“The Twilight of the Gods: Ragnarök and the Apocalyptic Tradition,” Harvard
Harvard has a freshman seminar on the apocalyptic tradition, starting with the Nordic end of the world, Ragnarök, and moving to its current appropriations, for instance, in Viking metal, as well as more-contemporary apocalyptic myths such as Y2K and 2012. At Arcadia University, Kathleen Pearle acknowledges that if there is one thing that is not going to end until the world does, it is people proclaiming the end of the world. Her history class, “Apocalypse: The End of Days, Yet Again?,” looks at the transformation and commercialization of apocalyptic images and culminates in a Last Supper.
Clark University has a course looking at the depiction of cities in science fiction. MIT’s Utopia/Dystopia encourages students to harness the passion inspired by utopian and dystopic visions for good. “Writing on social issues, we can see ourselves within a tradition of authors such as Charles Dickens, Frederick Douglass, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, George Orwell, Rachel Carson, John F. Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr., who have used the power of the pen to inspire social change.”