Category Archives: Courses

Register Now, MLS 405: Representations of the Body

MALS & IDS Students,

Time is running out to register for Winter Quarter’s MLS 405: Representations of the Body.  This MALS core course (also open to IDS students) is only offered once a year, so now would be a good time to satisfy this requirement if you haven’t already.

MLS 405: Representations of the Body

Wednesday 6 – 9:15 pm, Lincoln Park Campus

Professor Frida Furman

Representations of the body in philosophy, religion, art, and science reveal the human body as the site of rich historical and cultural meanings. Considering Western traditions as well as cultures other that European, this course investigates how structures of power and consciousness converge in and on the body and how they are presented in social space.

Please register as soon as possible if interested, since we may not be able to guarantee seats for much longer.

Feel free to contact the MALS/IDS office at (773) 325-7840 with any questions.



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CTH 389 – Christianity & Consumerism

For students still searching for Winter Quarter classes , Christianity & Consumerism could be an interesting option. Please see the course description and reading list below. As a reminder, MALS and IDS students are allowed to take up to four 300-level courses.

Professor William Cavanaugh

CTH 389: Christianity & Consumerism

MW 1:00-2:30 LPC, WQ 2011

Consumerism can be defined as the tendency to reduce both the material and the spiritual to commodities. This course is an extended investigation of the dynamics of consumerism in American culture from the perspective of the Christian intellectual tradition. Sources drawn upon will include materials from theology, political theory, philosophy and economic theory. Attention will be given to the history of consumerism, the theology implicit in consumerism, and different Christian reactions to the phenomenon of consumerism.

Required Texts:

Eric Schlosser, Fast Food Nation

Vincent Miller, Consuming Religion

David McCarthy, The Good Life

The Bible (New Oxford Annotated Bible recommended)

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DePaul’s Study Abroad: Can I Really Go There?

by Susan Jacobs

We’ve been telling our students for the past several years about the wonderful opportunities that DePaul’s Study Abroad Program (SAP) offers.  MALS and IDS students have taken advantage of SAP trips to China, Tibet, Ireland, Spain, and soon, Germany and Argentina.  The challenge for our adult students is finding a program that meshes their academic goals and scheduling constraints: work, family, classes.  While some students are fortunate enough to have flexible scheduling and financing that allows longer trips, shorter more accessible trips are becoming available.  This is a great time to consider Study Abroad opportunities.

One upcoming example of a shorter SAP opportunity blends a traditional on-campus LPC course with a trip that takes advantage of academic breaks.  During the first six weeks of Winter Quarter 2011, participants will take a thirty-hour course called “ENG 479: 20th-Century Berlin: History, Literature, Film” (Mon and Thurs nights, 6:00 to 8:30) taught by English Department professor Gerald Mulderig.  Then students go to Berlin for a nine-day guided study tour that develops the contents of the course they’ve had.  Undergraduates then go on to Bonn, and graduate students return to the US and work on a final course project due by the end of the term.  Graduate students are of course free to extend their stay in Europe at their own expense. We know that first year MALS student Vesna Lazaar plans to be on this trip, and we are eager to hear her report when she returns.  For more information, please visit:

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What’s a core?

by David Gitomer

{Graduate Liberal Studies Life}

I’ve been helping to steer the ship of DePaul’s Master of Arts in Liberal Studies Program

Randy Honold

Randy Honold

for about a decade now.  We’re a graduate liberal studies program for adults, which means that people out of college, mostly working, choose us to get to someplace that college didn’t take them.  They want that cultural knowledge, those intense conversations about ideas, justice, politics, spirituality.  They want to do research that goes deeper than googling.  They want to lead the conversation in a voice that is grounded and informed.

We’re organized around a set of Core Courses, followed by electives that students choose, and culminating in a final project that sums up the journey or sets out for lands unknown.  The Core Courses get students to think about the world they encounter in interdisciplinary ways.  They draw on the tools from many different academic disciplines, from sociology and history to gender studies and religion.

Everyone loves the titles and most people (!) love the content.  “Visions of the Self”  “Perceptions of Reality”  “Representations of the Body” “The American Experience” “The City”  These titles have been rolling around in our program for a long time, though the content of course has been refreshed quite a lot.  We’ve considered altering the Core many times, but the courses are flexible and each different faculty member makes his or her version come alive with unique content, so we never had the strong motivation to make changes.

But this year we’re adding a new one:  ENVIRONMENT AND SOCIETY.  Actually, the inspiration came last year when Susan Jacobs and I attended the Association of Graduate Liberal Studies Programs annual conference in Vancouver, BC.  “Culture, Consciousness and Nature—A Context for Climate Change.”  This got me to thinking:  What makes a “Core Course”?  I think it should deliver a fundamental chunk of human experience AND give you primary approaches to thinking about the chunk.  Climate change is indeed the burning issue of our time, connecting with just about every global issue I can think of.  But even more profound issues lurk beneath the policy questions and debates about climatology.  What is the environment?  Is it something “out there” that needs to be protected from “us”?  Or are we a part of it?  If we are, what does that mean for what we call “environmentalism”?

The chosen instructor for this new course is Randy Honold, a Ph.D. in philosophy who is also assistant dean in DePaul’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and a founding member of DePaul’s Institute for Nature and Culture.

Randy says:
“I’m very excited – and probably a little delusional – to lead an exploration of the topic of environment and society this winter quarter for the newest MALS course of the same name. I have to admit it’s hard for me to imagine a more quixotic adventure. When you get down to it, what isn’t environment, society, or something of both? Add to this the fact that perhaps no topic is more in need of exploring, with significant changes to the planet’s natural systems, and therefore to human societies, coming in the foreseeable future.

“None of us has a complete handle on the complex relationships among humans, nature, and the processes by which we are intertwined. There are multiple frameworks through which we structure and understand these relationships. And things are always changing: scientific knowledge, social needs, political exigencies. I figure it’s our job to enter into the discourse where and when we can, with our curiosity, concern, and commitments lighting the way.

“The main goal of the course is to do just this. We’ll think through what it means to be both a part of and apart from the environment. We’ll become better analysts of environmentalist (and anti-environmentalist) discourses. We’ll look at the role of ecological science and its truth-claims. We’ll examine the role of the arts in envisioning new possibilities for human dwelling on the planet. We’ll consider new kinds of politics suited for impending pressures.

“I’m going to prepare a context where all of us in the course can talk to and learn from each other. I hope that everyone emerges energized, not enervated, by the experience!”

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