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Shopping Around

Is the Course Catalog looking fatter than usual? The Crimson has done your work for you: Your guide to the 11 coolest classes offered this semester.

Beyond Politics

The long syllabus for Historical Study A-35: "Democracy in America" may intimidate some students, but if it results in a smaller class, Professor of History James T. Kloppenberg says he will be happy.

"I'm a better teacher when dealing with smaller classes," Kloppenberg says. "I'm hoping that the requirements for the class will be such that it will limit numbers."

"Democracy in America," a brand new course offered this semester will consist of two hour-and-a-half lectures and one section a week. According to Kloppenberg, however, lectures will be a little different.

Kloppenberg expects to lecture for an hour, and then set aside a half-hour for discussion, a method that he thinks will be most successful in a smaller setting.

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The new class will attempt to look at democracy in a different light. The common understanding is that democracy exists in political institutions alone, Kloppenberg says.

But the professor's new "experiment" hopes to show that democracy rests not just on political foundations, but also on cultural and social ones.

Students should expect a relatively large amount of reading in the class, upwards of 250 to 300 pages a week.

"If I told you the readings were fun, that would be false advertising," Kloppenberg says.

The class will begin with Sir Thomas More's Utopia. Other readings will be similar to those encountered in social studies or political theory classes, Kloppenberg says.

"The course will be a lot of work. As such courses go, some will be more fun than others. Given the amount of reading, some will find this more demanding than other core courses," he says.

The ideal class size is about 50 students. That, added with the potentially engaging half-hour question-and-answer portion of lecture, makes this course promising for those who can keep up.

--Adam M. Lalley

Black Hat and Broomsticks

A mild reaction against "demonism" and "wise women" in the early Middle Ages developed into the witch "craze" of the 16th and 17th centuries. This development will be examined in Professor Stephen A. Mitchell's Folklore and Mythology 108: "Witchcraft."

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