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Four classes to consider during drop-add period

Want to add a class to your schedule during drop-add this fall? The Chronicle has compiled a list of four classes from DukeHub, sampled from a variety of subjects, for the curious student to consider.

HISTORY 135: Silk Roads and China

Online course; TuTh Noon-1:15 p.m.; cross-listed AMES, MEDREN, RELIGION; CCI, CZ

The oldest and longest routes connecting Asia, Europe and Africa, the Silk Roads have bridged the continents since the days of Alexander the Great. This course investigates the many cultures that have lined the storied network, through themes such as Alexander’s empire, medieval cities and the Mongol Empire visited by Marco Polo. 

The course is taught by Associate Professor of History Sucheta Mazumdar. 

PHYSICS 134: Introduction to Astronomy

Online course; MW 3:30-4:45 p.m; NS, QS

“Rollin’, rollin’, rollin’, got me stargazin’.” 

Through this introductory astronomy course, students can go beyond Travis Scott’s hit lyrics to gain deeper insights into the science behind our universe. With only a background in high-school algebra and geometry, students in this course will learn how observation and insight can lead to amazing scientific discoveries.

The course will cover topics such as light and matter, the solar system, the lives of stars, the evolution of the universe, black holes and more. 

The course is taught by Professor of Physics Ronen Plesser.

AAS 227: African American Art

Online course; MW 10:15-11:30 a.m.; cross-listed ARTHIST; ALP, R, CCI, CZ

This course will be a “flipped classroom”: Students will watch short video lectures and complete assigned readings before attending synchronous meetings to investigate works of art “derived from an Afro-United States cultural perspective,” according to the DukeHub class notes and course description.

The course will focus on major figures such as Henry Ossawa Tanner, Aaron Douglas and Jacob Lawrence. The course aims to help students develop visual analysis and visual literacy skills, covering modern as well as contemporary art. 

This course is taught by Richard Powell, John Spencer Bassett distinguished professor of art and art history.

GERMAN 380: Marx, Nietzsche, Freud

Online course; TuTh 5:15-5:50 p.m. or 5:55-6:30 p.m.; cross-listed PHIL, LIT, POLSCI; CCI, CZ, SS

Three of the most influential thinkers of the modern era are remembered for their work in fields ranging from economics to human existence. This “critical examination and assessment on the thought of Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud,” as it’s described in the DukeHub course description, will be taught in English. 

Topics will include “nihilism and the challenge of overcoming it” and “the exploration of the hidden foundations of the self and of culture,” according to the description. 

This course is taught by Henry Pickford, associate professor of Germanic languages and literature, and Hannah Read, a doctoral student in philosophy. 

Editor's note: An earlier version of this article contained an incomplete description of GERMAN 380. It has been updated to reflect that topics discussed in that class will include "nihilism and the challenge of overcoming it." It has also been updated to include the days of the week for AAS 227.


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