This fall, Georgetown University is welcoming its first Disability Studies Course Cluster. Piloted by faculty members – Julia Watts Belser, Rebecca Kukla, and Sara Schotland – this cluster of three related but separate courses will engage students in monthly lectures and interactive workshops with scholars and leading voices in the disability studies field. The cluster is comprised of the following existing courses: ENG 270: Introduction to Disability Studies, PHIL 441.01: Bioethics and the Abnormal Body, and THEO 211: Religion and Disability Studies.
The first workshop of the semester was “Disability, Dignity and Ablution: Rituals of Care,” led by Emory University Professor of English Rosemarie Garland-Thomson. This module challenged students to re-envision notions of dignity and disability –as they are influential on policy and social conversations – and examined religious and secular imagery that regard giving and receiving care as sacred and central acts of being human.
This monthly course cluster offers students an opportunity to extend the usual boundaries of the classroom by synthesizing methods, insights and theoretical questions raised in their courses in the context of key issues in public life. Moreover, these courses advance Georgetown’s hallmark Jesuit values, by asking students to reflect upon core ethical questions, principles of empathy, a commitment to social justice, and a sincere appreciation for difference and cultural diversity through their academic pursuits.
If you would like more information about this course cluster, please contact Julia Watts Belser at email@example.com.