FSEM Courses

Welcome! Here you’ll find a full list of all Fall 2020 First-Year Seminar (FSEM) offerings. Browse through the pages of classes, select a course from the first drop down menu, or browse by subject area. Please note that this site shows the FSEMs regardless of whether or not they are full, so there is no guarantee that a course will still be open at the time of your registration


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    FSEM 100 | Sinatra’s America

    Frank Sinatra was a dominant figure in American culture for much of the twentieth century, embroiled in everything from music and film to politics and the mafia. He was an embodiment of American complexities, and he is worth talking about.

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    FSEM 100A1 | American Ideas of Inequality

    This FSEM explores the idea of equality from the perspective of cultural anthropology. You will learn just enough anthropology so that you can acquire this perspective, and then collectively we will try to figure out what equality means in America.

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    FSEM 100C7 | Sexuality in Southern Literature

      This section of FSEM is designated as an honors course and satisfies the requirements for students enrolled in the University Honors Program. This Honors first-year seminar will explore how southern literature of the twentieth and twenty-first c …

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    FSEM 100E4 | Cryptology

    Cryptology is the area of mathematics that studies cryptography, the art of encrypting messages, and crypt-analysis, the science of breaking encrypted messages. This first-year seminar studies these ideas broadly through mathematical explorations accessible to the inquisitive student with only basic algebra skills.

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    FSEM 100F | The French New Wave: Cinema and Society

    In this FSEM, we will examine the major directors and films of this movement, as well as the the themes and social issues that animate these works. We will explore how these films revolutionized film production, form, and the portrayal of political and social changes.

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    FSEM 100G2 | Parasites: Monsters Within

    In this seminar we will explore the fascinating world of parasites, including the evolutionary adaptations that allow them to be some of the most abundant organisms on earth, outnumbering free-living species 4 to 1.

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    FSEM 100G4 | Race & Revolution

    In this course, we will explore the life and work of James Farmer, an exemplary leader of the U.S. Civil Rights Movement who taught at Mary Washington during the 1990s. We will investigate the history of the concept of race and its impact on how we perceive ourselves and the world.

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    FSEM 100H3 | Holocaust in German and American Culture

    Are the 2,711 monumental concrete steles of the recently opened Holocaust Memorial in Berlin an appropriate way to remember the victims? This seminar will investigate the particular strengths and limits of a wide range of texts and images, facts and fictions, that each in its own way claims to represent some “truth” of the Holocaust.

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