All Monmouth students are required to take a Reflections course in their third year. Reflections courses encourage an exploration of ideas about the ultimate meaning and purpose of our lives.
Courses are taught from philosophical, religious, artistic and scientific perspectives. While a Reflections course is required for all students, a wide variety of options are offered each year.
Sample Reflections courses
INTG 322. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Soul 1.0 course credit
When it was published in England, the first of the Harry Potter novels was called Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Although the author was referring to the stone of alchemy supposedly able to turn base metals into gold and to produce the elixir of life, her novels also perform a sort of literary alchemy.
This class will read the Harry Potter series for its “alchemical” potential to transform its readers and, through them, the society in which we live. Some of those themes might include the transformative power of Renaissance science (alchemy, astronomy, and astrology) in the Potter novels; construction of self and/in society; oppression and social justice; issues of gender, race, and ethnicity; power, mortality, evil, and courage; and the magic of love.
INTG 326. Self-Made Men?: Gender and Modern Masculinities 1.0 course credit
In this course, we will reflect on the concepts of gender and masculinity, what it means to be “manly” in today’s society, and how masculine norms are both reinforced and questioned in literature, film, and popular culture. To do so, we will also trace the historical, economic, and religious underpinnings of modern, Western standards of masculinity from the Enlightenment to the present, with a particular focus on England and the United States.
INTG 327. Health & Fitness Culture 1.0 course credit
This course examines the influence of health and fitness culture on what we value. Using societal and cultural views of exercise and health the relationship between body image, self-esteem, and overall world view will be examined. Questions of meaning and purpose will be explored in the context of our attitudes and behaviors regarding health, fitness and body image.