Cooperative Living, Community Building,
and Sustainability

[Profs. Jerome Bauer, Bob Hansman (consultant),
CS40 Hybrid Living Committee,
and the
WashU Cooperative]

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Our class mascot is the starfish, not a
helpless stranded starfish, but a starfish
on the march, saving itself. Don't be a victim!



Course Description (2005-2006)



Course Description (2004-2005)

This FOCUS-seminar is for students who are concerned about the
global ecological and social crisis that, according to many, has the
potential to threaten the survival of humanity. The seminar investigates
ways to create a sustainable future on our planet. Specifically, we will
explore different aspects of alternative and experimental ways of living
and working together. Some topics we will cover are: utopian and intentional
communities, ecological aspects of language use (how the way we talk
influences the way we live), cultural self-awareness, the Kibbutz movement,
Gandhi´s practice of satyagraha (firmly grasping the way things ought
to be), ideology and utopia, and the history of the cooperative movement.

This course will be team taught with members of the WashU Cooperative,
and will feature field trips to local cooperatives, and guest lectures by
local community activists.Theory and practice of cooperative living,
community building, and sustainability will be taught.

Thi s is a two semester course, to be followed by study abroad (TBA).
We will take a Spring Break field trip to a cooperative (TBA).


Course Description (Spring 2005)

In this course, we we will explore the meaning of the terms cooperative
, community building, and sustainability. The central questions are:
what does it mean to live and work cooperatively, and is it important that
people do so? What is the difference between cooperation and submission?
Who decides, and on what bases? Do we have to agree, and do we have
to share the same worldview, religious belief, economic interest, social class,
political ideology, or language, to cooperate? When should we cooperate,
and when should we resist? When we have to resist, how can we do so
without fear or hate, and without violence? What are communities and how
do they form; in particular, how do they change and transform? Do they form
immediately or gradually? Are communities best led by command or by example?
Are communities best conceived as mechanisms, organisms, or would some
other model be more useful? How can communities founded on diverse principles
cooperate with each other? On what bases do we judge the success or failure
of a community, or an individual community member? Can and should there be
a global cooperative community? What does sustainability mean, and is it a r
ealistic goal, or a romantic, utopian dream? What is wrong with utopian dreaming,
if good things can come from it? Don’t we have to believe in something, in
order to act? This class is not only about cooperation and utopian social action,
but it also is an example of cooperation and utopian social action. In other
words, we are going to do what we learn, and we will learn by doing, and
dreaming. At the same time, we will keep a critical perspective, appropriate
for a secular, multicultural university.

"You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one,
Perhaps someday you'll join us, and the world will live as one.""
---John Lennon, "Imagine"


Satyagraha and Ahimsa (Gandhi's Way)

Satyagraha = "firmly grasping the way things ought to be
[non-violent non-cooperation]‚"

Ahimsa = "not having the desire to harm [non-injury]"

"Non-violence is a weapon of the strong. With the weak it might easily be

"My creed of non-violence is an extremely active force. It has no room for
cowardice or even weakness. There is hope for a violent man ot be someday
non-violent, but there is none for a coward."

"Non-violence in its dynamic condition means conscious suffering. It does
not mean meek submission to the will of the evil-doer, but it means putting
the whole of one’s soul against the will of the tyrant. Working under this
law of our being, it is possible for a single individual to defy the whole might
of an unjust empire to save his honour, his religion, his soul and lay the
foundation for that empire’s fall or its regeneration.

"A satyagrahi bids good-bye to fear. He is, therefore, never afraid of trusting
his opponent. Even if the opponent plays him false twenty times, the satyagrahi
is ready to trust him the twenty-first time, for an implicit trust in human nature
is the very essence of his creed."

---Mohandas K. Gandhi, quoted in Stephen Hay, ed., Sources of Indian Tradition,
Vol. II
, pgs. 253, 255, 268

Question for Discussion:

Gandhi was right, we should trust our opponent even if he or she has played
us false twenty-one times. But twenty-one is the limit....


Previously Offered:

Autumn 2004, Spring 2005


Next Offered:

Autumn 2005, Spring 2006


To Register

Washington University Online Course Catalog

WebSTAC (online course registration)


Course News (Autumn 2004)

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Class Announcements

Please arrive on time for class on Monday, 10/25.04:
Dan Koff will lead a walking tour through Forest Park.
If you must come late, please contact Dan to arrange a meeting place in the park.

On Wednesday, November 10, the WashU Coop and ATMA Hindu Students Association
will present a "
Religion in Medicine Symposium," an interdiscplinary and interfaith forum
on Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM), Integrative Medicine,
Religious Therapeutics, Yoga, Ayurveda, and Tantra.


Two Week Schedule

Monday, October 25: Walking Tour of Forest Park; Dan Koff, leader.
Wednesday, October 27: Communications and Community (general theme); Joachim Faust, leader

Monday, November 1: Language and Biology (general theme); Joachim Faust and Alexandra Templer, leaders
Wednesday, November 3: Utopian Communities; Jerome Bauer, leader


Semester Schedule



Full Year Schedule



Special Sessions



Electronic Reserve



Class Readings



Supplementary Materials

Power Point Presentation on Ursula K. LeGuin (please use Internet Explorer for best results)

Study Guide and Discussion Questions on Ursula LeGuin's The Dispossessed


Class Webring

2004-2005 Coop Focus Class Student Website
(Courtesy of Debra Stern)

Other Student Websites: TBA


Class Links



Also of Potential Interest

Go to Utopia and Cooperative Living Page
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Notes and Links

[This page is under development]


North American Students of Cooperation (NASCO)

Rochdale Cooperative Principles

Campus Cooperative Development Corporation (CCDC)
CCDC Organizer's Handbook

Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage: Sustainable Intentional Community Living
Dancing Rabbit Summer Internships

Society for Utopian Studies

Gateway Greening

Feminist Fantasy, Science Fiction and Utopia

International Workers of the World: The Anarchosyndicalist Trade Union, Workers' Confederation
and Section of the Anarchist International




Go to General Bibliography
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Classical Utopia Bibliography
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Science Fiction Utopias and Dystopias Bibliography
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Radical Movements Bibliography
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Kibbutz Movement Bibliography
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Sustainability Issues in India and America


General Bibliography

This bibliography is under construction)


Ideology and Utopia
Mannheim, Karl
HM24 M27 1959 Olin Level A Stacks

The University of Utopia
Hutchins, Robert Maynard
LA209.2 H87 Olin Level B Stacks



Classical Utopias

(This bibliography is under construction)


Utopian Thought in the Western World
Manuel, Frank and Fritzie
HX806 M33 Olin Level A Stacks; Soc General Stacks



Science Fiction Utopias and Dystopias

(This bibliography is under construction)


The Dispossessed: An Ambiguous Utopia
LeGuin, Ursula Kroeber
PS3562 E48 D57 1991 Olin Level 2 Stacks
[An anarcho-syndicalist utopia/dystopia]

The Left Hand of Darkness
LeGuin, Ursula Kroeber
PS3562 E48 L4 1994 Olin Level 2 PopLit SciFi
[An androgynous humanoid civilization]

The Telling
LeGuin, Ursula Kroeber
PS3562.E48 T35 2000 Olin Level 2 PopLit SciFi
[A fundamentalist dystopia]

Feminist Fantasy, Science Fiction and Utopia


Radical Movements and Utopian Communities

(This bibliography is under construction)


The Communist Societies of the United States
Nordhoff, Charles
HX653 N8 1966 Olin Level A Stacks

Communist and Cooperative Colonies
Gide, Charles
325.3 G361 WestC Dewey

Heavens on Earth: Utopian Communities in America, 1680-1880
Holloway, Mark
HX653 .H66 1966 Olin Level A Stacks

Solidarity Forever: An Oral History of the IWW
Bird, Stewart; Georgakas, Dan; Shaffer, Deborah
HD8055 I4 B57 1985 Olin Reserve 2 Hour



Kibbutz Movement

(This bibliography is under construction)

This bibliography courtesy of Professor Nancy Berg; see
her course, "Modern Israeli Politics"


Kibbutz Makom: Report from an Israeli Kibbutz
Lieblich, Amia
ISBN 039450724X (MOBIUS)

Crisis and Transformation : The Kibbutz at Century's End
Ben-Rafael, Eliezer
HX742.2 A3 B467 1997 Olin Level A Stacks

Crisis in the Israeli kibbutz : Meeting the Challenge of Changing Times
Leviatan, Uriel ; Oliver, Hugh; and Quarter, Jack; eds.
HX742.2 A3 C75 1998 Olin Level A Stacks

The Communal Experience of the Kibbutz
Blasi, Joseph
HX742.2 A3 B54 1986 Olin Level A Stacks

The Communal Future : The Kibbutz and the Utopian Dilemma
Blasi, Joseph
HX765 P3 B53 1980 Soc Upper Level Stacks

Family And Community In The Kibbutz
Talmon, Yonina
HQ689 I8 G37 1972  Olin Level A Stacks

Kibbutz Goshen: An Israeli Commune
Bowes, Alison
HX742.2 A3 B69 1989 Olin Level A Stacks

Gender And Culture : Kibbutz Women Revisited
Spiro, Melford E. Spiro
HX742.2 A3 S64  Olin Level A Stacks

Women in the Kibbutz
Tiger, Lionel, and Shepher, Joseph
HQ1781 P2 T54 Olin Level A Stacks


Sustainability Issues in India and America

(This bibliography is under construction)



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[Anarchism 1]

[Anarcho-Syndicalism 1]

[Buber, Martin 1]

[Business Ethics 6]

[Chronon, William 1]

[Classical Marxism 1]

[Commensality 5]

[Communism 1]

[Community Building 1]

[Community and Society (Gemeinschaft und Gesellschaft) 3]

[Composting 1]

[Cooperative Living 1]

[Cooperative Movements 1]

[Durkheim, Emile 2]

[Eco-Feminism 3]

[Ecological Aspects of Language Use 1]

[Education Reform 2]

[Environmentalism 1]

[False Consciousness 2]

[Frankfurt School 1]

[Gandhi, Mohandas K. ("Mahatma") 6]

[Globalization / Localization / Glocalization 6]

[Goals of Life 4]

[History of Ideas 11]

[History of Social Science 2]

[Humanistic Anthropology 2]

[Humanistic Psychology 2]

[Humanistic Soclology 2]

[Hutchins, Robert Maynard 2]

[Ideological Distortion 3]

[Ideology and Utopia 2]

[Imperialism and Scholarship 3]

[Inclusivism and Tolerance 4]

[Intellectual History of Social Science 4]

[Intellectual Property Rights Issues 3]

[Intentional Communities 1]

[Kibbutz 1]

[Law and Religion 5]

[Le Guin, Ursula Kroeber 3]

[Mannheim, Karl 3]

[Marcuse, Herbert 2]

[Marx, Karl 2]

[Methodology of the Humanities 4]

[Methodology of the Social Sciences 5]

[Models "Of" and Models "For" 2]

[Morris, William 3]

[Multiculturalism and Religion 10]

[Myths, Models, and Paradigms 6]

[Neo-Marxism 3]

[Oral History 6]

[Organic Gardening 1]

[Organic Solidarity and Mechanical Solidarity 4]

[Peace, Love, and Understanding (What's So Funny About...?) 1]

[Peasant and Proletarian Religiosity 3]

[Philosophy of Education 2]

[Political Philosophy 2]

[Populism and Religion 3]

[Postcolonialism 7]

[Public Culture 7]

[Race and Racism (in America) 5]

[Religious Therapeutics 7]

[Revolution and Religion 2]

[Satyagraha 3]

[Semiotics / Semiology 3]

[Shils, Edward 2]

[Social Uses of Social Science 3]

[Socialism 2]

[Sociology of Knowledge 3]

[Sociology of Religion 3]

[Subaltern Studies 4]

[Sustainability 1]

[Syndicalism 1]

[Thoreau, Henry David 1]

[Transnational Cultural Studies 5]

[University of Utopia 2]

[Utopian Communities 3]

[Utopian Social Action 4]

[Utopian Traditions 6>>]

[Weber, Max 2]

[Work Ethics 8]

[World Bourgeoisie 4]


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