What is an Honors Colloquium Course?
An Honors Colloquium is an HON-H 399 seminar course. Typically, it is led by different instructors in different semesters and the topic changes from semester to semester. To complete the Honors Program each student must complete two HON-H 399 Colloquium courses.
Five Gold Rings: Why Are We Afraid to Sing?
Fall 2022 (Tuesday/Thursday 2-3:45 p.m.)
Why is singing no longer participatory? Until recent decades, people sang at work, at family gatherings, in church, and just for fun. Ask yourself, when was the last time you sang outside of your car or in the shower? We will discuss singing in Eastern versus Western cultures, the gender factor, social anxiety, and how singing impacts us emotionally, spiritually, and physically. We will also touch on the benefits of singing to stroke and Alzheimer's patients. Let's talk!
We've Created a Monster!
Fall 2022 (Tuesday/Thursday 10-11:15 a.m.)
Dr. Jim Coby
Monsters: they haunt our thoughts, patrol the periphery of our imaginations, and keep us awake at night. And yet…
Be they cryptids, vampires, zombies, or aliens, we find ourselves compelled by and drawn to monsters and the monstrous. In this HON 399 seminar, we will investigate our love/repulsion dilemma with monsters through readings of several critical texts exploring concepts such as monstrosity, the uncanny valley, abjection, and othering. To help reify these theoretical ideas, we will engage with several popular pieces of film and literature. Authors who will likely populate the syllabus include Jefferey Jerome Cohen, Sigmund Freud, Octavia Butler, Carmen Maria Machado, Jordan Peele, Stephen King, and a host of other nightmare instigators. Enroll...if you dare.
Fostering a Brighter Future
Spring 2023 (Monday/Wednesday 11:30 a.m.-12:45 p.m.)
In this seminar, we will investigate current issues impacting foster care in the United States. Students will discuss readings, explore regulations, analyze statistics, perform cost analysis, and consider issues such as racial bias in the system. Students will engage in service learning, conduct interviews, select an area of focus, and develop a proposal. At the end of the seminar, students will present their proposals on how we can create a brighter future for students who have been in foster care.
I Don't Know what to Believe!: A Sociology of Moral Panics
Spring 2023 (Online)
Historical moral panics include the Salem witch trials among Puritans, the satanic panics of the 1980s, the Red scare during the Cold War, the war on drugs, among others. More recent moral panics include misplaced or disproportional concern about trans rights, the war on Christmas, human trafficking, crime surges, and cancel culture. Moral panics involve disproportionate media coverage and social media attention of a phenomenon thought to threaten societal values. Claims of harm and the size of the problem are typically exaggerated. Further, more legitimate threats may be minimized resulting in a moral calm, or lack of concern for other phenomena (e.g., viewing Covid-19 vaccines for children as unnecessary or lack of concern around the climate crisis).
This course will focus on a variety of moral panics and moral calms and sociological approaches to studying them. Urban legends and conspiracy theories may also be explored. Students will research a moral panic or calm, urban legends, or a conspiracy theory of interest and use data to make the case that society should be more or less concerned about the phenomena, whether societal concern or lack of concern is misplaced, or both. Students are expected to present their research at the IU Kokomo Research Symposium.