Worldmaking: Design and Designing in Social and Political Context

University Liberal Arts: University Lecture Program

Liberal Arts

Undergraduate Course

Degree Students


Fall 2020

Taught By: Shana Agid

Section: L

CRN: 7562

Credits: 0

In this course, we’ll delve into a range of approaches to fundamental questions raised by the theory that in the work of making, designers draw on “tacit knowledge” – things known, but not articulated, by the knower. What are the implications of tacit knowledge, and tacit beliefs, for design that seeks to make and change the world(s) in which we live? And what are the impacts on design when these tacit ideas are about structures of race, class, gender, sexuality, ability and nation, or what Ruth Wilson Gilmore, a professor of geography, calls “the fatal coupling of power and difference”? Working through perspectives of both designers and “non-designers,” this course will examine the social and political locations – and the tacit and explicit ideas that shape them – of designed objects and systems, as well as collaborative and participatory design processes and ways of working. We will use the emerging context of “social design,” “social innovation,” and “design for change,” in which designers from a range of fields are working locally and internationally to utilize design processes and create artifacts and systems intended to address serious social, ecological, and economic matters, as a framework, asking how differences in stakeholders’ ideas about what constitutes design “problems” and “solutions” in these projects might both limit and expand capacities for design. The course, appropriate for anyone who makes or uses designed things and systems, will draw on key analyses of contemporary and historical relationships of power and cultural meanings, including Cultural Studies, Queer and Feminist Theory, Critical Prison Studies, and Visual Cultural and Design Studies, to help interpret and think through these questions. This course counts toward the Gender Studies minor.

Students must register for both the lecture and discussion section of this course.
[This ULEC is in category 3, Interdisciplinary Approaches to the Arts and Humanities.]

College: University Liberal Arts (UL)

Department: University Lecture Program (ULIB)

Campus: Online (DL)

Sync Type: N/A

Course Format: Lecture (L)

Max Enrollment: 101

Add/Drop Deadline: September 14, 2020 (Monday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: November 22, 2020 (Sunday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Closed*

* Status information is updated every five minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 1:07pm 10/31/2020 EDT

Meeting Info:

Days: Wednesday

Times: 10:15am - 11:30am

Building: Online Course

Date Range: 9/2/2020 - 12/16/2020