Day 1, 2015?—an attempt to address various comments from the taking stock session in a course on gender, race & the complexities ofscience, technology


Getting going on learning tools to use to make connections and contributions to a topic

-1. Notice to all: Bring laptops or tablets

-1a. Recruit as many alums to attend to be part of the mix in #2.

0a. Name tags (with “alum” noted)

0b. Sign up for guest wifi

1a. The rhythm of the course


1b. Very brief overview of the four cases that make up the course:

  • learning to teach/engage others to interpret the cultural dimensions of science
  • case-based learning as a productive approach to generating wider engagement in the production of science and technology: responding to a provocation by a male Marxist historian
  • new genomics reconfiguring race and science, kinship and family
  • carrying over themes and approaches into one’s own areas of engagement

1c. Carry over from one case to next, or beyond the course? —depends on tangible outcomes & experiences


2. Making connections from near and far in place, time, practice, and culture

(Opening up = today & homework; Shaping connections to focus in = next class, in which the first case will be laid out)

a. Note that this activity and the course as whole is about gender, race, and the complexities of science and technology. In the spirit of complex connections, introduce Eric Wolf’s account of changes in the Mundurucu in the Amazon as rubber began to be used in Europe in C19 shows how people very distant in space can have their cultures profoundly shifted by connections, especially those made around new technologies and the commodities they give rise to.


b. Activity (for alums as well as students): Place the description of the video at in a wide context by tracing connections from near and from far in place, time, practice, and culture. (Don’t watch the video at this point. Following your own interests and curiosity, use the internet to learn more about who, when, where, why, what led to this video for the different players involved, what followed from this, and so on. Use the blackboard to record what you find out and what further questions arise.)

[Take photo of emerging map of connections]

c. Refreshments & Getting to know people bingo,

(where the cells of the bingo include items that students can talk about regarding their own background etc. + the connections they have drawn for #2b + questions about the course experience to share with peers and get perspective on from alums).

3a. Reassure students of that there will be a Focusing In phase next week after the Opening Up of this session & homework.

3b. Walk through of links needed for homework, which includes

  • read and post an annotation of Haraway, D. J. (1989) “Teddy bear patriarchy: Taxidermy in the garden of Eden, New York City, 1908-1936,” in Primate visions (originally published in 1984/5 in Social Text 11: 20-64)
  • view Paper Tiger video and note questions that interest you opened up by connections that Haraway draws and by continuing to place the video in context
  • post a page of selected questions that you would be most interested to learn more about (which might include questions raised by #2).
  • review what others said in the Critical Incident Questionnaire (#4; collated & posted on blog)
  • post, as a process reflection,
    skills and weaknesses interests
    (related to the course themes..)
    …that I bring
    to this course
    ….that I would like
    to leave with at the end

    Ideas about the path to bridge to then from now….

4. Note that this class and the course as a whole is informed (but not strictly governed) by the 4Rs framework that holds that courses and workshops should begin with activities that enhance Respect for the “private universes” each of us have and the diversity of other participants. That makes taking Risks more likely, in the sense of departing from predefined understandings and practice, which, in turn, fosters new insights or Revelations—seeing our own work in new ways and understanding it in ways that are our own—which, in turn, leads us to Re-engage—each of us with ourself (=the happiness of learning in the now [Makiguchi]) and through collaborations around influencing some issues that concern us.
5. Critical Incident Questionnaire


One thought on “Day 1, 2015?—an attempt to address various comments from the taking stock session in a course on gender, race & the complexities ofscience, technology

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