Course Offerings

Course Offerings Fall 2021

Course

 

Title

Cr

Time/Place

Instructor

050:101:01

 

Introduction to American Studies

Introduces students to the interdisciplinary field of American Studies. Employing literature, legal studies, film, history, visual culture, philosophy, and politics, the class will examine the concept and idea of America in its global, national, community, and bodily/psychic permutations. We will explore key themes from the past such as American exceptionalism, manifest destiny, and the search for equality and examine how these ideas have both changed and persisted as part of a national culture and identity.

SAS Core Curriculum Goals: AHo or AHp

3

T

1:00-2:20pm

SC 123 

CAC

Hybrid

Isaac

050:102:01

 

Introduction to Race/Ethnicity

Addresses issues of race and ethnicity, primarily in the United States, but also beyond. Students will explore histories of race, ethnicity, and racism in the U.S. through literature, politics, popular culture, digital media, and scholarly texts. We will explore the impact of legacies of enslavement and anti blackness, settler colonialism, orientalism, immigration, exclusion, and nationalism in our contemporary moment, alongside considerations of how race shapes identity, cultural, and political formation.

SAS Core Curriculum Goals: CCDEligible for CCRES Minor

SAS Core Curriculum Goals: CCD

3

M/W

3:00-4:20pm

HCK 119, CD

Chan-Malik

050:200:01

 

Topics:

Crosslisted with: 01:590:299:01, 01:595:299:01

3

H

7:00-8:20pm

BE 250, LIV

Rosado

050:227:01

 

19th Century American Literature and Culture

This course introduces students to American literature and culture from the long-nineteenth century (1783 to 1918). Topics that this course will explore include: the origins of American nationalism in the aftermath of the Revolution, and the struggle for cultural authority; the emergence of middle-class domesticity, the market economy, and urban and town life; the search for a distinct and “authentic” American literature; evangelical Protestantism and anti-Catholic nativism; race and the problem of slavery; westward expansion, overseas imperialism, and the displacement and removal of indigenous peoples; the rise of industrialism; American Romanticism, Gothic, and social realism; and, the rise of mass entertainment and popular culture.

We will focus on literary sources such as novels, poetry, autobiographical writings, and journalism, as well as cultural texts such as songs, paintings, sculpture, theater, and vaudeville. To contextualize these sources, we will read scholarly sources that interpret the social and political meanings of nineteenth-century cultural production and how works of culture were received and consumed by the public. Finally, we will also explore how writers and filmmakers from the present and recent past have sought to recreate the nineteenth century in period pieces and works of historical fiction.

3

T
1:00-4:00pm

HSB 106, CD

Urban

050:228:01

 

The Contemporary American

What is important in contemporary American culture?  This fall marks the 20th anniversary of the attacks of September 11, 2001.  In this course, we pause to remember those terrorist attacks, a day of infamy that remains all too vivid and recent in the minds of those who witnessed it.  We honor the nearly 3,000 Americans killed in coordinated attacks upon the World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan, the Pentagon in northern Virginia, and in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where a hijacked airplane crashed before in could reach its target in the nation’s capital. We will examine the cultural influence of those attacks, which has been profound and long lasting. This examination will focus on the Global War on Terror, with special reference to the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Eligible for CCRES Minor

SAS Core Curriculum Goals: AHp, SCL (h,m,p)

3

M/H

11:00-12:20pm

FOR 138B, CD

Gillespie

050:240:01

 

Latino Literature and Culture

SAS Core Curriculum Goals: AHo, WCr

Eligible for CCRES Minor

Crosslisted with: 01:595:240:01

3

T/H

5:00-6:20pm

LSH B267, LIV

Sifuentes-Jauregui

050:245:90  

Asian American Experience

Thorough a variety of genres,including history, literature, film and popular culture, interrogate the   fluid identity categories, the dynamic and diverse experiences, cultures, and   politics of “Asian American”/ “Asian Pacific American”/ “Asian Pacific   Islander American” peoples in the United States.

Crosslisted with: 01:098:262:01

3

M/W

5:00-6:20pm

TBA

Ramsamy

050:259:01

 

Popular Culture

Popular culture is a central part of everyday life for many Americans. This class explores the history and current dynamics of American popular culture. We will analyze and discuss a wide array of movies, music, songs, literature, and sports in an effort to understand what makes popular culture popular, how it works (or does not work) in society, what kinds of meaning it generates, and how it is received by audiences.  We will take a historical survey from about 1830 to the present.  We will pay close attention to matters of race, gender, class, technology, and politics.  We will explore the complex ways in which popular culture simultaneously reflects and transforms American culture, revealing that the world of entertainment constantly evolves as it tries to meet the demands of a diverse audience.

SAS Core Curriculum Goals: AHo AHp 

3

M/W

3:00-4:20pm

HSB 206, CD

Gillespie

050:263:01

 

American Folklore

This course provides an introduction to American folklore as the lore, values, ideas, and world views of Americans found in folk or community life, folk speech, words, signs and symbols, tools and decorative objects, music and other expressive forms. We will study several specific forms in which American folklore appears including the appearance of strange animals and the widespread belief in conspiracy theories. We then attempt to relate these phenomena to the greater American society and culture.

SAS Core Curriculum Goals: AHo or AHp

3

T/H

3:00-4:20pm

FS 101, CD

Kennedy

050:265:01

 

American Experience Film & Video

Survey on the history and development of the various American experimental cinema movements from its beginnings to the present. In-depth analyses of the structure and content of films by Andy Warhol, Maya Deren, Stan Brakhage, Sidney Peterson, Kenneth Anger, Bruce Baillie, Yoko Ono, and others. Emphasis on the "mise-en-scene," editing, narrative form, sound, and special effects in the films of these celebrated experimental filmmakers. Warning: some films may contain nudity, sexual situations, violence, profanity, substance abuse, and disturbing images.

Crosslisted with: 01:175:265:01

3

T/H

5:00-6:20pm

TBA

Nigrin

050:272:01

 

American Food, Past and Present

American food has been formed by the collision of people, animals, plants, recipes, and flavors from all over the globe. A history of encounters between Native Americans, enslaved Africans, and immigrants from around the world created a diverse and varied national cuisine, including cross-cultural fusion foods like Korean tacos. But these exchanges have also been the sites of inequality and oppression: from enslavement on sugar plantations in early America, to the brutal working conditions facing undocumented migrant food workers today. By moving chronologically through American food history, this course will introduce students to the contexts surrounding contemporary American food culture, including immigration, race, gender, Indigeneity, globalization, industrialization, and policy.

3

M/W

1:00-2:20pm

HCK 211, CD

Cevasco

050:281:01

 

Topics:

1.5

F

1:00-2:20pm

BE 219, LIV

Yoon

050:283:MA

 

Topics: Arts Adventure (10/20 – 12/13)

Visits to museums, galleries, and arts centers in New Jersey (New Brunswick, Princeton, etc.) and New York City, as well as Off-Broadway theatre, dance, music, and poetry readings to experience differing artistic forms. How do the aesthetic values of one art discipline (for example, painting) influence the creation of works in another artistic field (such as music or theatre)? We will examine how social events are depicted in the arts, how the arts shape social values, and how the arts are interpreted by different social groupings. We will also consider the human figure in artistic representation, as well as the body as an expressive vehicle.

3

Su

12:20-3:20pm

SC 202, CAC

Appels

050:283:MB

 

Topics: Arts Adventure (10/20 – 12/13)

Visits to museums, galleries, and arts centers in New Jersey (New Brunswick, Princeton, etc.) and New York City, as well as Off-Broadway theatre, dance, music, and poetry readings to experience differing artistic forms. How do the aesthetic values of one art discipline (for example, painting) influence the creation of works in another artistic field (such as music or theatre)? We will examine how social events are depicted in the arts, how the arts shape social values, and how the arts are interpreted by different social groupings. We will also consider the human figure in artistic representation, as well as the body as an expressive vehicle.

3

Su

3:30-6:30pm

SC 202, CAC

Appels

050:314:01

 

Tech Music Culture

Cultural responses to the growth and elaboration of American technology as reflected in literature, art, and popular culture. We will look at new art forms that have been created through new technologies, as well as the ways that traditional art disciplines (theatre, music, dance, painting, sculpture, architecture, etc.) have been shaped by differing forms of technology in distinct centuries and cultures. How is personal expression enhanced (or limited) with varying forms of technology?

3

H

5:00-8:00pm

SC 116, CAC

Appels

050:316:01

 

21st Century Expression: On and Off the Net

Can you imagine life without the internet? In spite of the seeming ubiquity of the so called “internet of things,” over half the global population does not have reliable internet access. In other words, half of the world is “offline.” This course will examine the implications of this digital divide—especially in light of the current global pandemic. We’ll explore how the carryover of mass media from older forms migrates onto the internet and the emerging ways by which forms of expression, by both individuals and groups, form new communities and new identities. Finally, we’ll consider how human interaction with new forms of technology impacts the future. These issues are fundamental to understanding differences among various groups (classes, ethnicities, genders, religions, generations, and more) and how people navigate information literacy in the 21st Century. Students are expected to show proficiency in research, reading, and writing. For our purposes, writing will include not only traditional academic essays, but online forms of expression including videos, audio, and social media.

Core Curriculum Requirements: CCO and AHp

3

M/W

3:00-4:20pm

SC 114, CAC

Moomjy

050:322:01

 

Science Fiction Film

This course surveys the science fiction genre in the history of American cinema. Our focus will be on the range of ways in which science fiction has been called upon to think through questions about the changing landscapes of science and technology and their relations to such topics as labor, class, race, and gender in both American culture and the cinema. The sci-fi genre experiences intense popularity during periods of significant techno-scientific transformation—from the electrification of the United States in the late 19th century to the computerization of life in the late 20th—which in turn fueled innovations in the science and technology of motion pictures. These exchanges between film and culture make the sci-fi film a particularly rich space for experimenting with the real and imagined impacts of cycles of innovation. Drawing on the history of science, art history, literature, and film theory, we will approach science fiction in American cinema, not simply as a future-oriented and quite fanciful genre, but as a profound and illuminating mode for teaching audiences about what the cinema is, how moving images work, and how the nature of techno-scientific innovation bears on enduring concerns about what it means to be human.

Crosslisted with: 01:175:322:01

4

M/H

11:00-12:20pm

MU 301, CAC

H

1:00-4:00pm

RAB 001, CD

Williamson

050:324:01

 

Wayward Americans

Wayward Americans – or – Who’s Normal Anyway? An examination of individuals and groups, those who might be categorized as “wayward” Americans, allows us to explore various normal/abnormal dichotomies within American culture. How do we determine who or what is normal? Do norms remain constant over time and place? How is normalcy measured? And by whom? How important is context – geographic location, social and cultural background, age, gender, race, ethnicity, and religion – when determining normalcy? As we examine groups that have been described as different, weird, deviant, strange, abnormal, disobedient or unnatural, we will seek to understand the historical, sociological and psychological underpinnings of the cultural norms, from which these groups are/were excluded.

3

M/W

9:00-10:20am

RAB 206, CD

Zemla

           
           

050:380:01

 

Internship in American Studies

Open to Majors/Minors doing an internship with an American Studies professor as a mentor.

3

   

050:389:01

 

Junior Seminar: Law, Courts, Justice

This course will be an interdisciplinary introduction to the American legal system. We will talk about crime and punishment, legal advocacy, constitutional rights, the citizen’s role in the legal process, law and social power, race, gender, and family. We will do so, primarily, by studying individuals or communities who become caught up—for good or ill—in some sort of legal process or investigation. Reading assignments and films will help each student develop a research proposal, bibliography, and eventual term paper on a topic of her or his choosing, within the broader subject of law, courts, and justice in the United States.

3

T

5:00-8:00pm

RAB 209A, CD

Decker

050:449:01

 

Principles of Folk Festival Management

Folk Festival Management and Principles of Folk Festival Management are a sequence of courses that prepare students to assist in running the New Jersey Folk Festival, an annual event that draws 15,000 people during Rutgers Day. In these courses, students learn about public humanities and heritage issues, non-profit event management, and contribute to the real work of festival production. Participation in the class sequence is by application.

Must apply for course during the Spring semester. For more information, contact NJFF Director Prof. Maria Kennedy.

1.5

M

5:00-8:00pm

RAB 110B

Kennedy

 

Off-Campus Courses

Course

Title

Cr

Time/Place

Instructor

050:240:90

Latino Literature and Culture

Crosslisted with: 01:595:240:90

3

TBA

Zamora

050:246:90

The Black Experience in America

Offers an inter-disciplinary examination of the Black experience in the US focusing of the themes of acculturation, alienation, oppression and resistance. While the course surveys the Black experience from slavery to the present, the subject matter is not approached in a simple chronological manner. Issues and individuals discussed in the context of the struggle of African-Americans for political rights, economic justice and cultural accommodation. Begins with a brief look of the position of Africa and the fledgling United States in the emerging international economic order of the 15th and 16th centuries and how the enslavement of Africans related to economic and political processes of this era. Proceeds to examine the institutionalization of slavery in the United States and the subsequent struggles for emancipation. Attempts by African-Americans to gain socio-cultural equality and political and economic rights in the aftermath of the slave experience.

Eligible for CCRES Minor

Crosslisted with: 01:014:203:90

3

TBA

Westbrook

050:260:90

On the Road: Mobility in America

3

W

1:00-4:00pm

TBA

Backes

050:306:90

American Detective Fiction and Film

The detective, as a preeminent figure in all forms of American popular culture, has become the subject of a variety of theoretical exploration. By investigating that figure, this class will explore how the genre embodies all the contradictions of American society and the ways in which literature and the media attempt to handle those contradictions. Issues of class, gender, and race; the interaction of film and literature; and generic evolution are fundamental to any understanding of the American detective in all of his or her forms.

Crime Fiction and Film flourished in the 20th Century.  The genre birthed great masterpieces, haunting memoirs, the urban experience novel, and what is commonly (and now fashionably) known as “Pimp Lit.”  These crime narratives have influenced, provoked and inspired subsequent generations and reached beyond the world of books into cinema, TV, popular music, and society-at-large.  While offering the action and thrills demanded of the crime genre, these texts also importantly give first-hand ethnographic ‘ground-zero’ accounts of lifestyles and communities extra to the mainstream.  What is the intersection of crime, poverty, lack of education, and drugs? What are the responsibility and burdens of first responders? Is our legal system just? How is prison reform possible? What are values of public education? This class will explore and celebrate Crime Fiction and Film while also examining historical legal cases, decisions and transcript that present a historical narrative parallel to the fictional development of the genre. Together, the class will seek to understand what these works says about identity, economy, politics, gender and race relations within the United States of America.

3

TBA

McElhinney

050:302:90

Topics in American Studies

Crosslisted with: 01:014:301:90

3

W

5:00-8:00pm

TBA

Grier

050:310:90

Approaches to American Studies

3

TBA

Backes

050:317:80

Law and American Culture

3

H

4:20-5:40pm

AMC

Hybrid

Furman

         

050:342:90

American Sexuality

Class will be fully online. Will go “Live” first week.

3

Online

McElhinney

050:389:90

Junior Seminar

Class will be fully online. Will go “Live” first week.

3

Online

Backes