Courses

The PULSE Core Course: Person and Social Responsibility I and II PHIL1088/THEO1088 and PHIL1089/THEO1089

This two-semester, twelve-credit course fulfills the entire Philosophy and Theology core requirement. Enrollment requires class work in conjunction with ongoing involvement in a PULSE Community Partner. Community Partners put students in contact with people experiencing the consequences of some form of social injustice and require a 12-hour per week commitment. Drawing on traditional and contemporary works of Philosophy and Theology, the class engages students in the challenge of self-discovery and growth as related to questions of what it means to assume responsibility for overcoming these injustices.

Courses 2018-2019

Course Number Schedule Disc Group Instructor
Section 01 M W F 11 F 1 or F 2 Troxell, M.
Section 02
T Th 9 M 12 or M 1 McMenamin, D.
Section 03 M W F 9 F 11 or F 12 Kruger, M.
Section 04 M W F 10 W 12 or W 1 Kruger, M.
Section 05 T Th 10:30 T 12 or T 3 Legas, J.
Section 06 T Th 12
T 11 or Th 11 Weiss, J.
Section 07 T Th 10:30 M 11 or M 12 Lamson-Scribner, J.
Section 08 T Th 9 T 1:30 or Th 3 Legas, J.
Section 09 T Th 12 W 10 or W 11 McMenamin, D.
Section 10 T Th 10:30 Th 12 or Th 1:30 McCoy, M.
Section 11 M W F 12 M 10 or M 2
Troxell, M.
Section 12 M W F 12 W 2 or F 1 Muldoon, T.
Section 13 M W F 10 M 11 or M 1 Antus, E.
Section 14 M W F 12 F 10 or F 11 Sweeney, M.
Section 15 T Th 1:30 W 11 or W 1 Himes, K.
Section 16 M W F 9 W 12 or F 12 Antus, E.

 

PULSE Elective Courses

All elective courses in the PULSE Program require 4 or 8 weekly hours of service at a local community organization.

PHIL 2233 VALUES IN SOCIAL SERVICE AND HEALTH CARE

Instructor: David Manzo

The broadest mission of this course is to give perspective and offer reflection on your service experiences to date and then to help you discern the answer to the question, "What's next?" We will try to accomplish this through readings, lectures, discussions, and written assignments. Together we will pursue some of the questions raised by the facts, philosophies and statements contained in the readings.

PHIL 2216 BOSTON: AN URBAN ANALYSIS

Instructor: David Manzo

This course is intended for PULSE students who are willing to investigate, analyze, and understand the history, problems, and prospects of Boston's neighborhoods. Community service at a PULSE placement is required for participation in this course. Assignments will require spending time observing, researching, and writing about the neighborhood in which the PULSE placement is located.

PHIL 2261 TELLING TRUTHS I: WRITING FOR THE CAUSE OF JUSTICE

Instructor: Kathleen Hirsch; Prerequisite: Philosophy Core Fulfilled

This PULSE elective will explore writing as a tool for social change. Students will read and experiment with a variety of written forms—fiction, poetry, creative non-fiction, and journalism—to tell the "truth" as they experience it in their own direct encounters with social injustice. This workshop is intended to provide a comprehensive introduction to the range of literary strategies that social prophets and witnesses have used, and are using today, to promote the cause of justice.

PHIL 2262 TELLING TRUTHS II: DEPTH WRITING AS SERVICE

Instructor: Kathleen Hirsch; Prerequisite: Philosophy Core Fulfilled

This PULSE elective focuses on the power of story-telling.  We will read accounts of the role of story in changing lives, from inner city gang members to trainees in soup kitchens to survivors of Hurricane Katrina.   As we explore the ways in which people are using their stories as a means of setting goals and participating in their own “solutions,”  we will tell stories of our own, from personal experience and from field placements.  We will explore the benefits and liabilities of social media, blogging, and websites in emerging social and political movements. Students will learn to gather the building blocks of “story,” in their weekly field placements.  The stories they discover will become the basis for a number of assignments, from narratives to blogs to a final multi-media public story telling project. Class time will be spent in sharing placement stories, responding to texts, learning how organizations create public narrative campaigns, and discussing the special ethical, research, and editing challenges such work entails.  (Telling Truths I is not a prerequisite.)

PHIL 2215 Telling Truths III:  The Narratives that Shape Our Lives

Instructor: Kathleen Hirsch; Prerequisite: Philosophy Core Fulfilled

As we encounter injustice, conflicting visions of “the good,” and different moral scales of behavior, rights and responsibilities, it is essential that we become aware of our own foundational narratives.

What “wisdom stories” shape the way you think about yourself in relation to others?   What narratives do you carry into encounters with conditions, attitudes and beliefs that are different from yours? 

In this course, students will have a rare opportunity to bring their weekly experience of service into a time of reflection, and into relation to some of the core narratives of the great spiritual traditions.   We will read modern mystics, parables, and creative theologians, including: Anne Lamott, Etty Hillesum, Kendrick Lamar, and Parker Palmer.  The conversation will continue as we write in and read from our journals, sharing stories and questions.  Several short writing assignments will occur through the course of the term; a final, longer piece of substantive “spiritual reflection” will give students the chance to synthesize the fruits of observation, reading and reflection.  The aim of the course is to expand students’ familiarity with the great narratives of grace and forgiveness, suffering and hope, as they engage in service, and to provide a setting in which they can become intentional about adopting narratives that will shape their lives.

PHIL 2217 Telling Truths IV: Justice and the Illuminations of Literature

Instructor: Kathleen Hirsch;  Prerequisite: Philosophy Core Fulfilled

It is said that fiction can tell the truth more ably than non-fiction, and that poetry can speak where rhetoric has no tongue. This course will open the vast treasury of literature to explore the depiction of character caught in the maze of moral struggles we all face as we take up our paths. Themes of faithfulness and betrayal, desire and sacrifice, will and grace, are among those we will consider. We will read works of fiction (Flannery O’Connor, Andre Dubus and others), poetry (Kendrick Lamar, Martin Espada, Audre Lourde), and view several contemporary films. At least one class will be a field trip to a museum.  Students will try their own stories and poems based on material they have gathered from their service placement work.

THEO 3201: THE MEANING AND WAY OF JESUS

Instructor: Meghan Sweeney; Prerequisite: Theology Core Fulfilled

This course inquires into the meaning of the person and mission of Jesus of Nazareth, the Messiah or Christ of God. The course seeks (1) to probe and to clarify those key issues that emerge in the Church’s centuries-long response to the question, ‘who was/is Jesus Christ?’ and (2) to explore what concretely is at stake in ‘following Jesus’ or in being his disciple. The first aim of the course requires a consideration of proper theological matters—divine and human natures, the salvific meaning of the ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus; the second explores the invitation of the gospel ‘to follow’ the way Jesus teaches—a way of compassionate solidarity and active commitment to the poor, abused, homeless, and excluded. With its emphasis on discipleship or living the ‘way’ Jesus taught, the course seeks to deepen students’ understanding of the relation between action and reflection, social practice and religious faith.

THEO 3202: IMMIGRATION AND ETHICS

Instructor: Kristin Heyer

This course offers an interdisciplinary examination of contemporary immigration with a primary focus on the U.S context. Texts from social scientific, legal and policy perspectives frame the phenomenon of contemporary migration. Theological and philosophical texts, along with PULSE service experiences, illuminate ethical assessments of immigration practices. Special attention will be given to Christian anthropology and ethics as resources for analysis as well as the role of gender in matters of migration and citizenship.

PHIL/THEO 2291 AND PHIL/THEO 2292 PHILOSOPHY OF COMMUNITY I & II
PHIL/THEO 2293 AND PHIL/THEO 2294 CULTURE AND SOCIAL STRUCTURES I & II

Instructor: Meghan Sweeney (Restricted to PULSE Council)

A four semester-long sequence of courses studying community: its structure, power and change. The dynamics of community, the interrelatedness and interdependence of its various sectors, will be examined by sharing impressions and insights. Specific theoretical models of analysis will be studied and critiqued. The purpose of the course is to begin developing new approaches for learning about social change and for building new visions for the direction that a PULSE students' responsibility to social change might take.