New Courses by Faculty

The HRC provides research funding to faculty to develop new courses in medical humanities and cultural heritage. Preference is given to proposals that promise to spark collaborations, cultivate new scholarly paradigms, or forge lasting curricular innovation.

HURC 361 - The Humanities of Care and End of Life [Spring 16; Fall 2017; Fall 2019]
Instructor(s): Marcia Brennan, Professor of Religion
Pairing the perspectives of medicine, bioethics, and the medical humanities with thematic case studies in art, literature, cinema, and visual culture, the class examines the humanities of care and the end of life.
Dr. Brennan's students' final essays have been collected and published in-house.


Fall 2017-Spring 2018

HIST 312 - Classical, Biomedical Approach to History [Fall 2017]
Instructor(s): Moramay López-Alonso, Associate Professor of History
This is a course in history of medicine, diseases and public health, demography, and nutrition. It delves into classic works on the history of human societies. It will also use historical studies from particular disciplines such as biology, demography, medicine, nutrition, anthropology, and economics concentrating on disease, medicine and public health.

Islamic Art and Empire of the Early Age [Spring 2018]
Instructor(s): Lisa Balabanlilar, Associate Professor of History, and Amy Froom, Lecturer, Rice University and Curator, Art of the Islamic Worlds, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
This course is an introduction to the visual, material cultural and religious and political systems of the great Islamic empires of the early modern Muslim world. It establishes a sound political/economic understanding of the period, and investigates displays of status and power in architectural projects and urban planning in each of the three empires. Students will moreover closely study Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal art works on view at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston throughout the semester.


Fall 2016-Spring 2017

MUSI/ASIA 378 - Classical, Contemporary, and Cross-Cultural Asian Music in the 21st Century [Fall 16]
Instructor(s): Shih-Hui Chen, Professor of Music, Chair, Music Composition Department
This upper-level undergraduate course introduces students to traditional Asian/Music culture, explores how these traditions have been extended into the twenty-first century, and presents concerts and workshops on campus as well as at the Asia Society Texas Center so that students can personally experience traditional and contemporary performers. The course will be continually offered continually, in alternating years.


Fall 2015-Spring 2016

HURC 341 - Museums and Heritage: Exhibiting Art, Exhibiting Culture [Fall 15]
Instructor(s): Susan McIntosh, Professor of Anthropology
This course serves as an introduction to museum studies with a particular focus on the collection and exhibition of cultural heritage materials. Students examine how heritage objects are displayed and represented in museums of art, natural historical history, and heritage. Topics include ethics of collecting, policies of display, changing roles for museums, exhibition design and curatorial practice.

HURC 211 - Brain, Mind, and Body in the Nineteenth Century [Spring 16]
Instructor(s): John Mulligan, Lecturer
The Romantic and Victorian periods hosted extended debates among literary and medical authors over the nature, function, and even location of consciousness. This course explores the substance and structure of these debates in order to: learn the history of a literary and medical movement, critically engage with present-day debates about these texts and the questions they raise, and reflect on the changing relationship between the sciences and the humanities.

ENGL 307 - The Poet in The Museum [Spring 16]
Instructor(s): Joseph Campana (Alan Dugald McKillop Associate Professor of English)
This course considers what it means for poets to seek meaning and inspiration in the world of the visual arts, from paintings, sculpture, and other objects in museums (and the architecture of museums themselves) to the practices of living artists. Through regular visits to the MFAH, Menil Collection, Museum of Natural Science, and the Rice Gallery students will examine objects of cultural heritage and learn about making, preserving, and presenting art from curators and conservators. The course offers an opportunity to work with two practicing artists, Rice’s own Natasha Bowdoin and visiting artist Marina Zurkow (NYU/Tisch).