12th Grade

History/Humanities

In twelfth grade, Moses Brown students are encouraged to pursue advanced studies through our broad range of electives, honing their strengths in critical analysis, historical thinking, thoughtful discussion, and clear, effective writing.

Ethics asks students to delve into the philosophical questions of what kind of world we should live in.  Through close reading of thinkers from Aristotle to Kant to modern ethicists like Michael Sandel, Martha Nussbaum, and Bryan Stevenson, students examine tough issues like euthanasia, the free market economy, and affirmative action, and big questions like:

Inquire

Are there universal moral laws?
What is justice?
What is freedom?
What is the common good?
What are our responsibilities to one another?
How can we apply the ethical theories of philosophers in our daily lives?

Students can undertake studies in comparative religions, conflict in the Middle East, and the similarities and differences between the three Abrahamic faiths (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam).  They can look at historical conflicts that spill into the modern millennium, including the Sunni/Shi’a divide, Israeli/Palestinian conflict, and the Syrian civil war.  It’s not uncommon for Moses Brown students to find motivation in the classroom to undertake humanitarian volunteer and fundraising efforts.

Students can interpret human development in classical or contemporary art history, and learn to elevate their own aesthetic experience, while also developing a deeper understanding of how art reflects the society in which it’s created.  Or they can dive into political theory with AP Government and Politics.

Students interested in current events can study current events in real time, using their classroom work to understand–and shape–the shifting political and policy environment in which they live.  They learn to be informed and responsible citizens, and to gather reliable information before forming judgments.  They learn about the inner workings of parties, lobbies, and how citizen groups can affect those in power.  Those whose passion skews international can study political science and the different systems of government in Great Britain, Russia, China, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, and the European Union (E.U.).

Students interested in psychology can learn about the powerful forces that motivate and inhibit us through case studies.  Whether studying memory, marshmallows, prison, or dolls, they continually explore the human mind, and how psychology has redirected public policy, and the cultural impact of this important discipline.

Faculty

Gara Field

Interim Head of Upper School/Dir. of Global Education

About

Gara Field

University of Hartford – B.A.
University of Hartford – M.A.
Harvard University – M.Ed.
University of Connecticut – Ph.D.

Beth Lantz

Director of Student Life

About

Beth Lantz

College of the Holy Cross – B.A.
Simmons College – M.A.
Framingham State University – M.Ed.

Elena Mansolillo

Upper School Humanities

About

Elena Mansolillo

Providence College – B.A.
Providence College – M.A.
Southern New England School of Law – J.D.

Sarah McShane

Associate Director of Athletics

About

Sarah McShane

University of Hartford – B.A.
Plymouth State University – M.Ed.

Jonathan Pitts-Wiley

Upper School Humanities and Upper School Humanities Department Chair

About

Jonathan Pitts-Wiley

Yale University – B.A.

Kelena Reid

Upper School History and Psychology

About

Kelena Reid

Wesleyan University – B.A.
Harvard Divinity School – M.T.S.
Rutgers University – Ph.D.

Jennifer Stewart

Upper School Humanities and Senior Dean

About

Jennifer Stewart

University of Chicago – B.A.
University of Chicago – M.A.

Kelly Joseph

Upper School Humanities

About

Kelly Joseph

College of the Holy Cross – B.A.
New York University – M.A.

Barbara von Salis

Director of Friends Education

About

Barbara von Salis

Smith College – B.A.
Hunter College – M.A.

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