UNXD-401-01 Radical Hope
Spring for 2016-2017
Major life changes can be difficult to navigate, especially when one’s sense of self is at stake. How do I confront a radically new world in which my old ways of making sense of things no longer apply? How can I remain ‘me’ throughout this transition, given that I will in some sense have to become someone new? These questions are at their most profound and most pressing in a situation of cultural collapse, such as that faced by the Crow people when the U.S. government forbade their way of life and forced them onto a reservation. In Radical Hope: Ethics in the Face of Cultural Devastation, philosopher Jonathan Lear considers the experience of the Crow and explores how their chief, Plenty Coups, was able to lead himself and his people through the experience of cultural collapse. In this course, we will discuss Lear’s analysis of Plenty Coups’s courage, hope, and imagination, and determine what lessons we can draw from it about navigating major changes in our own lives.
Course meets on Mondays, 7 - 9 PM, March 13 - May 1. Last day to add/drop (must visit Registrar's office): March 16.