SOCI 633: Special Topics in Sociology
SOCI 633-004: Next System Studies Seminar
10:30 AM to 01:10 PM T
Van Metre Hall (formerly Founders Hall) 313
Section Information for Spring 2024
Our lives can feel very precarious. Many of us are anxious about the future. And our ability to respond effectively to the social, economic, political, climate, ecological, and human crises of these times is undermined by a widespread sense of crisis fatigue. Several years ago, a new government was inaugurated in Washington that promised to “Build Back Better.”
But must we only build back better from what the previous president called the “American carnage” of recent years, or must we also find ways to transcend the mounting crises of the past forty and four hundred years?
With this seminar you become one of the first students anywhere to participate in a course of next system studies. Together we move beyond identifying and critiquing problems. Next System Studies seek to explain the relationships between systemic dysfunction, systemic movements, next system design, and system change. A rising global tide of community-based movements and initiatives
offer the possibility that from this period of systemic decay may emerge a next system that is more democratic, sustainable, and just. Students engage directly with the experiences and ideas created through these initiatives. We also draw from fertile fields of study in solidarity economics, climate transition, abolition, digital technology, popular constitutionalism, participatory democracy, community wealth, reconstruction, revolutions and social transformation, and social movements.
This course provides an excellent preparation for careers in public policy and public service, social entrepreneurship, cooperative development, community and human services, education and research, labor organizing and worker rights, and social movement organizations and advocacy. We engage directly with ongoing next system efforts both around the world and in our region, meet with practitioners and policy experts, present and discuss readings and films in a seminar format, and perform group work relevant to communities directly served and affected by George Mason University. Our sessions bring together graduate students and accelerated undergraduate students from various programs. Cross listed with SOCI 395-001, GOVT 319-005.
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Course Information from the University Catalog
Enrollment limited to students with a class of Advanced to Candidacy, Graduate, Junior Plus, Non-Degree or Senior Plus.
Enrollment is limited to Graduate, Non-Degree or Undergraduate level students.
Students in a Non-Degree Undergraduate degree may not enroll.
This course is graded on the Graduate Regular scale.