City Renter University: The Best Fictional Choice in Renter Education (Part II)

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Imagine there's a fictional university dedicated to renter education located right here in Chicago. Its name is City Renter University. Within this university, there are many different departments, professors, and courses.

In January, I shared a list of fictional course descriptions offered by the Department of Apartment Hunting (DAH).

Of course, not every student wants to focus on apartment hunting. Some have their eyes on the bigger picture, and know that once you find the apartment you have to actually move into it. Good for them!

For these students (and for all of you out there), I'd like to introduce another department in this college: The Department of Moving and Disagreement (MAD). Their course offerings on the City Renter University website might look something like this:

The Department of Moving and Disagreement

With great history and tradition, The Department of Moving and Disagreement (MAD) welcomes our students. Our program features one of the smallest student-to-furniture ratios in the country. The many opportunities to interact face-to-sweaty-face with our outstanding faculty allows our students to grow as movers and sharpen their skills at arguing about “the best way to get it around that corner.” Below you will find courses offered for First Term 2016.

MAD 102 – Foundations of the Moving Lexicon

This introduction to the language of moving allows students to develop, disseminate, and integrate the concepts of the diverse dialects, speech communities, and guttural sounds of the moving process. Students will learn the cultural contexts in which yelling “Turn it TOWARDS me” actually means “Turn it AWAY from me.”

MAD 105 – Digital Liberty and Setting Things Down

An examination of the conflict between fingers, toes, and the state power of heavy objects that seek to crush and imprison them. In MAD 105, students will analyze the compelling ethical questions behind the individual's surrender to the force of weight and the conditions and circumstances under which not dropping an object may qualify as torture.

MAD 204 – Motivation, Paint Fumes, and the Brain

This course focuses on the analysis of motivated behaviors (e.g. putting that chair in the corner) and the neural and cognitive processes that influence such behavior in a freshly painted apartment. Some field work is necessary. Field discussions may include lack of inhibition, brief mild euphoria, and increased hostility due to headache.

MAD 217 – The Unwilling Helper: Studies in Persuasion

Students will explore the best means to persuade an unwilling individual to participate in the moving process, paying special attention to bribery, shaming, and coercion. Course activities will include critiques of presentation techniques and the study of body language to determine the likely validity or falsity of excuses.

MAD 335 – Patterns and Cultural Identity in Box Labeling

This course reflects upon the consequences of faster and clearer labels on moving society, with an emphasis on the political and economic migration of those boxes marked with contents and destination rooms. Course participants will be required to make and wear their own "content" and "destination" labels for the duration of the term. Students labeled "fragile" may be dropped.

MAD 370 – Not Heavy but Awkward: Dance in Moving Society

Students will research the effect of improvisational and experimental movement as art, exploring themes such as originality, authenticity, and the methods through which different moving societies negotiate the cruelty of narrow stairways.

MAD 398 – Professional Moving Field Experience (12 weeks)

CRU lifting straps are available in the University Bookstore.


Do you know someone who would make a great student at CRU? How about potential instructors? Do you have an idea for a great course of study at CRU? Share it with us in the comments!

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Published by

Jon Hoferle