Today's high school students are too young to remember September 11, but they have grown up in a political landscape dominated by its aftermath. In this class we will study the causes and consequences of the terrorist attacks on 9/11. Questions we'll ask include:
> Who was responsible for 9/11 and what was their motivation?> If most of the attackers were from Saudi Arabia, why did we go to war with Afghanistan?> If Iraq wasn't involved in 9/11, how did it become part of the overarching "war on terror"?> What impact did 9/11 have on American civil liberties?> What does oil have to do with it?> Were there realistic alternatives to war?> How have Muslims in the United States and around the world responded to 9/11?
Students who complete this class will have a greater understanding of American foreign policy in the Middle East and will be able to weigh the pros and cons of military intervention from an informed perspective. They will also expand their understanding of Islamic history, culture, and politics.
There will be readings and video assigned each week, to be completed at home. All homework is optional, but students will get much more out of the course if they commit two to four hours a week to these assignments.
Suggested age range: 13+. By definition, this course will involve the discussion of violence. Students should be mature enough to read, watch, and discuss themes related to war and terrorism, including the torture that took place at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. Graphic images will always be preceded by a warning, and may be skipped at the discretion of students or their parents, but the class will not avoid these topics altogether since they are integral to understanding this conflict and its global context.
When & where: Fridays from 1:00-2:00 at Voyagers in Chelmsford, Sept. 16-Dec. 9, 2016. No class Nov. 25.
Fee: $250/semester + a Netflix subscription. (Books are included in the course fee.) $10 discount for Voyagers members. Payment plans available. Fees waived for families with financial need. (Waivers and payment plan information.)