Graduate Fall 2021



Classes are listed alphabetically according to their first department listing. For the most up-to-date listings, check the Yale Course Search  website. ​To add or remove a course from this list, email

AFAM 850 (10382) /ENGL 937
African Urban Cultures: Mediations of the City
Stephanie Newell
Th 9:25am-11:15am
This course approaches the study of African cities and urbanization through the medium of diverse texts, including fiction, nonfiction, popular culture, film, and the arts, as well as scholarly work on African cities. Through these cultural “texts,” attention is given to everyday conceptualizations of the body and the environment, as well as to theoretical engagements with the African city. We study urban relationships as depicted in literature and popular media in relation to Africa’s long history of intercultural encounters, including materials dating back to the 1880s and the 1930s.

AFAM 860 (10381) /ENGL 957
Ecologies of Black Print
Jacqueline Goldsby
A survey of history of the book scholarship germane to African American literature and the ecosystems that have sustained black print cultures over time. Secondary works consider eighteenth- to twenty-first-century black print culture practices, print object production, modes of circulation, consumption, and reception. Students write critical review essays, design research projects, and write fellowship proposals based on archival work at the Beinecke Library, Schomburg Center, and other regional sites (e.g., the Sterling A. Brown papers at Williams College).

AFST 836 (10512) /HIST 836

Histories of Postcolonial Africa: Themes, Genres, and the Phantoms of the Archive

Benedito Machava

T 1:30pm-3:20pm

This course is both historiographic and methodological. It is meant as an introduction to the major themes that have dominated the study of postcolonial Africa in recent years, and the material circumstances in which they were produced. We pay close attention to the kinds of sources and archives that scholars have employed in their works, and how they addressed the challenges of writing contemporary histories in Africa. We center our weekly meetings around one key text and one or two supplementary readings. We engage with works on politics, violence, environment and technology, women and gender, affect, fashion, leisure, and popular culture.

AFST 839 (10511) /HIST 839

Environmental History of Africa

Robert Harms

W 9:25am-11:15am
An examination of the interaction between people and their environment in Africa and the ways in which this interaction has affected or shaped the course of African history.

AMST 856 (10082)
American Mobilities
Laura Barraclough
Th 9:25am-11:15am
The “mobilities turn,” developed primarily in the social sciences since the early 2000s, examines the structured movements of people, ideas, and things; the transportation and communication infrastructures that move them; and the cultural meanings attributed to mobility and immobility. This course integrates critical mobilities scholarship with American Studies and adjacent fields to consider the significance of (im)mobilities for the evolution of American history, geographies, society, and culture. Our focus is on American (im)mobilities and mobility justice in relationship to settler colonialism, racism, and capitalism in a variety of regions and from the seventeeth century to the present.

ANTH 541 (10089) /PLSC 779/HIST 965/ENV 836

Agrarian Societies: Culture, Society, History, and Development
Kalyanakrishnan Sivaramakrishnan, Marcela Echeverri Munoz
W 1:30pm-3:20pm
An interdisciplinary examination of agrarian societies, contemporary and historical, Western and non-Western. Major analytical perspectives from anthropology, economics, history, political science, and environmental studies are used to develop a meaning-centered and historically grounded account of the transformations of rural society. Team-taught.

ANTH 963 (10510) /HIST 963/HSHM 691/HSAR 841
Topics in the Environmental Humanities
Kalyanakrishnan Sivaramakrishnan, Paul Sabin
Th 5:30pm-7:20pm
This is the required workshop for the Graduate Certificate in Environmental Humanities. The workshop meets six times per term to explore concepts, methods, and pedagogy in the environmental humanities, and to share student and faculty research. Each student pursuing the Graduate Certificate in Environmental Humanities must complete both a fall term and a spring term of the workshop, but the two terms of student participation need not be consecutive. The fall term each year emphasizes key concepts and major intellectual currents. The spring term each year emphasizes pedagogy, methods, and public practice. Specific topics vary each year. Students who have previously enrolled in the course may audit the course in a subsequent year.

HIST 791 (10500)
Ports, Cities, and Empires
Paul Kennedy, Jay Gitlin
T 1:30pm-3:20pm
A study of the relationship between imperialism and urbanism from the early modern period to the twentieth century. Topics include Roman medieval precedents; the uses and meanings of walls; merchant colonies and Latin Quarters; modernist urban planning and the International Style in Africa and the Middle East; comparative metro system in Paris, Algiers, and Montreal; decolonization and imperial nostalgia. Cities to be discussed include Delhi/New Delhi, New Orleans, Dublin, Cape Town, Tel Aviv, Addis Ababa, and many others.

HIST 913 (12547) /HSHM 713
Geography and History
Bill Rankin
W 9:25am-11:15am
A research seminar focused on methodological questions of geography and geographic analysis in historical scholarship. We consider approaches ranging from the Annales School of the early twentieth century to contemporary research in environmental history, history of science, urban history, and more. We also explore interdisciplinary work in social theory, historical geography, and anthropology and grapple with the promise (and drawbacks) of GIS. Students may write their research papers on any time period or geographic region, and no previous experience with geography or GIS is necessary.

Open to undergraduates with permission of the instructor.

HIST 930 (10485) /HSHM 701

Problems in the History of Medicine and Public Health
John Warner
T 1:30pm-3:20pm
An examination of the variety of approaches to the social and cultural history of medicine and public health. Readings are drawn from recent literature in the field, sampling writings on health care, illness experiences, and medical cultures in Asia, Latin America, Europe, and the United States from antiquity through the twenty-first century. Topics include the role of gender, class, ethnicity, race, religion, and region in the experience of sickness and healing; the intersection of lay and professional understandings of the body; and the role of the marketplace in shaping cultural authority, professional identities, and patient expectations.

HIST 931 (10484) /HSHM 702
Problems in the History of Science
Deborah Coen
Th 1:30pm-3:20pm
Surveys current methodologies through key theoretical and critical works. Students encounter major twentieth-century methodological moments that have left lasting imprints on the field: positivism and anti-positivism, the sociology of knowledge, actor-network theory, and historical epistemology, as well as newer approaches focusing on space, infrastructure, translation, and exchange. We also consider central conceptual problems for the field, such as the demarcation of science from pseudoscience; the definition of modernity and the narrative of the Scientific Revolution; vernacular science, the colonial archive, and non-textual sources.

HIST 937 (10482) /HSHM 761/AFAM 752
Medicine and Empire
Carolyn Roberts  
M 9:25am-11:15am
A reading course that explores medicine in the context of early modern empires with a focus on Africa, India, and the Americas. Topics include race, gender, and the body; medicine and the environment; itineraries of scientific knowledge; enslaved, indigenous, and creole medical and botanical knowledge and practice; colonial contests over medical authority and power; indigenous and enslaved epistemologies of the natural world; medicine and religion.

HSAR 705 (12569)  
Representing the American West

Jennifer Raab

T 1:30pm-3:20pm

The American West holds a powerful place in the cultural and political imagination of the United States. Taught at the Beinecke, this course examines settler colonial art and visual culture from the early republic to the present, considering changing conceptions of the land across media—from maps, aquatints, and guidebooks to paintings, panoramas, and photographs. We consider the representation of railroads, National Parks, ghost towns, and highways; terms such as distance, aridity, seriality, mythology, and the frontier; artists’ engagement with ecological questions; the construction of whiteness in and through the landscape; and sites of indigenous resistance. The seminar foregrounds research and writing, with the term structured around the conceptualization and development of student papers emerging from the Beinecke’s extraordinary collection of Western Americana. Prior permission of the instructor is required.

LAW (20054)
Animal Law
Jonathan Lovvorn, Doug Kysar
This course will examine the application of the law to non-human animals, the rules and regulations that govern their treatment, and the concepts of “animal welfare” and “animal rights.” The course will explore the historical and philosophical treatment of animals, discuss how such treatment impacts the way judges, politicians, lawyers, legal scholars and lay people see, speak about, and use animals; survey current animal protection laws and regulations, including overlap with such policy issues as food and agriculture, climate change, and biodiversity protection; describe recent political and legal campaigns to reform animal protection laws; examine the concept of “standing” and the problems of litigating on behalf of animals; discuss the current classification of animals as “property” and the impacts of that classification, and debate the merits and limitations of alternative classifications, such as the recognition of “legal rights” for animals. Students will write a series of short response papers. An option to produce a longer research paper for Substantial or Supervised Analytic Writing credit will be available to Law students.  Enrollment limited to for