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Foundational Area Three

The Global and Cross-Cultural Experience

Global interdependence

is a powerful fact. Through an exploration of societies in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and Europe, this Foundational Area opens the doors into varied cultures and issues that challenge a parochial understanding of the world.

You may select courses that focus on the major issues of contemporary world politics, including management of conflict, economic competition, and environmental threats to the quality of life. Other courses emphasize either a comparative or cross-cultural examination of societies, polities, and belief systems and acknowledge the importance of recognizing and overcoming cultural barriers.

Finally, some courses focus on the dilemma of the global majority—the three-quarters of the world’s population who live in countries striving for national identity as well as economic and political development.

All courses in this area encourage a better understanding of the dimensions of experience and belief that distinguish cultures and countries from one another and, conversely, the commonalities that bind human experience together. The courses stimulate awareness of the need for enhanced international and intercultural communication.

George Hausmann

Area Goals

  1. explore those habits of thought and feeling that distinguish regions, countries, and cultures from one another
  2. discuss, in comparative and cross-cultural perspective, the concepts, patterns, and trends that characterize contemporary global politics
  3. develop your capacity to critically analyze major issues in international and intercultural relations, especially how categories of difference are organized within and across cultures and how they affect political systems


Course Offerings

see Schedule of Classes for class times and course descriptions


ANTH-110 Culture and Human Experience
ANTH-210 Roots of Racism and Interracial Harmony
ANTH-215 Sex, Gender and Culture
ANTH-220 Living in Multicultural Societies
ANTH-230 India: Its Living Tradition

Arab World Studies

AWST-115 Introduction to the Arab World


COMM-280 Contemporary Media in a Global Society


ECON-110 The Global Majority


EDU-285 Education for International Development


GOVT-130 Comparative Politics
GOVT-235 Political Conflict


HIST-120 Imperialism and Revolution
HIST-225 Russia and the Origins of Contemporary Eurasia
HIST-250 Empires and States in East Asia

International Business

IBUS-200 The Global Marketplace


LIT-150 Third World Literature
LIT-250 Literature, Film and Globalization
LIT-267 Literatures of Global South


MGMT-201 Global Corporate Citizenship


RELG-145 Religion Without Borders
RELG-185 Forms of the Sacred
RELG-210 Non-Western Religious Traditions
RELG-245 Stories of South Asia

School of International Service

SISU-105 World Politics
SISU-130 Intercultural Understanding
SISU-140 Cross-Cultural Communication
SISU-211 Civilizations of Africa
SISU-212 China, Japan & the U.S.


SOCY-110 Views from the Global South
SOCY-225 Arab Societies
SOCY-235 Gender in Transnational Perspectives

World Languages and Cultures

SPAN-210 Latin America: History, Art, Literature
RUSS-200 Russia and the United States