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History

Modern Latin America 

 

Dates: June 21-July 9                 
NCAA Approved

Course Description: This course is a survey of Latin American history in which we will trace multiple and overlapping histories starting with colonial encounters, where we will come to a better understanding of how the enormous region we now know as Latin America fits into broader European projects of empire. We will come to understand how this history ushers forth ideas of race that are not analogous to North American conceptions of race. We will survey the struggles of independence that erupted in the 19th century, the spectral legacy of colonialism post-independence, and the emergence of nationalism across the region. In particular, we will consider the effects of supranational bodies, like the World Bank and IMF, and the neoliberal reforms and impositions that continue to impact Latin America. We will close the term considering contemporary, unfolding issues in Latin America.

Teacher:  Mauricio T. Torres

Class meeting time:
Monday-Friday:
8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. EDT

  • Synchronous:
    8:30 a.m. -10:30 a.m.
  • Asynchronous:
    10:30 a.m. -12:30 p.m.

Office Hours:
Monday Nights 9:30 p.m. -10:30 p.m.
or by appointment

Latin American Experience 

 

Dates:  July 12-July 30                           
NCAA Approved

Course Description: The Latin American Experience (LatAmEx) is an interdisciplinary course that reframes Americans of Latin American descent as co-producers of American history and culture rather than abject “illegals” This is a course that cuts across history, philosophy, sociology, musicology, cultural studies, and critical legal studies in order to reframe Latin Americans as active producers and shapers of American History rather than passive victims or invasive outsiders. We will move through critical topics in Latin American Studies, Raza Studies, and Latin@ studies in order to survey the plurality of Latin American experiences, cultural forms, and political thought.

Teacher:  Mauricio T. Torres

Class meeting time:
Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. EDT

  • Synchronous:
    8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
  • Asynchronous:
    10:30 a.m. - 12:30 a.m.

Office Hours:
Monday Nights 9:30-10:30 p.m.
or by appointment

Macroeconomics

 

Dates: July 12-July 30       
NCAA Approved

Course Description: Economics is the study of how a society uses limited resources to produce and distribute the goods needed to live healthy and fulfilling lives. Macroeconomics focuses on the dynamics of the economy as a whole, covering topics such as inflation, growth, finance, and US monetary policy. Students also complete a major research paper on a topic of their choice related to Economics. Grounded in the school's mission with special attention to issues of stewardship and sustainability, Westtown's Economics courses also investigate the nontraditional discipline of Ecological Economics, which probes the limits of the Earth’s resources and calls into question the basic assumption of the feasibility of ongoing growth in consumption.

Taking Economics online affords students the opportunity to learn at a distance without sacrificing the collaborative quality of education central to Westtown’s classroom experience. Course materials and goals are similar to Westtown’s school year syllabus but will be adapted and combined with traditional textbook materials (based on Greg Mankiw’s Essentials of Economics) to take advantage of online capabilities and provide the best possible learning experience. Students will watch short whiteboard-style lecture videos created exclusively for this course, navigate labs designed to guide students to understanding through constructing and applying economic concepts, and consult with student partners as needed to help each other master the material.

Teacher:  Elson Oshman Blunt

Class meeting time:
Monday- Thursday 8:30-9:30 p.m. EDT

Office Hours by appointment with individual students.

U.S. History


Dates: June 21-July 30
NCAA Approved

Course Description: This U.S. History course begins with a focus on the Pre-Columbian Americas and works through the late 20th Century. It is designed to provide an overview of some of the major events, trends, and themes across U.S. History. Aside from becoming familiar with the historical content and developing greater critical thought, students will develop and refine document analysis skills and work with primary sources to uncover the past while developing personal opinions on some of the major questions that have guided the history of the United States. As an online course, a disciplined and self-directed approach is required as students navigate course content in preparation for an online, synchronous weekly class meeting. Students should expect to spend on average 3-4 hours daily on coursework and will have the freedom to get ahead in the coursework if desired.

Teacher:  John Koenig 

Class meeting time:
Wednesday: 7:00 - 9:30 p.m. EDT

  • Synchronous:
    Wednesday, 7:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
  • Asynchronous:
    Daily (3-4 hours work)

Office Hours Available
by arrangement with students.

CLOSED

Non-Violence in Action

 

Dates:  June 21-July 9                
NCAA Approved

Course Description: This course is not a course on philosophical, religious, or moral questions about the use of violence. Instead, this course will examine nonviolent action as a technique for creating change, defending against threats, and protecting others at risk. Using real-world examples, we will look at active nonviolence from the interpersonal to the intergroup and international. We will examine common myths about nonviolent action, who uses it, when and how it works and why, looking at strategy and tactics and considering how our preconceptions about violence and nonviolence affect the stories that get told about it. We will also examine some of the cutting-edge theorizing and experimentation happening in the field of nonviolence now. Students will become literate in some of the major nonviolent movements that have occured in the last one hundred years, research and follow existing campaigns, and consider contexts in which nonviolence appears to have failed. Final projects will consider the potential of nonviolent action in this moment in history.

Teacher:  Jonathan Ogle 

Class meeting time:
Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. EDT

  • Synchronous:
    2 - 2.5 hours (with breaks)
  • Asynchronous
    1.5 - 2 hours (approx.)

Office Hours
TBD - with attention to student schedules and time zones, and by appointment.