Architectural Detail of Old Cabell

The World Gone Wrong

When the world seems unfair or unjust, who or what should we blame? And how do we build our worlds anew? In this Forum, we’ll investigate how concepts of a just and well-organized society have varied across culture and history by rigorously exploring different ideas about corruption. We’ll ask what kind of behaviors or morals various societies have judged to be corrupt and why. We’ll examine how people across history have attempted to tackle the problem of corruption, and we’ll try to learn from them as we struggle with corruption in our own society.

By tracing concepts of corruption, students will gain an understanding of how ideas develop within particular histories and cultures—ideas about the individual and society, public goods and private property, governments and markets, legality and ethics. They will learn how to think at multiple scales, from the local to the global, and how to connect corruption with other social problems such as inequality, racial injustice, and violence. Through their final projects, they will work with their peers to conduct deep and civically meaningful research, and ultimately to become more engaged and critical citizens.

Instructors

Sylvia Tidey, Department of Anthropology 

David Singerman, Department of History

Navigating the Forum

The introductory seminar, “Corruption in History and Culture,” offered during the opening semester of the Forum, will explore methods of comparison across culture, history, space, and time. The first part of the seminar will take an anthropological perspective, introducing students to diverse cultural perceptions of what corruption means. The second part of the seminar will take a historical approach, beginning before the formation of modern capitalism, to follow the development of ideas, laws, and institutions meant to guard against corrupt behavior. What historical and social forces made certain ideas of corruption seem not just plausible but even self-evident?

During the spring 2020 and fall 2020 semesters, the Forum instructors will arrange workshops, talks, visits, and other ways of engaging with practitioners and scholars studying and fighting corruption.

Finally, the capstone seminar to the Forum will ask the students to investigate and assess the effects of corruption, within its legal, ethical, and institutionalized contexts, in their own communities. In doing so, students will build on the expertise and skill sets they have developed in semesters 1-3 of the Forum. In small groups, students will choose an issue that affects Charlottesville or another community to which the students belong. In their semester-long projects, each group will research and map the people, institutions, policies, and influence that shape that issue—whether housing, the environment, poverty, health care, education, governance, or criminal justice—and explore and develop the best ways to present their findings.

Coursework

Category 1: Competency Requirements

  • First Writing Requirement (3 credits)
  • Second Writing Requirement (3 credits)
  • World Languages (0-14 credits)

Category 2: Core Required Courses (8 credits)

  • FORU 1500: Corruption in History and Culture (Fall ’19)
  • FORU 1510: Continuing the Forum (Spring ’20)
  • FORU 1510: Continuing the Forum (Fall ’20)
  • FORU 2500: Overcoming Corruption in the Community, Spring ’21

Category 3A: Introductory Courses in Anthropology (3 Credits - 1 course)
Choose one of the following introductory courses in anthropology.

  • ANTH 1010 - Introduction to Anthropology
  • ANTH 2040 - How To Do Ethnographic Field Research
  • ANTH 2280 - Medical Anthropology

Category 3B: Introductory or Methods Courses in the Humanities (3 Credits - 1 course)
Choose one of the following introductory or methods courses in the humanities.

  • ARTH 1500 - Any Introductory Seminar in Art History course
  • ARTH 1505 - Any Topics in Art History course
  • EAST 1010 - East Asian Canons and Cultures
  • ENLT 2100 - Any Introductory Seminar in Literature
  • HIST 1501 - Any Introductory Seminar in History course (can also be HIAF, HIEA, etc.)
  • MDST 2000 - Introduction to Media Studies
  • MUSI 2010 - Music, Meaning, and the Arts
  • MUSI 2070 - Popular Musics
  • PHIL 1730 - Introduction to Moral and Political Philosophy
  • PLPT 1010 - Introduction to Political Theory
  • RELG 1500 - Any Introductory Seminar in Religious Studies course

Category 3C: Statistics (3 Credits)

  • Choose any one class of three or more credits offered by the Statistics (STAT) Department

Category 4A: Wealth and Poverty (3 Credits - 1 course)

  • ANTH 2285 - Anthropology of Development and Humanitarianism
  • ANTH 3155 - Anthropology of Everyday American Life
  • ECON 2020 - Principles of Economics: Macroeconomics (note: students may only get Forum credit for ECON 2010 or ECON 2020 but not both)
  • GDS 3100 - Development on the Ground
  • GSGS 3559 - Global Perceptions of Corruption (note: course will be assigned a permanent number)
  • GSVS 2050 - Global Sustainability
  • HIME 2003 -Economic History of the Islamic World
  • HIAF 3112 - African Environmental History
  • HIST 2150 - Global Environmental History
  • HIUS 2061 - American Economic History
  • HIUS 2053 - American Slavery
  • HIUS 3411 - American Business
  • PLAP 2660 - Ideas, Institutions, and Public Policy
  • PLIR 2050 - Introduction to Political Economy
  • RELG 2630 - Business, Ethics, and Society
  • SOC 2442 - Systems of Inequality
  • SOC 2900 - Economy and Society

Category 4B: Injustice and Inequality (3 Credits - 1 course)

  • AAS 2450 - The Health of Black Folks
  • AAS 3853/HIUS 3853 - From Redlined to Subprime: Race and Real Estate in the US
  • ANTH 2250 - Nationalism, Racism, Multiculturalism
  • ANTH 2280 - Medical Anthropology
  • ENAM 3559 - Jim Crow America (note: course will be assigned a permanent number)
  • ENSP 3400 - Deafness in Literature and Film
  • GDS 3110 - Engaged Learning for Local/Global Development
  • HIUS 3654 - Black Fire
  • HIUS 3853 - From Redlines to Subprime: Race and Real Estate in the US
  • PHS 3825 - Global Public Health: Challenges and Innovations
  • PHIL 2690 - Justice, Law, and Morality
  • SOC 2442 - Systems of Inequality
  • SOC 3410 - Race and Ethnic Relations
  • SOC 3700 - Health and Society
  • WGS 2100 - Introduction to Gender and Sexuality Studies

Category 4C: Freedom and Power (3 Credits - 1 course)

  • ANTH 2390 - Biopolitics and the Contemporary Condition
  • ECON 2010 - Principles of Economics: Microeconomics (note: students may only get Forum credit for ECON 2010 or ECON 2020 but not both)
  • HILA 3111 - Public Life in Modern Latin America
  • HIST 3281 - Genocide
  • HIUS 2003 - Slavery and Freedom at UVA and in Virginia: history and Legacies
  • PHIL 2770 - Political Philosophy
  • PHIL 3720 - Contemporary Ethics
  • PLPT 3020 - Modern Political Thought
  • PPL 2010 - Morality, Law, and the State
  • SLTR 3300 - Facing Evil in the Twentieth Century: Humanity in Extremis
  • SOC 2055 - Law and Society
  • SOC 2230 - Criminology
  • SOC 3710 - Organization, Institutions, Markets

Category 5 - Sciences (2 Courses, 6 Credits)

  • BIOL 1040 - The DNA Revolution in Science and Society
  • BIOL 1050 - Genetics for an Informed Citizen
  • BIOL 1210 - Human Biology and Disease
  • BIOL 2100 - Cell Biology and Genetics
  • BIOL 2200 - Organismal and Evolutionary Biology
  • EVSC 1010 - Introduction to Environmental Sciences
  • EVSC 1080 - Resources and the Environment
  • EVSC 1450 - An Inconvenient Truce: Climate, You and CO2
  • EVSC 2050 - Introduction to Oceanography
  • EVSC 2200 - Plants, People and Culture
  • EVSC 2220 - Conservation Ecology: Biodiversity and Beyond
  • EVSC 2900 - Beaches, Coasts and Rivers
  • EVSC 4050 - Topics in Oceanography (January term)
  • PHYS 1110 - Energy on this World and Elsewhere