Core 101: Health Justice

July 5-August 5, 2022

Open only to incoming first-year Oxy students

FREE—all tuition costs & course materials covered by the Mellon Humanities for Just Communities grant

Course Description

In summer 2022, the HJC summer virtual course will introduce students to the range of ways Humanities disciplines—including History, Media Arts & Culture, Music, Philosophy, Religious Studies, and Theater—approach the study of human health and illness. Equipped with analytical frames from these fields, students will explore the connectedness of human and ecological health; the intersection of U.S. migration and health histories; narratives of pain and suffering; representations of illness in theatrical performances; the relationship between music, sound, and disease; and the history of pandemic experiences and responses. In discussions with faculty and classmates, students will build an understanding of health justice, and how it is manifested across the various topics.  

Enrolling in the summer course is a way for you to get to know other Oxy frosh before arriving on campus and to earn 1-unit toward your Oxy degree for FREE!

Course Structure

The course will be divided into 8 “modules,” 2 per week. Each module will be focused on a different topic and taught by a different faculty member. For each module, students will watch a recorded lecture, complete an assigned reading, write an initial response to the lecture/reading, and engage in a virtual discussion group with the faculty member and classmates. 

Students will need access to the internet in order to stream the lectures and to participate in virtual discussion groups twice a week.

Course Requirements

Students will earn a “Credit” grade for a 1-unit elective if they complete all of the following: 

  • introductory reflection & discussion group
  • complete at least 6 (out of 7) modules
  • social media assignment
  • final reflection & discussion group
  • Sign ups for discussion groups have closed. If you would like to join the course, email Prof. Upson-Saia at upsonsaia@oxy.edu 
  • Students who have signed up and have been assigend to a discussion group: Click the button below to open the registration form, complete ONLY the top portion, sign, then email your completed form to registrar@oxy.edu by the first week of the class. 

HJC Registration Form



The summer virtual course is part of the Humanities for Just Communities (HJC) curriculum, which aims to demonstrate the power of the Humanities to address a different social justice issue each year. The HJC curriculum has been generously funded by the Mellon Foundation. Read more

Contact Humanities for Just Communities