AMCULT 302 - Contemporary Social and Cultural Theory
Fall 2022, Section 001
Instruction Mode: Section 001 is  In Person (see other Sections below)
Subject: American Culture (AMCULT)
Department: LSA American Culture
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Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:
Start/End Date:
Full Term 8/29/22 - 12/9/22 (see other Sections below)
NOTE: Drop/Add deadlines are dependent on the class meeting dates and will differ for full term versus partial term offerings.
For information on drop/add deadlines, see the Office of the Registrar and search Registration Deadlines.


This course explores some of the core methodological choices available to social science researchers today. Our goal is to develop a deeper appreciation of how researchers position themselves with respect to established versus shifting paradigms of inquiry, and how these engagements with distinct sets of analytical concepts and categories in turn structure their/our understandings of individuals and societies. 

The first unit considers a particular set of categories – the shifting race and ethnicity categories used in the U.S. census – and examines how they have been differently approached through postitivist-inspired and non-positivist research. The second unit considers a particular object of inquiry – “the history of the working class” – and explores how it has inspired scholarly readings influenced by differing structuralist, post-structuralist, feminist, and cultural studies approaches. Finally, the third unit considers contemporary struggles to achieve social, racial, gender, and environmental justice and examines how they have been differently understood through theories of institutions and organizations and through theories of political discourse. As a final assignment, students will produce an annotated bibliography centered on an issue of personal concern and that explores how a range of prior scholarship has theorized the dynamics of achieving emancipatory social change in this domain.

Course Requirements:

Grading will be based on reading responses, two essay midterms, a final annotated bibliography assignment, and active participation in small groups and in class discussion.


AMCULT 302 - Contemporary Social and Cultural Theory
Schedule Listing
001 (SEM)
 In Person
MW 11:30AM - 1:00PM
8/29/22 - 12/9/22

Textbooks/Other Materials

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