Courses in AMERICAN CULTURE (DIVISION 315)

Unless otherwise stated, the permission required for the repetition for credit of specifically designated courses is that of the student's concentration or B.G.S. advisor.

203. Periods in American Culture. Amer. Cult. 201 or permission of instructor. (3). (HU). May be repeated for credit with permission of concentration adviser.
Section 001: Imagining the Frontier, 1800-1890.
People have imagined the frontier as both the domain of the devil and the promise of the future. How did people create the frontier, both in their minds and in the physical world? Did different peoples imagine the frontier differently, and how did that shape their world? We will begin by looking at several American Indian tribes and their diverse experiences in the contact with the invaders. The bulk of the course will examine the European-American settlers, emphasizing the pioneers' own words, from letters and autobiographies. Finally, we will end by comparing the frontier experience within the United States to that in South Africa. Throughout the course we will try to remain aware of what our own imagining of the frontier indicates about the meanings of America we construct. Student work will include a series of very short papers, but the emphasis in the class will be on class discussion and a 10-12 page paper. Cost:4 WL:2 (Nation)

Section 002: Indulgence and Denial in American Culture. From Temperance and Prohibition to today's "War on Drugs" and dietary and fitness obsessions, the American experience has been characterized by a complex interaction between over-indulgence and its kindred excess, self-denial. This seminar will explore the relationship between the individual and the Body Politic; examining how seemingly personal behavioral choices have expressed larger social and political concerns in specific historical periods. We will use books, articles, film and TV to ask how definitions of proper "private" behavior have changed and how these definitions have been used as mechanisms of social control, linked to race, class and gender. This course will require about 200 pages of reading per week. Informed participation in class discussion will count heavily toward the final grade. Written assignments will include a short paper, a midterm exam and an 8-10 page final paper. Cost:4 WL:4 (Ackermann)

Section 003: History, Memory, and Power Revolution and Reconstruction in American Culture, 1945-1990. This course examines the struggles between dominant and resistant cultures in post WWII America. During this period, powerful forces simultaneously created a traditional "Americanism" ("God," "Family," and "Country") while also establishing the U.S. as the dominant world power in technology, international markets, and `third-world' political conflicts. Thus, the fifties embodied two major contradiction: (1) the ideological hypocrisies of `American value' and the actual conditions of Blacks in the South, women, and the alienation of a growing youth population; (2) the conflicts between provincial isolationism and U.S. foreign intervention. These contradictions inspired early protests (bus boycotts, school desegregation, peace demonstrations, and the Beat culture) which became powerful, and potentially revolutionary, sixties movements. Still, the "Power Elite" continued to build a `traditional' mainstream culture celebrating (and manufacturing) "consensus" around international military and economic intervention. These efforts, and the internal fragmentations of sixties' movements themselves, paved the way for the conservative reconstruction of American culture, characterized by the `New Right.' (Dolgon)

205. American Cultures. (3). (Excl).
American Cultures is an introduction to the study of concepts of culture, cultural diversity, intercultural relations and dynamics, and their causes, effects, and contexts. The course is based on multidisciplinary American studies, where subjects are interpreted through methods which include historical, literary, artistic, religious, and philosophical, popular cultural, and social scientific analyses. Cultural groups to be studied are American Indians, European Americans, African Americans, Latino/Latina Americans, and Asian/Pacific Americans. Since each of these groups itself is diverse, we shall ask how cultural groupings are conceived, expressed, and interpreted. Further, the course aims to abstract, from specific cultural cases, questions and ideas about what it may mean for a seemingly singular grouping called "American" to be seen pluralistically, as a changing configuration of "cultures." Two lectures and one discussion section per typical week are required, as are three papers, about 5 pages each, and a final exam. Cost:4 WL:2 (Sumida)

210. Topics in Ethnic Studies. (3). (SS). May be repeated for credit with permission.
Section 001: The Asian American Experience.
Asian Americans have been participants in United States life since the 1800's. Sys

Section 002: Other Voices Native American Narratives. Personal narrative texts are an essential and rich source of information about the experiences of Native American peoples. By examining the memories, recollections and representations of individuals, we can hear other voices, see other views, of events the narrators wished to present. This introductory survey of Native American texts will explore personal, tribal and intertribal lives of Native Americans through their literature, film, music and painting. These multimedia texts will focus on particular social, cultural and historical events, from time before non-Indians to this year's Ann Arbor Powwow. Method of investigation is group-inquiry which requires attendance and active participation. After reading, listening to, and watching the narrative texts concerning events under consideration, individuals write preliminary responses to specific questions that are read aloud in small groups. Rewrites based on peer and instructor suggestions elaborate on these preliminary responses and constitute finished four of which determine the course grade. (Howe)

211. Introduction to Latino Studies. (3). (HU).
This class will explore Caribbean narrative as a textual form of resistance and cultural affirmation. Focusing on the history of colonialism, we will attempt to trace how the narrative produced in the Caribbean is embroiled in the ideological and political struggle toward self, voice, and nation. Necessarily issues of "race," class and gender will be considered and studied to speculate and think about the topics and texts under study and scrutiny. Through a collective and comparative investigation we will reflect and closely read the narrative strategies and practices produced by the following writers: Alejo Carpentier, Luis Rafael Sanchez, Ana Lydia Vega, Eduoard Glissant, Simone Schwarz-Bart, Michelle Cliff, and George Lamming. Instruction will concentrate on lecture and discussion, stressing the latter. Students will be expected to write three papers and produce relevant short class presentations as student interests and concerns develop. (Labiosa)

240/Women's Studies 240. Introduction to Women's Studies. Open to all undergraduates. (4). (HU).
See Women's Studies 240.

301. Topics in American Culture. (1-3). (Excl). May be repeated for credit with permission.
Section 001. From Bebop to Hiphop: African Americans and Popular Culture since 1945.
For Winter Term 1992, this course is jointly offered with CAAS 358.001. (Kelley)

304/Soc. 304. American Immigration. (3). (Excl).
See Sociology 304. (Pedraza)

310. Topics in Ethnic Studies. (3). (SS). May be repeated for credit with permission of advisor.
Section 001: Caribbean Diaspora Latino Immigrants in New York.
Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, Jamaicans, Haitians, and Cubans have all sought to migrate to the U.S. in search for economic prosperity or less political repression. Upon arrival to New York, they faced major problems, such as impersonal bureaucracies, racial prejudice, unemployment and job discrimination, pressures to assimilate, the disintegration of their family life, and the sudden loss of social standing and personal identity. This course seeks to understand the historical, cultural, geographic, and economic forces behind these migrations as well as the similarities and differences of the migrant experience. (Sfeir-Younis)

Section 002: Ethnopoetics. For Winter Term, 1992, this course is jointly offered with Anthropology 473.001. (Bierwert)

311. Topics in Ethnic Studies. (3). (HU). May be repeated for credit with permission of advisor.
Section 001: Approximations to Chicana/o Culture.
For Winter Term 1992, this course is jointly offered with Spanish 386.001. (Perez)

Section 002: Native American Music. For Winter Term 1992, this course is jointly offered with Music History 407.001. (Browner)

350. Approaches to American Culture. Amer. Cult. 201, junior standing, or concentration in American Culture; or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).
What constitutes method in American Studies? The identifying of myth and symbol, the investigation of mass, "minority," and "sub-cultures," interdisciplinary analysis, the critique of the culture the methodology of American Studies encompasses any and all of these approaches. In this course, students will examine a variety of things American be they fast foods, supermarket tabloids, or genre fiction. Readings will cover a wide spectrum of texts; authors such as Calvin Trillin, Janice Radway, and Michael Denning may be included. Both 350 and 398 will meet at the same time and place; Honors students should elect 398 rather than 350; other concentrators in the program should elect 350. Frequent papers, an oral presentation, and regular participation in class discussion are required. Cost:3 WL:2 (Zafar)

372/Hist. 376. American Technology and Society: Historical Perspectives. (3). (Excl).
This course will trace the history of major American technological developments during the period from the Revolutionary War to pre-World War II and examine the relationship between these technologies and their effects on American society and culture. The course will also explore the contrasting views and changing attitudes within this country regarding the role of technology in American society. No specific academic background is required and the participation of students from diverse academic disciplines is welcome. Students will be required to participate in CONFER for the purpose of class discussion. A field trip to the Henry Ford Museum is also a course requirement. Grades will be derived from a midterm and a final exam, a term paper, and classroom discussion of required readings. (Doyle)

398. Junior Honors Seminar. Permission of a concentration adviser in American Culture. (3). (Excl).
See American Cultures 350. (Zafar)

404/Soc. 404. Hispanic-Americans: Social Problems and Social Issues. Junior or senior standing. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in Amer. Cult. 410. (3). (Excl).
See Sociology 404. (Pedraza)

410. Hispanics in the United States. (3). (Excl). May be repeated for credit with permission.

Section 001: La Latina. Caught on a permanent confrontation, as a Hispanic and as a woman, Latino women struggle to preserve a voice and an identity within a powerful dominant culture. This course will focus on the experience of Latino women within the broad context of American society, exploring their participation in the labor force, in education, in social and political movements as well as their role in the family. We will look into both the old and new waves of immigration to examine those who have a precarious economic situation on the fringes of U.S. society. A general overview on the situation of women in Latin America is given in order to establish connections and differences whenever possible. (Moya-Raggio)

Section 002: Schooling and Achievement An Hispanic Perspective. This course will give an overview of the historical and current background of both U.S. Hispanics and newer immigrant groups. Class members will discuss this overview and look at possible effects of this on both populations. Course will examine links between status in "older" groups and social and economic advantage, and look at emerging patterns of newer immigration groups. The course will examine the traditional role of schooling in the United States and its current role, and how schooling has or has not served the Hispanic population. Census data such as birth rates, school enrollment rates, graduation rates, employment rates and college enrollment rates will be reviewed both for the general population and for Hispanic groups. In addition to examining the outcomes of schooling, the course will review several test cases in public school law which will give further insight into existing trends and to emerging trends as they are related to outcomes of schooling/education. The intent of schooling will be contrasted to the results of schooling and an analysis/projection of what the future impact of this will be to the general population will be presented by students themselves based on their perception and analysis of course content. (Garcia-Roberts)

Section 003: Differences in Health/Disease Latinas/os in the United States. Latinas/os have become a significant and growing population in the United States. Their differences from other "minorities" are culturally defined and represented in a variety of sites (the media, public health, art, politics, etc.). In this course we will explore the ways in which Latinas/os have been culturally defined and represented in the context of medical practices (social policy, research, public health, etc.), and through the definition of health and disease which these practices entail. We will be thinking through the AIDS epidemic to learn how cultural representations and social relations of ethnicity, sexuality, gender, class, and disease can be grasped through a cultural analysis. The other foci of the course are various categories of diseases, and social sites of potential conflict and cultural misunderstanding (hospitals, testing procedures, families, etc.). (Koreck)

430/WS 430. Theories of Feminism. Women's Studies 240 and one 340-level course, or permission of instructor.
Section 001. Black Feminist Thought.
For Winter Term, 1992, this course is jointly offered with CAAS 458.001.

490. American Film Genres. Junior standing. (3-4). (HU). Laboratory fee (approximately $20.00).
The western, the detective/crime film, the musical, the screwball comedy, the science fiction film, etc., form a background against which we measure and understand contemporary American cinema. These film genres each have their particular conventions presenting certain kinds of characters and plots; utilizing particular camera styles, mise-en-scene, and acting; and addressing themselves to particular issues and conflicts. As these genres evolve, old patterns are given new twists, surprising the viewer with unexpected departures from the norm and turning the genre toward consideration of new social and cultural problems. We will examine four characteristic American film genres. Weekly film screenings will be accompanied by two hours of lectures and one hour of discussion. Three films in each genre will be studied, ranging in period from the 1930's to the 1980's, thus allowing us to analyze changes within the genre, and the aesthetic as well as the socio-political implications of these changes. Students will be evaluated on the basis of three short papers, one longer paper and their participation in discussion. Required texts vary in accordance with the genres chosen for study. Cost:2 WL:2,4 (Eagle)

496. Historical Approaches to American Culture. (3). (Excl). May be repeated for credit with permission of concentration adviser.
Section 001: The American West.
For Winter Term 1992, this course is jointly offered with History 396.010. (Steinberg)

Section 002: Approaches to Asian American History. This is a course designed to introduce students to major works, theories, and methodologies in the writing of Asian American history. Dominant themes representing historical periods and processes in Asian American history will be examined. These include immigration and labor, contact and interaction, community formation and adaptive strategies, the anti-Asian movement, and the postwar legal changes and diverse communities. This seminar will also examine the place of Asian American history within U.S. history and will provide students with the tools to begin rethinking a more inclusive U.S. history. The format of the course will emphasize student-led discussion. Students will be assigned to read, report on, and discuss books and essays representing differing approaches to Asian American history. This will provide the student with an overview of the problems and issues in the field. In addition to these reports students will write and present to the seminar a critical review of the literature on a topic of their choice in Asian American History. (Nomura)

Section 003: Michigan in the Era of Industrialization. For Winter Term 1992, this course is jointly offered with History 396.006. (Blouin)

Section 004: Law and Society in American History. For Winter Term 1992, this course is jointly offered with History 396.007. (Green)

Section 005: Popular Performance in Urban America 1820-1920. For Winter Term 1992, this course is jointly offered with History 396.009. (Oberdeck)

Section 006: Asian American Communities in the Midwest. This is a research seminar for those wishing to explore the history of a prominent but little researched racial minority group in the Midwest. This seminar offers students the opportunity to do original research on the varied histories of Asian American groups in the Detroit area and the Midwest from the nineteenth century to the present. A study of Asian Americans in the Midwest is important in any examination of race relations, the mechanisms of ethnic community building, and ethnic adaptive strategies in the Midwest. The format of the course will emphasize student-led discussion. Students will be assigned to read, report on, and discuss the major current works on the history of Asian Americans in the Midwest. This will provide the student with an overview of the problems and issues in the filed. Using traditional archival resources as well as interviews and oral histories, students will then research, write and present to the seminar a research paper on an Asian American community in the Midwest. (Nomura)

498. Literary Approaches to American Culture. (3). (Excl). May be repeated for credit with permission.
Chicano Literature. This discussion course will analyze the Chicano experience in the United States through novels, short fiction, plays and poems (in English) written by Mexican-Americans. Often considered outside "mainstream" American literature, Chicano literary writings are a valid and exciting part of this country's literature, reflecting the rich historical and cultural experiences of America's fastest growing minority group. Works will be enjoyed and discussed for their literary merit as well as for their insights into the sociological, cultural and political realities of Chicano life, issues which frequently serve as dominant literary themes. Emphasis will be on works published from the 1960s to the present. As a discussion course, class attendance and participation are crucial. Students of all ethnic backgrounds are encouraged to enroll; ideally, the class can serve as a forum for cross-cultural exchange. Required readings will include a short course pack and 8-9 paperback books. Students will take a midterm, a final examination, and will write a 10-15 page paper. (Zimmerman)

Courses in Ojibwa

A full sequence of Ojibwa cannot be guaranteed. Students must consult with the American Culture Program Office before undertaking Ojibwa to satisfy the College language requirement.

222. Elementary Ojibwa. Non-LS&A students must have permission of the American Culture Program Director. (3). (LR).
This course is designed to give the conversational and cultural skills necessary to enable students to use Ojibwa in real life situations. The teaching methods are entirely inductive, and the role of writing is downplayed. There is considerable emphasis on teaching culturally appropriate behavior, and the simple conversational patterns of greetings, leave takings, introductions, table talk, etc. There is no prerequisite for the course. Cost:1 (McCue)

223. Elementary Ojibwa. Am. Cult. 222 and permission of the American Culture Program Director. (3). (LR).
See Ojibwa 222. (McCue)

322. Intermediate Ojibwa. Am. Cult. 223 and permission of the American Culture Program Director. (3). (LR).
This course is designed to improve the basic conversational skills of the student who knows some Ojibwa. The emphasis in class is on increasing the range of situations in which the student can use Ojibwa in real life. Some emphasis is placed on teaching the students to be able to learn more Ojibwa outside of the classroom, by talking and using the language with native speakers. Cost:1 (McCue)

323. Intermediate Ojibwa. Am. Cult. 322 and permission of the American Culture Program Director. (3). (LR).
See Ojibwa 322.

422. Advanced Ojibwa. Am. Cult. 323 and permission of the American Culture Program Director. (3). (Excl).
This course is aimed at giving students with conversational ability in Ojibwa the opportunity to both improve their speaking and listening skills and to introduce them to Ojibwa literature, and the various dialects represented in the literature. Students will work with the original, unedited texts, as well as with edited, retranscribed materials, and thus learn about the problems of working in a language without a standard writing system that is widely accepted. Cost:1 (McCue)

423. Advanced Ojibwa. Am. Cult. 422 and permission of the American Culture Program Director. (3). (Excl).
See Ojibwa 422.


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