Reed College Catalog

Master of Arts in Liberal Studies

The Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) is an interdisciplinary graduate program in the liberal arts and sciences. An alternative to the highly specialized course of study in the field of traditional graduate programs, which is an alternative to a flexible and rigorous program. While the MALS degree does not focus on a specific vocational or professional direction, it can prepare students for a range of career options and further study. The program then attracts a diverse group of bright and intellectually curious students of varied interests, ages, and backgrounds who are motivated to learn and who wish to pursue learning with similarly motivated students and faculty members. In short, the program advocates has lifelong commitment to learning. .


The MALS curriculum incorporates a broad spectrum of courses in liberal studies: humanities, history and the social sciences, the arts, and mathematics and science. Graduate courses are offered in the evenings and summers. These courses are frequently interdisciplinary in nature and are taught by Reed faculty members from various departments. Normally there are three half-unit evening courses each fall and spring semester, and one full-unit course, along with an additional half-unit evening course, in the summer term. With the exception of the accelerated summer term, graduate courses meet one and one-half hours once a week for the duration of the semester.

MALS students also may select from 300- and 400-level undergraduate courses, with consent of the instructor, for their degree program, or from 100- and 200-level courses for undergraduate background credit and prerequisites, and thus are eligible to take courses in any of the 24 academic departments at Reed. Students may petition the MALS office to create a 500-level graduate course from a 300- or 400-level undergraduate course. It is up to the individual instructor to determine any additional expectations or requirements to enroll in the course at the graduate level. The program director, in consultation with the graduate studies committee, will take into consideration the individual student’s educational circumstances and the compelling nature of the proposal in evaluating the petition. If there is an MALS course offered on the same topic in the same semester as the desired undergraduate course, students must register in the established graduate course (and may not petition to create a graduate level course).

On an exceptional basis, a student may undertake an MALS independent study course where the student works one-on-one with a Reed faculty member. The course must be approved in advance by the Committee on Graduate Studies, which will take into consideration the individual student’s personal and educational circumstances. A proposal for the course, signed by the instructor, must be submitted to the committee no later than the last day of classes of the preceding term.

MALS courses are conducted as discussion groups and generally enroll between 6 and 10 students, with a maximum enrollment of 15 and a minimum of 5. At least one MALS course each term is designated as liberal studies core. These courses are explicitly interdisciplinary and writing-intensive. Liberal studies core courses scheduled for the 2017–18 academic year are “Religious Reformations and Social Transformations in Early Modern Europe” in fall, “Media, Persons, and Publics in a Globalized World” in spring, and “The Art of Speech” in summer 2018.

Course Load and Progression

The program does not specify a minimum number of courses required in a field of principal interest. The student’s total program, however, should lead to a clearly defined objective and provide the theoretical basis for the final thesis project. After completing two provisional Reed courses, one of which must be a liberal studies core course, all students must make application for formal candidacy to the program (see “Admission”). Upon candidacy approval, a faculty adviser and the director of the MALS program will assist students in designing a course of study that meets their particular intellectual interests while providing a broad academic base.

Almost all MALS students attend part-time; full-time status requires concurrent enrollment in both undergraduate courses and graduate courses, and is difficult to sustain for every semester of the program. Full-time enrollment in a regular semester is three units; half-time enrollment is one and one-half units. In the accelerated summer term, one unit is considered half-time enrollment; one and one-half units is full-time. While most students take three to six years to graduate, it is possible to complete the program in two years. The yearly course load for graduate students generally ranges from one to five academic units. There is no specified minimum or maximum course load, however, and students are not required to enroll each consecutive term. Complementing this flexibility in progression, however, is the expectation that all MALS students meet the following completion time frames:

  • If a student does not complete a course within three consecutive semesters, the student must submit a petition to continue in the program to the Committee on Graduate Studies by the last day of classes of the third term of nonenrollment. The petition for continuation must include enrollment in at least one of the next two semesters, a statement of continued interest, and a proposed time frame for completing the program. A student who does not meet these criteria and who wishes to continue study at a later date must reapply for admission to the program.
  • Students are expected to complete the MALS degree within six years of candidacy acceptance. Petitions to extend the time for degree completion must be approved in advance of the thesis semester by the Committee on Graduate Studies.


Reed welcomes applications from individuals who wish to pursue interdisciplinary graduate work in a program that is both flexible and rigorous. Those applicants are accepted who, in the view of the Committee on Graduate Studies, are most likely to become successful members of and contribute positively to the MALS community. Admission decisions are based on many integrated factors. We recognize that qualities of character—in particular, motivation, intellectual curiosity, and openness to constructive criticism—are important considerations in the selection process, beyond a demonstrated commitment to academic excellence.

Students may apply to enter in the fall, spring, or summer term. Online application forms are available at Initial, provisional admission to the MALS program requires submission of the following items:

  • Completed application form with personal statements that includes a critical response to an essay or book of choice
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and postbaccalaureate work from each originating school, with evidence of completion of a bachelor’s degree
  • Two letters of recommendation: either a faculty member who recently taught the applicant in an academic subject, or an individual who is familiar with the applicant’s intellectual and personal abilities, motivation, and accomplishments
  • $75 nonrefundable application fee
  • Interview with the MALS director and a faculty member of the Committee on Graduate Studies upon completion of the above materials.

In addition, students are invited to submit a writing sample from a recent academic, personal, or business-related endeavor. Please note that GRE scores are welcome but not required.

Applicants must submit all required materials by the following deadlines:

  • no later than July 1 for fall entrance
  • no later than December 1 for spring entrance
  • no later than April 1 for summer entrance.

Because of space limitations, we encourage applicants to begin the process earlier by requesting transcripts and recommendations several months in advance. Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis throughout the year, and applicants are notified of the admission decision accordingly.

Students accepted for admission may request a deferral of entrance for up to two terms, and should attach a letter of intention to the enrollment form, explaining their reasons for the deferral. If students wish to enroll in courses elsewhere during the deferral term, they must notify the MALS office of their intention and submit an official transcript of the completed work to the MALS office for additional review.

All students are admitted to the program on a provisional basis. In order to be admitted formally as a candidate to the MALS program, the applicant must successfully complete two successive or concurrent Reed courses, at least one of which must be a liberal studies core course. Exceptions to this requirement must be approved in advance of the entering semester by the Committee on Graduate Studies. If an exception is approved, one of the student’s two preliminary courses must still be at the graduate level, and the student must take at least one liberal studies core course within two semesters of acceptance as a formal candidate. Within one term of completing the second preliminary course, the student must submit to the Committee on Graduate Studies a candidacy application that includes a self-evaluation, an outline of course progression and completion, and a class paper. The program director will solicit evaluations from the student’s instructors, including an assessment of the applicant’s potential to write a final thesis. If the student's candidacy is approved, credit for the completed courses will be applied to the MALS degree. Once accepted as a candidate, the student should consult with the faculty adviser and program director to plan a program of study consistent with the goals of the program, leading to the completion of all requirements for the MALS degree.

Special Students

Those individuals with an undergraduate degree who wish to sample a graduate course one time only may initiate a special student application to take one MALS course. Credit for the course may be applied to the MALS degree requirements if the student enters the degree-seeking program within five years of taking the course.

Reed undergraduate juniors and seniors may apply to take a fall or spring MALS course that does not have a comparable undergraduate offering within the same academic year. Undergraduates may apply only one MALS course to their degree requirements. Enrollment priority is given to MALS students and undergraduate enrollment in any MALS class is limited to no more than two students. Interested students may contact the MALS office for an application and should apply at least 30 days in advance of the desired semester. Approval of enrollment is based on the application, an interview with the program director, and instructor permission.


Graduate courses are open only to students who have been admitted to the MALS program, and to undergraduate students with special permission (above). Students currently enrolled in the MALS program are eligible to audit undergraduate courses and should follow the guidelines outlined in the “Auditors” section of the undergraduate admission section of this catalog (under “Special Admission Groups”).

Only Reed MALS graduates are eligible to audit MALS courses. Graduates may apply to audit one MALS course per academic year. Graduates should submit an audit application to the MALS director no later than 30 days before the start of the desired semester. The director will consider the auditor’s statement of interest, instructor approval, and space availability in granting admission to the course.

Transfer Credit

A maximum of two of the nine units required for the degree may be satisfied by transfer credit. Transfer credit may not be used to meet the minimum requirement of four units of Reed coursework at the graduate level. The registrar and the Committee on Graduate Studies must approve all work submitted for transfer, preferably before enrollment in the transfer course. The decision for granting credit will be based on a careful evaluation of the following materials: an official transcript recording the course(s), a petition from the student that includes such course details as professor name and title, and a course description and syllabus. (If available, the student also should submit a course paper with instructor comments.) The coursework must be from a regionally accredited college or university, may not be applied to another degree, and should represent B or better work. Courses completed as a postbaccalaureate student should be comparable to upper-level undergraduate or graduate coursework offered at Reed. Normally, all courses approved for transfer must have been completed within the past five years.

Costs and Financial Assistance

Tuition is calculated on a per-unit basis at a rate reduced from that of the undergraduate program. For the 2017–18 academic year, the semester MALS tuition rates are as follows:

1/2 unit


  2 units


1 unit


  2 1/2 units


1 1/2 units


  3 or more units


Students enrolled at least half time (1.5 units in the fall or spring terms; 1 unit in the summer term) are eligible to participate in the Direct Loan program. Only courses at the 500 or 600 level that apply toward requirements for the degree may be used in determining financial aid eligibility.

Students wishing to borrow under the Direct Loan program must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). In addition, for each semester that a graduate student is interested in borrowing a federal loan, the student should provide the financial aid office with a letter stating the semester of attendance (fall, spring, or summer), the course titles, and the number of units per course.

The FAFSA is available online at The Reed College code for the FAFSA is 003217. The maximum unsubsidized Direct Loan available to a graduate student is $20,500 per academic year. The exact amount of unsubsidized loan eligibility is based upon the number of units enrolled in at Reed each semester. Graduate students may, in some circumstances, borrow under the Graduate PLUS loan program to cover educational expenses. Eligibility for the Graduate PLUS program is credit-based and students wishing to borrow under this federal program must file a FAFSA. Generally, a student may borrow sufficient amounts to cover educational expenses under the Direct Loan program; therefore, it is unlikely that an MALS student will qualify for additional funding through the Graduate PLUS loan. Loan terms for the Direct Loan are more favorable than terms for the Graduate PLUS loan, and students should always borrow under the Direct Loan before considering the Graduate PLUS loan. New federal loan borrowers at Reed must also complete loan entrance counseling and a Master Promissory Note.

For financial aid purposes, the academic year at Reed College begins in summer, continuing through fall and spring.

A Reed College monthly payment option, administered by Tuition Management Systems, offers a flexible alternative to semester payments to the college. Participants may enroll in a semester plan and make four, five, or six equal monthly payments, beginning May 15, July 15, or August 15. Please call TMS at 800-722-4867 or visit for information about this program. Families can also use TMS to make payments using a credit card or with a direct deduction from a checking or savings account. A 2.99 percent convenience fee is charged for using a credit card and there is no fee for a direct deduction.

The MALS program also sponsors a small scholarship each year to help defray tuition costs for two or three students. Recipients are chosen by the Committee on Graduate Studies based on an application process that takes into account primarily financial need (as calculated from the FAFSA form), but also academic and personal merit. Generally, the committee will call for scholarship applications in the spring and make a final decision on awards no later than fall of the new academic year.

Degree Requirements

The MALS degree requires the completion of nine units of coursework. Each student designs an individual program, incorporating the following degree requirements:

  1. Eight units of courses.
    1. A minimum of four of the eight units must be in Reed courses at the graduate level (numbered 500 or higher).
    2. No more than four units from 300- and 400-level undergraduate courses may be applied to the eight required units.
  2. A one-unit thesis.
  3. No more than five units (including thesis) in any one department or division, or in liberal studies core courses, may be applied to the total nine units required for graduation.

Exceptions to the above requirements must be approved in advance by the Committee on Graduate Studies. Petitions should be addressed to the committee no later than the first day of classes of the term before the thesis.

Gateway Course

One or two terms prior to the thesis semester, students must designate one of their courses as a gateway course that serves as preparation for writing the thesis. The designated course can be either an MALS or an upper-level undergraduate course that provides the student with an opportunity to write a substantial research paper. The topic of the paper is not restricted to the field of the thesis. The student and the instructor should agree on a process and topic that takes the place of any regular course papers and that includes a proposal, annotated bibliography, draft, and rewrite in the same format as required for the thesis. The student must submit to the MALS office a description of the research project, including the instructor’s note of approval, by the second week of classes of the gateway semester.


A required final project, the thesis is a one-unit, one-semester study of a specific topic that should emerge out of the student’s courses and critical studies. The experience of writing the thesis allows the student to investigate a particular topic in depth and to present a conclusion in the scholarly manner appropriate to the field(s) of inquiry. A description of the thesis topic and methodology, along with an outline and a bibliography, must be approved in advance by the Committee on Graduate Studies. The committee also encourages students to work with a thesis adviser from whom the student has taken a prior course. Candidates should submit the thesis proposal to the MALS office according to the following schedule:

  • proposals for fall theses are due the last day of classes of the preceding spring term;
  • proposals for spring theses are due the last day of classes of the preceding fall term;
  • proposals for summer theses are due the first Monday in April of the preceding spring term.

The committee is cautious about approving creative thesis proposals and considers carefully the nature of the project, the educational benefit of the project for the student, and the availability of an appropriate adviser. It is imperative that the project arise out of prior coursework at Reed. Since creative projects also include a critical component, they generally require substantial work on the part of the student. Students may contact the MALS office for additional information on the creative thesis requirements and guidelines.

On an exceptional basis, students may petition to write a two-unit, two-term thesis, leading to a 10-unit degree program. This opportunity is for the student who wishes to research and write a longer, more ambitious paper. The student must explain in the thesis proposal the reasons for extending the project to two terms, and obtain explicit permission from the thesis adviser.

The thesis is due on the date specified in the academic calendar for undergraduate thesis submission. The college registrar and the MALS program director determine the schedule and deadlines for summer projects. The thesis requirement is completed with a two-hour oral defense of the project. The committee of examiners typically includes the student’s thesis adviser, one member of the Committee on Graduate Studies, at least one but occasionally two additional faculty members, and the program director. The committee should represent at least two different academic divisions of the college. The Reed library houses copies of all theses, easily accessible for both reference and borrowing.

When necessary, MALS students may take a three-day extension for submitting the thesis, provided a $50 late fee is paid and the bound copies are submitted to the library by the regular deadline.

If a student does not earn a passing grade in the thesis, the student must submit a new proposal on a different topic to the committee, following the normal deadlines, and register again for thesis. A student who fails thesis a second time is ineligible for graduation.


MALS students are expected to perform at the graduate level and to earn grades of B− or better in all their courses. The grade of C is allowed for students who complete a course with credit, but whose work was unsatisfactory. The grade of F designates failure. Students are eligible for an incomplete grade with the same constraints applicable to undergraduate students, with the exception of thesis. For thesis, B− is the lowest passing grade. The Committee on Graduate Studies conducts a grade review at the end of each semester.

Satisfactory Academic Progress

Satisfactory academic progress refers to a minimum grade point average (GPA) expectation, the number of units completed during the academic year, and the time it normally would take to complete the MALS degree. For federal financial aid purposes, a student is expected to maintain at least a 2.0 GPA. Full-time status at Reed is 3 units in a regular semester (fall or spring) and 1.5 units in summer. Based on the degree requirement of 9 units, a student attending full time would typically take two years to complete the program. Students are eligible for federal financial aid for up to 150 percent of the regular time frame to complete a degree; therefore, MALS students may be eligible for federal aid for up to two years of full-time study. A student who enrolls part-time during any semester may be eligible for additional semesters of federal aid.

Reed’s institutional definition of satisfactory academic progress for the number of completed units is the same as noted above in the federal definition. It differs, however, from the federal definition in minimum GPA and time frame. MALS students generally are expected to maintain a GPA of at least 3.0. They must apply for formal candidacy in the program after completing their first two courses, take at least one course every three semesters, and complete the degree within six years of acceptance as a degree candidate.

Dropping Courses, Refunds, and Withdrawal from the Program

MALS students who drop courses during a semester must complete an add/drop form, available from the registrar’s office. The signatures of the instructor, adviser, and student are required for acceptance of the form. Deadlines for registration changes are published in the academic calendar. The date that the completed form is submitted to the registrar’s office is the effective date for determining any refund.

The refund of tuition is based on the percentage of the payment period completed by the student. The effective drop date determines the period of completion. The method of determining the refund percentage pertains to nonfederal Title IV financial aid (e.g., alternative loans or the Menashe scholarship). The business office has detailed information on the refund policy.

No deviations from the refund schedule will be made except in cases of extreme hardship, of which the college shall be the sole judge. The Administration Committee may, with the recommendation of the MALS program director, approve petitions for such exceptions. Reed College’s refund policy is based in part on the fact that it is an institution with a semester-based program and instructors are not required to take attendance. The refund policy applies to all graduate students who drop or withdraw from courses during a semester, whether or not they have federal Title IV financial aid, except as noted in the section below.

Any student who wishes to withdraw formally from the MALS program must provide written notification to the MALS office. If the student is enrolled at the time of withdrawal, the student must complete the add/drop form.

Credit balances under $10 will not be refunded.

Tuition Refund for Federal Title IV Financial Aid Recipients

Federal Title IV financial aid is available to MALS students primarily through unsubsidized Federal Direct Stafford Loan. For students who are recipients of federal Title IV financial aid, additional calculations must be made for tuition refunds.

First, the college calculates the amount of Title IV aid earned by the student for the percentage of payment period completed. If the percentage of payment period completed is greater than 60 percent, the student is considered to have earned 100 percent of his or her Title IV aid; otherwise, the student has earned the actual percentage calculated.

Second, the college compares the amount earned with the amount disbursed to determine the amount that must be returned to the Title IV programs. The amount disbursed is that aid awarded and disbursed to the student’s account, plus the Title IV aid awarded that could have been disbursed to the student’s account (such as memo balances).

Third, the college determines the amount of Title IV aid that must be returned to the Title IV programs by the college and by the student. Aid is returned to the Title IV programs in the following order: unsubsidized Direct (Stafford) Loans, Direct Graduate PLUS Loans.

Health Insurance

All degree-seeking MALS students taking a half unit or more of Reed classes continuously each term, including summers, are eligible to enroll in the Reed College health plan. Students are allowed one term of nonenrollment in their progression to the MALS degree; a second term of nonenrollment would result in termination of coverage. A student who is unable to return to classes because of extenuating circumstances may qualify to purchase coverage for an additional period of time.

The plan offers access to Pacific Source Health Plan’s network of preferred providers. Detailed information on the plan benefits and costs is available at or by calling Pacific Source at 855/274-9814.

MALS students may choose their own primary care providers off campus. In addition, currently enrolled MALS students who are on the Reed health plan, or who can show proof of major medical insurance with benefits and coverage comparable to the benefits provided through the Reed plan, may utilize the services of Reed’s health and counseling center. The health center requires students seeking their services to complete a confidential health history form and to provide proof of insurance at the time of scheduling the first appointment.

Course Offerings - The following courses are scheduled for the 2017–18 academic year:

Biology 530 - Science and Society: Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine

One-half course for one semester. The promise that stem cells hold for tailored human therapies has captured the interest of scientists and nonscientists alike. This course is designed to increase scientific literacy and enable all students to build a nuanced understanding of regenerative medicine. Each week, students will read and analyze journalistic science writing and/or primary scientific literature to (1) trace the history of stem cell research, focusing on key discoveries from the 1950s to the present; (2) dissect key findings that have propelled the field; (3) appreciate the parallels between embryonic development and regenerative processes; (4) recognize that scientific pursuits are influenced by human nature and politics; and (5) consider how governmental regulations have impacted stem cell research. Weekly writing assignments will help students solidify their understanding of the scientific process, including experimental design and science as a human endeavor. Conference. Offered spring 2018.

Liberal Studies 509 - Religious Reformations and Social Transformations in Early Modern Europe

One-half course for one semester. According to the well-known tale, the Protestant Reformation started when Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses challenging the sale of indulgences to the door of the cathedral church in Wittenberg in 1517. In reality, the sixteenth-century fracturing of Western Christendom was the product of many forces, including the transformation of popular piety, reform movements within the Roman Church, and broader changes in European culture and society. This course will examine the processes that brought about the end of centuries of religious unity in Western Europe as well as the many social, political, and cultural consequences of this epochal transformation. We also will examine how the Reformations (Protestant and Catholic) transformed European society by looking at the nature of religious violence, the hardening of confessional divides, and the gradual emergence of forms of religious coexistence and cooperation. Conference. Offered fall 2017.

Liberal Studies 554 - Media, Persons, and Publics in a Globalized World

One-half course for one semester. The meteoric rise of new forms of digital data and social media in the past 20 years has generated, on the one hand, fantasies of utopic intimacy, and on the other, moral panics about unprecedented estrangement. In this course, we challenge this dichotomy of intimacy/immediacy versus estrangement/mediation by taking an anthropological approach to the question of human communication. Drawing on interdisciplinary debates in philosophy, linguistic anthropology, and media studies, we develop tools for understanding all communication as both mediated and material, grounded in embodied practices and technological infrastructures and situated in historical events. This in turn will allow us to grasp how circulations of media forms and commodities participate in the creation of types of persons and publics across multiple scales of time and space. Conference. Offered spring 2018.

Liberal Studies 575 - The Art of Speech

One-half course for one semester. Studies suggest that Americans fear public speaking more than they fear death itself. Yet, many of us would agree that skilled orators have the ability to change not only minds, but also the world. In this course we will examine the hallmarks of exceptional speeches. Using influential speeches from antiquity to the present, we will pay attention to rhetorical devices, pathos, ethos, structure, audience, openings, visuals, body language, vocal variety, humor, storytelling, and “sticky” endings. Assignments will include oral presentations and written analyses. Oral presentations will develop skills in delivering original speeches, giving effective speech evaluations, using visual aids, creating data visualizations, and becoming comfortable with impromptu speaking. Conference. Offered summer 2018.

Literature 524 - Red Sci-Fi: Science Fiction in Soviet Literature and Film

One-half course for one semester. Post–World War II Soviet writers and filmmakers were preoccupied with the same ideas and questions as their Western and American counterparts, often working in parallel genres. One such genre was science fiction, which became enormously popular in the Soviet Union starting in the mid-1950s. Relying on the rich tradition of the 1920s, the postwar writers and filmmakers used science fiction to reflect on urgent societal and philosophical issues. In the presence of state censorship and official ideology, science fiction became the venue for veiled and subversive critique of the regime. Through reading and watching major works of Russian sci-fi fiction and cinema, we will explore how they imagined artificial intelligence and time travel, space exploration and alien species and robots, the quest for immortality, and the nuclear apocalypse. We will situate these works in their immediate artistic and cultural contexts and the wider, primarily American, comparative context of postwar science fiction. Conference. Offered spring 2018.

Mathematics 547 - The Geometry of Light

One-half unit for one semester. In 1425, Filippo Brunelleschi, a Florentine artisan, conducted a “modest experiment,” demonstrating in practical terms by means of a primitive precursor of the modern camera the concept of linear perspective in visual perception. In 1435, Leon Battista Alberti published his essay “On Painting,” developing in precise terms by means of geometric reasoning and workshop diagrams the methods of linear perspective. Upon these formative events, we will build our course: a study of the relations among geometry, light, and art. Among other topics, we shall study elementary optics, the formation of the rainbow, optical instruments, color perception, and visual illusions. Among other texts, we shall study S. Edgerton’s The Renaissance Rediscovery of Linear Perspective and The Mirror, the Window, and the Telescope; C. Boyer’s The Rainbow: From Myth to Mathematics; J. Heilbron’s Geometry Civilized; M. Woolfson’s The Fundamentals of Imaging; and T. Wieting’s workshop essays. Conference. Offered fall 2017.

Political Science 553 - American Climate Change Politics

One-half unit for one semester. The United States is a significant contributor to global climate change; the American economy and way of life generate greenhouse gasses in the in-country use of fossil fuels and the consumption of goods. Despite intransigence within certain members of the population and the government, the United States has positioned itself as a leader in climate negotiations and in identifying innovative solutions to climate problems. This course considers climate change and climate change politics in the United States. Climate change politics in most nations is centrally coordinated and mandated by a national government; in the United States, the federal government does not have a climate policy per se, but a series of federal actions the aggregate of which forms the basis for American climate policy. This course will examine federal, state, and local climate policies. The course also considers values associated with climate politics, the role of science in climate politics, and undercurrents of skepticism. Conference. Offered fall 2017.

Theatre 561 - Translation and Adaptation in Modern Theatre

One-half unit for one semester. How do stories work? From nuanced word choice to major plot points, how can the same play sound so different depending on the translation? Why do some stories make good stage adaptations, when others are terrible failures? This course proposes an investigation into the arts of translation and adaptation for performance. In this course, we will examine the crafts of translation and adaptation and engage in a variety of translation and adaptation exercises. We will carefully examine different translations of plays, look at contemporary practices of adaptation, and study both of these processes as artists and scholars. Additionally, we will read plays that translate and adapt historical events for the stage. Throughout, we will focus on questions of how language and storytelling work in stage performance and the role of the translator/adapter in the collaborative process. No second-language skills required. Conference. Offered summer 2018.

MALS 670 - Thesis

Full course for one semester or one year.


Recent Courses - The following graduate courses have been offered in the past five years:

Art 508 Renaissance Space
Art 530 Art and Life in Renaissance Florence
Art 544 Video, Media, Politics (1968–present)
Art 551 Theories of Visuality
Biology 505 The Biological Legacy of Lewis and Clark
Classics 531 Socrates and Plato
Dance 560 Gender, Form, and Identity in Contemporary Dance
English 530 Race and Region: Representing the American South
History 544 The Psychoanalytic Tradition
Liberal Studies 505 Transformation and Identity in the Roman Empire
Liberal Studies 510 The Fifties in the U.S.
Liberal Studies 511 Horror and the Sublime in Russian Culture
Liberal Studies 520 Turn-of-the-Century Vienna and Prague
Liberal Studies 523 Dante’s Divine Comedy
Liberal Studies 524 American Dead and Undead
Liberal Studies 525 Hindu Religious Traditions
Liberal Studies 527 Sex, Gender, and Political Theory
Liberal Studies 534 The Politics of Genre
Liberal Studies 537 Women in the Ancient World
Liberal Studies 552 Classical Traditions and Receptions
Liberal Studies 556 Race and the Immigrant Experience
Liberal Studies 558 Islam in the Modern World
Liberal Studies 564 The Modern Middle East: History, Culture, Politics
Liberal Studies 570 The Theory and Practice of Globalization
Liberal Studies 578 Politics, Culture, and the Great Depression
Literature 510 Modern Turkish Literature: East-West Trajectories
Literature 528 Late Tolstoy: From Anna Karenina to a Religious Teaching
Literature 537 James Joyce
Literature 541 Two Contemporary Dramatists
Literature 547 The Literature of Love
Literature 550 The Unknown Holocaust Cinema
Literature 554 The Novels of Vladimir Nabokov: A Study
Literature 571 Critical Race Theory
Mathematics 537 The Trials of Galileo
Music 560 Music and the Black Freedom Struggle
Music 565 Music and Cold War America
Theater 521 "The Mirror Up to Nature": Theater Theater Reading
Theater 540 Race in American Theater