Top five lib-eds at the U

Jared Hemming

james-franco-spring-breakers.jpg

(Via Moviefone)

 

Registration for next semester is open to the masses, and now that I’m in my third year within the University of Minnesota’s College of Liberal Arts, I consider myself well-versed in all-things liberal, artsy and of college-level significance.

 

Taking a look back at my unofficial transcript, here’s a retrospective list of the best liberal arts classes I’ve taken at the University.

 

  1. DNCE 1331: Yoga– If you’re looking to avoid packing on the classic Freshman 15 (or is it 50?!) pounds next semester, Yoga on the West Bank blends the perfect amount of spiritual de-stressing and a rigorous ab-burning workout. Taught by adjunct Yoga teachers across the Twin Cities, Yoga at the U will teach you not only how to keep trim, but also encourages you to keep a journal of your thoughts through the 3-hours-a-week semester. My only regret that is that I don’t keep a journal now (but this blog counts for something, right?).

 

  1. MUS 1014: Rock II: 1970-present– Don’t get me wrong, Rock I is okay; however, Rock II professor Peter Mercer-Taylor eschews Rock I’s historical emphasis and imparts upon the class his extensive analyses of classic tunes by Nirvana, Radiohead and even Eminem. Contrary to popular belief, Rock I is not a prerequisite necessary to take Rock II.

 

An added bonus is that the class is structured around a final paper, rather than the pointless, trivial exam featured in Rock I’s final (Actual Question: “Which of these people was in the Beatles? A) Jimi Hendrix B) Eric Clapton C) Keith Richards or D) Paul McCartney?”).

 

  1. CSCL 3172: Music as Discourse– I admit, I may be biased towards these music analysis classes given my current Daily pursuit, but after years of mediocre to terrible professors, I can honestly say that cultural studies professor Michael Gallope is one of the most engaged with his subject that I have ever seen teach at the University.

 

So if you want a class that allows you to revel in the deep shallowness of Skrillex’s score to “Spring Breakers” while examining Aristotle’s take on the point of popular music, look no further than Music as Discourse. Plus, Gallope has been in a bunch of sweet bands!

 

  1. ESCI 1005: Geology and Cinema– While this introductory geology class was not my favorite I’ve taken at the University, professor Justin Revenaugh’s snarky, Mystery Science Theater-esque comments on each of the geology-related films we watched in class made the colloquially-known “Rocks for Jocks” more tolerable for those not associated with Greek life.

 

  1. FREN 1001: Beginning French– Most Bachelor of Arts degrees within the CLA require a two-year language proficiency to graduate, so why not bone-up (bon-up?) on your baguette-and-wine consuming skills and take French? Though the learning curve is steep for those without any previous French-speaking experience (aside from knowing that ‘bleu’ means ‘blue,’ I knew virtually no French going into the class) Beginning French is perfect for all you Francophones looking for a certain je ne sais quoi in your education.

 

By the way, ‘je ne sais quoi’ literally translates to ‘I don’t know what.’ So, when you hear someone airily describe a foreign film as having a ‘je ne sais quoi’ aspect, now you know that this person has no idea what they’re talking about.