College Of Arts and Sciences | From Witchcraft to Terrorism
S103 | 4003 | Breithaupt, F.


Infanticide in 1780, crimes of passion in 1900, and terrorism in the
90s, what do they have in common?  Each of these crimes was the
obsession of public attention at certain points in history. This
course will examine why certain crimes draw such attention at certain
times while others do not and how those crimes relate to the
symbolical values and institutions that organize a society.
In this course, we will work historically by looking at the notorious
crimes of the past including crimes related to gender, race, drugs,
and abnormal psychological states, and will end with our contemporary
situation in the US.  In all cases, we will carefully examine highly
interesting works of literature, film, and popular culture from
various eras that display the notorious crime of its time.  Students
are expected to write a short essay every two or three weeks and a
final essay project.  Classroom activities will include debates, role
games, and prepared discussions.