I am in conversation with CARE/Counseling Center to devise materials that could extend these tools beyond the classroom and into the broader Georgia Tech student community. In addition, I intend reach out to a new community partner to explore how we might address the inequalities of mental health and self-care for people of color. I would like to invite the Atlanta-based art-activist group “The Nap Ministry” to give a workshop to the class.
The Shape of the City: Gentrification and Culture in Atlanta and America
Gentrification—the economic and cultural “revitalization” of American cities--has been, for better or worse, the defining feature of urban life in the twentyfirst century. As late as the 1990s, the “inner city” was often portrayed in journalism and popular culture as a decaying, crime-ridden ghetto; now it is often seen as a booming, culturally vibrant, economically desirable playground for hipsters and creatives—at least those who can afford it. How did this happen? Is it good or bad? Can gentrification go on forever?
The wealth of the United States is premised upon many things: hard work, inventiveness, an entrepreneurial spirit, and so on, but its first premise is land. Land that had been tended and kept by Native Americans. Land that was taken, stolen, or bought over the course of American expansion west. These lands offered new sources of biomass, fossil fuels, and even uranium to exploit. The American energy system benefited from these abundant fuels (in addition to the labor of enslaved Blacks).
If you feel like you sometimes see the world differently than your friends, family, and classmates, you might just be a documentary filmmaker. This course gives you a framework for trying to put your vision on film. It won't be as hard as you think--it will actually be a lot of fun. The materials for your film are all around you--the people and place of Atlanta provide us with exciting stories, a passionate cast of characters, and beautiful scenes for our film.
In this first year writing and communication course you will consider how your work at Tech and after Tech may interact with and affect urban communities and the people who live in them. We will begin by examining our own backgrounds--whether you're a life long city dweller or whether you grew up in a rural or suburban area--and how they have shaped our attitudes toward Atlanta and toward cities generally. These backgrounds, we will see, may condition our attitudes toward the development of urban space.
This course is a service learning course focused on the interaction of communication and narrative in social justice (and specifically social justice in food and community). This course uses the living-learning opportunity to foster community engagement within the GATech Community. This course encourages students to learn the story of social justice in Atlanta and the south through its food history, and ask bigger questions of its food futures. This course pairs with community engaged partners to pursue SLS Big Ideas, and community health partnerships.
Immoral Energy: Slavery and Fossil Fuels in the Anthropocene
Energy systems are permeated with political and ethical questions, and no historical system demonstrates that as well as transatlantic slavery. Before fossil fuels, the bodies and labor of enslaved peoples powered trade. While at first slavery helped support the expansion of fossil fuels, eventually fossil fuels replaced slavery. This course will explore the ethical/moral valences of energy systems through a juxtaposition of transatlantic slavery and modern fossil fuels. The first half of the class will focus on the abolition debate.
Japan Today is a Japanese language course held in Beppu Japan during the summer abroad program that is organized around the theme of environmental sustainability. We discuss topics including solar energy, thermal energy, biomass, garbage disposal, local produce, and the Japanese concept of "mottainai" (trying to avoid wasting things). We also take students on a farmstay, to a geothermal plant, and to an elementary school. This is a community-driven course focused on teaching students how to think about issues of sustainability in Japan.