LITERATURE AND THE SOCIAL WORLD
Examining how social ideas are expressed through and portrayed in works of the creative imagination. A selection of literary texts, films, visual representations, and/or essays that speak to a particular social issue or set of interrelated social issues. A variety of themes, such as feminism, globalization, migration, environmentalism, post-colonialism and nationalism. Developing students’ competencies in: written and oral communication skills; creativity and scepticism; and critical thinking.
FILM AND VISUAL
Introduction to the study of film and visual culture. Acquisition of skills necessary to analyze and critique visual texts and place them in cultural contexts. Developing students’ competencies in: written and oral communication skills; creativity and scepticism; and critical thinking.
IMAGINING THE OTHER
Examinaton of the definition of the ‘Other’, starting with the widespread description of the term as the processes by which social groups create boundaries and distinctions, often demonizing, dehumanizing, romanticizing, or exoticizing those who do not fit into their society. Exploring the notions of the Other represented in literature to canvas a human fascination with the foreign and the unknown, unlimited by time, place, or cultural context. Focusing on the ways of perception of the Other in socio-cultural, political, religious, geographic, ethnic, gendered, or racial terms in different cultures or time periods. Exploring human identity in relation to the Otherness of the monstrous, the animal, and the super-, sub-, or extra-human.
ART AND INNOVATION
Interdisciplinary study of connections between art/design and politics, science, psychology, literature, music. Creative thinking activities. Innovative design studio. Role of images in propaganda, advertising. Impact of masterpieces in society. Visual perception, gestalt, color theory, drawing as a way of thinking, form and function, poetics of space, collaboration, artistic research. Fluxus, public art, information arts, kinetic sculpture, environmental art.
WAR IN LITERATURE ART AND CULTURE
Exploring war as a shared historical, social and psychological experience as recorded, represented or expressed in literature (poetry, novels, plays, memoirs), art (sculpture, painting, drawing), architecture (monuments, memorials) and other cultural media (photography, film, journalism) from prehistory to the present.
LANDMARKS OF ART AND ARCHITECTURE
Introducing students a select group of significant monuments in world art and architecture and present the unique aesthetic, cultural and historical issues that frame them; presenting the main methods to analyze and interpret artworks produced in different media. A different time period and culture each week, as wide-ranging as 20th century Europe and America, Safavid Persia, Medieval Europe, Ancient Greece, etc. Social factors in the creation process of artworks, and how the specific cultural context of the artworks influences our reading and understanding of them.
ART OF MUSIC AND MOVEMENT IN THE 20TH CENTURY
An exploration of the aesthetic concepts of the 20th century musical composition and dance choreography, the arts of creating/organizing sounds and movements. Possible relationships-both diverging and converging-between these two disciplines when brought together on stage in traditional or contemporary inter-disciplinary artistic forms such as dance-musical, music-drama, opera, digital multi-media performance. Considering parallel developments in other artistic fields such as painting, sculpture and cinema. Testing and challenging the boundaries between sound and movement, as well as those investigating the tripartite relation between sound, movement and image. Critical discussions on Aesthetics, Modernity&Postmodernity, High&Low Art, Orientalism&Self-Orientalism, the nature of art and creativity, autonomy of artistic disciplines as well as blurring of boundaries.
ISLAMIC ART: PROBLEMS AND TRENDS
Introduction of the major artefacts and monuments of the Islamic world from 600-1700 AD by way of integrating the material within its socio-religious and cultural contexts. A broad thematic approach, particularly looking at cross-cultural influences and artistic exchanges that made the art of the Islamic lands so eclectic and regionally diverse. Visits to the Turkish and Islamic Arts Museum and the Rustam Pasha mosque in Istanbul giving the students the opportunity to experience the art in its living form.
PRINCIPLES OF ECONOMICS
Economic reasoning; basic concepts and processes in microeconomics and macroeconomics; identification and discussion of current economic issues covered in popular economics publications.
QUANTITATIVE REASONING USING COMPUTERS
Effective assessment of data by applying statistics and computing techniques. Introduction of major data descriptors. Applying spreadsheet tools to facilitate data analysis and consequent decision making. Introduction to flowcharts and algorithms. Algorithmic reasoning for computer programming. Emerging information and computing technologies and the future of computing.
MATHEMATICS FOR EVERYDAY LIFE
Introduction to basic mathematical concepts (including sets, counting, permutations, combinations, graph theory, basic probability and statistics) and simple problem solving methods using the following interesting examples: Hilbert Hotel, pigeonhole principle, Fibonacci numbers, stable marriage problem, four color theorem, traveling salesman problem, art gallery problem, schoolgirl problem, seven bridges problem, three prisoners problem, mathematical ideas in magic tricks, mathematics of gambling.
INTRO TO SYMBOLIC LOGIC
The fundamental concepts of logic such as statement, argument, premise, conclusion, inference, truth, falsity, validity, and invalidity; elements of propositional and predicate logic; conjunction, disjunction and negation of statements; truth tables for complex statements; logical equivalence; tautologies and contradictions; universal and existential quantifiers; truth trees; proof methods.
Linear algebra and matrix theory; mathematics of finance; counting and the fundamentals of probability theory; game theory.
Examination of concepts such as law, justice and fairness; relationship between law, religion, morals and ethics; natural law and the law of nature; theories of ethical reasoning: utiliarianism, egoism, relativism, deontology; justice as a theory of ethical reasoning, normative ethics and Greek philosophy; modern ethics and postmodern ethics, ethics and science; understanding the legal concepts of rights, duties, personality and their ethical dimensions.
ETHICS AND EVERYDAY LIFE
Understanding how we experience freedom, justice, equality, rights, good&evil, judgments, and discrimination in our everyday life from the corner of a grocery store to a doctor’s office, to a court-house or to a class at the university. Analyzing the various ways of ethical reasoning already happening in our everyday interactions in order to enrich and sometimes to challenge the philosophical theories of ethics. Analyzing the already existing theories of ethical reasoning in the history of philosophy to challenge our at times non-reasoning habits. Connections between theory and practice in everyday life through very open discussion of everyday examples in connection to our readings of ethical reasoning from Plato, Aristotle, Mill, Kant, Marx, Nietzsche, Sartre, Arendt, De Beauvior, etc.
SEXISM AND DISCRIMINATION
Investigation of sexism, discrimination and gender equality from an interdisciplinary perspective to explore various aspects of “women’s human rights” from historical, legal, philosophical as well as sociological perspectives. Examination of concepts such as sex, gender, oppression, equality, equity, justice, intersectionality, cultural relativism and rights.
A growing area of philosophy focusing on issues about the value of nature and other living beings and our responsibility towards them. Primary questions dealing with issues of moral responsibility of human beings towards other life forms and on the relative value of nature. Various topics focus on economic and technological development, pollution, the preservation of species, and the uses and abuses of life.
A QUEST FOR ETHICAL FOUNDATIONS
A historical introduction to ethical reasoning in order to develop skills to examine our lives. Recognition of the principal problems of ethics in a variety of works. Reading, thinking and writing critically about ethical issues and problems. Examination of theory of knowledge, origins of ethics, ethical responsibility and critiques of ethical theories under the guidance of Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Kant and Nietzsche.
Chief themes and events in modern history, roughly since 1848. Industrialization, the American Civil War, start of true globalization. The spread of westernization, the rivalries of the Great Powers, World War I. The spread of Americanization, the rise of Communism, the Russian Revolution; the peace-treaties of the period 1919, 1923 (Versailles to Lausanne).
SEA ROUTES: CIVILZATIONS OF THE MEDITERRANEAN
The history, archaeology, art and architecture of societies and civilizations of the Mediterranean region from the prehistory until the 15th century AD. Focusing on the examination, discussion and analysis of the art, architecture, history and religion of various civilizations in Anatolia, Near East, the Levant, Northern Africa, Greece and western Mediterranean countries. Some basic questions such as exchange, continuity and discontinuity, trade, migration, traditions and innovations.
IDENTITY, POWER AND CULTURE
Focusing on how power structures and different cultural encounters including trade, religious conversion, conquest, migration, colonization and warfare influence the way people see themselves and `the others? from the 18th century to the beginning of 21st century. Understanding how individuals conceive and experience their identities along nation, class, race, ethnicity, gender in the broader context of different geographic regions across the globe. Recourse to a variety of historical sources from photos to cartoons.
THINGS: THE MATERIAL WORLDS OF HUMANITY
Explores the relationship between people and things. Examines a wide variety of approaches to the world of objects, artifacts and material goods using several disciplines and perspectives, including archaeology, philosophy, materialist and cognitive approaches, consumption studies, phenomenology, social constructivism, actor-network-theory.
RATIONALITY AND IRRATIONALITY
An inquiry concerning the idea with which Western philosophy begins: we are rational animals. An investigation of what kind of power rationality is and in what respects it sets humans apart from non-rational creatures. An examination of the commonplace instances of irrationality such as weakness of the will, wishful thinking, and self-deception in order to explain the possibility of irrationality in the lives of beings which are by nature rational.
EMPIRES OF THE STEPPES: ART AND ARCHITECTURE OF EURASIAN EMPIRES
Examines the material culture of nomadic empires that emerged from the Eurasian steppe from antiquity to the early modern era. Thought of as bow-wielding warriors on horseback, tribal groups such as the Scythians, Huns, Turks, Mongols and Timurids encountered and came to rule many cities from ancient Greece to China. Studies the art and architecture of steppe cultures and assesses the dynamics between nomadic and settled civilizations.
An introduction of the distinction between an argument and merely a set of sentences. An examination of the distinction between good cases and bad cases of reasoning. In depth study of some of the basic distinctions between different types of reasoning.
HISTORY OF SCIENCE AND TECHOLOGY
An introduction to key aspects of the History of Science and Technology from ancient times to today. Investigating the changing relationship between culture and science and technology, and traces the history of ideas from antiquity to the modern day such as experimentation, the scientific method, a heliocentric solar system, and various ways of measuring and understanding time.
INTRODUCTION TO ECOLOGY
Introduction to the science of ecology including the physical, chemical and biological processes, and interactions that influence the distribution and abundance of organisms. Fundamental principles and concepts of ecology across multiple levels of organization: individual organism, population, community, ecosystem, and landscape. Global climate/biome structure and distribution, population structure and growth, community diversity, species interactions, evolution, energy flow, nutrient cycling, succession, molecular ecology, and human influences on ecosystems.
ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT
Energy production from non-renewable sources such as fossil fuels, oil and natural gas. Comparative discussion of the present and future (renewable) alternative energy resources (solar, geothermal, wind, biomass, hydrogen) and technologies for their commercialization. Environmental consequences, greenhouse effect and global warming, destruction of ozone layer and water pollution. Recycling and sustainable development.
General overview of living organisms. Selected topics on the control of cellular mechanisms. Gene technology and evolution.
CULTURE AND SOCIETY
Introduction of main themes of discussion within the field of sociology of culture, focusing on four selected themes: 1) culture and domination; 2) culture and signification, 3) culture and practice, 4) cultural continuity and discontinuity. A good mix of theoretical and empirical orientations, with examples from both the Turkish context and around the world in order to understand how symbols, language, conceptual structures, forms of knowledge and forms of power interact to create meaning in our lives.
HUMAN BEHAVIOR AND RELATIONSHIPS
Family relations; social relations; social influence; group behavior; socio-cognitive development and relational influences; behavior in organizations.
MIGRATION & GLOBALIZATION
Present realities of contemporary global migration in the context of social sciences. Critical analysis of the social problems such as social mobility, poverty, gender and education, inequality and citizenship as they relate to migration. Understanding the basic methods used for analysing migration related issues. Exploring fundamental consequences of migration for shaping social relations at local and global levels. Examination of social forces within the contexts of migration and migrant integration.
STATE AND SOCIETY
An introductory exploration of state-society relations from an interdisciplinary perspective. Focusing on the questions of what the state is, what the society is, and what the relationship between the two is? The concept of citizenship and how the state relates to citizens through security forces, juridical system, social welfare, education, religion and culture. Working with examples from history, Turkey and other countries.
STUDIES IN POPULAR CULTURE
An introduction to a scholarly study of popular culture, with the overall objective of illustrating how pop culture influences our attitudes and worldviews. Dissecting a variety of pop culture texts such as cartoons, children?s literature, youtube videos, commercials, advertisements, websites, music videos, television, film and news broadcasts. Focusing on icons and imagery which address a global dimension of pop culture. Through the study of these pop culture texts, as well as relevant readings and writing/homework assignments, students will learn to analyze different aspects of pop culture through a variety of more specific critical lenses (such as gender, class, race and ethnicity, sexuality, beauty, etc).
CIVIL SOCIETY AND DEMOCRACY
Civil society and its relation to democracy. Introduction to the main concepts, theories, and discussions on this relationship. Analysis of contribution of civil society to democracy, including the relationship of civil society to various social institutions such as religion and state. Emphasis on Turkish civil society.
ENCOUNTERS WITH GLOBALIZATION
The meaning of globalization; the global economic order; globalization, development and inequality, the global financial crisis of 2008; the future of the global trading order; globalization and new insecurities: migration, terrorism and environmental challenges; emerging powers; the rise of China and the new Russia-China axis; Turkey in a shifting global context; the future of the European Union in the post-Brexit era; the future of American leadership; challenges to liberal democracy and the liberal international order