My areas of specialization in teaching include: political geography, cultural geography, settler colonial studies, globalization and regional development, border and mobility studies, and Palestine/Israel.
Introduction to International and Area Studies (Lecturer Summer Session A 2017)
Introduction to International and Area Studies is designed to introduce students to the international studies curriculum. The goal is to illuminate the profoundly international and regional character of the world we live in, and to cover a number of contemporary issues and challenges with global implications. Most of these topics can be studied in greater depth in upper division thematic courses at UCLA. And many of them will reappear in upper division area-studies focused courses as well. The first section covers political and economic issues central to international studies such as democratization and economic development. The second half of the course focuses on social and cultural issues with a global significance such as transnational migration and climate change.
Border Studies: mobility, (extra)territoriality & sovereignty in a globalizing world (Teaching Fellow & Instructor of Record Spring 2017)
This course considers theory and modern issues in border studies in Political Geography and related disciplines, and provides insights into research methodologies in the field. In an era of globalization, free trade, and increasing integration, in this course we will analyze the function and effects of bordering practices and transnational mobility in the contemporary, globalized world. It analyzes the impacts, imagined and real, of globalization on the modern sovereign state system, the practice of bordering around the world, and the relative (im)mobility of various groups and peoples. Among other topics, the course will explore: challenges to the sovereign state system, the securitization and externalization of borders both discursively and in practice, and immigration and mobility. Throughout the course we will apply theoretical concepts from political and cultural geography to contemporary geopolitical events. We will also analyze multidisciplinary studies of the continuing significance of borders—not just the line on the map, but more dynamic and functional processes of bordering within the wider realms of society and space, including invisible borders that separate groups.
Introduction to Cultural Geography (Teaching Associate Fall 2015; Teaching Fellow & Instructor of Record Summer Session A 2016)
Why do people act in certain ways in certain places? Why does the urban landscape look the way it does? How do consumer goods link people’s lives around the world? If you have ever asked yourself any of these questions, you have already started thinking like a cultural geographer. Cultural geographers are interested in the relationships between people and their environments, and particularly in the cultural and social dynamics of these relationships. In this class, you will develop an understanding of some of the ways cultural geographers think about the world, and you will gain a basic familiarity with some of the conceptual tools that they use.
Globalization: Regional Development and the World Economy (Teaching Assistant Spring 2015; Teaching Associate Spring 2016)
This course provides an introduction to the uneven geographies of economic globalization today, in the context of longer-term developments. By economic globalization (the economic being just one vector of globalization), I mean the ways in which our increasingly inter-connected world has been shaped by a variety of economic processes: The emergence of capitalism as the dominant way of organizing an economy, national and regional economic growth and development, class, gender and race and economic inequality, and economic interconnections (movements of commodities, people, money, corporations, labor, etc.). As geographers, we look at spatial aspects of these processes: Differences and inequality across and between places, the shifting influence and nature of different geographical scales (from the body to the globe), and the networks, mobilities and connectivities linking places. By uneven geographies, I mean that globalization is not producing a flat world in which everything is equally possible everywhere; difference and inequality remain pervasive (characterized by increasingly complex geographies).
Political Geography (Teaching Assistant Winter 2015; Teaching Associate Winter 2016)
Political geography is about the uneven distribution of political power around the world: how it is produced and the consequences for human populations. Political power is manifested geographically in the definition of boundaries between states, in the control exercised by more powerful states and empires over less powerful ones, in the origins and spread of political and social movements, and in the identifications people make between themselves and the territories and places they inhabit. Political geographers thus study the following topics: the spatiality (or geographical organization) of polities, geopolitics (or geographies of international relations), place and politics, and geographies of nationalism and ethnic conflicts. They study these in different ways depending on their theoretical views about geographical space, history, and political power. The purpose of this course is to introduce each of the topics by looking at how they have been studied from the three broad theoretical perspectives that dominate the field: the spatial-analytic, the political-economic, and the postmodern. At the end of the course you should have an understanding of the scope of contemporary political geography, how it has developed, and the main ways in which scholars have studies its main topics.