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About the Participant

Team-Taught Courses Show Interdisciplinary Studies in Action

Team-taught courses form an essential core of the interdisciplinary experience at Pitzer. The College encourages professors from different disciplines to combine their efforts to give students multiple perspectives on a variety of topics. Course descriptions from the 2005-06 Pitzer Course Catalogue include classes on soccer, film, world history, environmental policy and External Studies, among others.

Environmental Studies 50: Nature Through Film, taught by Professors Melinda Herrold-Menzies and Paul Faulstich, examines ideas of nature and the environment and how they have been explored in film. From wildlife documentaries to popular dramas of environmental struggles, to cult classics and Disney’s animated visions of nature, the human-nature relationship has been depicted through film to transmit particular views of the world. The class views and studies films, reads relevant theory and actively critiques ways in which our worldview has been shaped and affected through cinema.

History 21: The World Since 1492, taught by Professors Carina Johnson and Dan Segal, explores the past 500 years of world history. The focus is on four closely related themes: (1) struggles between Europeans and colonized peoples; (2) the global formation of capitalist economies and industrialization; (3) the formation of modern states; and (4) the formation of the tastes, disciplines, and dispositions of bourgeois society.

History 187: The History and Politics of World Soccer, taught by Professors Nigel Boyle and Andre Wakefield, explores how culture, politics and history play themselves out upon the stage of stadium and field, from fascist Italy to visionary Uruguay to indomitable Cameroon. The course looks at how the World Cup has become a catalyst for political and cultural debate, and how it has made, and destroyed, political regimes. And the class tries to understand the game as others, in different times and places, have seen it: a game freighted with meaning and beauty.

Media Studies 77: Imagined Communities, taught by Professors Alex Juhasz and Dipa Basu, investigates how the boundaries of time, space, origin, community and political allegiance are imagined in the following case studies: Eastern Europe, American suburbs, the international Queer Movement, and the African Diaspora.

Media Studies 110: Media & Sexuality, taught by Professors Alex Juhasz and Ming-Yuen S. Ma, examines the intersections between media theory and the study of sexuality. In exploring issues including transgenderism, pornography, censorship, feminism, queer cinema and representations of race and sexuality, the course focuses on compelling case studies that provide students with specific understanding of the prevailing debates and defining theories of sexuality within media studies.

Political Studies 188: External Studies Colloquium, taught by Professor Nigel Boyle and Vice President of International Programs Carol Brandt, is for students who have returned from study abroad. Students are required to reflect on their study/experiences and develop the skills necessary to become agents of intercultural understanding. Students give presentations to local schools, conduct a research project and have the opportunity to develop proposals for Fulbright and other fellowships.

Sociology 3 BK/AA: Transatlantic Black/Asian Film, Literature and Sociology, taught by Professors Dipa Basu and Laura Harris, which is organized as a film series, explores Black and Asian transatlantic immigrations, histories, and representations via film and popular culture. The course employs film, cultural criticism, sociological literature and guest speakers/directors as core materials for examination and discussion.


Stuart Goldstein '86 on Pitzer Opportunities
Professor Kate Rogers on Organizational Studies
Jacque Kaster Torrens '92 on Linked Disciplines
Team-Taught Courses Integral to Pitzer Experience
Professor Dana Ward on Political Psychology
Michael Pearson '06 on Breadth of Understanding