The Humanities Gateway course is designed as an introductory course to the human experience for all GBC students. Built around shared experiences and values across place and time, the Gateway opens the breadth of human triumphs and tragedies to students to provide a basis for understanding current and future situations that will require more than just a technical solution.
The Humanities Gateway Course is designed to impart eight key humanities skills to students:
At the core of the Humanities is the concept of Dialogue--between people, between cultures, between times. The Humanities Gateway Course is intended to give students both the skills and the content to engage in the ongoing dialogues that surround us all. It guides them through the most challenging of human situations, where the solutions are neither immediately obvious nor unquestionably correct.
At the core of modern Western societies is the idea of the "social contract"--the basic rights, values, and responsibilities that bind Western societies together. These ideals derived from the tumult of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. But these ideals are not as simple as merely a list of rights. Although Western societies share a vocabulary of "rights" and "freedoms" and "liberties" and "equality", what is actually meant by these terms varies widely--which in turn impacts how Western societies react to new issues.
Students will develop an understanding of the three major social contract theories of modern Western societies, and how these different approaches impact contemporary issues.
Students should read Patrice Higonnet's Burka in the French and American Minds article.
Question Prompts for Discussion/Writing: