Not to be outdone by NYU and their upcoming course on Occupy Wall Street, Columbia University will offer its own course on the nascent movement this spring. Offered by the Anthropology Department, the course [pdf], called "Occupy the Field," will offer "training in ethnographic research methods alongside a critical exploration of the conjunctural issues in the Occupy movement: Wall Street, finance capital, and inequality; political strategies, property and public space, and the question of anarchy; and genealogies of the contemporary moment in global social movements." Finger Twinkling 101 is a prerequisite.
Professor Hannah Appel will be teaching the course, which will consist of seminars and lots of fieldwork with Occupy Wall Street, where students are encouraged to get involved with any of the working groups that meet regularly in the atrium at 60 Wall Street. Appel is a self-proclaimed "regular participant in the Occupy movement," and in the course description she assures students with "absolute certainty that there is no foreseeable risk in teaching this as a field-based class. On the contrary, the risks of disengaged scholarship seem more profound." All of this is really tickles the student-run Columbia blog The Bwog, which notices in the course description that "the reading is admittedly 'lighter than many other classes.' Score! Attendance is also a big part of the grade."
So with NYU and Columbia both offering OWS courses, it's probably only a matter of time before a publicly-funded CUNY school takes the plunge, and we can't wait to hear what the NY Post has to say about that. For now, the tabloid simply wonders, "Does getting pepper-sprayed count as extra credit?"