Affiliated Courses

2023 Flexner Courses

During the 2023-24 academic year, Bryn Mawr faculty members will teach five courses that will engage Mindy Fullilove's Flexner lectures and/or the larger body of her work. Dr. Fullilove will visit each class during her Flexner residency to participate in class discussions.


Topics in Modern Art (HART B350)

Lisa Saltzman, Professor of History of Art on the Emily Rauh Pulitzer '55 Professorship

This is a topics course. Course content varies. Prerequisite: one course in History of Art at the 100- or 200-level or permission of the instructor. Enrollment preference given to majors and minors in History of Art.

Current topic description: Flexner Seminar - Trauma's Traces If testimony is the mechanism by which traumatic experience is belatedly reconfigured into speech/narrative form, visual culture is another crucial site of belated expression and encounter. Anchored by theory, animated by cultural objects, and in tandem with the Flexner Lectures, the seminar will work through the possibilities and limits of visual representation in the aftermath, or in the wake, of trauma.

Jose Vergara

Chornobyl (RUSS B220)

Jose Vergara, Assistant Professor of Russian on the Myra T. Cooley Lectureship in Russian Studies

This course introduces students to the Chornobyl nuclear disaster, its consequences, and its representations across a range of cultures and media through a comparative lens and as a global phenomenon. Culture meets ecology, science, history, and politics. Students will contribute to a digital exhibition and physical installation. Taught in translation. No knowledge of Russian required.

Writing Intensive
Critical Interpretation (CI)
Cross-Cultural Analysis (CC)

Shiamin Kwa

Theories and Methods in Comparative Literature (COML B398)

Shiamin Kwa, Co-Chair and Professor of East Asian Languages and Cultures and Co-Director of Comparative Literature

This course, required of all senior comparative literature majors in preparation for writing the senior thesis in the spring semester, has a twofold purpose: to review interpretive approaches informed by critical theories that enhance our understanding of literary and cultural texts; and to help students prepare a preliminary outline of their senior theses. Throughout the semester, students research theoretical paradigms that bear on their own comparative thesis topics in order to situate those topics in an appropriate critical context. This is a required for majors and minors.

Melissa Pashigian

Narratives of Illness, Healing, and Medicine (ANTH B357)

Melissa Pashigian, Associate Professor of Anthropology

This course will explore the construction of narratives around illness, healing, and medicine cross-culturally and across a variety of media including through graphic novels, video drama series, primary source diaries, audio accounts, and anthropological texts. Illness narratives have figured prominently in the study and practice of medical anthropology, and increasingly in the teaching of medicine. We will ask: What is the role of illness narratives in the healing process for patients, healers, and caregivers in cross-cultural comparison? How can illness narratives destabilize dominant discourses, and provide an avenue of expression for those who are unable to easily speak or be heard, particularly in biomedical contexts? Who gets to speak, in what ways, and who remains unheard? What does it mean to tell a story of illness? What roles do illness stories play in illuminating and complicating understandings of illness, disability, trauma, and caregiving? How do illness narratives relate to suffering, hope, and healing, and how they differ for chronic or terminal illness? What do they tell us about making and remaking the self? Students will have the opportunity to explore frameworks and cross-cultural experiences through media beyond standard text.

Prerequisite: ANTH B102 or permission of instructor.

Flexner Italian Class

The Italian Margins: Places and Identities (ITAL B335)

Roberta Ricci, Professor and Chair of Italian on the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Chair in the Humanities
Luca Zipoli, Assistant Professor of Transnational Italian Studies

Thompson Fullilove's scholarship will be the theoretical foundation of this survey of 20th century topics-from literary representations of mental health to the displacement of marginalized communities, from historical persecution in Europe to contemporary domestic violence in Italy. The main goal of the seminar will be to challenge the rhetoric of 'otherness', 'encounters', 'marginalization', 'anti-canon', and 'exoticism' that is typical of broader readings of Italy's modern traditions, adopting Thompson Fullilove's inter-sectional and trans-historical paradigms to re-imagine Italian Studies, to center the gender gap, and overcome the stigma of mental illness and madness. Rooted in the perspectives of transcodification, trans-historical tradition, and cultural translation, this course attempts to address such questions both in theory and practice using Freudian literary criticism (The interpretation of Dreams, 1899; The Uncanny, 1919; Beyond the Pleasure Principle, 1920; The Ego and the Id, 1923; Civilization and its Discontents, 1930). We will start with a seminar, devoted to the analysis and discussion of primary sources and then follow with a scholarly (and creative) workshop. Tailored activities related to social activism (Praxis) will also fulfill the course requirements.

Prerequisite: 200 level course or permission of instructor.
Writing Intensive
Power, Inequity, and Justice (PIJ)
Counts Toward Gender/Sex Studies (Min/Conc)