticism, romance in "The Tale of Genji, Japanese" geisha, and attitudes towards homosexuality among the" classical Greeks, medieval Christians, & samurai of Japan.

Humanities College Student Staff


Max Ferrer, Junior Fellow

Max Ferrer

Hometown: West Hartford, CT
Major: Undecided
Contact: maf037@bucknell.edu

"Being in the Humanities Residential College introduced me to lots topics I'd never looked into before. Whether we were learning about yoga, ancient glass-making or art history, Common Hours were always really interesting. Our New York trip was awesome as well, but more than anything else I love living with people who have similar interests as me. For this reason I would encourage you to join any res college, but if youíre looking for an especially awesome time, I recommend Humanities!"

Roberto Flores, Resident Fellow

Roberto Flores

Hometown: Springfield, VA
Major: Mechanical Engineering
Contact: raf039@bucknell.edu

"The Humanities Residential College had a huge impact on my first semester here in Bucknell. Whether it be in class or in Common Hour, I could always count on learning something new and interesting on a topic I wouldnít normally think about. Through the Residential College I was also able to meet other first year students who shared the same interests as I did and make many strong relationships within the first couple of weeks. This allowed me to make a smooth transition into living on campus."

J.D. Russo, Junior Fellow

J.D. Russo

Hometown: Carmel, CA
Major: Electrical Engineering
Contact: jdr033@bucknell.edu

"I joined the Humanities res college because I'm an engineer, and I wanted to get a chance to regularly interact with people that weren't just math and science people. It completely lived up to that, and we still have our fair share of engineers! The res college program built an incredible sense of community throughout our halls, and through it I've met some of the closest friends I've ever had."

Spencer Schell, Junior Fellow

Spencer Schell

Hometown: Katonah, NY
Major: Biology
Contact: sms060@bucknell.edu

"You get to know your entire residential college; professors, JFs/RF and students included, far more than you likely will expect. You may also find/learn something in Humanities you did not know before and cannot imagine having gone without such knowledge throughout all your years."

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