Welcome to our First-Year Seminar

How do people overcome injustice? In this course, we will study historic justice movements, including abolition, the fight against Jim Crow, and the LGBTQ+ revolution. We will also analyze two ongoing movements: the fights against mass incarceration and against climate change. Our reading will include the work of Frederick Douglass, Ida B. Wells, Ella Baker, Bryan Stevenson, and Nikole Hannah-Jones, among others. During our final two weeks, you will present your ideas for overcoming current forms of injustice.

The goals of Middlebury’s First Year Seminars are:

  • To learn what is expected intellectually and ethically for college-level work in the liberal arts.
  • To engage seriously with the topic to which one’s seminar is devoted.
  • To develop skills in widely accessible yet scholarly presentation (written and oral), involving observation, analysis, argumentation, research, and the use of sources.
  • To become (with the help of advising) active in exploring academic and professional interests, and to find rewarding ways to participate in intellectual life in the liberal arts.

This is the second time I have taught this course. I look forward to learning with you.

Jonathan Isham, Jr. 
Professor of Economics and Environmental Studies 

(prefers he/him pronouns)

Fall 2021 Office Hours: Mondays and Wednesdays, 12:30 – 2:00 in Franklin Environmental Center 119.

802 443 5761