Seminars

Seminar Offerings Link

Fall 2020 - Spring 2021 Seminars

Freshman Seminars are offered under the general supervision of the Standing Committee on Freshman Seminars. They are designed to intensify the intellectual experience of incoming undergraduates by allowing them to work closely with faculty members on topics of mutual interest.

Freshman seminars are graded SAT/UNS and may not be audited. Only students in their first-year in the College may take a seminar in either or both of the terms. Each seminar is worth 4 units of credit. Enrollment is limited to 12-15 students.

Advice to Young Leaders

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

David R. Armitage (Department of History)
Freshman Seminar 40J     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Our current crisis has starkly exposed the strengths and weaknesses of leaders around the world and in local communities. Meanwhile, questions of leadership will be front and center as we head towards November's elections in the US. What makes a good leader has been subject to debate for at least two thousand years, especially in the many classic works of political and ethical theory in the western tradition that were written for young people about to enter public service... Read more about Advice to Young Leaders

All of Physics in 13 Days

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

John M. Doyle (Department of Physics)
Freshman Seminar 23Y 4 credits (fall term) Enrollment: Limited to 8

Some claim that there are 13 ideas or principles that can form the bedrock for a pretty good understanding of our physical and technological world. These are: 1) Boltzmann factor and thermal equilibrium, 2) Turbulence, 3) Reaction rates, 4) Indistinguishable particles, 5) Quantum waves, 6) Linearity, 7) Entropy and information, 8) Discharges, ionization, 9)...

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American Presidential Campaigns and Elections 1960-2020

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Maxine Isaacs (Department of Government)
Freshman Seminar 41P         4 credits (fall term)      Enrollment: Limited to 16

For two hours each week, students will work to understand the history, forces and politics of American presidential campaigns and elections.  Each student will be “responsible” for one presidential election between 1960 and 2020, and, together, members of the seminar will develop some perspective on dramatic changes as well as enduring factors that have shaped our own times, issues...

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Americans at Work in the Age of Robots and Artificial Intelligence

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Benjamin M. Friedman (Department of Economics)
Freshman Seminar 71G  4 credits (fall term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Where will the coming generation of Americans (say, today's 18-year-olds) find jobs? And will the jobs be worth having? People have worried about losing their jobs to technology at least since the Luddites 200 years ago. In the aggregate, they have been wrong. The automobile put lots of stable boys and saddle makers out of work, but it created vastly more...

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Asian American Literature

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Catherine H. Nguyen (Committee on Degrees in History & Literature)
Freshman Seminar 64E    4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

What is Asian American literature? Recently, Asian American literature has been increasingly visible with the 2016 Pulitzer Prize winner Viet Thanh Nguyen’s The Sympathizer and with the many New York Times best sellers by Asian American writers. Asian American literature is...

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Back to the Future: How the Past Imagined the Cities of Tomorrow

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Bruno M. Carvalho (Department of Romance Languages and Literatures)
Freshman Seminar 62Y     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

What will the cities of tomorrow be like? How did people in the past imagine our cities would be like? Our ability to foretell the future, it turns out, has a mostly poor record so far. And yet, predictions, visions and expectations can teach us a lot about how people make sense of their...

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Biology of Symbiosis: From the Deep-Sea to the Human Microbiome

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Colleen Cavanaugh (Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology)
Freshman Seminar 24Q        4 credits (fall term)      Enrollment:  Limited to 11

Symbioses–"living together" with microbes–are ubiquitous in nature, with powerful effects on the physiology, ecology, and evolution of all living organisms. The diversity of symbioses drives biological innovation, challenging us to think about life on earth at a different/new level.... Read more about Biology of Symbiosis: From the Deep-Sea to the Human Microbiome

Black Holes, String Theory and the Fundamental Laws of Nature

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Andrew E. Strominger (Department of Physics)
Freshman Seminar 21V     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

The quest to understand the fundamental laws of nature has been ongoing for centuries. This seminar will assess the current status of this quest. In the first five weeks we will cover the basic pillars of our understanding: Einstein’s theory of general relativity, quantum mechanics and the Standard Model of particle...

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Bob Dylan

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Richard Thomas (Department of the Classics)
Freshman Seminar 37U     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 15

“’Twas a dark day in Dallas.” So begins the nearly 17-minute song Bob Dylan delivered on March 27, 2020, a gift to a world in the grip of Covid-19. With its Shakespearean title “Murder Most Foul” is, in part, about the assassination of JFK, and...

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California in the 60's

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Kate van Orden (Department of Music)
Freshman Seminar 30M    4 credits (fall term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 13

This seminar examines American youth culture in the "long" 1960s through the lens of music in California. A range of popular and art music will be considered, from San Francisco psychedelia, L.A. rock-n-roll, surf rock, outlaw country, funk, and the ballads of singer-songwriters to the early minimalism of Steve...

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Challenges to International Monetary and Financial Stability in Historical Perspective

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Kenneth S. Rogoff (Department of Economics)
Freshman Seminar 40X     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

This seminar explores contemporary debates on the future of the international monetary and financial system drawing on both historical and recent experiences. Topics will include understanding the underpinning and aftermath of sovereign defaults, financial crises and high inflation over...

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Changing Our Mind: Evolving Thoughts on Brain Regeneration

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Paola Arlotta (Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology)
Freshman Seminar 26O   4 credits (fall term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 12

We will discuss current theories on brain regeneration in a dynamic setting that combines brainstorming of the literature with virtual experiences in the laboratory. Students will learn experiments that have shaped the field of brain repair and consider the newest theories on ways to regenerate the nervous system. We will also...

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CIA Operations in the Global Cold War

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Beatrice T. Wayne (Committee on Degrees in History & Literature)
Freshman Seminar BWX    4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

What was the secret side of US foreign policy during the global Cold War? This seminar uses empirically grounded readings from across the Americas, Africa and Asia to understand the impact of the Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) covert operations on governments,...

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Complexity in Works of Art: Ulysses and Hamlet

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Philip J. Fisher (Department of English)
Freshman Seminar 33X 4 credits (fall term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Is the complexity, the imperfection, the difficulty of interpretation, the unresolved meaning found in certain great and lasting works of literary art a result of technical experimentation? Or is the source of this extreme complexity psychological, metaphysical, or spiritual?  Does it result...

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Death and Immortality

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Cheryl K. Chen (Department of Philosophy)
Freshman Seminar 30Q  4 credits (fall term)  Enrollment: Limited to 12

In this seminar, we will discuss philosophical questions about death and immortality. What is death? Is there a moral difference between "brain death" and the irreversible loss of consciousness? Is the classification of a person as dead a moral judgment, or is it an entirely scientific matter? Is death a misfortune to the person who dies? How can death be a misfortune...

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Death: Its Nature and Significance

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Jeffrey Behrends (Department of Philosophy)
Freshman Seminar 60S     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Here's a hard truth: you are going to die. That's nothing against you, of course. I'm going to die, too, and so is everyone else—it's just the way of things for creatures like us. Yet, despite the central role that death plays in our existence, it seems to remain deeply...

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Exploring the Infinite

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

W. Hugh Woodin (Department of Mathematics and Department of Philosophy)
Freshman Seminar 23C 4 credits (fall term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Infinity captivates the imagination. A child stands between two mirrors and sees herself reflected over and over again, smaller and smaller, trailing off to infinity. Does it go on forever? Does anything go on forever?  Does life go on forever?...

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GeoSciFi Movies: Real vs. Fiction

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Miaki Ishii (Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences)
Freshman Seminar 23I 4 credits (fall term) Enrollment:  Limited to 14

Natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, and volcanic eruptions have major impact on society and cause great tragedies. The participants in this seminar will examine one Earth-science related science fiction movie each week and discusses features that are real and fictitious based upon our current understanding of the science of disastrous...

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History, Nationalism, and the World: the Case of Korea

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Sun Joo Kim (Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations)
Freshman Seminar 43W     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

This seminar will explore the quandary that faces all historians: To what extent is the understanding of past episodes influenced by current politics and to what extent is current politics influenced by people's understanding of the past? In the study of Korean history, this question is particularly...

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Language and Prehistory

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Jay H. Jasanoff (Department of Linguistics)
Freshman Seminar 34X 4 credits (fall term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

It was discovered around 1800 that the major languages of Europe, along with the ancient languages of India and Iran, were descended from an unattested parent, formerly known as “Aryan” or “Indo-Germanic,” but today usually called Proto-Indo-European. The identification of the Indo-European family raised many questions, some purely linguistic (e.g., what was Proto-Indo-...

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Language: The Origins of Meaning

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Gennaro Chierchia (Department of Linguistics)
Freshman Seminar 61Q    4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

How do languages work? Why are they so distinctly human in the natural world? Is language a creation of our intelligence, i.e. we speak, because we are smart, or the other way around? Birds produce sophisticated songs. Do bird songs mean anything? They do, in some way. They serve, for example, as predator warnings or mating calls. Humans...

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LGBT Life Stories

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Linda Schlossberg (Committee on Degrees in Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality)
Freshman Seminar 62R     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

In this seminar we'll read a range of classic LGBT life stories (memoirs, journals, diaries, essays, and autobiographies), beginning in the 1800s and ending in the present. We will study them as products of their specific historical moment, paying close attention to changing ideas about race...

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Literature of Epidemics and Pandemics: Tackling Oppression

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Karen L. Thornber (Department of Comparative Literature and Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations)
Freshman Seminar 64C    4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 15

Wherever you live—whether in the United States, Asia, or anywhere in-between; whether in an isolated rural community, a booming megacity, or anywhere in-between—it is almost certain that your life has been affected...

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Making Places and Spaces in Modern America

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Lizabeth Cohen (Department of History)
Freshman Seminar 71P     4 credits (fall term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

How did a home in 1945 compare to one in 2000? Did the opening of shopping malls in the 1950s change people’s consumer habits? What made living in suburbs similar to and dissimilar from cities? How did various work and leisure settings alter people’s attitudes toward labor and play? In what ways was traveling by airplane from airports different from transit by train?... Read more about Making Places and Spaces in Modern America

Marvelous Markets: From Airbnb to Feeding the Hungry

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Scott Duke Kominers (Harvard Business School)
Freshman Seminar 72K  4 credits (fall term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Markets are everywhere, but they don’t always work the way we want them to. While economists’ “ideal” markets are supposed to find their way to socially optimal outcomes, real-world markets often fall far short. Valuable goods don’t always reach the people who want to buy them; prices don’t always match up across venues; and jobs can be hard...

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Memory Wars: Cultural Trauma and the Power of Literature

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Nicole A. Suetterlin (Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures)
Freshman Seminar 63L 4 credits (fall term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

How do we respond to a traumatic event? Denial, acceptance, blame, reconciliation—there are many stances we can take toward a harmful act we have suffered or committed in the past. When entire populations have suffered or perpetrated crimes against humanity, the question of how to deal with this traumatic past can spark...

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Models of the World: Explaining the Past and Predicting the Future

Semester: 

Fall

Offered: 

2020

Nina Zipser (Department of Mathematics)
Freshman Seminar 51H  4 credits (fall term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 12

This freshmen seminar explains the concept and practice of social and natural science modeling. The seminar will address four fundamental questions: (1) What is a model? (2) How are models related to data? (3) How are models used to explain and predict events in the world, including counterfactuals (i.e., what would happen if we conducted military campaigns differently)? (...

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America's $4 Trillion Challenge: Boosting Health Care Productivity and Broadening Access

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Alan M. Garber (Department of Economics, Harvard Medical School, Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health)
Freshman Seminar 40K  4 credits (spring term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 15

"Why does health care cost so much?" Policymakers, employers, and the public share deep frustration at high health expenditures, which are blamed for rising federal deficits, the...

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Asian America

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Diana L. Eck (Department of South Asian Studies & Committee on the Study of Religion)
Freshman Seminar 70Y     4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

 

How "Asian" is America today? This seminar explores the Asian dimensions of American society, with special attention to religion, ideas, and culture from the first encounters of Thoreau and Emerson with texts and ideas of...

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Asteroids and Comets

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Charles R. Alcock (Department of Astronomy)
Freshman Seminar 23R     4 credits (spring term)    Enrollment:  Limited to 12 

Comets have been seen regularly since before the beginning of recorded history. They have often been regarded as disturbing portents. Asteroids, on the other hand, were not discovered until the nineteenth century, with the advent of astronomy with telescopes. Today we know of many more asteroids than comets, but we believe that there are vastly...

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Build a Modern Art Exhibition—Dig up Harvard’s Archives

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Felipe Pereda (Department of History of Art and Architecture)
Freshman Seminar 63U    4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

The making of an exhibition entails a thorough process of investigation. We will need to find the works of art, document them and construct an argument that will be brought to life at a museum gallery. The goal of this seminar is to give you the chance to participate in the research and design of this...

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Cartoons, Folklore, and Mythology

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Joseph F.Nagy (Department of Celtic Languages and Literatures)
Freshman Seminar 61F     4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12 

The creators of cinematic (and later TV) animation have perennially turned to traditional oral and literary tales about fantastic heroes, villains, tricksters, and settings for their story material.  In the world of the animated “short” and feature-length film, myths, epics, legends, and folktales could come to life in a...

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Changing Perspectives: The Science of Optics in the Visual Arts

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Aravinthan D. T. Samuel (Department of Physics)   
Freshman Seminar 51X     4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 8

Renaissance artists developed many techniques to create stunningly realistic representations of the natural world. From a two-dimensional visual image on the retina, the human brain effortlessly comprehends its three-dimensional surroundings. But faithfully transferring three-dimensional information to a canvas—a sense...

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Copycat China?

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Thomas P. Kelly (Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations)
­­Freshman Seminar 63K 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

In our age of deception, China is widely blamed for a failure to respect intellectual property. These attacks are not new: Chinese makers have long been condemned for flooding the market with cheap knockoffs, forgeries, and counterfeit brands. Challenging such stereotypes, this seminar explores ideas of copying in Chinese...

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Democracy and Education in America

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Robert B. Willison (Committee on Degrees in Social Studies)
Freshman Seminar 72D    4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Cheerful illusions and wish fulfillment have dominated both popular and scholarly thought about democracy for two centuries. Democratic theory has sailed along as if no iceberg had struck and the engine room were not taking on water…Our view is that conventional thinking about democracy has collapsed in the face of modern social-scientific research.
(Achen and Bartels, Democracy...

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Economic Development

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021


(This seminar is no longer offered. Professor Kremer has left Harvard University.)

 

Michael R. Kremer (Department of Economics)
Freshman Seminar 41J 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Understanding the determinants of the wealth of nations has long motivated the study of economics and it is arguably the most important problem in the field for human welfare. This seminar will examine economic development, looking both at historical experience and...

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First Stars and Life in the Cosmos

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Abraham Loeb (Department of Astronomy)
Freshman Seminar 21G    4 credits (spring term)    Enrollment:  Limited to 15

Since the Universe is expanding, it must have been denser in the past. But even before we get all the way back to the Big Bang, there must have been a time when stars like our Sun did not exist because the Universe was denser than they are. Since stars are needed to keep us warm, we face the important question about our origins: how and when did the first stars...

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Insurrection in a Little Kingdom—The Real Story of the Standard Model of Particle Physics

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Howard M. Georgi (Department of Physics)
Freshman Seminar 51U 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment: Limited to 12

At the end of the 1960s, particle physics was in a very chaotic state. There were experiments producing apparently conflicting data that were as confusing to the theorists as they were to the experimenters themselves. There were dramatically different theoretical approaches, none of which were convincing or even thoroughly understood. Less than 10 years later, we could put the standard...

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Literal Looking: What We See in Art

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Peter J. Burgard (Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures)
Freshman Seminar 31Q    4 credits (spring term)    Enrollment:  Limited to 12

What do we really see when we look at a work of art? If we have little experience, we may not get far beyond discerning the theme and ascertaining whether the work is an accurate representation of reality (in the case of representational art);...

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Making the Grade? Middle and High School Math Education in the U.S.

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Robin Gottlieb (Department of Mathematics)    
Freshman Seminar 40P    4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12 or 15?

What are the goals of mathematics education at the middle and high school level, and how do these goals impact our evaluation of the success or failure of math education in America? Why does math education at these levels matter? What societal structures (historic, economic, political, cultural) impact mathematics education? How...

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Museums

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

James Hanken (Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology)
Freshman Seminar 41U    4 credits (spring term)    Enrollment:  Limited to 12

What are museums?  Where did they come from?  What exactly do they do, and why?  Do they have a future?  This seminar will trace the history of museums from their beginnings centuries ago as personal collections maintained by private (wealthy) individuals to the modern institutions of today.  We will...

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Nuclear Dilemmas

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Benjamin T. Wilson (Department of the History of Science)
Freshman Seminar 52G 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

This seminar explores major issues in nuclear weapons history and policy. Did the use of atomic bombs by the United States against Japan end the Second World War? Have nuclear arsenals prevented a direct conflict between nuclear powers since 1945? Why have some countries pursued nuclear arsenals while others have not? Could society survive a nuclear war in any...

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Science and Technology Primer for Future Leaders

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Hongkun Park (Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology and Department of Physics)
Freshman Seminar 52E 4 credits (fall term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

We live in a world that is shaped by science and technology. As a modern citizen who will lead the U.S. and the world in the coming generation, you should be cognizant of the rapidly changing landscape of science and technology and be ready to be active participants in the decision-making processes for deploying these life-changing...

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Science Not Silence: Censorship and Secrecy from Copernicus to Climate Crisis

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Hannah Marcus (Department of the History of Science)
Freshman Seminar 51W 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

In April 2017, over a million people around the globe took to the streets to defend science in the face of declining public attention to scientific knowledge and increasing governmental neglect of scientific research. This seminar explores how and why...

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Surviving Your First Year at Harvard: Lessons of Resiliency From Mexican Artist Frida Kahlo

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

María Luisa Parra-Velasco (Department of Romance Languages and Literatures)
Freshman Seminar 63S  4 credits (spring term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Are you trying to discover your passion in life? Is love a concern of yours? Do you often think about your appearance, and what others might think of you? Is a strong sense of community important to you? Do you fantasize about (better) Mexican food at Annenberg? Are you looking for opportunities to express your creativity? If...

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That Seventies Seminar: Discovering a Decade that Made America

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Jane Kamensky (Department of History)
Freshman Seminar 72E 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

Sure, you know Watergate and disco. But did you know that the American 1970s also witnessed the rise of phenomena as diverse as the environmental movement, neoliberal economic policy, mass incarceration, modern conservatism, terrorism, gay rights, hip hop, the “zipless fuck,” and the abortion wars? Freshman Seminar 72E takes a short, strange trip through this generative and often-...

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The Economist’s View of the World

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

N. Gregory Mankiw (Department of Economics)
Freshman Seminar 43J     4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

This seminar's goal is to probe how economists of various perspectives view human behavior and the proper role of government in society. Each week, seminar participants will read a brief, nontechnical, policy-oriented book by a prominent economist. The participants will then discuss the work's strengths and weaknesses, exploring the positive scientific...

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The Interaction of Light with the World

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Melissa Franklin (Department of Physics)
Freshman Seminar 52H 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment: Limited to 12

The interaction of light with matter dominates both our sensory and scientific understanding of the world. The way the sunlight scatters from atoms in the atmosphere to shine on objects so that we can see them, for instance. This interaction is deeply rooted in quantum mechanics, and requires a good understanding of the atom which we will develop with very, very few equations. We will...

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The Origins of the Human Mind

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Susan E. Carey (Department of Psychology) 
Freshman Seminar 71F  4 credits (spring term)  Enrollment:  Limited to 12

The adult human mind is a unique phenomenon on earth. Only people can ponder the causes of and cures for global warming or pancreatic cancer, and can think thoughts about molecules, genes, democracy... Animals, and human infants, do not have most of the 500,000 concepts expressed by words in English. How does...

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The Universe: Its Origin, Evolution, and Major Puzzles

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Cora Dvorkin (Department of Physics)
Freshman Seminar 51T 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 15

This seminar will lead you on a tour of Cosmology and its open questions: how were the first structures of the universe seeded? What is dark matter? What is dark energy? We will study the universe since the very first tiny fraction of a second after the Big Bang and its subsequent evolution. We will delve into its composition at large...

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Vegetal Humanities

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Carrie Lambert-Beatty (Department of History of Art and Architecture and Department of Art, Film, and Visual Studies)
Freshman Seminar 63W 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

A paradigm is changing. In Western culture, plant life tends to be green background for the more interesting lives of animals. Senseless, immobile, and silent, plants—99% of the planet’s biomass—are resources for human use or enjoyment, if not enemies that civilization must beat back.  But in...

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Video: The Medium of Everyday Life

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Karthik Pandian (Department of Art, Film, and Visual Studies)
Freshman Seminar 63V   4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 10

Video is fast becoming the medium of everyday life. We use it to communicate, learn, entertain, inform, and express ourselves. At the same time, we are often used by "it"—manipulated, programmed, influenced, distracted, fooled. In this production seminar, we will explore the medium of video by putting works of...

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War in Fiction and Film

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Justin M. Weir (Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures and of Comparative Literature)
Freshman Seminar 62P     4 credits (spring term)     Enrollment:  Limited to 12

War has always been one of the most important subjects of art and literature, but in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, public ideas about war and military service have been formed increasingly by film and other visual media....

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War Stories: Looking at War Through the Tales We Tell

Semester: 

Spring

Offered: 

2021

Drew Gilpin Faust (Department of History)
Freshman Seminar 63M 4 credits (spring term) Enrollment:  Limited to 12

This seminar will explore American wars from the Civil War to the present through the lens of fiction and film. As Ernest Hemingway once explained to F. Scott Fitzgerald, “War is the best subject of all.  It groups the maximum of material and speeds up the action and brings out all sorts of stuff that normally you have to wait a lifetime to get.” War has been lodged at the...

Read more about War Stories: Looking at War Through the Tales We Tell
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Working Remotely

Summer Hours: Monday-Thursday, 9:00AM-5:00PM
Contact us by the Email below or Zoom

Email: seminars@fas.harvard.edu
Tel: 617-495-1523