In this category students develop their skills for critical analysis through intense
engagement with works of literature, philosophy, visual arts, music, and film. The works studied may be associated with a particular country, time period, genre, or theme. Students will learn to use techniques of literary and artistic analysis. At the same time they will become familiar with disciplinary and interdisciplinary methods of argument and persuasion. Because intensive reading and writing is demanded in these courses, they will generally be capped at 30 students.
Students learn to become more discriminating readers, viewers, and listeners. Critical
thinking and knowledge of a subject are developed through careful study of particular works and consideration of such questions as: What are the primary methods for interpreting works of literature, art, or philosophy? How is literary, artistic or philosophical analysis different from empirical or scientific analysis? What is the relationship between works of art and thought and their cultural or social contexts? What evidence counts for making arguments in literary, artistic or philosophical study? What criteria have been used for judging the quality or significance of works of literature, art, and philosophy? Why do we care about literature, art, and philosophy?