Spring 2015 - Undergraduate Course Descriptions

Starnaman, Sabrina
Discipline and Number
LIT 3334 Section 001
MW Time 4:00 PM - 5:15 PM
Course Title
Mismeasure of Man

Description of Course:

This course examines and critiques the ways that American society, science, and culture has tried to quantify and measure humans. People have historically been ranked physically and intellectually in the name of science and progress, though the methods and outcomes were sometimes hardly “scientific” or “progressive.” From the construction of “the normal man” arises the notion of “the abnormal” or “the defective man.” We will explore historical constructions of normality, disability, sanity, madness, and approaches to treatment, eugenics, and reformation.

We will examine historical and critical works, fiction, memoir, and film.

Required Texts:

Readings may include:
The Mismeasure of Man, Stephen Jay Gould. (1981/1996) Selections.
The Disability Studies Reader, 4th ed. (2013) Selections.
Intuition, Allegra Goodman (2006)
Darwin’s Radio, Greg Bear (1999)
Geek Love, Katherine Dunn. (1983)
“Fade to White,” Catherynne Valente. (2012)
Tomorrow’s Children (1934) ¬¬
Gattacca, (1997)
Murderball, (2005)

Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:

Course requirements will likely include:
Discussion Questions turned in before class
Midterm and final take-home essay exams
Active course participation

© The University of Texas at Dallas School of Arts and Humanities.
No part of this website can be copied or reproduced without permisssion.