Mail Code: 94305-2022
Phone: (650) 723-3413; (650) 725-1477
Web Site: http://amstudies.stanford.edu
Mission of the Undergraduate Program in American Studies
The mission of the undergraduate program in American Studies is to provide students with a broad understanding of American culture and society. Building on a foundation of courses in history and institutions, literature and the arts, and race and ethnicity, students learn to analyze and interpret America's past and present, forging fresh and creative syntheses along the way. The program is an interdisciplinary major and, beyond the core requirements of the major, students may define and pursue their own interests from fields such as history, literature, art, communication, theater, African American studies, feminist, gender & sexuality studies, economics, anthropology, religious studies, Chicana/o-Latina/o studies, law, sociology, education, Native American studies, music, and film. The program is designed to provide students majoring in American Studies with excellent preparation for further study in graduate or professional schools as well as careers in government, business, journalism, entertainment, public service, the arts, and other fields.
Learning Outcomes (Undergraduate)
The program expects undergraduate majors to be able to demonstrate the following learning outcomes. These learning outcomes are used in evaluating students and the undergraduate program. Students are expected to demonstrate:
ability to think about American culture and society in sophisticated, interdisciplinary, historically-informed ways, drawing on coursework in: history and institutions; literature, art, and culture; comparative race and ethnicity; and each student's individualized thematic focus
ability to identify and critically to assess different disciplinary, methodological, and interpretive approaches to the study of Americans and their past
ability to produce their own persuasive, nuanced, fact-based interpretations reflecting a close critical reading and analysis of relevant primary or secondary sources
ability to express their interpretive and analytical arguments in clear, effective prose.
ability to listen actively and to contribute to productive intellectual discussion in class
Bachelor of Arts in American Studies
The Program in American Studies offers a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies. Eligible students may also pursue a Bachelor of Arts with Honors. The department also offers a minor in American Studies.
The core requirements illustrate how different disciplines approach the study and interpretation of American life and include three courses in each of two main areas: history and institutions; and literature, culture, and the arts. One additional course in comparative race and ethnicity is also required. The required gateway seminar, AMSTUD 160 Perspectives on American Identity, explores the tensions between commonality and difference from a variety of disciplinary perspectives.
Beyond the core requirements of the major, American Studies expects students to define and pursue their own interests in interpreting dimensions of American life. Accordingly, each student designs a thematic concentration of at least five courses drawn from fields such as history, literature, art, communication, theater, political science, African American studies, feminist, gender, and sexuality studies, economics, anthropology, religious studies, Chicana/o-Latina/o studies, law, sociology, education, Native American studies, music, and film. At least one of the five courses in a student's thematic concentration should be an approved advanced seminar. With program approval, students may conclude the major with an honors research project during their senior year.
Whether defined broadly or narrowly, the thematic focus or concentration should examine its subject from the vantage of multiple disciplines. Examples of concentrations include: race and the law in America; gender in American culture and society; technology in American life and thought; health policy in America; art and culture in 19th-century America; education in America; nature and the environment in American culture; politics and the media; religion in American life; borders and boundaries in American culture; the artist in American society; and civil rights in America.
How to Declare the Major
To be approved as a major, students must meet with the Director or a program coordinator to review their study plan prior to declaring in Axess.
Completion of the major thus normally requires 13 courses (totaling at least 60 units), all of which must be taken for a letter grade. Not all courses are offered each year; students should consult ExploreCourses for scheduling information for the current academic year.
|1. Gateway Seminar and WIM Course|
|AMSTUD 160||Perspectives on American Identity (WIM course for American Studies)||5|
|2. History and Institutions|
|Majors are required to complete three courses in American History and Institutions.|
|AMSTUD/HISTORY 150A||Colonial and Revolutionary America||5|
|AMSTUD/HISTORY 150B||Nineteenth Century America||5|
|Select one of the following:||3-5|
|Madwomen and Madmen: Gender and the History of Mental Illness in the U.S.|
|Exploring American Religious History|
|America at Play: A History of Leisure in the United States|
|Introduction to Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies|
|The Fourth "R": Religion and American Schools|
|Political Power in American Cities|
|Introduction to American Politics and Policy: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly|
|The American West|
|Perspectives on American Journalism|
|In Sickness and In Health: Medicine and Society in the United States: 1800-Present|
|Deliberative Democracy and its Critics|
|The Dialogue of Democracy|
|The United States in the Twentieth Century|
|The White Supremacist Constitution: American Constitutional History|
|Women and Medicine in US History: Women as Patients, Healers and Doctors|
|(not offered this year)|
|From Freedom to Freedom Now: African American History, 1865-1965|
|Introduction to American Law|
|History of Education in the United States|
|Education, Race, and Inequality in African American History, 1880-1990|
|(not offered this year)|
|(not offered this year)|
|(not offered this year)|
|American Jewish History: Learning to be Jewish in America|
|Church, State, & Schools: Issues in Education & Religion|
|3. Literature, Culture, and the Arts|
|Majors are required to take a minimum of three courses in literature, culture, and the arts, broadly understood.|
|At least one course focusing on the period before the Civil War, normally:|
|AMSTUD 150/ENGLISH 11B||Introduction to English II: American Literature and Culture to 1855||5|
|Select two of the following, including at least one course outside of literature that emphasizes art, drama, film, music, translation studies, or culture from a different disciplinary or interpretive perspective.||6-10|
|Media, Culture, and Society|
|The American Songbook and Love Poetry|
|Introduction to English III: Introduction to African American Literature|
|African American Autobiography|
|10 American Photographs|
|Mark Twain and American Culture|
|American Short Stories|
|Art and Social Criticism|
|Introduction to American Art|
|Law and Popular Culture|
|Asian American Film and Popular Culture|
|Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Contemporary American Film|
|Science Fiction: Cyborgs & Human Simulacra in the Cinema|
|The Rise of Digital Culture|
|American Literature, 1855 to World War I|
|The American West|
|Perspectives on American Journalism|
|The Lost Generation: American literature between the World Wars|
|American Style and the Rhetoric of Fashion|
|Animation and the Animated Film|
|American Art and Culture, 1528-1910|
|Technology and American Visual Culture|
|The Western: Imagining the West in Fiction and Film|
|American Women Writers, 1850-1920|
|Starstuff: Space and the American Imagination|
|Jewish American Literature and Film|
|Migration and Diaspora in American Art, 1800-Present|
|The JFK Era and American Literature|
|Abstract Expressionism: Painting/Modern/America|
|American Photographs, 1839-1971: A Cultural History|
|Re- Imagining American Borders|
|Being John Wayne|
|Curating Experience: Representation in and beyond Museums|
|Baldwin and Hansberry: The Myriad Meanings of Love|
|African American Literature and the Retreat of Jim Crow|
|Race in American Memory|
|4. Comparative Race and Ethnicity|
|Majors are required to take one course that focuses on the comparative study of race and ethnicity rather than a single racial or ethnic group.||3-5|
|Choose one from the following list:|
|Introduction to English III: Introduction to African American Literature|
|Comparative Fictions of Ethnicity|
|African American Autobiography|
|American Landscapes of Segregation|
|(no longer offered)|
|Asian American Film and Popular Culture|
|Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Contemporary American Film|
|(no longer offered)|
|Solidarity and Racial Justice|
|Language as Political Tool: Feminist and LGBTQ Movements and Impacts|
|Ethnicity and Dissent in United States Art and Literature|
|Re- Imagining American Borders|
|Education, Race, and Inequality in African American History, 1880-1990|
|Race and Racism in American Politics|
|Constructing Race and Religion in America|
|(not offered this year)|
|African American Literature and the Retreat of Jim Crow|
|The Urban Underclass|
|Race in American Memory|
|5. Concentration and Capstone Seminar||3-5|
|Students must design a thematic concentration of at least five courses, with the help of faculty advisors. The courses, taken together, must give the student in-depth knowledge and understanding of a coherent topic in American cultures, history, and institutions.|
|See course list below.|
Concentration and Capstone Seminar
Students must design a thematic concentration of at least five courses, with the help of faculty advisors. The courses, taken together, must give the student in-depth knowledge and understanding of a coherent topic in American cultures, history, and institutions. Thematic concentrations should be approved by the end of the registration period of the Autumn Quarter of the junior year, if at all possible. Sample thematic concentrations and courses that allow a student to explore them are available in the American Studies Office in Building 460.
At least one of the courses in the concentration must be an advanced seminar (approved by the advisor) designated as the capstone seminar and must require a substantial research paper. This paper must be filed with the program office prior to degree conferral. An honors project, or an independent study course with a faculty member culminating in a research paper, may also fulfill this requirement with the Director's approval.
Students may choose, but are not limited to, selections for their thematic concentrations from the following list of suggested courses:
|AFRICAAM 105||Black Matters: Introduction to Black Studies||5|
|ANTHRO 82||Medical Anthropology||5|
|CHILATST 14N||Growing Up Bilingual||3|
|CHILATST 125S||Chicano/Latino Politics||5|
|CHILATST 201B||The Undocumented Migration Project Exhibition at Stanford||3|
|COMM 116||Journalism Law||5|
|COMM 125||Perspectives on American Journalism||5|
|COMM 162||Campaigns, Voting, Media, and Elections||5|
|CSRE 45Q||Understanding Race and Ethnicity in American Society||4|
|CSRE 103B||Race, Ethnicity, and Linguistic Diversity in Classrooms: Sociocultural Theory and Practices||3-5|
|CSRE 245||Understanding Racial and Ethnic Identity Development||3-5|
|ECON 155||Environmental Economics and Policy||5|
|ECON 157||Imperfect Competition||5|
|EDUC 102||Examining Social Structures, Power, and Educational Access||2-4|
|EDUC 216||Education, Race, and Inequality in African American History, 1880-1990||3-5|
|EDUC 277||Education of Immigrant Students: Psychological Perspectives||4|
|HISTORY 60N||Revolutionaries and Founders||3|
|HISTORY 166B||Immigration Debates in America, Past and Present||3-5|
|HUMBIO 120||Health Care in America: An Introduction to U.S. Health Policy||4|
|HUMBIO 120A||American Health Policy||3|
|HUMBIO 121E||Ethnicity and Medicine||1-3|
|HUMBIO 122S||Social Class, Race, Ethnicity, and Health||4|
|HUMBIO 123||(not offered this year)||3-4|
|HUMBIO 125||Current Topics and Controversies in Women's Health||2-3|
|HUMBIO 166||Food and Society: Exploring Eating Behaviors in Social, Environmental, and Policy Context||4|
|INTNLREL 140C||The U.S., U.N. Peacekeeping, and Humanitarian War||5|
|MUSIC 8A||Rock, Sex, and Rebellion||3|
|MUSIC 18A||Jazz History: Ragtime to Bebop, 1900-1940||3|
|MUSIC 18B||Jazz History: Bebop to Present, 1940-Present||3|
|MUSIC 34N||Performing America: The Broadway Musical||3|
|MUSIC 147K||Studies in Music, Media, and Popular Culture: Music and Urban Film||3-4|
|NATIVEAM 103S||Gender in Native American Societies||5|
|NATIVEAM 115||Introduction to Native American History||5|
|NATIVEAM 240||Psychology and American Indian/Alaska Native Mental Health||3-5|
|POLISCI 110X||America and the World Economy||5|
|POLISCI 118P||U.S. Relations with Iran||5|
|POLISCI 120B||Campaigns, Voting, Media, and Elections||5|
|POLISCI 120C||American Political Institutions in Uncertain Times||5|
|POLISCI 121||Political Power in American Cities||5|
|POLISCI 213S||(no longer offered)||5|
|POLISCI 225C||Fixing US Politics: Political Reform in Principle and Practice||5|
|PUBLPOL 101||Introduction to American Politics and Policy: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly||5|
|PUBLPOL 132||The Politics of Policy Making||3|
|PUBLPOL 135||Regional Politics and Decision Making in Silicon Valley and the Greater Bay Area||4|
|PUBLPOL 154||Politics and Policy in California||5|
|PUBLPOL 156||Health Care Policy and Reform||5|
|SOC 135||Poverty, Inequality, and Social Policy in the United States||3-4|
|SOC 118||Social Movements and Collective Action||4|
|SOC 142||Sociology of Gender||3|
To graduate with honors, American Studies majors must complete a senior thesis and have an overall grade point average of at least 3.5 in the major, or demonstrated academic competence.
Students applying must secure a thesis advisor, a Stanford faculty member who is willing and available to direct the thesis project through the ensuing year. Having a confirmed thesis advisor is required for final approval to pursue an honors project. Students also need to secure a second reader for the honors thesis no later than the start of Winter Quarter of senior year.
Along with the application form signed by the thesis advisor, a 3-5 page proposal describing the thesis project and including a preliminary bibliography is due to the program office by June 1 of Spring Quarter of the student’s junior year. The program may approve the application and proposal or request that the student resubmit with revisions.
Students pursuing honors must enroll in AMSTUD 199A, AMSTUD 199B, and AMSTUD 199C American Studies Honors Seminar during the Autumn, Winter, and Spring quarters of their senior year, respectively. They must also enroll in AMSTUD 250 Senior Research with their thesis advisor during the senior year. The total units between AMSTUD 199A/B/C and AMSTUD 250 should equal 10-15. These units are in addition to the 60 units required for the major and must be taken for a letter grade. For students pursuing honors during the 2020-21 Academic Year, please work with our honors program coordinator, Elizabeth Kessler, regarding flexibility in meeting honors program requirements due to student leaves of absence.
|Students pursuing honors must enroll in:||10-15|
|American Studies Honors Seminar (Autumn Quarter)|
|American Studies Honors Seminar (Winter Quarter)|
|American Studies Honors Seminar (Spring Quarter)|
The finished essay is due in mid-May (typically May 15) of the senior year. The senior honors experience culminates in Honors Thesis Presentations in May of senior year.
Honors info sessions are offered during Winter and Spring quarters of junior year. Students interested in honors are encouraged to attend. More information about American Studies honors is available from the program office.
Minor in American Studies
To earn a minor in American Studies, students must complete at least 28 units of course work in the program. Because students may not count courses for both a major and a minor, the specific courses that are used for an American Studies minor depend on the courses that are used to satisfy the major requirement.
A student must take the following:
|AMSTUD 160||Perspectives on American Identity (The gateway seminar)||5|
|at least 2 courses from category 2 (History and Institutions)||6-10|
|at least 2 courses from category 3 (Literature, Culture and the Arts)||6-10|
|at least 1 course from category 4 (Comparative Race and Ethnicity)||3-5|
If the units for these requirements do not total 28, the student must take additional coursework, appropriate to American Studies and approved by the Director or one of the Program Coordinators, to meet the minimum unit requirement. Courses used to satisfy all units taken for the minor must be taken for a letter grade.
On July 30, the Academic Senate adopted grading policies effective for all undergraduate and graduate programs, excepting the professional Graduate School of Business, School of Law, and the School of Medicine M.D. Program. For a complete list of those and other academic policies relating to the pandemic, see the "COVID-19 and Academic Continuity" section of this bulletin.
The Senate decided that all undergraduate and graduate courses offered for a letter grade must also offer students the option of taking the course for a “credit” or “no credit” grade and recommended that deans, departments, and programs consider adopting local policies to count courses taken for a “credit” or “satisfactory” grade toward the fulfillment of degree-program requirements and/or alter program requirements as appropriate.
Undergraduate Degree Requirements
American Studies counts all courses taken in academic year 2020-21 with a grade of 'CR' (credit) or 'S' (satisfactory) towards satisfaction of undergraduate degree requirements that otherwise require a letter grade.
Other Undergraduate Policies
The American Studies Honors Program will consider flexibility in meeting program requirements on a case-by-case basis.
Director: Shelley Fisher Fishkin (Spring; on leave Autumn, Winter)
Acting Director: Judith Richardson (Autumn, Winter)
Director of Undergraduate Studies: Judith Richardson
Program Coordinators: Elizabeth Kessler, Judith Richardson
Lecturers: William Gow
Committee in Charge: Shelley Fisher Fishkin (English, chair, Spring), Judith Richardson (English, chair, Autumn and Winter), Jennifer DeVere Brody (Drama), Scott Bukatman (Art and Art History), Bruce Cain (Political Science), James T. Campbell (History), Gordon H. Chang (History), Michele B. Elam (English), James Fishkin (Communication, and by courtesy, Political Science), Estelle Freedman (History), Jonathan Gienapp (History), William Gow (American Studies), Allyson Hobbs (History), Gavin Jones (English), Ari Kelman (Education), Elizabeth Kessler (American Studies), Charles Kronengold (Music), Marci Kwon (Art and Art History), Kathryn Gin Lum (Religious Studies), Doug McAdam (Sociology), Richard Meyer (Art and Art History), Ana Minian (History), Paula Moya (English), Clayton Nall (Political Science), Alexander Nemerov (Art and Art History), Kathryn Olivarius (History), Vaughn Rasberry (English), Ramón Saldívar (English, Comparative Literature), Fred Turner (Communication), Sam Wineburg (Education), Caroline Winterer (History), Gavin Wright (Economics), Amy Beth Zegart (Hoover Senior Fellow)
AMSTUD 1B. Media, Culture, and Society. 5 Units.
The institutions and practices of mass media, including television, film, radio, and digital media, and their role in shaping culture and social life. The media's shifting relationships to politics, commerce, and identity.
Same as: COMM 1B
AMSTUD 3E. Michelle Obama in American Culture. 1 Unit.
Never before has the United States had a First Lady like Michelle Obama. During her eight years in the White House, Michelle Obama transformed traditional meanings of womanhood, marriage, motherhood, and style and created new possibilities for what it means to be strong and what it means to be beautiful. No First Lady has ever been so scrutinized but also so beloved: from her J. Crew dresses to her Let's Move campaign, from her vegetable gardens to her chiseled arms, and from her powerful speeches to her casual and always authentic personality. This class examines the impact on American culture of the most popular First Lady in American history.
Same as: AFRICAAM 3E, CSRE 3E, FEMGEN 3E, HISTORY 3E
AMSTUD 5I. Hamilton: An American Musical. 1 Unit.
"Hamilton" is one the most popular and most celebrated musicals in American history. It has received 11 Tony Awards, including best musical, and 16 Tony nominations, the most nominations in Broadway history. It won the Pulitzer Prize and a Grammy Award. The musical draws on the language and rhythms of hip-hop and R & B, genres that are underrepresented in the musical theater tradition. "Hamilton" has redefined the American musical, particularly in terms of sound, casting, and storytelling. What explains the deep cultural impact and acclaim for this play?n nThis interdisciplinary course examines Alexander Hamilton and his world as well as Hamilton: An American Musical through a series of lectures from faculty in History, Theater and Performance Studies, English, Music, and Writing and Rhetoric.
Same as: AFRICAAM 5I, CSRE 5I, HISTORY 3G
AMSTUD 10Q. Dystopian California: Imagining the Golden State in Disaster and Science Fiction Film. 3 Units.
Dystopian California examines the ways the Golden State has been popularly imagined both historically as the Land of Promise and more recently as the land of apocalypse in science fiction and disaster films. Through this lens, we¿ll be exploring anxieties articulated through images of natural disaster, environmental degradation, urbanization and urban decay, invasion (both viral and ¿alien¿), societal collapse, overpopulation, and nuclear holocaust ¿ as well as the tenacity of the human spirit. We¿ll be discussing conceptions of survival and the ways these films both articulate societal fears and help to neutralize them. More broadly we will discuss how these films metaphorically address, through the loss of innocence, the possibility of establishing a truly Utopian California ¿ the Golden Land of Opportunity promised to us ¿ that had been unattainable or lost in the melee of postmodernity.
AMSTUD 12A. Introduction to English III: Introduction to African American Literature. 3-5 Units.
In his bold study, What Was African American Literature?, Kenneth Warren defines African American literature as a late nineteenth- to mid-twentieth-century response to the nation's Jim Crow segregated order. But in the aftermath of the Jim Crow era and the Civil Rights movement, can critics still speak, coherently, of "African American literature"? And how does this political conception of African American literary production compare with accounts grounded in black language and culture? Taking up Warren's intervention, this course will explore African American literature from its earliest manifestations in the spirituals and slave narratives to texts composed at the height of desegregation and decolonization struggles at mid-century and beyond. English majors must take this class for 5 units.
Same as: AFRICAAM 43, ENGLISH 12A
AMSTUD 15. Global Flows: The Globalization of Hip Hop Art, Culture, and Politics. 1-2 Unit.
This course consists of film screenings, dialogues, and performances that examine and engage Hip Hop Cultures and artists from around the world. We will explore diverse scenes and artists, from the formation of new musical genres such as hiplife in Ghana, to the impact of the first Hip Hop concert in Morocco, to comparative investigations of race and citizenship in Japan, Cuba, Palestine, France, and the United States (including Black, Mexican and Arab-Americans).
AMSTUD 27Q. Fashion and Photography. 3 Units.
Preference to sophomores. Seminar on the history of 20th and 21st century fashion photographs, with a focus on American examples. Topics include: the relationship of fashion and photography to modernity; interplay between mass consumption and luxury; intersection of art and commerce; the role of designers, photographers, editors, and models; studio v. street photography; and the place of mass media, alternative magazines, and online publications. Photographers covered: Edward Steichen, Louise Dahl-Wolfe, Richard Avedon, Irving Penn, Steven Meisel, and others. Readings on American culture, film, photography, and fashion.
AMSTUD 32. The 5th Element: Hip Hop Knowledge, Pedagogy, and Social Justice. 1-5 Unit.
This course-series brings together leading scholars with critically-acclaimed artists, local teachers, youth, and community organizations to consider the complex relationships between culture, knowledge, pedagogy and social justice. Participants will examine the cultural meaning of knowledge as "the 5th element" of Hip Hop Culture (in addition to MCing, DJing, graffiti, and dance) and how educators and cultural workers have leveraged this knowledge for social justice. Overall, participants will gain a strong theoretical knowledge of culturally relevant and culturally sustaining pedagogies and learn to apply this knowledge by engaging with guest artists, teachers, youth, and community youth arts organizations.
Same as: AFRICAAM 32, CSRE 32A, EDUC 32, EDUC 432, TAPS 32
AMSTUD 41N. Family Drama: American Plays about Families. 3 Units.
Focus on great dramas about family life (Albee, Kushner, Shephard, Vogel, Kron, Nottage, Parks). Communication in writing and speaking about conflict central to learning in this class.
Same as: ENGLISH 41N, TAPS 40N
AMSTUD 41Q. Madwomen and Madmen: Gender and the History of Mental Illness in the U.S.. 3 Units.
This seminar explores the ways that gender and historical context shaped the experience and treatment of mental illness in U.S. history. What is the relationship between historically constructed ideas of femininity and masculinity and madness? Why have women been the witches and hysterics of the past, while men experienced neurasthenia and schizoid conditions? Why have there historically been more women than men among the mentally ill? How has the emotional and psychological suffering of women differed from that of men, and how has it changed over time? Among the sources we use to explore these questions are memoirs and films such as The Three Faces of Eve and One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest. By contrasting the changing ways women and men experienced mental illness and were treated in the past, this seminar will elucidate the historically embedded nature of medical ideas, diagnoses and treatments.
Same as: FEMGEN 41Q
AMSTUD 42Q. Black & White Race Relations in American Fiction & Film. 3-5 Units.
Movies and the fiction that inspires them; power dynamics behind production including historical events, artistic vision, politics, and racial stereotypes. What images of black and white does Hollywood produce to forge a national identity? How do films promote equality between the races? What is lost or gained in film adaptations of books? NOTE: Students must attend the first day; admission to the class will be determined based on an in class essay.
Same as: AFRICAAM 101Q, CSRE 41Q
AMSTUD 43Q. Body Politics: Health Activism in Modern America. 3-5 Units.
¿Medicare for All¿ has become a rallying cry for those calling for reform of the American health care system. But this slogan is only the most recent political expression of the conviction that health care ought to be a right and not a privilege, part of an ongoing project to expand access to health care to all Americans. This course will examine key moments in the history of health care reform movements in the twentieth-century United States, considering the successes and failures of advocates, activists, and reformers who have sought to transform the medical system and secure equal access to care. Among the topics we will consider as we move through the century are proposals for a national health insurance program; the fight against racial discrimination in public health and medicine; the women¿s health movement; the disability rights movement; and efforts of AIDS activists to reshape the production of biomedical knowledge. Students will work throughout the quarter on a research-based project on a topic of interest to them, culminating in a final paper and presentation.
AMSTUD 43X. Starstuff: Space and the American Imagination. 3 Units.
(Same as AMSTUD 143X. Students who wish to take it for 5 units, register for AMSTUD 143X.) Course on the history of twentieth and twenty-first century American images of space and how they shape conceptions of the universe. Covers representations made by scientists and artists, as well as scientific fiction films, TV, and other forms of popular visual culture. Topics will include the importance of aesthetics to understandings of the cosmos; the influence of media and technology on representations; the social, political, and historical context of the images; and the ways representations of space influence notions of American national identity and of cosmic citizenship.
AMSTUD 44Q. Self-Made: Culture, Identity, and Histories of Reinvention in America. 3-5 Units.
From Ben Franklin to Oprah, Americans have triumphantly reinvented their identities, and used these transformations to demonstrate their ingenuity and grit. But the history of personal reinvention in America is far more complicated. In this course we will study the lives of individuals who adopted new identities in response to restrictive political and social conditions. How did these people construct their new identities, and what cultural influences did they use to do so? What did they gain in the process of assuming new identities, and what did they lose?nnCase studies from the 19th and 20th centuries include Ellen and William Craft, an enslaved couple who escaped bondage by pretending that Ellen was already free, and a young African-American musician named John Roland Redd, who found fame as the turban-wearing television host ¿Korla Pandit.¿ Crossing seemingly fixed cultural divisions (race, gender, sexuality, citizenship), these individuals raise compelling questions about the larger political stakes of self-reinvention. How did acts of self-reinvention challenge inequality and oppression? What kinds of systems could not be dismantled through self-reinvention?.
AMSTUD 48N. The American Songbook and Love Poetry. 3 Units.
A study of performances (Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra etc) of songs by classic American composers (Porter, Rogers and Hart, Cohen).
AMSTUD 51Q. Comparative Fictions of Ethnicity. 4 Units.
We may "know" "who" we "are," but we are, after all, social creatures. How does our sense of self interact with those around us? How does literature provide a particular medium for not only self expression, but also for meditations on what goes into the construction of "the Self"? After all, don't we tell stories in response to the question, "who are you"? Besides a list of nouns and names and attributes, we give our lives flesh and blood in telling how we process the world. Our course focuses in particular on this question--Does this universal issue ("who am I") become skewed differently when we add a qualifier before it, like "ethnic"? Note: To be eligible for WAYS credit, you must take course for a Letter Grade.
Same as: COMPLIT 51Q, CSRE 51Q
AMSTUD 53N. African American Autobiography. 3 Units.
Since the publication of slave narratives in the eighteenth century, the genre of autobiography has occupied a unique position in the history of African American literary expression. By studying classic autobiographical narratives by black writers, this course will explore questions about racial inequality and democracy, the individual and society, and writing and freedom, among other topics.
AMSTUD 54Q. African American Women's Lives. 3-4 Units.
Preference to sophomores. African American women have been placed on the periphery of many historical documents. This course will encourage students to think critically about historical sources and to use creative and rigorous historical methods to recover African American women¿s experiences. Drawing largely on primary sources such as letters, personal journals, literature and film, this course explores the everyday lives of African American women in 19th- and 20th-century America. We will begin in our present moment with a discussion of Michelle Obama and then we will look back on the lives and times of a wide range of African American women including: Charlotte Forten Grimké, a 19th-century reformer and teacher; Nella Larsen, a Harlem Renaissance novelist; Josephine Baker, the expatriate entertainer and singer; and Ida B. Wells and Ella Baker, two luminaries of civil rights activism. We will examine the struggles of African American women to define their own lives and improve the social, economic, political and cultural conditions of black communities. Topics will include women¿s enslavement and freedom, kinship and family relations, institution and community building, violence, labor and leisure, changing gender roles, consumer and beauty culture, social activism, and the politics of sexuality.
Same as: AFRICAAM 54Q, FEMGEN 54Q, HISTORY 54Q
AMSTUD 55F. The Civil War and Reconstruction Era, 1830 to 1877. 3-5 Units.
(HISTORY 55F is 3 units; HISTORY 155F is 5 units.)This course explores the causes, course, and consequences of the American Civil War. The Civil War profoundly impacted American life at national, sectional, and constitutional levels, and radically challenged categories of race and citizenship. Topics covered include: the crisis of union and disunion in an expanding republic; slavery, race, and emancipation as national problems and personal experiences; the horrors of total war for individuals and society; and the challenges--social and political--of Reconstruction.
Same as: AFRICAAM 55F, AMSTUD 155F, HISTORY 55F, HISTORY 155F
AMSTUD 57Q. 10 American Photographs. 3 Units.
Preference to sophomores. "The humor, the sadness, the EVERYTHING-ness and American-ness of these pictures!" wrote Jack Kerouac of photographer Robert Frank's iconic collection, The Americans. This seminar takes Kerouac's enthusiasm and applies it to ten American photographs, a new one each week. Examples span the medium's history and were taken as art, science, commerce, journalism, or personal mementos. Close study of the photo of the week will address how it looks and why; its history, from initial responses to later reception; and its relationship to the larger American visual and cultural context. Also under discussion: What story does this set of pictures tell about Americanness? What might another set of photos convey?.
Same as: ARTHIST 57Q
AMSTUD 58Q. American Landscapes of Segregation. 3-4 Units.
This course examines various landscapes of segregation in U.S. history from 19th century reconstruction and settler expansion through the contemporary U.S. security state. Each week we consider different histories of segregation including native reservation and boarding school stories, Jim Crow and post-World War II urban/suburban segregation, school integration and bussing, and the rise of the carceral state. We will ask: How have Americans moved through space with different degrees of freedom and constraint over time, and how has that shaped what it has meant to be an American in different ways for different groups? How has access to land, property, consumer, recreational and educational spaces and resources been regulated by categories of race, gender, sexuality, colonial subjectivity, immigrant status and class? To gain a better sense of our local history, we will also consider how structures of segregation have historically mapped the Bay Area. Sources include primary and secondary historic texts, feature and documentary films, photography, and poetry.
Same as: AFRICAAM 58Q, HISTORY 58Q
AMSTUD 63N. The Feminist Critique: The History and Politics of Gender Equality. 3-4 Units.
This course explores the long history of ideas about gender and equality. Each week we read, dissect, compare, and critique a set of primary historical documents (political and literary) from around the world, moving from the 15th century to the present. We tease out changing arguments about education, the body, sexuality, violence, labor, politics, and the very meaning of gender, and we place feminist critics within national and global political contexts.
Same as: CSRE 63N, FEMGEN 63N, HISTORY 63N
AMSTUD 66. Ten Ways to Study Cars. 1 Unit.
This class is a lunch seminar on the car and auto-mobility in twentieth-century America. We will talk about cars with a guest each week from one of ten disciplines; and topics will range from design and mechanics, to film and literature, the mapping of the United States, a gas dependent economy, social mobility, car collectability, and the history of the driver¿s license. Guests from Design and the Stanford Revs Digital Archive will also attend. Once a week TBD at Noon. Manzanita Seminar Room. Limited Enrollment. Sophomore Priority. One Unit.
AMSTUD 68N. Mark Twain and American Culture. 4 Units.
Preference to freshmen. Mark Twain defined the rhythms of our prose and the contours of our moral map. He recognized our extravagant promise and stunning failures, our comic foibles and tragic flaws. He is viewed as the most American of American authors--and as one of the most universal. How does his work illuminate his society's (and our society's) responses to such issues as race, gender, technology, heredity vs. environment, religion, education, art, imperialism, animal welfare, and what it means to be "American"?.
AMSTUD 73. Mexican Migration to the United States. 3-5 Units.
(HISTORY 73 is 3 units; HISTORY 173 is 5 units.) This course is an introduction to the history of Mexican migration to the United States. Barraged with anti-immigrant rhetoric and calls for bigger walls and more restrictive laws, few people in the United States truly understand the historical trends that shape migratory processes, or the multifaceted role played by both US officials and employers in encouraging Mexicans to migrate north. Moreover, few have actually heard the voices and perspectives of migrants themselves. This course seeks to provide students with the opportunity to place migrants' experiences in dialogue with migratory laws as well as the knowledge to embed current understandings of Latin American migration in their meaningful historical context.
Same as: CHILATST 173, HISTORY 73, HISTORY 173
AMSTUD 75N. American Short Stories. 3 Units.
How and why did the short story take root and flourish in an American context? Early works of classic American literature read alongside stories by women and minority writers, stretching from the early nineteenth century to the contemporary period.
AMSTUD 89. Race, Ethnicity, and Electoral Politics. 4 Units.
This course explores the role that racial and ethnic politics play in American political campaigns and elections. This will include readings that explore the power of ethnoracial voting blocs (e.g. the Black vote and the Latino vote), as well as the challenges and advantages of candidates that are people of color. We will discuss how changing demographics are changing the political landscape, and how candidates and political parties are responding to those changes. This will include, of course, significant attention to ongoing battles at the national (e.g. Trump v. Clinton), state (e.g. Kamala Harris v. Loretta Sanchez), and local levels, most often in California but in other geographic areas as well. We will also explore historic candidacies and elections (e.g. Jesse Jackson) and political parties (e.g. La Raza Unida party) that help put the 2016 races into perspective.
Same as: CSRE 89
AMSTUD 91. Exploring American Religious History. 4 Units.
AMSTUD 91A. Asian American Autobiography/W. 3-5 Units.
This is a dual purpose class: a writing workshop in which you will generate autobiographical vignettes/essays as well as a reading seminar featuring prose from a wide range of contemporary Asian-American writers. Some of the many questions we will consider are: What exactly is Asian-American memoir? Are there salient subjects and tropes that define the literature? And in what ways do our writerly interactions both resistant and assimilative with a predominantly non-Asian context in turn recreate that context? We'll be working/experimenting with various modes of telling, including personal essay, the epistolary form, verse, and even fictional scenarios. First priority to undergrads. Students must attend the first class meeting to retain their roster spot.
Same as: ASNAMST 91A, CSRE 91D, ENGLISH 91A
AMSTUD 92. Food in America. 3 Units.
This course examines the history and culture of food in the United States, exploring topics that have fueled debates about what Americans should eat over the last hundred years. We will examine the rise of restaurant cuisine and celebrity chefs; of the nation¿s concern about the obesity epidemic and its long-standing obsession with fitness and the quantified self; and controversies about diet politics, fast food, food processing, and the importance of the iconic `home cooked meal. Sources include historic cookbooks, food writing, food literature, advertisements, and film. Course activities include guest lectures and a visit to the Stanford teaching kitchen.
AMSTUD 93. Food and Popular Culture. 3 Units.
This course introduces students to the social history, political economy and aesthetics of eating in America, paying particular attention to representations of food in popular culture over the last hundred years. Though firmly grounded in American Studies, an interdisciplinary perspective draws from the material and methods of anthropology, cultural studies, art history, and history. Topics include the California citrus industry, competitive eating, food art, utopias, and edible landscapes. Students will actively engage with primary sources including cookbooks, paintings and art installations, diet books, TV shows, film, and advertisements.
AMSTUD 94. Topics in Food Studies. 3 Units.
This course examines food in the United States over the last hundred years as it relates to the broad themes of nature, disease, technology, and labor. Though firmly grounded in American Studies, an interdisciplinary perspective draws from the material and methods of anthropology, cultural studies, art history, and history. Specific topics include diet-related disease, tipping and the subminimum wage, the concept of agrarian democracy, supermarkets, and food preservation. Creative assignments include writing a menu, conducting a food observation, and reviewing a restaurant. Students will actively engage with paintings, sculpture, film, advertisements, restaurant reviews, commercials, and music videos.
AMSTUD 95. Consumer Culture. 3 Units.
This course will examine consumerism in the United States, first focusing on the rise of advertising, mass market goods, catalogues, and department stores at the turn of the 20th century. We will then examine post-WWII suburbia and the rise of the "good life" and the ensuing backlash in 1960s counterculture anti-consumerist movements. Our topics will include the annual no-shopping day, back to nature movements, urban homesteading, thrift, slow food activism, and the efforts to resist mass production in food, clothing, and housing. Sources include novels, films, magazines, music, and advertisements.
AMSTUD 96. Signal to Noise: The Sounds of American Culture. 3 Units.
Inundated by images and associated with the meteoric rise of such media as film and photography, the past century has long been considered a predominantly visual era. Yet, sound offers alternative sensory platforms for understanding American culture and history. ¿Sound history,¿ as Jonathan Sterne writes, ¿indexes changes in human nature and the human body ¿ in life and in death.¿ Similarly, transformations in American landscapes, from its cities to its national parks, can be heard as well as seen. In this course, we will explore the intertwined histories of sound, society, and space, asking how developments in auditory media have engaged with broader American culture. Through a study of history, film, literature, music, and other media, we will look at the relationship between sound and cultural change, as well as evolving attitudes towards diverse human bodies and identities.
AMSTUD 100. Introduction to Asian American Studies. 4 Units.
What is meant by the term Asian American? How have representations of Asian Americans influenced concepts of US citizenship and belonging? What are the social and political origins of the Asian American community? This course provides a critical introduction to the interdisciplinary field of Asian American studies. Drawing on historical, creative, and scholarly texts, the course examines the history and possibilities of Asian American community. To do this, we place the Asian American experience within a transnational context, paying particular attention to the ways that Asian American lives have been shaped by the legacies of US wars in Asia and by the history of US racism. In the process, we examine the role that representations of Asian Americans have played in shaping the boundaries of US citizenship and belonging. Throughout the course, we utilize our discussions of Asian American racialization and community formation to think critically about the social and political ramifications that the designation Asian American entails.
Same as: ASNAMST 100
AMSTUD 102. Art and Social Criticism. 5 Units.
Visual artists have long been in the forefront of social criticism in America. Since the 1960s, various visual strategies have helped emergent progressive political movements articulate and represent complex social issues. Which artists and particular art works/projects have become key anchors for discourses on racism, sexism, economic and social inequality, immigrant rights and climate change? We will learn about a spectrum of political art designed to raise social awareness, spark social change and rouse protest. The Art Workers Coalition's agit-prop opposing the Vietnam War and ACT-UP's emblematic signs and symbols during the AIDS/HIV crisis of the 1980s galvanized a generation into action. Works such as Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party (1979), Fred Wilson's Mining the Museum (1992), and Glenn Ligon's paintings appropriating fragments from African-American literature all raised awareness by excavating historical evidence of the long legacy resisting marginalization. For three decades feminist artists Adrian Piper, Barbara Kruger and the Guerilla Girls have combined institutional critique and direct address into a provocative form of criticality. Recent art for social justice is reaching ever broadening publics by redrawing the role of artist and audience exemplified by the democratization of poster making and internet campaigns of Occupy and the Movement for Black Lives. We will also consider the collective aesthetic activisms in the Post-Occupy era including Global Ultra Luxury Faction, Climate Justice art projects, and the visual culture of Trump era mass protests. Why are each of these examples successful as influential and enduring markers of social criticism? What have these socially responsive practices contributed to our understanding of American history?.
Same as: AFRICAAM 102B, ARTHIST 162B, CSRE 102A, FEMGEN 102
AMSTUD 103S. Introduction to American Art. 3 Units.
How do images tell stories about the people who made them and the places they depict? How can we encounter the histories of America in works of art and why should we care about encountering them? This course will explore such questions by surveying some of the most compelling paintings, sculptures, films, photographs, prints, and decorative arts produced in the United States from the Colonial period to our present moment. In class lectures and discussions, our goal will be to articulate how pictures from the past shape and construct our sense of American history. Works by important artists such as Jackson Pollock, Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Kara Walker, John Singer Sargent, Winslow Homer, Georgia O'Keeffe, and Jacob Lawrence, among others, will help students to understand and express how Images have power, and how art continues to matter today.
Same as: ARTHIST 103S
AMSTUD 104. America at Play: A History of Leisure in the United States. 5 Units.
What we call "free time" is actually the product of multiple constraints, from economics and gender roles, to trends, moral strictures, and more. This course studies leisure to explore American culture from the late 19th century to the present. We consider, for instance, how new forms of entertainment, such as movies and iPods, altered notions of community and ideals of personal expression. For historical context, the class draws upon popular and critical sources, conversations with guests, and hands-on activities.
AMSTUD 105Q. Law and Popular Culture. 3 Units.
(Same as AMSTUD 105Q) This seminar focuses on the interface between two important subjects: law and popular culture. Before class, students will see a series of films or television shows relating to law, lawyers, and the legal system. There is also a weekly homework assignment based on materials in the assigned text and the assigned film or TV show. We will discuss the pop culture treatment of subjects such as the adversary system, good and bad lawyers, female and gay lawyers, the work life of lawyers, legal education, ethical issues, the jury system, and criminal and civil justice. The seminar discussions will draw on film theory and film-making technique to deepen understanding of the interrelationship between law and popular culture. The discussions will illuminate the ways in which pop culture products both reflect and change social views about law and lawyers. The assigned text is Michael Asimow & Shannon Mader, "Law & Popular Culture: A Course Book" (Peter Lang, 2d edition, 2013).
Same as: LAWGEN 105Q
AMSTUD 105R. Religion and War in America. 4 Units.
Scholars have devoted much attention to wars in American history, but have not agreed as to whether religion was a major cause or simply a cover for political, economic, and other motives. We will compare interpretations that leave religion out, with those that take it into account. We will also look at the impact of war on the religious lives of ordinary Americans. We will examine both secondary as well as primary sources, beginning with King Philip's War in the 17th century, and ending with the "War on Terror" in the present day.
Same as: CSRE 105, HISTORY 254D, HISTORY 354D, RELIGST 105
AMSTUD 106. Spectacular Trials: Sex, Race and Violence in Modern American Culture. 5 Units.
This course will use the phenomenon of the spectacular trial as a framework for exploring the intersections of sex, race, and violence in the formation of modern American culture. Beginning in the late nineteenth century and continuing through the 1990s, we will focus our inquiry on a number of notorious cases, some associated with familiar names¿the ¿Scottsboro Boys,¿ Emmett Till, O.J. Simpson¿others involving once-infamous actors¿like Joan Little and Inez Garcia¿whose ordeals have receded into historical memory, considering a range of questions arising from this thematic nexus. For instance, in what ways are sexual transgressions racialized and gendered? What are the practical and theoretical ramifications of the seemingly inextricable conjunction of sex and violence in legal and popular discourse? And what insights might such spectacles afford when broached as an arena in which sexual meanings, identities, and practices are refracted and ultimately constructed? We will also examine the role of the pertinent professions in the evolution of these events, in particular how the interplay of law, medicine, psychiatry, and forensic science helped define the shifting boundaries of legality, and how print, radio, and television journalism operated not only in sensationalizing, but also in reflecting, modeling, and shaping prevailing attitudes and behaviors. Our study of this vital facet of our ¿society of the spectacle¿ will draw on a series of compelling secondary readings complemented by a diverse array of primary sources¿from contemporaneous pamphlets and newspaper accounts to photographs, letters, trial testimony, and psychological commentary¿that will enable class members to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of different textual genres, experiment with alternative methods of fashioning historical interpretations, and contemplate the ways history might be employed to illuminate the persistent problems of racial bias, reflexive sexualization, and the packaging of trials as mass entertainment in the present day.
Same as: CSRE 66
AMSTUD 106A. A.I.: Artificial Intelligence in Fiction. 5 Units.
From self-driving cars to bots that alter democratic elections, artificial intelligence is growing increasingly powerful and prevalent in our everyday lives. Literature has long been speculating about the techno-utopia¿and catastrophe¿that A.I. could usher in. Indeed, literature itself presents us with a kind of A.I. in the many characters that speak and think in its pages. But how do we classify an intelligence as ¿artificial¿ or not? Is there a clear boundary that demarcates bodies from machines? What, if anything, separates the ¿genre¿ of technology from that of literature? What classifies literature as ¿science fiction,¿ ¿scientific,¿ ¿futuristic,¿ ¿psychological,¿ or ¿dystopian¿? And can technology or literature ever overcome the ultimate division between all intelligences¿the problem of other minds? This course consists in curated multi-genre combinations of literature, philosophy, film, and television that explore what makes someone¿or something¿a person in our world today. Special events will include celebrating the current bicentennial of Mary Shelley¿s Frankenstein (1818) in Stanford Special Collections; a possible visit to Stanford¿s A.I. Laboratory; and chatting with the ELIZA chatbot.
AMSTUD 107. Introduction to Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. 4-5 Units.
Introduction to interdisciplinary approaches to gender, sexuality, queer, trans and feminist studies. Topics include the emergence of sexuality studies in the academy, social justice and new subjects, science and technology, art and activism, history, film and memory, the documentation and performance of difference, and relevant socio-economic and political formations such as work and the family. Students learn to think critically about race, gender, and sexuality from local and global perspectives.
Same as: CSRE 108, FEMGEN 101, TAPS 108
AMSTUD 108. Race and the Law: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives. 5 Units.
When Obama began his presidential tenure in 2009, many commentators declared the U.S. a truly colorblind society, a place where race (read: non-whiteness) no longer served as an impediment to individual and group aspirations, indeed had become so insignificant as to be practically invisible. In late fall 2014,in the aftermath of the police-involved killings of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and Tamir Rice, society is confronted with a radically different social and political landscape. Yet events like these, while doubtless underscoring the fallaciousness of the equalitarian narrative, are regrettably commonplace. What, if anything, occurred during the intervening years that might explain the apparent displacement of hope by despair? With the advent of the Black Lives Matte movement, the persistence of bias and discrimination against people of color, particularly at the interface of African American males and law enforcement authorities, has attained a place of prominence on the public agenda, presenting a significant opportunity for citizen-activists, legislators, and policymakers to combine forces to effectuate meaningful change. To take advantage of this moment, it is imperative to understand the origins and development of the entrenched structural inequalities manifest in contemporary America. What role have law and legal institutions played in hindering and facilitating the promise of equality for all citizens? How far are we from realizing that vaunted democratic aspiration? This course offers participants an opportunity to systematically engage with recent events in Baltimore, Ferguson, and elsewhere in an historically informed manner that foregrounds questions of race, citizenship, and law. Against the backdrop of the achievements of the Civil Rights Movement, it considers such topics as the rise of urban ghettos and the use of segregationist practices like redlining and steering in helping to sustain them; resegregation in the late 20th-early 21st century; differential arrest and sentencing patterns; and, crucially, the extraordinary growth of the American carceral state.
Same as: CSRE 81
AMSTUD 109Q. American Road Trips. 4 Units.
"Nothing behind me, everything ahead of me, as is ever so on the road." --Jack Kerouac, On the Road, 1957. From Jack Kerouac's On the Road to Cheryl Strayed's Wild, this course explores epic road trips of the twentieth century. Travel is a fundamental social and cultural practice through which Americans have constructed ideas about the self, the nation, the past, and the future. The open road, as it is often called, offered excitement, great adventure, and the space for family bonding and memory making. But the footloose and fancy-free nature of travel that Jack Kerouac celebrated was available to some travelers but not to all. Engaging historical and literary texts, film, autobiography, memoir, photography, and music, we will consider the ways that travel and road trips have been represented in American culture. This course examines the following questions: How did men and women experience travel differently? How did the motivations for travel change over time? What role did race, ethnicity, class, relationships, and sexuality play in these trips? Students will work together to plan a road trip of their own which the class will take during the quarter.
Same as: HISTORY 69Q
AMSTUD 110D. War and Peace in American Foreign Policy. 3-5 Units.
The causes of war in American foreign policy. Issues: international and domestic sources of war and peace; war and the American political system; war, intervention, and peace making in the post-Cold War period. Political Science majors taking this course to fulfill the WIM requirement should enroll in POLISCI 110D for 5 units. International Relations majors taking this course should enroll in INTNLREL 110D for 5 units. SCPD students should enroll for 3 units.
Same as: INTNLREL 110D, POLISCI 110D, POLISCI 110Y
AMSTUD 111. Reproductive Politics in the United States and Abroad. 3-5 Units.
Course description: This course examines the issues and debates surrounding women's reproduction in the United States and beyond. It pays special attention to how knowledge and technology travel across national/cultural borders and how women's reproductive functions are deeply connected to international politics and events abroad. Topics include: birth control, population control, abortion, sex education, sex trafficking, genetic counseling, assisted reproductive technologies, midwifery, breastfeeding, menstruation, and reproductive hazards.
Same as: FEMGEN 111
AMSTUD 111Q. Recording Race and Religion in America. 5 Units.
This course will explore the relationship between race and religion, as manifest in America¿s aural cultures. From Gospel and Avant Garde jazz to Contemporary Christian Music and hip hop, we will listen in on the ways in which music has served as a powerful mode of organizing, constructing, transcending and complicating ideas about religion and race in America. Focusing on a select playlist, this course will expand our critical vocabularies and enable us to hear American culture differently.
AMSTUD 114Q. Visions of the 1960s. 5 Units.
Preference to sophomores. Introduction to the ideas, sensibility, and, to a lesser degree, the politics of the American 60s. Topics: the early 60s vision of a beloved community; varieties of racial, generational, and feminist dissent; the meaning of the counterculture; and current interpretive perspectives on the 60s. Film, music, and articles and books.
AMSTUD 114X. Reading Comics. 4 Units.
The modern medium of comics, a history that spans 150 years. The flexibility of the medium encountered through the genres of humorous and dramatic comic strips, superheroes, undergrounds, independents, journalism, and autobiography. Innovative creators including McCay, Kirby, Barry, Ware, and critical writings including McCloud, Eisner, Groenstee. Topics include text/image relations, panel-to-panel relations, the page, caricature, sequence, seriality, comics in the context of the fine arts, and relations to other media.
Same as: FILMSTUD 114, FILMSTUD 314
AMSTUD 115. Asian American Film and Popular Culture. 4 Units.
Tracing the evolution of Asian American cultural representations from the silent film era through the first generation of Asian American YouTube stars, this course examines the economic, political, and cultural influence of Asian American screen images on U.S. society. Through a focus on both mainstream and independent productions, we discuss the work of Asian American actors, audience members, media producers, consumers, and activists. Possible films and TV shows to be discussed include The Cheat (1915), Shanghai Express (1932), Flower Drum Song (1961), Chan is Missing (1983) Fall of the I Hotel (1983), Who Killed Vincent Chin? (1989), Sa-I-Gu, (1992), Saving Face (2004) Crazy Rich Asians (2018), To All the Boys I've Loved Before (2018), TV episodes of the Mindy Project, and work by early Asian American YouTube stars including Michelle Phan, HappySlip, and KevJumba.
Same as: ASNAMST 115, COMPLIT 159
AMSTUD 117. Race, Gender, and Sexuality in Contemporary American Film. 4-5 Units.
This course introduces students to the theoretical and analytical frameworks necessary to critically understand constructions of race, gender, and sexuality in contemporary American film. Through a sustained engagement with a range of independent and Hollywood films produced since 2000, students analyze the ways that cinematic representations have both reflected and constructed dominant notions of race, gender, and sexuality in the United States. Utilizing an intersectional framework that sees race, gender, and sexuality as always defined by one another, the course examines the ways that dominant notions of difference have been maintained and contested through film in the United States. Films to be discussed include Coco, Get Out, Moonlight, Mosquita y Mari, and The Grace Lee Project.
Same as: AFRICAAM 117J, ASNAMST 117D, CSRE 117D, FEMGEN 117F
AMSTUD 117N. The Fourth "R": Religion and American Schools. 4 Units.
In this seminar, we will engage with historical, legal, and sociological texts, in order to trace the complicated relationship between church and state as it has played out in and around questions of education. Deciding what belongs in schools, what does not, whose interests are served in the process, and what the Constitution will allow are just some of the questions that will guide us. Through close readings of text and critical writing, we will develop alternative narratives about church-state issues that can make sense of everything from prayer in schools to civic education. This course must be taken for a minimum of 3 units and a letter grade to be eligible for Ways credit.
Same as: EDUC 117N, RELIGST 13N
AMSTUD 117R. Christianity, Race, and Gender in 21st-century America. 4 Units.
As the largest religion practiced in the United States, Christianity not only shapes the private lives of a large number of Americans but also plays an important role in public discourse, policies, and debates. This course investigates Christianity's place on the shifting religious landscape in America, with special attention to present-day movements for racial and gender justice in the era of Black Lives Matter and #MeToo. Students explore reasons for declining numbers of Christians in the United States, the polarization of Christian conservatives and religious "nones," and Christian constructions of social relations. How do Christian beliefs and practices shape attitudes about race and gender roles? How is contemporary Christianity acting as a force for as well as a barrier to social justice? This course assumes no background in the study of religion, race, or gender and is open to practitioners of all faiths or none.
Same as: RELIGST 117
AMSTUD 118. Critical Family History: Narratives of Identity and Difference. 4 Units.
This course examines family history as a site for understanding identity, power, and social difference in American society. Focusing in particular on the intersections of race, gender, and sexuality, we approach the family as an archive through which we might write alternative histories to the ones that dominate the national historical consciousness. To do this, we examine memoirs, oral histories, and first-person documentaries as historical texts that can be used to foreground marginalized historical voices. Students will then be asked to apply course readings and theories to their own family histories as a means of better understanding issues of identity and difference.
Same as: AFRICAAM 118X, ASNAMST 118S, CSRE 118S
AMSTUD 119. Science Fiction: Cyborgs & Human Simulacra in the Cinema. 4 Units.
The human simulacrum has a long history in mythology, fairy tales and children¿s stories, as well as in the genres of horror and science fiction. This course explores synthetic human narratives in the cinema. Stories of artificially created life, living statues, automata, body snatchers, robots, cyborgs and electronic simulations all direct our attention to our assumed definitions of the human.The fantasies and anxieties that undergird these stories engage with such issues as labor, gender, sexuality, death, emotion, rationality, embodiment, consumerism, reproductive technologies, and power relations. Attention will also be given the relation of cinema¿s human simulacra to changing cinematic technologies. Films will include Metropolis, Pinocchio, Robocop, Bride of Frankenstein, The Golem, A.I., My Fair Lady, Her, Blade Runner, and the HBO iteration of Westworld. Readings will include essays, as well as some fiction and possibly comics.
Same as: FILMSTUD 119, FILMSTUD 319
AMSTUD 120. The Rise of Digital Culture. 4-5 Units.
From Snapchat to artificial intelligence, digital systems are reshaping our jobs, our democracies, our love lives, and even what it means to be human. But where did these media come from? And what kind of culture are they creating? To answer these questions, this course explores the entwined development of digital technologies and post-industrial ways of living and working from the Cold War to the present. Topics will include the historical origins of digital media, cultural contexts of their deployment and use, and the influence of digital media on conceptions of self, community, and state. Priority to juniors, seniors, and graduate students.
Same as: COMM 120W, COMM 220
AMSTUD 120B. Superhero Theory. 3-5 Units.
With their fantastic powers, mutable bodies, multiple identities, complicated histories, and visual dynamism, the American superhero has been a rich vehicle for fantasies (and anxieties) for 80+ years across multiple media: comics, film, animation, TV, games, toys, apparel. This course centers upon the body of the superhero as it incarnates allegories of race, queerness, hybridity, sexuality, gendered stereotypes/fluidity, politics, vigilantism, masculinity, and monstrosity. They also embody a technological history that encompasses industrial, atomic, electronic, bio-genetic, and digital.
Same as: ARTHIST 120, ARTHIST 320, FILMSTUD 120, FILMSTUD 320
AMSTUD 121Z. Political Power in American Cities. 5 Units.
The major actors, institutions, processes, and policies of sub-state government in the U.S., emphasizing city general-purpose governments through a comparative examination of historical and contemporary politics. Issues related to federalism, representation, voting, race, poverty, housing, and finances. Political Science majors taking this course to fulfill the WIM requirement should enroll in POLISCI 121.
Same as: POLISCI 121, PUBLPOL 133, URBANST 111
AMSTUD 122D. Free Speech and Inclusion on Campus. 3 Units.
How do we balance norms of inclusion and respect with norms of free speech? This seminar course utilizes readings from sociology, political science, and legal/ethical reasoning to elucidate the larger structures and ideals that are at stake in the debates over what kind of speech is tolerable, or more normatively speaking, desirable, at colleges and universities. The expected learning outcomes are: a greater understanding of the free speech's role in American society and democracy, how America's position on free speech compares to other countries, and how speech restriction and liberties can reveal larger patterns in social structure and agency. Finally, key skills students will develop are learning how to identify common ethical frameworks that academic and popular authors use and how to analyze the origins of and changes in social institutions and social structures.
Same as: SOC 122D
AMSTUD 123D. American Literature, 1855 to World War I. 5 Units.
A survey of American writers from Whitman to T.S. Eliot, including Emily Dickinson, Mark Twain, Stephen Crane, Frank Norris, Kate Chopin, Theodore Dreiser, and Henry James. Topics include the tension between romance and realism, the impact of naturalism and modernism, as well as race, gender, and the literary evolution of the American language.
AMSTUD 123G. Mark Twain: A Fresh Look at an Icon and Iconoclast, 100 Years after His Death. 3-5 Units.
The vitality and versatility of a writer who has been called America's Rabelais, Cervantes, Homer, Tolstoy, and Shakespeare. Journalism, travel books, fiction, drama, and sketches by Mark Twain; how Twain engaged such issues as personal and national identity, satire and social justice, imperialism, race and racism, gender, performance, travel, and technology. What are Twain's legacies in 2010, the centennial of his death, the 175th anniversary of his birth, and the 125th anniversary of his most celebrated novel? Guests include actor Hal Holbrook.
AMSTUD 123X. Introduction to American Politics and Policy: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly. 4-5 Units.
This is a course about American politics, which means this is a course about individuals, identities, and institutions. How do Americans come to think andnreason about politics? What is the role that identities play in affecting the political judgments that individuals make? How do our political institutionsnrespond to the demands of a diverse public that disagrees about issues related to race and justice, income and wealth inequality, climate change, gunncontrol, reproductive rights, the power of the executive, and the role that government ought to play in the lives of the governed? And how do we makensense of this seemingly peculiar contemporary moment in American politics? These are not easy questions, but they are ones for which political sciencenprovides a useful foundation to guide our inquiry. The objective of this course is to introduce students to various concepts and theoretical frameworks thatnhelp us understand the messiness and complexity of American politics. In addition to classroom lectures and discussion sections, students will benrequired to apply concepts and theoretical frameworks to contemporary issues in American politics. Undergraduate Public Policy students are required to enroll in this class for 5 units.
Same as: POLISCI 102, PUBLPOL 101, PUBLPOL 201
AMSTUD 124. Cultures of the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands. 3-5 Units.
Cultures of the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands: Since becoming president, Donald Trump has deported more than a million migrants and started building a multi-billion-dollar border wall. Although some of Trump¿s actions have seemed anomalous, they have all relied on and reaffirmed longstanding legacies of settler colonialism and racial capitalism. In this seminar, we will look at these legacies through the eyes of the Natives, Latinxs, whites, and others who have lived in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. Within the confines of literature, we will read novelists like Willa Cather, essayists like Valeria Luiselli, and poets like Simon Ortiz (Acoma Pueblo). Meanwhile, across the more capacious category of culture, we will engage with promoters who encouraged whites to claim homesteads, periodistas who emboldened Latinxs to protect pueblos, and leaders who helped Natives fight for sovereignty. By blending literary studies and ethnic studies, we will gain a thorough grasp of the territories that have taken shape since the U.S.-Mexico War (1846¿48), especially the ones that we currently call Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas. From these concrete contexts, we will ask and answer more abstract questions: What are borders¿are they physical boundaries, or are they psychosocial conditions? Similarly, what are nations¿are they stable and homogeneous groups, or are they flexible and diverse communities? Ultimately, what are human beings¿can they be branded as illegal aliens, or do they have inalienable rights? During the quarter, we will work through these questions both collectively and individually: to enrich our in-class discussions, each five-unit student will complete a four- to five-page reading of a single source, a six- to eight-page paper on several sources, and a multimedia borderlands map.
Same as: CHILATST 124C, ENGLISH 124C
AMSTUD 124A. The American West. 5 Units.
The American West is characterized by frontier mythology, vast distances, marked aridity, and unique political and economic characteristics. This course integrates several disciplinary perspectives into a comprehensive examination of Western North America: its history, physical geography, climate, literature, art, film, institutions, politics, demography, economy, and continuing policy challenges. Students examine themes fundamental to understanding the region: time, space, water, peoples, and boom and bust cycles.
Same as: ARTHIST 152, ENGLISH 124, HISTORY 151, POLISCI 124A
AMSTUD 124B. European and North African Visions of the American West. 3-5 Units.
This course is an interdisciplinary investigation of the rewriting of the American West in the Mediterranean context through the transnational lenses of filmmakers and artists of diverse religious and ethnic backgrounds, through primarily cinema, but also graphic novels, novels, and murals. How do these films and novels adopt and adapt the Western genre? How do these artistic endeavors tell us about the enduring aura and stereotypes of the American West mythology? Films: Jacques Audiard, The Sisters Brothers, Sergio Leone, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, David Oelhoffen, Far From Men, Karl May, Winnetou, Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist, Agnès Varda, Mur murs. Special guest: photographer/street artist JR. Readings: Mark Twain, Joan Didion, Romain Gary.
AMSTUD 125. Perspectives on American Journalism. 4-5 Units.
An examination of American journalism, focusing on how news is produced, distributed, and financially supported. Emphasis on current media controversies and puzzles, and on designing innovations in discovering and telling stories. (Graduate students register for COMM 225.).
Same as: COMM 125, COMM 225
AMSTUD 125C. The Lost Generation: American literature between the World Wars. 5 Units.
An exploration of American literature between the World Wars, with a focus on themes such as expatriation, trauma, technology, race, modernism; writers include Gertrude Stein, Sherwood Anderson, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Langston Hughes, Jean Toomer, William Faulkner, Richard Wright, John Steinbeck, John Dos Passos.
AMSTUD 127. American Style and the Rhetoric of Fashion. 4 Units.
Focus on the visual culture of fashion, especially in an American context. Topics include: the representation of fashion in different visual media (prints, photographs, films, window displays, and digital images); the relationship of fashion to its historical context and American culture; the interplay between fashion and other modes of discourse, in particular art, but also performance, music, economics; and the use of fashion as an expression of social status, identity, and other attributes of the wearer. Texts by Thorstein Veblen, Roland Barthes, Dick Hebdige, and other theorists of fashion.
Same as: ARTHIST 165B, FILMSTUD 165B
AMSTUD 128. Representing Fashion. 4 Units.
Course on the representation of fashion in the 20th and 21st century, with focus on American fashion photography. Topics include: history of fashion illustration, fashion photography, and fashion films; intersection of art and commerce; role of designers, photographers, editors, and models; studio v. street photography; the place of mass media, alternative magazines, and online publications; and use of media, photography, and design theory for interpretation of fashion representations. Illustrators and artists include Lepape, Erte, Avedon, Penn, Klein, Newton, Sherman, and Leibovitz.
Same as: ARTHIST 166
AMSTUD 129. Animation and the Animated Film. 3-5 Units.
The fantasy of an image coming to life is ancient, but not until the cinema was this fantasy actualized. The history of the movies begins with optical toys, and contemporary cinema is dominated by films that rely on computer animation. This course considers the underlying fantasies of animation in art and lit, its phenomenologies, its relation to the uncanny, its status as a pure cinema, and its place in film theory. Different modes of production and style to be explored include realist animation, abstract animation; animistic animation; animated drawings, objects, and puppets; CGI, motion capture, and live/animation hybrids.
Same as: FILMSTUD 129, FILMSTUD 329
AMSTUD 130A. In Sickness and In Health: Medicine and Society in the United States: 1800-Present. 3-5 Units.
Explores the history of medical institutions, ideas and practices in the United States from the early nineteenth century to the present. How are ideas of illness and health historically rooted and socially constructed? How did scientific and medical discoveries lead to the rise of scientific medicine, and how were these innovations adopted within the American cultural landscape? Topics include the transformation of therapeutics and technologies, medicine and the scientific ideal in the U.S., gender and race and medicine, the history of public health, and the professionalization and specialization of American medical practice.
AMSTUD 131. Food and American Culture. 5 Units.
This course introduces students to the cultural history, politics, and aesthetics of eating in America, exploring topics that have fueled debates about what Americans should eat over the last hundred years. Discussions of American cuisine will lead directly into larger concepts of American identity, culture, and politics. We will ask questions such as: What role does food play in national identity? Have restaurants shaped American social life? What is modern American cuisine?nnCourse goals include fluency in the key terminology and theoretical frameworks of American Studies and a deep historical understanding of our contemporary food system. Students will actively engage with primary sources, including nutrition manuals, advertisements, cookbooks, restaurant menus, and paintings.
AMSTUD 132. American Art and Culture, 1528-1910. 4 Units.
The visual arts and literature of the U.S. from the beginnings of European exploration to the Civil War. Focus is on questions of power and its relation to culture from early Spanish exploration to the rise of the middle classes. Cabeza de Vaca, Benjamin Franklin, John Singleton Copley, Phillis Wheatley, Charles Willson Peale, Emerson, Hudson River School, American Genre painters, Melville, Hawthorne and others.
Same as: ARTHIST 132, ARTHIST 332
AMSTUD 133. Technology and American Visual Culture. 4 Units.
An exploration of the dynamic relationship between technology and the ways we see and represent the world, with a focus on American visual culture from the 19th century through the present. We study the history of different tools from telescopes and microscopes to digital detectors that have changed and enhanced our visual capabilities; the way technological shifts, such as the introduction of electric lights or train travel, have shaped our visual imagination and aesthetic sensibilities; and how technology has inspired or responded to visual art. Special attention is paid to how different media, such as photography, cinema, and computer screens, translate the visual experience into a representation; the automation of vision; and the intersection of technology with notions of time and space.
Same as: FILMSTUD 133B
AMSTUD 134C. The Western: Imagining the West in Fiction and Film. 3-5 Units.
The Wild West: a mythical place seared deep into the American imagination. Its familiar tropes lone riders on horseback, desert sunsets, saloon fights, train robberies echo through countless Western stories, novels, films, radio programs, and television series. Both formulaic and flexible, the Western has endured as a popular genre in American culture for more than a century, embodying and responding to many of the nation's broader anxieties surrounding its colonial history, its notions of masculinity and gender roles, its fascination with guns and violence, and its ideals of self-reliance and individualism. In this class we'll examine the Western genre through a selection of its central works in fiction and film, from the first dime novel Western, Ann S. Stephens Malaeska (1860), to Cormac McCarthy¿s acclaimed Blood Meridian (1985); and from the first silent film Western, Edwin S. Porter's The Great Train Robbery (1903), to the mid-century Hollywood films of John Ford, to Maggie Greenwald¿s feminist Western, The Ballad of Little Jo (1993). Along the way we'll examine the Western as both a literary form and a cultural phenomenon, probing the history of its enduring appeal as a genre. How do these novels and films construct, adapt, and subvert the form and expectations of the Western, and how do they both perpetuate and challenge the broader cultural problems of their, and our, time? Finally, as Californians and inheritors of the nation's westward expansion, what does the Western tell us about national myths of the West, and the place in which we live?.
AMSTUD 135. Deliberative Democracy and its Critics. 3-5 Units.
This course examines the theory and practice of deliberative democracy and engages both in a dialogue with critics. Can a democracy which emphasizes people thinking and talking together on the basis of good information be made practical in the modern age? What kinds of distortions arise when people try to discuss politics or policy together? The course draws on ideas of deliberation from Madison and Mill to Rawls and Habermas as well as criticisms from the jury literature, from the psychology of group processes and from the most recent normative and empirical literature on deliberative forums. Deliberative Polling, its applications, defenders and critics, both normative and empirical, will provide a key case for discussion.
Same as: COMM 135, COMM 235, COMM 335, ETHICSOC 135F, POLISCI 234P, POLISCI 334P
AMSTUD 136X. Indigenous Peoples and Environmental Change in the North American Wes. 5 Units.
This course explores the dynamic relationships between indigenous communities and the continuously changing environmental landscapes of the North American West from before European contact to the present. In particular, it examines how specific indigenous communities of the region have navigated and adapted their relationship with the natural world amidst the challenges of colonialism, globalization, climate change, and an increasing national dependency on the natural resources of the North American West.
AMSTUD 137. The Dialogue of Democracy. 4-5 Units.
All forms of democracy require some kind of communication so people can be aware of issues and make decisions. This course looks at competing visions of what democracy should be and different notions of the role of dialogue in a democracy. Is it just campaigning or does it include deliberation? Small scale discussions or sound bites on television? Or social media? What is the role of technology in changing our democratic practices, to mobilize, to persuade, to solve public problems? This course will include readings from political theory about democratic ideals - from the American founders to J.S. Mill and the Progressives to Joseph Schumpeter and modern writers skeptical of the public will. It will also include contemporary examinations of the media and the internet to see how those practices are changing and how the ideals can or cannot be realized.
Same as: COMM 137W, COMM 237, POLISCI 232T, POLISCI 332T
AMSTUD 139B. American Women Writers, 1850-1920. 3-5 Units.
This course traces the ways in which female writers negotiated a series of literary, social, and intellectual movements, from abolitionism and sentimentalism in the nineteenth century to Progressivism and avant-garde modernism in the twentieth. Authors include Harriet Beecher Stowe, Harriet Jacobs, Rebecca Harding Davis, Emily Dickinson, Kate Chopin, Edith Wharton, Gertrude Stein, Willa Cather, and Charlotte Perkins Gilman.
Same as: ENGLISH 139B, FEMGEN 139B
AMSTUD 140. Stand Up Comedy and the "Great American Joke" Since 1945. 5 Units.
Development of American Stand Up Comedy in the context of social and cultural eruptions after 1945, including the Borscht Belt, the Chitlin¿ Circuit, the Cold War, censorship battles, Civil Rights and other social movements of the 60s and beyond. The artistry of stories, monologues, jokes, impersonations, persona, social satire, scatology, obscenity, riffs, rants, shtick, and more by such artists as Lenny Bruce, Dick Gregory, Richard Pryor, George Carlin, Margaret Cho, Sarah Silverman, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, as well as precursors such as Mark Twain, minstrelsy and vaudeville and related films, TV shows, poems and other manifestations of similar sensibilities and techniques.
Same as: CSRE 140C
AMSTUD 141F. Short Story to Big Screen. 3-5 Units.
This course will study the adaptation from short stories to films, with a particular eye toward the form and structure of each media and their relationship to each other. Students will read a variety of 20th and 21st century stories and watch their adaptations (including ¿Rashomon" and ¿Brokeback Mountain,¿), as well as write a short screenplay adaptation and a short critical essay on a story/film of their choosing.
AMSTUD 142. The Literature of the Americas. 5 Units.
A wide-ranging overview of the literatures of the Americas inncomparative perspective, emphasizing continuities and crises that are common to North American, Central American, and South American literatures as well as the distinctive national and cultural elements of a diverse array of primary works. Topics include the definitions of such concepts as empire and colonialism, the encounters between worldviews of European and indigenous peoples, the emergence of creole and racially mixed populations, slavery, the New World voice, myths of America as paradise or utopia, the coming of modernism, twentieth-century avant-gardes, and distinctive modern episodes--the Harlem Renaissance, the Beats, magic realism, Noigandres--in unaccustomed conversation with each other.
Same as: COMPLIT 142, CSRE 142, ENGLISH 172E
AMSTUD 143A. American Architecture. 4 Units.
A historically based understanding of what defines American architecture. What makes American architecture American, beginning with indigenous structures of pre-Columbian America. Materials, structure, and form in the changing American context. How these ideas are being transformed in today's globalized world.
Same as: ARTHIST 143A, ARTHIST 343A, CEE 32R
AMSTUD 143X. Starstuff: Space and the American Imagination. 5 Units.
Course on the history of twentieth and twenty-first century American images of space and how they shape conceptions of the universe. Covers representations made by scientists and artists, as well as scientific fiction films, TV, and other forms of popular visual culture. Topics will include the importance of aesthetics to understandings of the cosmos; the influence of media and technology on representations; the social, political, and historical context of the images; and the ways representations of space influence notions of American national identity and of cosmic citizenship.
Same as: ARTHIST 264B, FILMSTUD 264B
AMSTUD 145. Silicon Valley. 5 Units.
Silicon Valley. The site and source of vibrant economic growth and technological innovation. A disruptive force in social, economic, and political systems. An interface between technology and academia, with the the quirky influence of the counterculture in the background. A surprisingly agile cultural behemoth that has reshaped human relationships and hierarchies of all sorts. A brotopia built on the preferences and predilections of rich, geeky white guys. A location with perpetually sunny skies and easy access to beaches and mountains. nnThis seminar will unpack the myths surrounding Silicon Valley by exploring the people, places, industries, and ideas that have shaped it from post-WWII to the present. It takes an interdisciplinary approach to the subject and considers region's history and development; the products of Silicon Valley, from computers and circuit boards to search algorithms and social networks; and Silicon Valley's depictions in photography, film, television, and literature.
AMSTUD 145D. Jewish American Literature and Film. 5 Units.
From its inception, Jewish-American literature has taken as its subject as well as its context the idea of Jewishness itself. Jewish culture is a diasporic one, and for this reason the concept of Jewishness differs from country to country and across time. What stays remarkably similar, though, is Jewish self-perception and relatedly Jewish literary style. This is as true for the first-generation immigrant writers like Isaac Bashevis Singer and Anzia Yezierska who came to the United States from abroad as it is for their second-generation children born in the United States, and the children of those children. In this course, we will consider the difficulties of displacement for the emigrant generation and their efforts to sustain their cultural integrity in the multicultural American environment. We'll also examine the often comic revolt of their American-born children and grandchildren against their (grand-)parents nostalgia and failure to assimilate. Only by considering these transnational roots can one understand the particularity of the Jewish-American novel in relation to mainstream and minority American literatures. In investigating the link between American Jewish writers and their literary progenitors, we will draw largely but not exclusively from Russia and the countries of Eastern Europe.
Same as: ENGLISH 145D, JEWISHST 155D, REES 145D
AMSTUD 145J. The Jewish-American Novel: Diaspora, Privilege, Anxiety, Comedy. 4-5 Units.
Jews are sometimes referred to as 'the people of the book.' Would Portnoy's Complaint count as a book that constitutes Jewish-American peoplehood? What about Fear of Flying? This seminar introduces students to influential Jewish-American novels (and some short stories and film) from the late nineteenth century to the present day. These works return time and again to questions of diaspora, race, queer social belonging, and the duty to a Jewish past, mythical or real. Through close readings of short stories and novels coupled with secondary readings about Jewish-American history and culture, we will explore how American Jewishness is constructed differently in changing historical climates. What makes a text Jewish? What do we mean by Jewish humor and Jewish seriousness? How do Jewish formulations of gender and power respond to Jews' entrance into the white American mainstream? As we read, we'll think through and elaborate on models of ethnicity, privilege, sexuality, and American pluralism. Authors include Cahan, Yezierska, Singer, Roth, Bellow, Malamud, Ozick, Mailer, Jong, and Englander.
Same as: ENGLISH 145J, JEWISHST 155J
AMSTUD 145M. Culture Wars: Art and Social Conflict in the USA, 1890-1950. 4 Units.
This course examines social conflicts and political controversies in American culture through the lens of visual art and photography. We consider how visual images both reflect and participate in the social and political life of the nation and how the terms of citizenship have been represented¿and, at times, contested¿by artists throughout the first half of the 20th century. The class explores the relation between American art and the body politic by focusing on issues of poverty, war, censorship, consumerism, class identity, and racial division.
Same as: ARTHIST 145, ARTHIST 345, FEMGEN 145
AMSTUD 146C. Hemingway, Hurston, Faulkner, and Fitzgerald. 3-5 Units.
While Hemingway and Fitzgerald were flirting with the expatriate avant-garde in Europe, Hurston and Faulkner were performing anthropological field-work in the local cultures of the American South. Focus on the tremendous diversity of concerns and styles of four writers who marked America's coming-of-age as a literary nation with their multifarious experiments in representing the regional and the global, the racial and the cosmopolitan, the macho and the feminist, the decadent and the impoverished.
Same as: ENGLISH 146C
AMSTUD 147J. Studies in Music, Media, and Popular Culture: The Soul Tradition in African American Music. 3-4 Units.
1960s and 70s Black music, including rhythm and blues, Motown, Southern soul, funk, Philadelphia soul, and disco. Its origins in blues, gospel, and jazz to its influence on today's r&b, hip hop, and dance music. Soul's cultural influence and global reach; its interaction with politics, racism, gender, place, technology, and the economy. Synchronous and asynchronous remote learning, with class discussions, small-group activities, guest presenters, and opportunities for activism. Pre-/co-requisite (for music majors): MUSIC 22. (WIM at 4 units only.).
Same as: AFRICAAM 19, CSRE 147J, MUSIC 147J, MUSIC 247J
AMSTUD 148. Los Angeles: A Cultural History. 4 Units.
This course traces a cultural history of Los Angeles from the early twentieth century to the present. Approaching popular representations of Los Angeles as our primary source, we discuss the ways that diverse groups of Angelenos have represented their city on the big and small screens, in the press, in the theater, in music, and in popular fiction. We focus in particular on the ways that conceptions of race and gender have informed representations of the city. Possible topics include: fashion and racial violence in the Zoot Suit Riots of the Second World War, Disneyland as a suburban fantasy, cinematic representations of Native American life in Bunker Hill in the 1961 film The Exiles, the independent black cinema of the Los Angeles Rebellion, the Anna Deaver Smith play Twilight Los Angeles about the civil unrest that gripped the city in 1992, and the 2019 film Once Upon a Time¿in Hollywood.
Same as: CSRE 148R
AMSTUD 150. Introduction to English II: American Literature and Culture to 1855. 5 Units.
(Formerly English 23/123). A survey of early American writings, including sermons, poetry, captivity and slave narratives, essays, autobiography, and fiction, from the colonial era to the eve of the Civil War.
Same as: ENGLISH 11B
AMSTUD 150A. Colonial and Revolutionary America. 5 Units.
(HISTORY 50A is 3 units. HISTORY 150A is 5 units) This course surveys early American history from the onset of English colonization of North America in the late sixteenth century through the American Revolution and the creation of the United States in the late eighteenth. It situates the origins and the development of colonial American society as its peoples themselves experienced it, within the wider histories of the North American continent and the Atlantic basin. It considers the diversity of peoples and empires that made up these worlds as well as the complex movement of goods, peoples, and ideas that defined them. The British North American colonies were just one interrelated part of this wider complex. Yet out of that interconnected Atlantic world, those particular colonies produced a revolution for national independence that had a far-reaching impact on the world. The course, accordingly, explores the origins of this revolutionary movement and the nation state that it wrought, one that would rapidly ascend to hemispheric and then global prominence.
Same as: HISTORY 150A
AMSTUD 150B. Nineteenth Century America. 5 Units.
(Same as HISTORY 50B. History majors and others taking 5 units, register for 150B.) Territorial expansion, social change, and economic transformation. The causes and consequences of the Civil War. Topics include: urbanization and the market revolution; slavery and the Old South; sectional conflict; successes and failures of Reconstruction; and late 19th-century society and culture.
Same as: AFRICAAM 150B, CSRE 150S, HISTORY 150B
AMSTUD 150C. The United States in the Twentieth Century. 5 Units.
(Same as HISTORY 50C. History majors and others taking 5 units, register for 150C.) 100 years ago, women and most African-Americans couldn't vote; automobiles were rare and computers didn't exist; and the U.S. was a minor power in a world dominated by European empires. This course surveys politics, culture, and social movements to answer the question: How did we get from there to here? Two historical research "labs" or archival sessions focus on the Great Depression in the 1930s and radical and conservative students movements of the 1960s. Suitable for non-majors and majors alike.
Same as: AFRICAAM 150C, HISTORY 150C
AMSTUD 150X. From Gold Rush to Google Bus: History of San Francisco. 4 Units.
This class will examine the history of San Francisco from Native American and colonial settlement through the present. Focus is on social, environmental, and political history, with the theme of power in the city. Topics include Native Americans, the Gold Rush, immigration and nativism, railroads and robber barons, earthquake and fire, progressive reform and unionism, gender, race and civil rights, sexuality and politics, counterculture, redevelopment and gentrification. Students write final project in collaboration with ShapingSF, a participatory community history project documenting and archiving overlooked stories and memories of San Francisco. (Cardinal Course certified by the Haas Center).
Same as: HISTORY 252E, URBANST 150
AMSTUD 151. Migration and Diaspora in American Art, 1800-Present. 4 Units.
This lecture course explores American art through the lens of immigration, exile, and diaspora. We will examine a wide range of work by immigrant artists and craftsmen, paying special attention to issues of race and ethnicity, assimilation, displacement, and political turmoil. Artists considered include Emmanuel Leutze, Thomas Cole, Joseph Stella, Chiura Obata, Willem de Kooning, Mona Hatoum, and Julie Mehretu, among many others. How do works of art reflect and help shape cultural and individual imaginaries of home and belonging?.
Same as: ARTHIST 151, ARTHIST 351, ASNAMST 151D, CSRE 151D
AMSTUD 152A. "Mutually Assured Destruction": American Culture and the Cold War. 5 Units.
The temperature of the early Cold War years via readings of Soviet and U.S. propaganda; documentary film and film noir; fiction by Bellow, Ellison, O¿Connor, and Mailer; social theory by Arendt, the New York Intellectuals, and the Frankfurt School; and political texts such as Kennan¿s Sources of Soviet Conduct, the ¿Truman Doctrine¿ speech, and the National Security Council Report 68. Major themes include the discourse of totalitarianism, MacCarthyism, strategies of containment, the nuclear threat, the figure of the ¿outsider¿ and the counterculture, and the cultural shift from sociological to psychological idioms.
AMSTUD 152C. The JFK Era and American Literature. 5 Units.
Few U.S. presidents have exerted so great a fascination on the national¿and global¿post-World War II imagination as John F. Kennedy. As the 2013¿s semi-centennial anniversary of Kennedy¿s assassination attests, the production of films, television and multimedia programs, biographies, conspiracy theories, academic studies, and literary texts about the iconic JFK and his fabled, thousand-day presidency continues unabated. In this course, we will explore the attention Kennedy has drawn from writers and filmmakers in texts by Norman Mailer, Don DeLillo, Mario Vargas Llosa, and others.
AMSTUD 153. Warhol's World. 5 Units.
Andy Warhol's art has never before been more widely exhibited, published, or licensed for commercial use, product design, and publication than it is today. For all Warhol's promiscuous visibility and global cachet at the current moment, there is much we have yet to learn about his work and the conditions of its making. This course considers the wide world of Warhol's art and life, including his commercial work of the 1950s, Pop art and films of the 1960s, and celebrity portraiture of the 1970s and 80s. Of particular interest throughout will be Warhol's photography as it reflects his interest in wealth and celebrity on the one hand and on the everyday life of everyday people on the other. The course will include multiple visits to Contact Warhol: Photography without End, an exhibition co-curated by Prof. Meyer on view throughout the quarter at the Cantor Arts Center.
Same as: ARTHIST 153, ARTHIST 353, FEMGEN 153, TAPS 153W, TAPS 353W
AMSTUD 154. American Intellectual and Cultural History to the Civil War. 5 Units.
(Same as HISTORY 54. History majors and others taking 5 units, register for 154.) How Americans considered problems such as slavery, imperialism, and sectionalism. Topics include: the political legacies of revolution; biological ideas of race; the Second Great Awakening; science before Darwin; reform movements and utopianism; the rise of abolitionism and proslavery thought; phrenology and theories of human sexuality; and varieties of feminism. Sources include texts and images.
Same as: HISTORY 154
AMSTUD 154X. The American Civil War: A Visual History. 4 Units.
A painting of men charging across a field, a photograph of dead bodies in a ditch, a fragment of metal, a sliver of bone, and a brass button: how do we make sense of the visual record of the American Civil War (1861-65)? From the Capitol Dome to a skeleton dug up in a highway project a hundred years after the last battle, the course will consider the strange and scattered remnants of a famous era. Drawing on the poetry of Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, and Herman Melville, the paintings of Winslow Homer, the photographs of Alexander Gardner, and the oratory of Abraham Lincoln, the course will examine what cannot be portrayed: the trauma of war.
Same as: ARTHIST 154, ARTHIST 354
AMSTUD 155. The White Supremacist Constitution: American Constitutional History. 5 Units.
This course addresses U.S. constitutional history from the post-Civil War Reconstruction period through the mid-20th century. Because of the breadth of the subject matter, the view will necessarily be partial. In particular we will take as our focus the way the Constitution has provided a point of political mobilization for social movements challenging economic and social inequality. Topics covered include: Civil War Reconstruction and restoration; the rise of corporate capitalism and efforts to constrain it; Progressive Era regulation; the New Deal challenge to federalism and the anti-New Deal backlash; government spending; WWII and the Japanese Internment; the Civil Rights Era, and the War on Poverty. Readings will include both legal and historical materials with a focus on the relationship between law and society. Elements used in grading: Class Participation, Attendance, Written Assignments, Final Paper. Paper extensions will be granted with instructor permission. No automatic grading penalty for late papers. Cross-listed with the Law School (LAW 7008),.
Same as: HISTORY 155
AMSTUD 155C. Abstract Expressionism: Painting/Modern/America. 4 Units.
The course will focus on American abstract painting from the 1930s to the 1960s, emphasizing the works of art at the Anderson Collection at Stanford. We will focus on looking closely at pictures by Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Willem de Kooning, and other renowned abstract painters, developing skills of speaking and writing about these works of art. We will also place these pictures in their mid-20th century context: World War II and the Cold War; Hollywood and popular culture generally; Beat literature; and locations such as New York and San Francisco.
Same as: ARTHIST 155C
AMSTUD 155F. The Civil War and Reconstruction Era, 1830 to 1877. 3-5 Units.
(HISTORY 55F is 3 units; HISTORY 155F is 5 units.)This course explores the causes, course, and consequences of the American Civil War. The Civil War profoundly impacted American life at national, sectional, and constitutional levels, and radically challenged categories of race and citizenship. Topics covered include: the crisis of union and disunion in an expanding republic; slavery, race, and emancipation as national problems and personal experiences; the horrors of total war for individuals and society; and the challenges--social and political--of Reconstruction.
Same as: AFRICAAM 55F, AMSTUD 55F, HISTORY 55F, HISTORY 155F
AMSTUD 156H. Women and Medicine in US History: Women as Patients, Healers and Doctors. 5 Units.
This course explores ideas about women's bodies in sickness and health, as well as women's encounters with lay and professional healers in the United States from the eighteenth century to the present. We begin with healthy women and explore ideas about women's life cycle in the past, including women's sexuality, the history of birth control, abortion, childbirth, and aging. We then turn to the history of women healers including midwives, lay physicians, professional physicians and nurses. Finally, we examine women's illnesses and their treatment as well as the lives of women with disabilities in the past. We will examine differences in women's experience with medicine on the basis of race, ethnicity, sexuality and class. We will relate this history to issues in contemporary medicine, and consider the efforts of women to gain control of their bodies and health care throughout US history.
Same as: FEMGEN 156H
AMSTUD 157P. Solidarity and Racial Justice. 4-5 Units.
Is multiracial solidarity necessary to overcome oppression that disproportionately affects certain communities of color? What is frontline leadership and what role should people play if they are not part of frontline communities? In this course we will critically examine practices of solidarity and allyship in movements for collective liberation. Through analysis of historical and contemporary movements, as well as participation in movement work, we will see how movements have built multiracial solidarity to address issues that are important to the liberation of all. We will also see how racial justice intersects with other identities and issues. This course is for students that want to learn how to practice solidarity, whether to be better allies or to work more effectively with allies. There will be a community engaged learning option for this course. Students who choose to participate in this option will either work with Stanford's DGen Office or a community organization that is explicitly devoted to multiracial movement-building.
Same as: AFRICAAM 157P, CSRE 157P, FEMGEN 157P
AMSTUD 157X. Language as Political Tool: Feminist and LGBTQ Movements and Impacts. 3-5 Units.
How does a social or political movement gain traction? For example, how did 20th-century movements of the disenfranchised, such as the Civil Rights movement, LGBTQ movements, or feminist movements, gain a voice and eventually enact change? In the mediascape of today, where everyone with access to a computer could have a voice, how does a movement change the national conversation? How do written and verbal choices of the movements impact their success and outreach to supporters? In this course, students will write and revise their own arguments in order to best understand the rhetorical potential in these movements¿ choices and to consider how those rhetorical moves are incorporated into political discourse. We'll examine the role of rhetoric, the use of argument to persuade, in social movements working toward social justice, party platforms, and public policy.
Same as: FEMGEN 157, FEMGEN 257
AMSTUD 159B. American Photography Since 1960. 5 Units.
Since the publication of Robert Frank's THE AMERICANS (1958), many distinguished American photographers have emerged, creating a density and power of expression that arguably rivals and even surpasses the extraordinary achievements of earlier photographers in this country. Garry Winogrand's street photography, Diane Arbus's portraits, Ralph Eugene Meatyard's grotesque masks, Danny Lyon's impassioned social outsiders, William Eggleston's deadpan sidewalks and suburban tables, and on to photographers of our moment--these are just a few of the topics the course will cover. Careful attention to individual pictures; careful consideration of what it is to be an artist, and a critic.
Same as: ARTHIST 159B, ARTHIST 359B
AMSTUD 159X. American Photographs, 1839-1971: A Cultural History. 4 Units.
This course concentrates on many important American photographers, from the era of daguerreotypes to near the end of the pre-digital era. We study photographs of the Civil War, western exploration, artistic subjects, urban and rural poverty, skyscrapers, crime, fashion, national parks, and social protest, among other topics. Among the photographers we study: Carleton Watkins, Eadweard Muybridge, Walker Evans, Dorothea Lange, Garry Winogrand, and Diane Arbus. Emphasis on developing students' abilities to discuss and write about photography; to see it.
Same as: ARTHIST 159, ARTHIST 359
AMSTUD 160. Perspectives on American Identity. 5 Units.
Required for American Studies majors. In this seminar we trace diverse and changing interpretations of American identity by exploring autobiographical, literary, and/or visual texts from the 18th through the 20th century in conversation with sociological, political, and historical accounts. *Fulfills Writing In the Major Requirement for American Studies Majors*.
Same as: ENGLISH 165
AMSTUD 161. The Politics of Sex: Work, Family, and Citizenship in Modern American Women's History. 3-5 Units.
This course explores the transition from Victorian to modern American womanhood by asking how Native, European, African, Mexican, and Asian American women navigated the changing sexual, economic, and political landscapes of the twentieth century. Through secondary readings, primary sources, films, music, and literature we explore the opportunities and boundaries on groups of women in the context of historical events that included immigration, urbanization, wartime, depression, the Cold War, as well as recurrent feminist and conservative political movements.
Same as: CSRE 162, FEMGEN 161, HISTORY 61, HISTORY 161
AMSTUD 163. Queer America. 4 Units.
This class explores queer art, photography and politics in the United States since 1930. Our approach will be grounded in close attention to the history and visual representation of sexual minorities in particular historical moments and social contexts. We will consider the cultural and political effects of World War II, the Cold War, the civil rights movement, psychedelics, hippie culture and sexual liberation, lesbian separatism, the AIDS crisis, and marriage equality.
Same as: ARTHIST 163, FEMGEN 163
AMSTUD 164C. From Freedom to Freedom Now: African American History, 1865-1965. 5 Units.
(Same as HISTORY 64C. History majors and others taking 5 units, register for 164C.) Explores the working lives, social worlds, political ideologies and cultural expressions of African Americans from emancipation to the early civil rights era. Topics include: the transition from slavery to freedom, family life, work, culture, leisure patterns, resistance, migration and social activism. Draws largely on primary sources including autobiographies, memoirs, letters, personal journals, newspaper articles, pamphlets, speeches, literature, film and music.
Same as: HISTORY 164C
AMSTUD 165. History of Higher Education in the U.S.. 3-5 Units.
Major periods of evolution, particularly since the mid-19th century. Premise: insights into contemporary higher education can be obtained through its antecedents, particularly regarding issues of governance, mission, access, curriculum, and the changing organization of colleges and universities.
Same as: EDUC 165, EDUC 265, HISTORY 158C
AMSTUD 168D. American Prophet: The Inner Life and Global Vision of Martin Luther King, Jr.. 3-5 Units.
Martin Luther King, Jr., was the 20th-century's best-known African-American leader, but the religious roots of his charismatic leadership are far less widely known. The documents assembled and published by Stanford's King Research and Education Institute provide the source materials for this exploration of King's swift rise to international prominence as an articulate advocate of global peace and justice.
Same as: AFRICAAM 68D, CSRE 68, HISTORY 68D, HISTORY 168D
AMSTUD 169. Race and Ethnicity in Urban California. 4-5 Units.
The course is part of an ongoing research project that examines the consequences of longterm social, economic, and political changes in ethnic and race relations in in urban California. The required readings, discussions, and service learning component all provide a platform for students to explore important issues, past and present, affecting California municipalities undergoing rapid demographic transformation.
Same as: AFRICAAM 169A, CSRE 260, URBANST 169
AMSTUD 176B. Documentary Fictions. 4 Units.
More and more of the best American fiction, plays, and even comics are being created out of documentary practices such as in-depth interviewing, oral histories, and reporting. Novels like Dave Eggers' What is the What, plays like Anna Deavere Smith's Twilight: Los Angeles, and narrative journalism like Rebecca Skloot's The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, all act as both witnesses and translators of people's direct experience and push art into social activism in new ways. In this course students will examine the research methods, artistic craft, and ethics of these rich, genre-bending works and then create documentary fictions of their own. Readings will include works by Truman Capote, Dave Eggers, and Lisa Taddeo, as well as Katherine Boo, author of the award-winning Behind the Beautiful Forevers, who will visit the class. No prior creative writing or journalism experience required. Note: First priority to undergrads. Students must attend the first class meeting to retain their roster spot.
AMSTUD 178. Ethnicity and Dissent in United States Art and Literature. 4 Units.
The role of the visual arts of the U.S. in the construction and contesting of racial, class, and gender hierarchies. Focus is on artists and writers from the 18th century to 1990s. How power, domination, and resistance work historically. Topics include: minstrelsy and the invention of race; mass culture and postmodernity; hegemony and language; memory and desire; and the borderlands.
Same as: ARTHIST 178, ARTHIST 378
AMSTUD 179. Introduction to American Law. 3-5 Units.
For undergraduates. The structure of the American legal system including the courts; American legal culture; the legal profession and its social role; the scope and reach of the legal system; the background and impact of legal regulation; criminal justice; civil rights and civil liberties; and the relationship between the American legal system and American society in general.
Same as: POLISCI 122, PUBLPOL 302A
AMSTUD 183. Re- Imagining American Borders. 5 Units.
In this third volatile and violent year of the Trump presidency, American borders of all kinds seem to be dangerously tight. This is seen in the literal horror of immigrant detention centers filled with hungry, sick children taken from parents, ongoing mass incarceration and police attacks on young black and brown men and gendered violence targeting trans Americans and pro-choice movements. Additionally urban and rural antagonisms and constant social media anger with a kind of newly brutal linguistic framing are all underscoring a vision of an America of intractable difference. The hopeful transformation from the 2018 elections, which is having enormous reverberations in the present 2020 presidential campaigns, is interestingly also based in a discourse of difference. This course investigates sources of these borderlines and most crucially how novelists, filmmakers, poets, visual artists and essayists perceive racial, ethnic, gender, religious, sexual orientation and class borders in this country as they may re-imagine difference possibly via Vijay Prashad's polyculturalism or Gloria Anzaldùa's borderlands. Texts include those of Ta-Nehisi Coates, Boots Riley, Dee Rees, Ryan Coogler, Nelly Rosario, Janice Lobo Sapigao, Layli Long Soldier, Naomi Shihab Nye, Edwidge Danticat, Sherman Alexie, Shailja Patel, Kara Walker, and the podcast Ear Hustle, narratives created and produced from inside San Quentin, along with Shane Bauer's undercover expose of an American prison. Course guests will include actors and writers from the acclaimed web series, The North Pole, showing parts of the new second season of biting, humorous stories of gentrification, racism and immigration issues in West Oakland. And the Bay Area founder of the only women-run, inclusive mosque in the US, Rabi¿a Keeble, will speak with us about an American Islam with a Muslim community that embraces difference. Course work includes active discussion, journal entries, one comparative analytical essay and a creative final project/with analytical paper examining personal or community identities.
Same as: CSRE 183, FEMGEN 183
AMSTUD 185. American Studies Internship. 1-3 Unit.
Restricted to declared majors. Practical experience working in a field related to American Studies for six to ten weeks. Students make internship arrangements with a company or agency, under the guidance of a sponsoring faculty member, and with the consent of the director or a program coordinator of American Studies. Required paper focused on a topic related to the internship and the student's studies. May be repeated for credit.
AMSTUD 186A. American Hauntings. 5 Units.
Cultural, psychological, social, and political dynamics of haunting in American literature, from the early national period to the late 20th century. Sources include ghost stories and other instances of supernatural, emotional, or mental intervention. Authors include Charles Brockden Brown, Washington Irving, Edgar Allan Poe, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Louisa May Alcott, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Charles Chesnutt, Henry James, Edith Wharton, Toni Morrison, and Stephen King.
AMSTUD 186B. American Song in the 20th Century and after. 3-4 Units.
Critical and creative exploration of song in the Americas. About twenty-five key examples will guide discussion of the interactions between words, music, performance and culture. Weekly listening, reading and assignments will be organized around central themes: love, sex and romance; war and politics; labor and money; place; identity; society and everyday life. Genres include art song; blues, gospel, jazz and country; pop, soul, rock and hip-hop; bossa nova, nueva canción and salsa; electronic and experimental. Takehome and in-class assignments will include critical and creative writing, and music composition, production and performance; final projects may emphasize any of the above.
Same as: MUSIC 186B, MUSIC 286B
AMSTUD 186D. Asian American Art: 1850-Present. 4 Units.
What does it mean, and what has it meant historically, to be "Asian American" in the United States? This lecture course explores this question through the example of artists, craftspeople, and laborers of Asian descent. We will consider their work alongside the art, visual culture, and literature of the United States. Key themes will include the history of immigration law; questions of home and belonging; art, activism, and community; interethnic solidarity; and gender and queerness. Artists and authors will include Isamu Noguchi, Grace Lee Boggs, Nam June Paik, Yoko Ono, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Grace Lee Boggs, Zarina, Carlos Villa, Takashi Murakami, Anne Cheng, Lisa Lowe, among many others. In addition to learning the history of Asian Americans and reading key texts in Asian American studies, this course will also teach the foundational skills of close looking and primary source research.
Same as: ARTHIST 186B, ASNAMST 186B
AMSTUD 195. Individual Work. 1-5 Unit.
AMSTUD 197. Dance in Prison: The Arts, Juvenile Justice, and Rehabilitation in America. 3 Units.
This class uses the lens of performance, and particularly dance, to explore the aesthetic, cultural, historical, and legal issues in the lives of incarcerated youth. In the process students gain an understanding of incarceration and its cultural dimensions. Class readings and discussions foreground the legal and social contexts surrounding prisons in the U.S., Particular attention will be paid to the nexus of art, community, and social action, and how dance might be used to study the performing arts effects on self-construction, perception, experiences of embodiment, and social control for incarcerated teenagers. The class includes guest speakers who bring important perspectives on criminal justice including returned citizens, a juvenile justice attorney, a restorative conferencing facilitator and a dancer who teaches women in prison to be their own dance instructors.
Same as: DANCE 197, TAPS 197
AMSTUD 199A. American Studies Honors Seminar. 1 Unit.
*Enrollment Required for American Studies Honors students in their senior year.
AMSTUD 199B. American Studies Honors Seminar. 1 Unit.
*Required for all American Studies honors students.
AMSTUD 199C. American Studies Honors Seminar. 1 Unit.
*Required for American Studies honors students.
AMSTUD 200J. Doing Oral History. 5 Units.
Students explore exemplary historical works based on oral histories and develop a range of practical skills while completing their own interviews. Topics include oral history and narrative theory, interview techniques, transcript preparation, and digital archiving. Students also learn how to analyze interviews using both qualitative and quantitative methods, practice writing history using oral evidence, and experiment with digital humanities approaches for disseminating oral history, including the Stanford Oral History Text Analysis Project. This course forms part of the "Doing History" series: rigorous undergraduate colloquia that introduce the practice of history within a particular field or thematic area.
Same as: HISTORY 200J
AMSTUD 200R. Doing Community History: Asian Americans and the Pandemic. 5 Units.
Students utilize a community-engaged oral history methodology to produce short video documentaries focused on Asian Americans in the Covid-19 pandemic. In producing these collaborative digital history projects, students learn to evaluate the ways social power influences historical documentation at various levels including the making of sources, the construction of archives, and the telling of historical narratives. We ask: how have race and racism, ethnicity and community, gender and class, shaped the ways that the pandemic has influenced the lives of Asian Americans? To what extent have Asian American experiences with the pandemic been shaped by the recent global protests for racial justice and Black liberation? In studying the pandemic and its relationship to histories of race and racism, how should we understand the place of Asian Americans?.
Same as: ASNAMST 201, HISTORY 200R
AMSTUD 201. History of Education in the United States. 3-5 Units.
How education came to its current forms and functions, from the colonial experience to the present. Focus is on the 19th-century invention of the common school system, 20th-century emergence of progressive education reform, and the developments since WW II. The role of gender and race, the development of the high school and university, and school organization, curriculum, and teaching. Class meetings will typically end around 1:50pm.
Same as: EDUC 201, HISTORY 258B
AMSTUD 214. The American 1960s: Thought, Protest, and Culture. 5 Units.
The meaning of the American 60s emphasizing ideas, culture, protest, and the new sensibility that emerged. Topics: black protest, the new left, the counterculture, feminism, the new literature and journalism of the 60s, the role of the media in shaping dissent, and the legacy of 60s protest. Interpretive materials from film, music, articles, and books.
AMSTUD 215. Understanding Jews. 1-2 Unit.
This discussion-based course will give students an opportunity to explore the constellation of religious, ethnic, national, cultural, artistic, spiritual, and political forces that shape Jewish life in the 21st century. Drawing on historical documents, classical texts, and contemporary events, this course will give students from any background an opportunity to ask hard questions, deepen their own understandings, and challenge their conceptions of what makes Jewish life ¿Jewish.¿ No matter where you went for Sunday school ¿ church, synagogue, the woods, or nowhere at all ¿ this course is a chance to question what you know, and interrogate how you came to know what you know about Jews, Judaism, and Jewish culture.
Same as: JEWISHST 215
AMSTUD 216. Education, Race, and Inequality in African American History, 1880-1990. 3-5 Units.
Seminar. The relationship among race, power, inequality, and education from the 1880s to the 1990s. How schools have constructed race, the politics of school desegregation, and ties between education and the late 20th-century urban crisis.
Same as: AFRICAAM 116, CSRE 216X, EDUC 216, HISTORY 255E
AMSTUD 218. Islam, Race and Revolution: A Pan-American Approach. 3-5 Units.
Taking a pan-American approach to the study of religious traditions, this upper-level course traces the history of the critical intersection between race, religion and revolution among Muslims from the turn of the nineteenth century until the present day. Moving from the Atlantic Revolutions of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, to the United States, to the decolonizing Third World, and then finally to the contemporary Middle East, this class will emphasize that Islam and race together have been used by many groups in order to challenge existing power structures, agitate for change, and more than occasionally, transform the social, cultural and governmental structures comprising their worlds. Moreover, although this class is concentrated upon religious formations in the Americas, students will explore global events throughout the Muslim world in order to examine how global politics contribute to religious formations, solidarities and identities. At the conclusion of this course, students will be expected to write a 10-15 page research paper, and a topic will be chosen in consultation with the instructor. Students will also be expected to write weekly reflection papers, which will serve to facilitate class discussion. Undergraduates register for 200-level for 5 units. Graduate students register for 300-level for 3-5 units.
Same as: CSRE 218, RELIGST 218, RELIGST 318
AMSTUD 220B. Being John Wayne. 5 Units.
John Wayne's imposing corporeality and easy comportment combined to create an icon of masculinity, the American West, and America itself. Focus is on the films that contributed most to the establishment, maturation, and deconstruction of the iconography and mythology of the John Wayne character. The western and war film as genres; the crisis of and performance of masculinity in postwar culture; gender and sexuality in American national identity; relations among individualism, community, and the state; the Western and national memory; and patriotism and the Vietnam War.
Same as: FILMSTUD 220, TAPS 220A
AMSTUD 224. Nature, Race, and Indigeneity in the U.S. Imagination. 3-5 Units.
Nature is one of the weirdest words in the English language¿it can refer to human trait (it is in her nature), a nonhuman environment (we walked in nature, a divine power (mother nature), or a biological process (¿nature calls¿). Despite¿and indeed, because of¿these ambiguities, nature has played pivotal roles in the territory that has come to be known as the United States. In various guises, nature has inspired pilgrims, pioneers, and tourists. At the same time, nature has staged struggles between settlers and Natives, whites and racialized peoples, upper classes and working classes. As both a cultural construct and a material reality, therefore, nature has brought us together and torn us apart. In this seminar, we will learn how Natives, Latinxs, Blacks, whites, and other ethno-racial groups have depicted and dwelled in the U.S. By engaging with a variety of media¿from literature and visual art to law and public policy¿we will recover conflicting ideas of nature. And by reading in the environmental humanities¿including history, anthropology, and literary criticism¿we will discover how these ideas have impacted human and more-than-human worlds. While our inquiries will take us from prehistory to the present, they will converge on the future; now that we are destroying our ecosystems, extinguishing our fellow species, and transforming our atmosphere, we will ask, is there still such a thing as nature?.
Same as: ENGLISH 224B
AMSTUD 226. Race and Racism in American Politics. 5 Units.
Topics include the historical conceptualization of race; whether and how racial animus reveals itself and the forms it might take; its role in the creation and maintenance of economic stratification; its effect on contemporary U.S. partisan and electoral politics; and policy making consequences.
Same as: CSRE 226, POLISCI 226, POLISCI 326
AMSTUD 226X. Curating Experience: Representation in and beyond Museums. 2-4 Units.
In an age when some 50% of museum visitors only "visit" museums online and when digital technologies have broken open archival access, anyone can be a curator, a critic, an historian, an archivist. In this context, how do museums create experiences that teach visitors about who they are and about the world around them? What are the politics of representation that shape learning in these environments? Using an experimental instructional approach, students will reconsider and redefine what it means to curate experience. (This course must be taken for a minimum of 3 units to satisfy a Ways requirement.).
Same as: CSRE 226X, EDUC 226
AMSTUD 231X. Learning Religion: How People Acquire Religious Commitments. 4 Units.
This course will examine how people learn religion outside of school, and in conversation with popular cultural texts and practices. Taking a broad social-constructivist approach to the variety of ways people learn, this course will explore how people assemble ideas about faith, identity, community, and practice, and how those ideas inform individual, communal and global notions of religion. Much of this work takes place in formal educational environments including missionary and parochial schools, Muslim madrasas or Jewish yeshivot. However, even more takes place outside of school, as people develop skills and strategies in conversation with broader social trends. This course takes an interdisciplinary approach to questions that lie at the intersection of religion, popular culture, and education. May be repeat for credit.
Same as: EDUC 231, JEWISHST 291X, RELIGST 231X
AMSTUD 236. Interfaith Dialogue on Campus: Religion, Diversity, and Higher Education. 2-5 Units.
How are we to talk across religious and spiritual differences? What is the purpose of such dialogues? What do we hope to gain from them? How do such dialogues take shape on college campuses, and what do they indicate about how students cultivate spiritual, political, and civic commitments? This course will explore these questions and others through seminar discussions, fieldwork, and writing that will examine the concepts, assumptions, and principles that shape how we think about interfaith dialogue.
Same as: CSRE 136A, EDUC 436, RELIGST 336X
AMSTUD 240A. Pre-Honors Seminar. 1-5 Unit.
Methods, interpretations, and issues pertinent to honors work in American Studies. Open to juniors interested in honors.
AMSTUD 240Y. The Yiddish Story. 3-5 Units.
The Yiddish language is associated with jokes, folktales, and miracle legends, as well as modern stories. This class traces the development of Yiddish literature through these short oral and written forms, following Jewish writers out of the East European market town to cities in the Soviet Union, Israel, and especially the United States. We conclude with stories written in other languages about Yiddish writers. Readings include Sholem Aleichem, I. L. Peretz, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Esther Singer-Kreitman, Cynthia Ozick, and Dina Rubina. Readings in English; optional discussion section for students who read Yiddish.
Same as: JEWISHST 240
AMSTUD 244. The Visual Culture of the American Home Front, 1941-1945. 5 Units.
How does home front of WWII look now? What sort of meanings appear with the vantage of more than sixty years' distance? Examining Hollywood films from those years -films made during the war but mostly not directly about the war - the seminar focuses on developing students' abilities to write emotion-based criticism and history. Weekly short papers, each one in response to a film screening, are required. Among the films screened: Shadow of a Doubt, Gaslight, I Walked with a Zombie, The Best Years of Our Lives.
Same as: ARTHIST 244
AMSTUD 246. Constructing Race and Religion in America. 4-5 Units.
This seminar focuses on the interrelationships between social constructions of race and social interpretations of religion in America. How have assumptions about race shaped religious worldviews? How have religious beliefs shaped racial attitudes? How have ideas about religion and race contributed to notions of what it means to be "American"? We will look at primary and secondary sources and at the historical development of ideas and practices over time.
Same as: AFRICAAM 236, CSRE 246, HISTORY 256G, HISTORY 356G, RELIGST 246, RELIGST 346
AMSTUD 246B. Pop Art. 5 Units.
A new course on the history and meaning of Pop art in the United States and abroad. The course will feature close study of paintings, photographs, and prints at the Cantor Art Center. The course will be given in the Denning Family Resource Room, located in The Anderson Collection building. If you have any questions regarding the location, please contact Linda Esquivel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Same as: ARTHIST 246B
AMSTUD 250. Senior Research. 1-15 Unit.
Research and writing of senior honors thesis under the supervision of a faculty member. The final grade for the thesis is assigned by the chair based on the evaluations of the primary thesis adviser and a second reader appointed by the program. Prerequisite: consent of chair.
AMSTUD 250J. Baldwin and Hansberry: The Myriad Meanings of Love. 4 Units.
This course looks at major dramatic works by James Baldwin and Lorraine Hansberry. Both of these queer black writers had prophetic things to say about the world-historical significance of major dramas on the 20th Century including civil rights, revolution, gender, colonialism, racism, sexism, war, nationalism and as well as aesthetics and politics.
Same as: AFRICAAM 250J, CSRE 250J, FEMGEN 250J, TAPS 250J
AMSTUD 251C. The American Enlightenment. 5 Units.
The eighteenth century saw the rise of many exciting new political, religious, and scientific theories about human happiness, perfectibility, and progress that today we call "the Enlightenment." Most people associate the Enlightenment with Europe, but in this course we will explore the many ways in which the specific conditions of eighteenth-century North America --such as slavery, the presence of large numbers of indigenous peoples, a colonial political context, and even local animals, rocks, and plants--also shaped the major questions and conversations of the people who strove to become "enlightened." We'll also explore how American Enlightenment ideas have profoundly shaped the way Americans think today about everything from politics to science to race. The class is structured as lecture and discussion, with deep reading in primary sources from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
Same as: HISTORY 251C
AMSTUD 251J. The End of American Slavery, 1776-1865. 4-5 Units.
How did the institution of American slavery come to an end? The story is more complex than most people know. This course examines the rival forces that fostered slavery's simultaneous contraction in the North and expansion in the South between 1776 and 1861. It also illuminates, in detail, the final tortuous path to abolition during the Civil War. Throughout, the course introduces a diverse collection of historical figures, including seemingly paradoxical ones, such as slaveholding southerners who professed opposition to slavery and non-slaveholding northerners who acted in ways that preserved it. Historical attitudes toward race are a central integrative theme.
Same as: AFRICAAM 251J, HISTORY 251J, HISTORY 351J
AMSTUD 256A. Horror Comics. 5 Units.
This seminar will explore the vast array of horror comics. How does horror work in comics, as distinct from prose and cinema? How and why are non-moving images scary? The different narrational strategies of short stories, self-contained works, and continuing series will be explored, as will American, Japanese, and European approaches. Special attention will be given to Frankenstein, in novel, film, illustration, and comics. Example of such sub-genres as literary horror, horrific superheroes, cosmic (Lovecraftian) horror, ecological horror, as well as the horrors of bodies, sexuality, and adolescence will be encountered.nnStudents will read many comics, some comics theory, and will do an in-class presentation on a comic or topic of their choosing. The course is a seminar, so discussion will be continuous and required. Enrollment limited.
Same as: FILMSTUD 256
AMSTUD 256E. The American Civil War: The Lived Experience. 5 Units.
What was it like to live in the United States during the Civil War? This course uses the lenses of racial/ethnic identity, gender, class, and geography (among others) to explore the breadth of human experience during this singular moment in American history. It illuminates the varied ways in which Americans, in the Union states and the Confederate states, struggled to move forward and to find meaning in the face of unprecedented division and destruction.
Same as: AFRICAAM 256E, HISTORY 256E
AMSTUD 258. History of Sexual Violence in America. 4-5 Units.
This undergraduate/graduate colloquium explores the history of sexual violence in America, with particular attention to the intersections of gender and race in the construction of rape. We discuss the changing definitions of sexual violence in law and in cultural representations from early settlement through the late-twentieth century, including slavery, wartime and prison rape, the history of lynching and anti-lynching movements, and feminist responses to sexual violence. In addition to introducing students to the literature on sexual violence, the course attempts to teach critical skills in the analysis of secondary and primary historical texts. Students write short weekly reading responses and a final paper; no final exam; fifth unit research or CEL options.nnLimited enrollment, permission of instructor required. Submit application form and indicate interest in CEL option. Priority admission to History, FGSS, CSRE, AFRICAAM, and AMSTUD declared majors and minors. (Cardinal Course certified by the Haas Center).
Same as: AFRICAAM 192, CSRE 192E, FEMGEN 258, FEMGEN 358, HISTORY 258, HISTORY 358
AMSTUD 260. Disability, Gender, and Identity: Women's Personal Experiences. 5 Units.
This course explores visible and invisible disabilities, focusing on issues of gender and identity in the personal experiences of women. The course emphasizes psychological as well as physical health, the diversity of disability experiences, self-labeling, caretaking, stigma and passing, and social and political aspects. Disabilities covered include blindness, multiple sclerosis, diabetes, arthritis, emotional and learning disabilities, and conditions requiring wheelchairs and other forms of assistance. The readings draw from the disability studies literature and emphasize women's personal narratives in sociological perspective. Note: Instructor Consent Required.
Same as: FEMGEN 260, FEMGEN 360
AMSTUD 261. Personal Narratives in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. 4-5 Units.
This course explores the contribution of personal narratives to knowledge in the field of feminist, gender, and sexuality studies. Each week, students do extensive readings of exemplary personal narratives that have contributed in substance and method to the field and that have opened up new areas of inquiry. These narratives deal especially with issues of individual and group identity; gender, sexuality, racial and ethnic diversity; and disability. Students select a topic of special interest to them to focus their readings and guide individual research during the quarter. The approach of the course is feminist, ethnographic, and welcoming of a variety of approaches to personal narrative. Instructor consent required; students apply at the first class meeting.
Same as: FEMGEN 261, FEMGEN 361
AMSTUD 261A. Geography, Time, and Trauma in Asian American Literature. 5 Units.
The notion that homes can be stable locations for cultural, racial, ethnic, and similarly situated identity categories. Tthe possibility that there really is no place like home for Asian American subjects. How geography, landscape, and time situate traumas within fictional Asian American narratives.
Same as: ASNAMST 187
AMSTUD 261E. Mixed Race Literature in the U.S. and South Africa. 5 Units.
As scholar Werner Sollors recently suggested, novels, poems, stories about interracial contacts and mixed race constitute ¿an orphan literature belonging to no clear ethnic or national tradition.¿ Yet the theme of mixed race is at the center of many national self-definitions, even in our U.S. post-Civil Rights and South Africa¿s post-Apartheid era. This course examines aesthetic engagements with mixed race politics in these trans- and post-national dialogues, beginning in the 1700s and focusing on the 20th and 21st centuries.
Same as: AFRICAAM 261E
AMSTUD 261W. Introduction to Asian American History. 5 Units.
This course provides an introduction to the field of Asian American history. Tracing this history between the arrival of the first wave of Asian immigrants to the US in the mid-nineteenth century and the present, we foreground the voices and personal histories of seemingly everyday Asian Americans. In the process, the course disrupts totalizing national historical narratives that center the US nation-state and its political leaders as the primary agents of historical change.
Same as: ASNAMST 261, HISTORY 261E
AMSTUD 262C. African American Literature and the Retreat of Jim Crow. 5 Units.
After the unprecedented carnage of WWII, the postwar era witnessed the slow decline of the segregated Jim Crow order and the onset of landmark civil rights legislation. What role did African American literature and culture play in this historical process? What does this shift in racial theory and praxis mean for black literary production, a tradition constituted by the experience of slavery and racial oppression? Focus on these questions against the backdrop of contemporaneous developments: the onset of the Cold War, decolonization and the formation of the Third World, and the emergence of the "new liberalism.".
Same as: AFRICAAM 262C, CSRE 262C
AMSTUD 262D. African American Poetics. 5 Units.
Examination of African American poetic expressive forms from the 1700s to the 2000s, considering the central role of the genre--from sonnets to spoken word, from blues poetry to new media performance--in defining an evolving literary tradition and cultural identity.
Same as: AFRICAAM 262D
AMSTUD 264. History of Prisons and Immigration Detention. 4-5 Units.
This course will explore the history of the growing prison and immigration detention systems in the United States. They will pay particular attention to how they developed and how they affect different populations.
Same as: CSRE 264, HISTORY 264, HISTORY 364
AMSTUD 267E. Martin Luther King, Jr. - His Life, Ideas, and Legacy. 4-5 Units.
Using the unique documentary resources and publications of Stanford's King Research and Education Institute, this course will provide a general introduction to King's life, visionary ideas, and historical significance. In addition to lectures and discussions, the course will include presentations of documentaries such as Eyes on the Prize. Students will be expected to read the required texts, participate in class discussions, and submit a research paper or an audio-visual project developed in consultation with the professor.
Same as: AFRICAAM 267E, HISTORY 267E
AMSTUD 271. Mexicans in the United States. 5 Units.
This course explores the lives and experiences of Mexicans living in the United States, from 1848 to the present. Themes and topics include: the legacies of colonialism, the Mexican-American War, transnational migration, the effects of economic stratification, race and racialization, and the impact of sexual and gender ideologies on the lives of Mexicans residing north of the border.
Same as: CHILATST 171, CSRE 171H, HISTORY 271
AMSTUD 279X. American Jewish History: Learning to be Jewish in America. 2-4 Units.
This course will be a seminar in American Jewish History through the lens of education. It will address both the relationship between Jews and American educational systems, as well as the history of Jewish education in America. Plotting the course along these two axes will provide a productive matrix for a focused examination of the American Jewish experience. History students must take course for at least 3 units.
Same as: EDUC 279, HISTORY 288D, JEWISHST 297X, RELIGST 279X
AMSTUD 281. Asian Religions in America; Asian American Religions. 4 Units.
This course will analyze both the reception in America of Asian religions (i.e. of Buddhism in the 19th century), and the development in America of Asian American religious traditions.
Same as: ASNAMST 281, RELIGST 281, RELIGST 381
AMSTUD 290. Movies and Methods: Contemporary Black Filmmakers. 5 Units.
Despite the systemic inequalities of the Hollywood system, there is a robust, stylistically diverse cohort of African-American writer/directors at work, including Barry Jenkins, Ava DuVernay, and Ryan Coogler. Jenkins' films (Moonlight, If Beale Street Could Talk), are aesthetically lush, intimate, and understated. DuVernay (When They See Us) foregrounds racial history and injustice in her feature films, television, and documentary work. Coogler followed his realist Fruitvale Station with two powerful genre films with black protagonists (Creed, Black Panther - this last the highest-grossing film by a black director).
Same as: FILMSTUD 290, FILMSTUD 490
AMSTUD 293. Church, State, & Schools: Issues in Education & Religion. 4 Units.
This course will examine interactions between religion and education, focusing on both formal and experiential sites in which people and communities explore, articulate, encounter, and perform religious ideologies and identities. The class will focus on different religious traditions and their encounters the institutions and structures of education in American culture, both in the United States and as it manifests in American culture transnationally.
Same as: EDUC 293, RELIGST 234X