Experimental College - Past Courses, Fall 2019

Fall 2019 Courses

Decolonial Anarchist Theory and History

This course departs from classical, Eurocentric thought into decolonial anarchist theory and action. As such, the class will delve and combine feminist, decolonial and anarchist theory, as well as look into anarchist movements in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Final project is subject to class consensus.

Environmental Justice and the Zero Waste Movement

In this course we will define and juxtapose environmental justice and the zero waste movement--the impact of discrimination and institutional injustice on land and privilege-based practices. We will evaluate the systematic implications and burdens affecting sustainability and discuss solutions to amplify marginalized voices and traditional applications. As a hands-on class, we will reflect on our daily habits throughout the semester and draft “Eco Plans” tailored to individual and/or familial goals utilizing the limitations of resources available to us to promote environmental justice and ensure protection from harm.

Geography and Privilege

In this course, there will discussions of privilege based on geographical location and issues that occur worldwide such as white supremacy, lack of representation, exploitation, climate change, and more. We will look at negative versus positive movements and activism worldwide.

Helping Hand: Careers for Your Future

This class will explore what is needed to perform and excel in various careers paths. We seek to expose students to the harsh realities of the world, working as travelers on the path to the success sold to us when we were young and naive. We aim to advise and learn from countless students on where we will all end up if/when we find out our degree is worthless. We shall acknowledge the institutions that keep the gates to the careers of our dreams and strategize where to move on to next.

History of Moral Panic

This course would be a in depth look into situations of moral panic throughout history and today. I will connect some examples of moral panic that have happened, like the satanic panic that happened in the 80’s and 90’s and talk about the criminal justice and political response to that panic. I will go over how moral panic spreads, how politicians use it to push an agenda, how social media has caused moral panic in modern day. As well as going over big cases of moral panic, for example, the pedophile sex ring in US preschools, Razor blades in halloween candy, the war on christmas, how aids is transmitted, all these things caused panic in the united states yet weren’t backed up by facts or statistics to warrant the reaction and influence they had. I will go over the importance of recognizing moral panic in today's political climate and how it can affect our society. There would be in class discussions on how to combat this problem and discussions on moral panic we see today.

Internet Communities and Cultures:

Showing the way different communities on the internet connect to each other and the outside world. Searching through the different groups on the internet and the interpersonal relationships they have with one another. The main point of the class will be to become more aware and tolerant of the different communities around us. Topics covered are YouTube content, Freedom of Speech and censorship, Internet history, and an always evolving communities through different platforms.

Marx's Critique of Political Economy

An exploration of Marx's analysis of the dynamics of capitalist society and historical interpretations of them. Particular emphasis to be placed on his relationship with the tradition of bourgeois political economy that preceded him. I hope to help people develop methods for critical engagement with texts and authors that they encounter, with an emphasis on the influence of historical context and ideology. Furthermore, study of this subject is aimed at providing a greater understanding of our society and how positive change may be enacted in it.

Mental Analysis of Famous Serial Killers

In this course we will learn about the upbringing and actions of some of history’s most notorious killers, and unpack their lives to understand who they were. Doing so, we will break down preconceptions of mentally ill people and mental health, and how capturing these people led to new formats of investigating crimes.

Nothing For Us Without Us: An Intersectional Approach to Mad Studies

In this course we will start off by exploring the history of the Mental Patients Liberation movement in the ‘60s and trace how it has impacted the current mental healthcare system. From there we will critically examine the way in which modern conceptions of mental illness intersect with traditional cultural models and our own lived experiences. We will critically examine the medicalization of deviance as a means of social control, and explore community-centered non-hierarchical alternatives to psychiatric intervention and institutionalisation.

Perceptions of Mental Illness in Society

Analyze the ways in which mental illness has historically been represented and how we can change the negative perceptions of it.

Personal development through philosophical literature

Perspective enhancing course that seeks to help students develop and nourish curiosity about life’s purpose and meaning. The goal of the course of for students to critically analyze their current positions and views on life and provide literature that can enhance or challenge their views. The class will encourage students to not be trapped by dogma and to have the courage to share new ideas and beliefs.

Reveal to Heal: Mental Health in Communities of Color

Dicussing and learning about the mental health barriers in communities of color. Addressing the stigmas and disparities that surround mental health. Creating a safe, open space where students can have the opportunity to talk about their personal experiences. Working together to address these challenges, where they come from, and why they are ingrained in many cultures.

Social Serendipity: How Individuals Spark Change

A case study based course where we analyze individuals throughout history to understand how they utilized their social location in order to create change within a community they identify with. Specifically, how their actions impacted the greater society at large. In this course, we will look at individuals who sparked revolutionary change across different divisions of society including: religion, politics, gender/sexuality, business, and art/literature. Students will be able to recognize themselves as contemporary agents of change. Collectively, this course aims to reimagine history as the culmination of everyday people who inspired a domino effect for reform.

Student Leadership and Community Engagement

Gain the opportunity to network and connect with fellow students through intersectional teaching methods. Develop the leadership skills needed to effectively organize and facilitate change within local communities from fellow students and community leaders. Apply this knowlege to a collective project that will be aimed at improving our SFSU community.

Teaching Through Superheroes

Discussing critical theortical ideaology using superheores and other comic characters through comic books and other forms of media.

The Power of Connection

In this course, students will learn first how strong connection with those around them can change the world, and then they will learn the skills to create these powerful connections quickly, but effectively. The focus will be on interpersonal communication as well as the shared human experience. A mix of philosophy and communications will come together in this class, helping students figure out how they want to show up in their lives. We will also learn about our purpose and how that can help connect us to people who share the same values and goals.

U.S. intervention in Latin America

This course will discuss the various ways the U.S. has destabilized Latin America through intervention (i.e. presidential elections, funding the militarization of these countries, etc.) and the issues it has created (i.e. civil war, mass genocide against indigenous populations, the creation of the banana republic, and mass immigration to the U.S. and other Latin American countries, etc.)

Why we sit in rows

Education research has shown the benefit to sitting in a circle rather than rows, yet many classes are still conducted as lectures. There are political reasons for this disconnect, because changing education is revolutionary. This class will be taught using the progressive methods of self determination, egalitarian class discussions and no letter grading.