SCANDINAVIAN 24: Freshman Seminar: Occupied: A Suspenseful Norwegian Television Series on the Politics of Global Warming, the Global Economy, and Violence
W 10-11 Fall 2016, 6415 Dwinelle. Instructor: Linda Rugg
Set in the near future, Occupied depicts a Norway stricken with a killer storm reminiscent of Hurricane Sandy… only much worse. The storm is assumed to be the outcome of global warming, and Norway, which is one of the wealthiest countries in the world due to its production of oil, decides to abandon fossil fuels and develop green energy. But the European Union and Russia, who depend on Norwegian oil, object. Russia mounts an invasion with the support of the EU, and Norway finds itself torn apart into groups of collaborators and resistors. We will begin the class with some information about Norway and its economic and political culture, including its rejection of EU membership. We will discuss the guilty environmental conscience that seems to have motivated the telling of this story and examine Norwegian culture for signs of guilty conscience, not only about the environment, but about some of the collaboration that took place during the real historical occupation of Norway by Germany during the Second World War. Students will then watch one episode per week before coming to class, where we will discuss the episode and think about the serial narrative form. Requirements: Access to Netflix streaming, some short readings on bCourse website, attendance and participation. This course will be graded P/NP. To pass, students must participate in discussion and have no more than three unexcused absences.
Prerequisite: freshman standing.