Chapman students studying on Bert Williams Mall in front of Memorial Hall

»Freshman Foundation Courses

The Freshman Foundations Course (FFC) is the foundational portion of the Chapman General Education program. All entering freshmen enroll in an FFC section.  

The FFC course engages students in university-level critical inquiry and reflection. FFC courses focus more on critical engagement, exploration and communication related to complex issues than on mastering a body of material. More than 50 sections are offered on varying topics. Students select a topic according to their academic and personal interests. All of the sections offer students an intellectually enriching exploration of ideas, values, and disciplinary knowledge and methods. Working independently and collaboratively to frame issues and questions that have engaged the intellectual interests of historians, philosophers, fine arts, and media critics, scientists, economists and political theorists over the centuries, students develop their analytic, creative and expressive abilities.  

FFC is taught by a select group of faculty who are committed to supporting students in their transition to university-level inquiry. Field trips, guest speakers, collaborative research, multimedia projects and other forms of active learning are an important part of the course.

For course section numbers, meeting days, times, and locations, see WebAdvisor. For more information on a particular professor, view the Faculty Directory.


Photo not Available Julie Artman-M.F.A., MLIS Leatherby Libraries
Phone: (714) 532-7752
Office: Leatherby Libraries
Email: Julie Artman

American Theatre in Contemporary Culture
In this course, students will explore how theatre reflects challenges and triumphs in contemporary American culture. We will examine, discuss, and analyze pivotal events during the twentieth century through reading selected plays that reveal America's rich theatrical history. Reviewing performances will provide students with direct observational opportunities to expose the issues facing today's theatrical artists, and students will engage in both analytic and creative projects, individually and collaboratively. 3 credits.
Gordon Babst, Associate Professor of Political Science, Chapman University

Gordon Babst, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Political Science
Phone: (714) 744-7696
Office: DeMille Hall 150C
Email: Gordon Babst

Globalization, Citizenship, and Consumption
The course introduces students to the contemporary phenomenon of globalization, analyzes the concept of globalization, and reviews processes of globalization. The course will examine globalization across a range of issues, with a special focus on globalization's effects on us and other people as world citizens and consumers, and our capacities to affect the course of globalization. 3 credits.

Ian Barnard, Ph.D. - Associate Professor of Composition and Rhetoric

Ian Barnard, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Composition and Rhetoric
Phone: TBA
Office: TBA
Email: Ian Barnard

Queer Critique
Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick famously asserted that "an understanding of virtually any aspect of modern Western culture must be, not merely incomplete, but damaged in its central substance to the degree that it does not incorporate a critical analysis of modern homo/heterosexual definition."  Using Sedgwick's claim as a starting point, this course invites you to analyze the ways in which sexuality and gender are constructed and are constitutive in our society,  and how they define and are defined by race, class, colonialism, and other nexuses of power and identity.  We'll also examine and produce our own multimedia queer interventions into contemporary culture and politics, including engaging with queer critiques of same-sex marriage and queering popular films and television shows. 3 credits.

Julye Bidmead, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, Chapman University Julye Bidmead, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of Religious Studies
Phone: (714) 532-7709
Office: Wilkinson Hall 234
Email: Julye Bidmead

Heroines and Harlots: The Bible You Didn't Learn in Sunday School.
Women play a variety of roles in the Bible. They are wives, mothers, daughters, sisters, heroines, virgins, harlots, victims, villians, warriors, queens, and prophets, but their narratives are buried under years of religious misinterpretations that diminish or erase their worth. This course examines selected biblical texts and other ancient literature using multiple methodologies (feminist and gender critique, ideological criticism, comparative studies, literary criticism, and historical analysis) to uncover the stories and status of women in ancient Isreal. 3 credits.
Arthur Blaser, Ph.D. - Professor of Political Science

Art Blaser, Ph.D.- Professor of Political Science
Phone: (714) 997-6612
Office: Reeves Hall 101
Email: Art Blaser

Tales from the Global Disability Rights Movement
In this course, we will analyze: (1) medical and socio-political approaches to studying disability issues; (2) implications of a slogan adopted by many movements worldwide: “Nothing about us without us!;” and (3) implications of a disability rights framework globally, to places as varied as Dubai, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe, Canada, and Costa Rica. We will explore parts of the global disability rights movement: through descriptive accounts, biography, and memoirs from the United States, England, and Mexico.  3 credits.

Jim Brown, Ph.D.-Professor of Education, Chapman University Jim Brown, Ph.D.-Professor of Education
Phone: (714) 997-6884
Office: Reeves Hall 104
Email: Jim Brown

Lies You Learned in School: Difficult Histories and Critical Theory
What histories did you learn in School? Should history only be the story of dominant culture or should it include narratives that contradict the "American Celebrationist" perspective? This course provides a critical analysis of important social themes (e.g., identity, conformity, and bystander vs. upstander) linked to key histories (e.g., Holocaust and other genocides, America in Vietnam). The course is based on the assumption that if citizens in a democracy are to value their rights and take responsibility for their actions, they must know not only the triumphs of history but also the failures and tragedies. As students study the historical development and the lessons of "difficult" histories, they learn to make the essential connections between history and the moral choices they confront in their own lives. 3 credits.
Cristina Bruns, Ph.D.-Adjunct Professor of English Cristina Bruns, Ph.D. Adjunct Professor of English
Phone: (714) TBD
Office: TBD
Email: Cristina Bruns

What Does Literature Do and Why Does it Matter?
We have all encountered literature in various forms and contexts, whether it's The Odyssey and Romeo and Juliet in school or reading "for fun" like the Harry Potter series. Reading fiction and poetry can entertain us or can at least help us know what most educated people in Western society know, but is that all that it does? In this course we will explore two related questions: What does literature do and why does it matter? Our approach will consist of gathering and analyzing various forms of "data," from scholarly writings to our own experiences with fiction or poetry, the reports or testimonials of other readers, and our observations about how literature is treated in various social settings. The course will function as a collaborative inquiry, all of us working together to arrive at some answers, informed by students' contributions through individual research projects (examining a particular text or type of text, or a particular kind of reader, for instance). 3 credits.


Victoria Carty, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Sociology

Victoria Carty, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Sociology
Phone: (714) 744-2137
Office: Roosevelt Hall 200
Email: Victoria Carty

Contentious Politics and Nonviolent Civil Disobedience: Does is it Work?
Considering the explosion of social movement activity over the past few years, social movement scholars question why movements occur when and where they do, how social movement activity is organized (planned, spontaneous or both?), tactics and strategies employed, the outcomes of the various struggles and how can they be measured.  We will evaluate a number of social movements that address these questions. Examples include Gandhi’s struggle to emancipate India from British rule; the U.S. civil rights movement led by Martin Luther King; the Cuban revolution; Las Madres de la Plaza de Mayo in Argentina; the Indignados rebellions in Spain, Mexico and Greece; the outbreak of Arab Spring that swept across parts of North Africa and the Middle East; the Occupy Wall Street movement that caught many in the United States by surprise; and the ongoing mobilizations for humane immigration reform, with a specific focus on the Dreamers (undocumented students seeking means to higher education). 3 credits.

William Cumiford, Ph.D. Associate Professor of History, Chapman University William Cumiford, Ph.D. Associate Professor of History
Phone: (714) 532-6013
Office: Roosevelt Hall 219
Email: William Cumiford

The Classical Legacy in America
This course focuses on the many ways ancient Greece and Rome contributed to the government, culture, and values of the United States. Beginning with the influence of classical political institutions and continuing with drama, art, architecture and literature, we'll explore the multi-faceted legacy of the ancients in modern American society. 3 credits.
Elizabeth Eastman, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Chapman University

Elizabeth Eastman, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of Political Science
Phone: (714) 532-7770
Office: Roosevelt Hall 207
Email: Elizabeth Eastman

Citizenship and Community
Membership in a community is one of the key aspects of human relationships. Through the study of works from various time periods and cultures, we examine what it means to be a citizen, the citizen's obligations to the larger community, and the many types of communities that people can form. We also explore the numerous challenges that members of a political community—citizens—can experience such as denial of fundamental human rights and external influences that cause the breakdown of traditions and political order and imperil the community or cause it to take on a different form. 3 credits.

Fantastic Journeys
There are journeys over foreign lands, journeys through time, and journeys of the imagination.  Each provides an experience that prompts inquiry, discovery, and reassessment of beliefs and traditions.  Human experience itself regularly adopts the metaphor of the journey to recognize what has happened to us in our lives.  Follow Gulliver on his travels through fantastic lands, experience Alice’s Wonderland, go on a sea journey with Coleridge’s Ancient Mariner, visit the island in Shakespeare’s Tempest, and accompany Bilbo Baggins on his quest.  This course is designed to provide students an introduction to university-level critical inquiry.  3 credits.  

Pam Ezell, M.F.A.-Director, Panther Productions Pam Ezell, M.F.A.-Director, Panther Productions
Phone: (714) 289-3129
Office: 633 W. Palm Avenue
Email: Pam Ezell

The Family Drama on Stage
Sibling rivalry, marital strife, parental ambition, alcoholism, and the pressures of running a household—the challenges of family life present playwrights with rich soil for domestic drama. This course will investigate the topic of the family in a selection of plays. We will analyze how various playwrights explore the concept of family in both realistic and comedic ways, and will consider why the domestic theme continues to intrigue writers and audiences. We will read plays, see plays, discuss plays and write about plays in this course. 3 credits


Robert Frelly, Professor of Music, Chapman University Robert Frelly, D.M.A.-Professor of Music
Phone: (714) 997-6917
Office: Oliphant Hall 110
Email: Robert Frelly

From Bach to Rock: Music and Society
Does music affect society, or are various evolving musical styles simply a continual expression of the subcultures that created them? Changes in social structure and hence in social needs have brought about changes in the function of music; these are the moving forces underlying the growth and development of music as an art throughout history. This course explores the place of music in society and its relation to the life of its time. 3 credits.
Kelli Fuery, Ph.D.-Instructor of Communications, Chapman University Kelli Fuery, Ph.D.-Instructor of Communications
Phone: (714) 744-2183
Office: Smith Hall 116C
Email: Kelli Fuery

Introduction to Media and Cultural Studies
Media are an integral part of the culture that surrounds us and therefore of our sense of the self. This course provides an interdisciplinary framework for the analysis of our complex relationship with media and cultural forms. It will introduce a range of theoretical approaches to the study of media and culture, and you will be actively engaged in exploring the function and effects of media in your own experience. We will consider popular and subcultures; transgression and culture; gender, race, and the media; and new and emerging media forms and their cultural impacts. 3 credits.

Cristina Giannantonio, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Human Resources

Cristina Giannantonio, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Human Resources
Phone: (714)628-7320
Office: Beckman Hall 303M
Email: Christina Giannantonio

Expeditions: Leadership Lessons from Shackleton and the Polar Explorers
The era of polar exploration offers students an exciting lens through which to explore the factors necessary for being both a successful leader and an effective follower.  The expeditions of polar explorers such as Ernest Shackleton, Robert Falcon Scott, and Roald Amundsen offer students historical case studies from which they can construct the principles of being both a leader who is successful and a follower who is effective in contributing to a team effort.  This class will encourage students to both envision and ultimately embark on their own expeditions and to develop their own definitions and operationalizations of success. 3 credits.

Linda Hall, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of English

Lynda Hall, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of English
Phone: (714)532-6091
Office: Wilkinson Hall 223
Email: Lynda Hall

Banned Books (and other Issues of Censorship)
This course will explore the large topic of censorship, with a particular emphasis on the written text. We will read a variety of books that have been banned throughout history for political, religious, sexual, or social reasons. We will also investigate how films and music are currently rated and regulated. We will explore some important questions about censorship: Who decides what is offensive or dangerous within a particular society?  Why are books banned?  Should films and recorded music be rated?  How might rating be considered a form of censorship?  How consistent or random is the censorship, suppression, or banning of various texts? Is any suppression or censorship necessary or valuable in a free society? 3 credits.

Amy Hanson, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Human Resources Amy Hanson, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Human Resources
Phone: (714) 628-7312
Office: Beckman Hall 307J
Email: Amy Hanson

The History and Impact of the Surfing Industry
The sport of surfing is currently practiced by about twenty million people worldwide; the U.S. surf industry boasts sales of over $5 billion a year, the global industry $15 billion; and surfing has again become a touchstone of popular culture. This course will explore how surfing developed, over the course of the 20th century, from a benign pastime pursued on a handful of Polynesian islands to a global commercial and cultural force, and will examine the history of surfing informed by current historical scholarship. It will include perspectives from history, economics, physics, marketing, and leadership. Additional topics will cover geography, surf tourism, gender, surf films, surf music, surf art, and social responsibility. 3 credits.


Photo not Available Charles Hughes, D.Phil. Associate Professor of Religion and Philosophy
Phone: (714) 997-6952
Office: Wilkinson Hall 227
Email: Charles Hughes

The Christ of History and the Jesus of Faith
Jesus Christ has been the dominant religious and cultural figure in Western civilization for two-thousand years. But who was Jesus Christ? Did the leaders of the early apostolic Christian Church work to suppress the truth about Jesus by creating myths about him in order to consolidate and enforce their own authority, or did the apostolic Church fathers instead protect the truth about Jesus by rejecting alternative false views about him? In this class, we will identify and evaluate the historical, philosophical and theological assumptions that inform the positions of important contemporary Jesus scholars so that we can gain a better understanding of what the facts and evidence really are concerning Jesus and the development of early Christianity. 3 credits.
Jeff Koeber, M.A., Research Associate, Chapman University Fellow in Holocaust History

Jeff Koerber, M.A.-Research Associate, Chapman University Fellow in Holocaust History
Phone: (714) 997-6623
Office: Roosevelt Hall 201
Email: Jeff Koerber

Exiles in Paradise: Refugees from Hitler in 1940s Hollywood
Among the hundreds of thousands of refugees that fled the Nazis and war-torn Europe were a unique set of cultural icons who settled in Southern California: actresses Marlene Dietrich and Hedy Lamarr, film director Fritz Land, novelist Thomas Mann, dramatist Bertolt Brecht, composers Arnold Schoenberg and Erich Wolfgang Korngold, and perpetual muse to genius Alma Mahler Gropius Werfel. The course is a cultural history that examines the unique artistic creations fashioned by these exiles. We will place their works in the dual context of the persecutions that led these Europeans to flee their homelands and the image-consciousness of Hollywood. 3 credits.

Alicia Kozameh, M.A.-Instructor, Department of English Alicia Kozameh, M.A. Instructor, Department of English
Phone: (714) 997-6732
Office: Wilkinson Hall 20
Email: Alicia Kozameh

Literature Mirrors Society: Manifestations of Social Struggle and Political Repression in Latin American Fiction and Testimony
The struggle for social equality, justice and survival has been present, in various forms, throughout the existence of humanity. During the second half of the twentieth century, Latin America experienced several processes of social struggle that were met with harsh political repressions--kidnapping, torture, disappearances, concentration camps, prison, and exile among them. Latin American literature has expressed, in fiction and non-fiction, poetry and essay, this complex and violent experience. This course will focus on the reading and discussion of fictional and testimonial texts that reflect the Latin American political and social experience. Students will analyze the way in which society can use creative literary elements to collectively deal with and work through the remnants of turbulent historical moments. 3 credits.
Kent Lehnhof, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of English Kent Lehnhof, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of English
Phone: (714) 628-2746
Office: Wilkinson Hall 211
Email: Kent Lehnhof

Close Reading
My father is fond of saying that "the devil is in the details," which is his way of saying that little things often turn out to be terribly important. My dad's saying could well be the unofficial motto of this course, for it will focus, from start to finish, on the little things. Content-wise, we will consider a wide range of "texts"--from Renaissance stageplays to modern short stories to contemporary films. But our objective in each instance will be the same: to attend to and analyze the particulars of each presentation. By asking questions like "What difference does it make to use this word instead of that word?" and "What difference does it make to show this shot instead of that shot?" we will practice a kind of close reading that promises to make meaning of all those devilish details. 3 credits.
Mildred Lewis, M.F.A.-Assistant Professor of English Mildred Lewis, M.F.A.-Assistant Professor of English
Phone: (714) 744-7891
Office: DeMille Hall 167
Email: Mildred Lewis

Faith in Popular Culture
How can pop culture help us to understand an increasingly pluralistic world? This course critically examines the representation of faith in pop culture, including narrative and documentary films, music videos, fashion, sports, graphic novels and the blogosphere. The course will integrate the work of critical and contemporary scholars, including Aristotle, Frederic Jameson, Theodor Adorno, Teresa de Lauretis and Frantz Fanon. The class emphasizes critical thinking, digital literacy, and the integration of scholarly and creative work. 3 credits.


Tibor Machan, Ph.D.-R.C. Hoiles Chair in Business Ethics and Free Enterprise

Tibor Machan, Ph.D.-R.C. Hoiles Chair in Business Ethics and Free Enterprise
Phone: (714) 997-6704
Office: Beckman Hall 307D
Email: Tibor Machan

History of Political Philosophy
This course will examine the main ideas in political philosophy. We will combine a historical and problems approach studying the views of particular philosophers, starting with some of the key ideas in contemporary politics. Our exploration will center on the views of Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Aquinas, Machiavelli, Hobbes, Spinoza, Locke, Hume, Marx, Mill, Spencer, Strauss, contemporary Marxists such as Marcuse, Habermas, Mao, et al., Welfare Statists and Libertarians. We will also study the concepts of liberty, order, equality, justice, welfare, rights, order, authority, and community. 3 credits.

Clara Magliola, M.A.-Instructor of Sociology Clara Magliola, M.A.-Instructor of Sociology
Phone: (714) 997-6621
Office: Roosevelt Hall 200
Email: Clara Magliola

From Botticelli to Maxim magazine, perhaps nothing has been more favored as an artistic subject—more glorified, nor more reviled—than the female body. The “canon” of Western art as well as much contemporary visual culture systematically casts women as muses and objects, rather than as artists, creators, and agents themselves. This course focuses on and derives its spirit from the Women’s Art Movement of the 1970s in the US and utilizes feminist theory to rupture the “canon,” to interrogate contemporary visual culture, and to explore social activism and the revolutionary power of art and feminism. 3 credits.

Bernard McGrane, Ph.D.-Professor of Sociology

Bernard McGrane, Ph.D.-Professor of Sociology
Phone: (714) 997-6564
Office: Roosevelt Hall 216
Email: Bernard McGrane

Self and Society: the Social Construction of Reality
Where does society end and my self begin? Am I me or am I society? Why do I feel so pressured and “stressed” about what others think of me? Why do I care so much about my image in the human opinion, my reflection in society? Am I truly an individual or have I been deeply programmed and trained to want to be an individual? This course will be an examination, on both a critical scientific and a personal, experiential level, of “self” and “society."  We will make use of sociology with its focus on the primacy of social relations as well as psychology with its focus on the individual psyche, paying particular attention to the intersection of these ways of seeing human life. 3 credits.

Geraldine McNenny, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Education Geraldine McNenny, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Education
Phone: (714) 744-7936
Office: Reeves Hall 104
Email: Geraldine McNenny

Imagining a Sustainable Future
Imagining a sustainable future as a course invites you to consider what it means to live sustainably from multiple perspectives, from the food we eat and the water we drink, to the energy sources we rely on and the transportation systems we use to trade and work together, to the very structure of the cities and towns we construct and inhabit. For your final project, you will be asked to envision, research, and design your own sustainable solutions, in whatever area you choose. This FFC section will have a multimedia emphasis as well. 3 credits.
Ali Nayeri, Ph.D. - Clinical Assistant Professor of Physics

Ali Nayeri, Ph.D.- Clinical Assistant Professor of Physics
Phone: (714)744-7632
Office: Hashinger Science Center 117
Email: Ali Nayeri

Science for Future Leaders
Energy, global warming, terrorism and counter-terrorism, health, Internet, satellites, remote sensing, ICBMs and ABMs, DVDs and HDTVs—economic and political issues increasingly have a strong high tech content. Misjudge the science, make a wrong decision. Yet many of our leaders never studied physics, and do not understand science and technology. Science for future Leaders (or SfL) is designed to address that problem. After every lecture, you should come away with the feeling that what was just covered is important for every leader to know. Modern science and technology have the power to shape the world we live in, for good or for evil. To make wise decisions, future business and community leaders and thoughtful citizens overall need to be literate in understanding technology’s impact. The course is geared for nonscientists, long on concepts and short on math, and covers topics such as radioactivity, climate change, and waves of all kinds. 3 credits.

Kevin O'Leary, Ph.D.-Adjunct Professor of Political Science

Kevin O’Leary, Ph.D.- Adjunct Professor of Political Science
Phone: (714) TBA
Office: Roosevelt Hall 101
Email: Kevin O'Leary

Thomas Paine, Edmund Burke and Modern Political Argument
This course explores how the French Revolution gave birth to modern political argument and the left-right divide.  British statesman Edmund Burke penned the conservative response to the bloodshed in Paris in his Reflections on the Revolution in France.  Thomas Paine, who earlier sparked the American Revolution with Common Sense, responded with The Rights of Man.  Burke remains a touchstone for conservative thought while Paine championed universal human rights.  Students will examine how political arguments are constructed, consider the importance of conviction and passion to great writing, trace the legacy of Burke and Paine to contemporary debates and ponder the roots of political ideologies. 3 credits.

Veronique Olivier, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Languages

Veronique Olivier, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of Languages
Phone:(714) 628-7212
Office: DeMille Hall 116
Email: Veronique Olivier 

From France to Hollywood: Film Remakes and Adaptations
This courses is designed to help students approach films from a critical perspective by comparing original French versions with their American remakes and adaptations. In our evaluations, we will pay attention to cultural values (Three Men and a Baby), notions of national identity (The Return of Martin Guerre), and economic challenges in the production of film. We will also question the simplistic assumption that the French film is by definition of a higher value, Hollywood being strictly interested in the box office when it comes to adapting or remaking a movie (Besson's Nikita/Point of No Return). Films will include various genres and periods. 3 credits.

Jan Osborn, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of English

Jan Osborn, Ph.D.- Assistant Professor of English
Phone: (714) 628-7221
Office: Wilkinson Hall 223
Email: Jan Osborn

Humanomics: Exchange and the Human Condition
What makes a rich nation rich? What makes a good person good? And what do these questions have to do with one another? While exploring these and other questions about markets and ethics, students will challenge the perception of economics as distinct from the humanities.  Co-taught with Socratic discussions, this course combines the laboratory method of inquiry into the human propensity to exchange with the cultural interpretation of the human condition in novels, poems, and film. 3 credits.


Joseph Rachiele, Instructor of Philosophy

Joseph Rachiele, B.A., Instructor of Philosophy
Phone: TBA
Office: Wilkinson Hall 229
Email: Joseph Rachiele

Philosophy and Science Fiction
Time-travel, teleportation, artificial intelligence, and the simulation of experience each raise difficult philosophical problems.  We will use these and other science fiction scenarios to initiate our philosophical inquiry, reading and discussing philosophy articles that address the problems raised by science fiction scenarios. 3 credits.

No photo available

Sarah Robblee, M.A., Lecturer, English
Phone: (714) 997-6750
Office: Wilkinson Hall 217
Email: Sarah Robblee

Ethics in Technical Communication
Technical communicators, and sometimes users of technical communication, often find themselves in the midst of ethical dilemmas in which they are balancing roles, responsibilities, audiences, purposes, and cultural norms. These dilemmas might include miscommunication from a user manual that results in injury or fatality to the user, or the misuse of confidential client information. After first discussing what constitutes technical communication, we will dive into some ethical theory, and then spend the majority of our course deconstructing ethical cases. Most of these ethical cases are real, some of which you probably remember hearing about on the news. In addition to pulling apart the ethical dilemmas of situations revolving around technical communication, we will look at the technical documents relevant to these cases, and company codes of conduct to identify underlying values and how they play a part in these cases. 3 credits.

Courtney Rodet, Ph.D.-Research Associate Professor in the Economic Science Institute

Courtney Rodet, Ph.D.-Research Associate-Post Doctoral Researcher
Phone: (714) 516-4533
Office: Wilkinson Hall 1st floor
Email: Courtney Rodet

Humanomics: Exchange and the Human Condition
What makes a rich nation rich?  What makes a good person good?  And what do these questions have to do with one another? While exploring these and other questions about markets and ethics, students will challenge the perception of economics as distinct from the humanities.  Co-taught with Socratic discussions, this course combines the laboratory method of inquiry into the human propensity to exchange with the cultural interpretation of the human condition in novels, poems, and film. 3 credits.

Michael Shermer, Ph.D.-Adjunct Professor

Michael Shermer, Ph.D.-Adjunct Professor
Email: Michael Shermer

Skepticism 101, or How to Think Like a Scientist without Being a Geek
The founding publisher of Skeptic magazine and the “Skeptic” monthly columnist for Scientific American will introduce students to the world of skepticism and science through some of the most controversial ideas of our time: science and pseudoscience, superstition and the paranormal, evolution and intelligent design creationism, climate denial and “political” science, pseudohistory and Holocaust denial, UFOs and alien abductions, the afterlife and reincarnation, God and religion, science-based morality and evolutionary ethics, and the neuroscience of belief. You can learn how to think critically and skeptically without becoming a science geek be open-minded enough to accept new ideas without being so open-minded that your brains fall out. The course includes numerous in-class demonstrations, videos, magic, illusions, and examples from pop culture along with rigorous scientific research. Be prepared to have your worldviews challenged. 3 credits.

Eric Schniter, Ph.D.-Research Associate-Post Doctoral Researcher

Eric Schniter, Ph.D.-Research Associate-Post Doctoral Researcher
Phone: (714) 628-7272
Office: Wilkinson Hall 1st floor
Email: Eric Schniter

Human Universals—Human Diversity
This course considers evidence for "human universals" (behavioral or cognitive traits common to all humans) in a world full of diversity. Students learn how to evaluate traits for qualification as universals, considering functional design explanations, prehistoric and phylogenetic evidence, developmental patterns, and cross-cultural comparison. 3 credit.

Fredric Smoller, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Political Science

Fredric Smoller, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Political Science
Phone: (714) 585-2990
Office: Roosevelt Hall 101
Email: Fredric Smoller

Politics and Film
This course promotes citizen engagement by exposing students to vital political issues and American political institutions. Students will critically analyze some old and more recent classic films that have shaped political discourse in the United States. We will also explore and critically analyze Hollywood's complex relationship with government and the political process. 3 credits.


Walter Tschacher, Ph.D.-Professor of Languages

Walter Tschacher, Ph.D.-Professor of Languages
Phone: (714) 628-7276
Office: DeMille Hall 125
Email: Walter Tschacher

From Socrates to Freud
From classical Athens to fin-de-siècle Vienna, cities have provided the context in which writers and artists have addressed questions fundamental to humanity. This course examines select texts and works of art central to the classical, Renaissance and modern, exploring the interaction between text and context and between individual and society. 3 credits.

Angela Tumini, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Italian Studies

Angela Tumini, Ph.D.-Associate Professor of Italian Studies
Phone: (714) 997-6842
Office: DeMille Hall 127
Email: Angela Tumini

Issues of Gender and Identity in European Cinema
The aim of this course is to help students develop the critical ability to "read" films within their historical, political, and cultural contexts and to enable them to identify relevant and recurring themes. We will focus on European cinema, and we will address issues of identity-- how a single European identity cannot be established through films' reflections of the societies they represent; the complex relationship between the gender identity of female characters and, in some cases, the repressive patriarchal structure of the society they belong to; the role of motherhood; the defined ranking, behavior, and appropriate attitude of family members; and other social constructions of the self in relation to society. 3 credits.

Justine Van Meter, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of English, Chapman University Justine Van Meter, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of English
Phone: (714) 997-6750
Office: DeMille Hall 134
Email: Justine Van Meter

Beauties, Beasts, and the Construction of Western Culture
Through the study of the origins and transformations of Western myths and fairy tales, in particular, we will explore how storytelling shapes our sense of ourselves and others. We will investigate how social values and expectations are reflected in or constructed by these tales. We will also explore whom the authors of these tales were addressing and what political, historical, and social realities were influencing and guiding their writings. Inevitably, we will ask why and how the recurring motifs within the tales have endured and why and how contemporary authors have subverted or reinforced the themes and lessons of the traditional tales. Above all, we will address how these tales have influenced - and continue to influence - how we understand and define our individual and collective selves as well as those who are other to us. Be prepared: the land of Disney may be near, but our explorations will prove that there is more to these tales than magic castles, sleeping beauties and singing teacups. 3 credits.
Carolyn Vieira-Martinez, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of History, Chapman University Carolyn Vieira-Martinez, Ph.D.-Assistant Professor of History
Phone: (714) 997-6834
Office: Roosevelt Hall 205
Email: Carolyn Vieira-Martinez

Imagining Africa
In this class we survey how Europeans and Americans redefined "Africa" and "Africans" after 1500, and how those changes shaped experience. The historical conversation was neither monolithic nor hegemonic, yet significant in consequences for the world today. Furthermore, Africans used the dialogue to alter the shape of non-African traditions. Students will learn the history of relations between Africa and the west, the ideas of "Africa" and "Africans" that developed, and their influence on contemporary relations. 3 credits.
Bart Wilson, Ph.D.-Professor of Economics and Law, Chapman University Bart Wilson, Ph.D.-Professor of Economics and Law
Phone: (714) 628-7306
Office: Wilkinson Hall 109
Email:Bart Wilson

Humanomics: Exchange and the Human Condition
What makes a rich nation rich? What makes a good person good? And what do these questions have to do with one another? While exploring these and other questions about markets and ethics, students will challenge the perception of economics as distinct from the humanities.  Co-taught with Socratic discussions, this course combines the laboratory method of inquiry into the human propensity to exchange with the cultural interpretation of the human condition in novels, poems, and film. 3 credits.
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