ESP Biography

GRACE WAGNER, Columbia & Sciences Po human rights student

Major: Human Rights

College/Employer: Columbia University

Year of Graduation: 2022

Picture of Grace Wagner

Brief Biographical Sketch:

Not Available.

Past Classes

  (Clicking a class title will bring you to the course's section of the corresponding course catalog)

A983: Reality TV & Discourse in Splash Spring 2021 (Mar. 20, 2021)
Netflix and Chill is overrated—we're all about Reality TV and Discourse. Reality TV is a reflection of modern life in every way, and we feel comfortable putting our deepest, darkest secrets on display for primetime or consuming them with a mix of shock, disgust, schadenfreude, and pity. And if reality television is a mirror, we should listen to the Godmother of it all, Paris Hilton, when she says, "never pass a mirror without looking in it." What is reality and what is real life? In this class we'll explore concepts of post-modernism, particularly Jean Baudrillard's Simulation and Simulacra, analyze how reality TV tackles taboo, and reflect on our own engagement and consumption. Fair Warning: many of the shows we'll discuss are rated TV-MA and deal with challenging topics. We think Jean Baudrillard should also come with a TV-MA rating.

Y988: American Presidential Scandals in Splash Spring 2021 (Mar. 20, 2021)
American political culture has been characterized by endless scandal and intrigue, so much so that we've added a uniquely American suffix to the english language, -gate. From duelling to romantic affairs to illicit whiskey rings, scandal has graced American headlines since the inception of the republic. Something about American political culture, particularly our expectations around Presidents, is particularly puritanical—we expect saints and heroes. But why then do they so often escape justice? Join us and we'll explore the juiciest secrets of American Presidential history, but also reflect on the impulses that create such a scandal-obsessed and dominated culture.

H966: DC Music: History, Culture and Politics in Tides Spring 2021 (Feb. 07, 2021)
What do you think of when you think of Washington, D.C.? The President, Congress, lobbyists? Well I think of go-go, hardcore, Ben’s Chili Bowl, and the Washington Color Field School. Join us as we explore the District of Columbia’s unmatched, unique musical history: everything from jazz (Duke Ellington) to country (John Denver's "Take Me Home Country Roads" is not based on West Virginia but Clopper Road just outside DC) hardcore punk (Minor Threat, Fugazi and Dave Grohl) to DC’s very own and very best genre, go-go! Go-go is more than a musical genre—it's a social movement and the soundtrack of the city—and it blends funk, R&B, Latin music, hip hop and West African rhythms. We’ll unpack DC music with a focus on how it is a reflection of socio-cultural experience—a manifestation of “the secret city.” We'll explore the complex web of influence DC's musical genres had on each other and American music as a whole, and compare go-go to global musical movements like soca and electro chaabi. Sign up to bang on buckets, listen to everyone from Jelly Roll Morton to Chuck Brown to Bad Brains and watch National Archives footage of leopard print-clad, future Mayor Marion Barry.

H967: Gender and Witchcraft in Tides Spring 2021 (Feb. 07, 2021)
Throughout Western history, witchcraft and gender have been inextricable. We’ll travel from 15th century Germany to 17th century France, stopping over in Puritan New England, through modern American popular culture. We’ll read from Hammurabi’s Code, Malleus Maleficarum, The Scarlet Letter and the W.I.T.C.H. Manifesto, discuss Catharism, “Monster Theory” and Thomas Aquinas, and watch clips from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Sabrina the Teenage Witch and Wizards of Waverly Place. How do gender, religion and traditions interact? Who and what is a witch? What are historical factors that fuel environments leading to witch trials? Why have witches seen a resurgence in modernity? While this class focuses on witches in (mainly) occidental history, we will also touch on witchcraft in Eastern Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.