Courses - Fall 2019

AMST 1115 Introduction to American Government and Politics

A policy-centered approach to the study of government in the American experience.  Considers the American Founding and how it influenced the structure of government;  how national institutions operate in shaping law and public policy; who has a voice in American politics and why some are more influential than others; and how existing public policies themselves influence social, economic, and political power.  Students will gain an introductory knowledge of the founding principles and structure of American government, political institutions, political processes, political behavior, and public policy.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Douglas Kriner (dlk265)
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AMST 1148 FWS: Labor and American Media

This course is dedicated to two scholarly pursuits. First, we will conceptualize different forms of labor and work. Second, we will situate those modes of labor within our contemporary American media landscape. We will ask a series of questions: Whose labor is culturally valued and devalued? What kinds of labor are rendered peripheral and invisible? How does media consumption generate its own kind of fan labor? Assignments will include scholarly mission statements, research projects, textual analysis, and film reviews. In addition to assigned readings, students will be asked to watch visual media, particularly films, for class discussion and assignments.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Jonathan Cicoski (jc3385)
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AMST 1500 Introduction to Africana Studies

This course offers an introduction to the study of Africa, the U.S., the Caribbean and other diasporas.  This course will examine, through a range of disciplines, among them literature, history, politics, philosophy, the themes - including race/racism, the Middle Passage, sexuality, colonialism, and culture - that have dominated Africana Studies since its inception in the late-1960s. We will explore these issues in the attempt to understand how black lives have been shaped, in a historical sense; and, of course, the effects of these issues in the contemporary moment. This course seeks to introduce these themes, to investigate through one or more of the disciplines relevant to the question, and to provide a broad understanding of the themes so as to enable the kind of intellectual reflection critical to Africana Studies.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Siba Grovogui (sng52)
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AMST 1595 African American History From 1865

Focusing on political and social history, this course surveys African-American history from Emancipation to the present. The class examines the post-Reconstruction "Nadir" of black life; the mass black insurgency against structural racism before and after World War II; and the Post-Reform Age that arose in the wake of the dismantling of legal segregation. The course will familiarize students with the basic themes of African-American life and experience and equip them to grasp concepts of political economy; class formation; and the intersection of race, class and gender.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Russell Rickford (rr447)
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AMST 1600 Indigenous North America

This course provides an interdisciplinary introduction to the diverse cultures, histories and contemporary situations of the Indigenous peoples of North America. Students will also be introduced to important themes in the post-1492 engagement between Indigenous and settler populations in North America and will consider the various and complex ways in which that history affected - and continues to affect - American Indian peoples and societies. Course materials draw on the humanities, social sciences, and expressive arts.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Kurt Jordan (kj21)
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AMST 1802 Introduction to Latinos in U.S. History

This course seeks a fuller recounting of U.S. history by remapping what we understand as "America." We will examine traditional themes in the teaching of U.S. history—territorial expansion and empire, migration and nation building, industrialization and labor, war and revolution, and citizenship and transnationalism—but we will examine this "American experience" in a broader hemispheric context and include as actors americanos of Spanish, Mexican, Caribbean, and Central/South American ancestries.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Maria Cristina Garcia (mcg20)
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AMST 2070 Social Problems in the United States

"Social Problems in the U.S." introduces the causes, consequences, and possible solutions of major issues facing U.S. society today. Students learn how social problems are defined and contested in the public sphere, and how various perspectives reflect underlying debates about social norms and values. Through readings, lectures, in-class discussion, and writing assignments, students explore a range of social problems in depth, such as: childhood poverty, racial segregation and discrimination, crime, civil and human rights abuses, job insecurity, family instability, discrimination by sexual identity, unequal pay for women's work, and gender imbalances in family life. Students study the historical and social roots of these various issues, bringing into focus how individual experiences and choices are embedded within a broader social structure.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Peter Rich (pmr86)
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AMST 2225 Controversies About Inequality

In recent years, poverty and inequality have become increasingly common topics of public debate, as academics, journalists, and politicians attempt to come to terms with growing income inequality, with the increasing visibility of inter-country differences in wealth and income, and with the persistence of racial, ethnic, and gender stratification. This course introduces students to ongoing social scientific debates about the sources and consequences of inequality, as well as the types of public policy that might appropriately be pursued to reduce (or increase) inequality. These topics will be addressed in related units, some of which include guest lectures by faculty from other universities (funded by the Center for the Study of Inequality). Each unit culminates with a highly spirited class discussion and debate.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Cristobal Young (cy469)
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AMST 2280 What is Public Health?

How have different dimensions of our lives become matters of public health? Focusing on modern America, this course explores how public health has been bound up with histories of the state, the economy, and inequality. Most broadly, we will ask what is defined as a public health problem and why. The class examines early attempts to control infectious disease, the expansion of public health in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and new dimensions of public health in the post-war period. In the final portion, the class will explore recently recognized threats to the public's health. Throughout, we will pay attention to the practices of public health that have fostered or challenged hierarchies of race, gender, class, and ability.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Hannah LeBlanc (hfl22)
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AMST 2296 History Lab: Digital History of Black Resistance

This course will use digital resources to study the history of African-American resistance to and organization against slavery, Jim Crow, and mass incarceration/racialized policing from 1619 to the present. We will also build new resources.  In addition to the historical content, students will participate in designing, building, and testing digital humanities resources that are reshaping how we understand the past and the present.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Edward Baptist (eeb36)
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AMST 2315 The Occupation of Japan

In August 1945, Japan was a devastated country; its cities burned, its people starving, its military and government in surrender. World War II was over. The occupation had begun. What sort of society emerged from the cooperation and conflict between occupiers and occupied? Students will examine sources ranging from declassified government documents to excerpts from diaries and bawdy fiction, alongside major scholarly studies, to find out. The first half of the course focuses on key issues in Japanese history, like the fate of the emperor, constitutional revision, and the emancipation of women. The second half zooms out for a wider perspective, for the occupation of Japan was never merely a local event. It was the collapse of Japanese empire and the rise of American empire in Asia. It was decolonization in Korea and the start of the Cold War. Students will further investigate these links in final individual research projects. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Kristin Roebuck (kar79)
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AMST 2320 Latino Music in the US

Music and dance cultures have been central topics of study in the development of Chicano studies, Puerto Rican studies, and Latino studies in general. From Americo Paredes to Frances Aparicio and from Jose Limon to Deborah Pacini-Hernandez, focusing on music and embodied culture through sound has allowed scholars to engage the wide variety of cultural experiences of the different ethnic groups usually described with the term "Latino." Taking this scholarship as a point of departure, this class offers a survey of Latino music in the U.S. as a window into the political, cultural and social that struggles Mexicans, Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Brazilians, Colombians, and Central Americans have gone through while becoming hyphenated (Eg. Mexican-American, Cuban American, etc) or not, and into how these processes have continually challenged and enriched mainstream notions of "American identity."

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Alejandro Madrid (alm375)
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AMST 2340 The Beatles

The course will focus on the music of the Beatles and their impact on American and British culture in the 1960s to the present day. Topics include considerations of race, gender, class, sexuality, and the media in their rise to fame; the influence of the counter-culture, drugs, and other rock musicians, as well as Western and Indian classical music on their music and image; their perceived rivalry with the Rolling Stones; and their experimentation with recording technology

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Judith Peraino (jap28)
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AMST 2401 Introduction to Latino/a Literature

From the radical manifestos of revolutionaries to the satirical plays of union organizers, from new, experimental novels to poetry, visual art, and music, this course examines Latino/a literature published in the United States beginning in the early nineteenth century and continuing to the present. We will pay particular attention to the historical, theoretical, and literary context for this literature. We will study memoir, poetry, essays, and cultural production. Authors include José Martí, Luisa Capetillo, Israel 'Cachao' López, Josefina López, Cherríe Moraga, Esmerelda Santiago, Gloria Anzaldúa, José Montoya, Carmen Tafolla, and Pedro Pietri.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Mary Pat Brady (mpb23)
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AMST 2405 The Italian-American Experience

Between 1880 and 1920, 4 million Italians moved to the United States in search of better fortunes. As a result, today there are 17 million US citizens of Italian descent, among them famed artists and celebrities such as Martin Scorsese, John Turturro, Madonna, and Lady Gaga.  Italian-Americans have left their mark on art, food, music, cinema, and television, creating a new vibrant culture. In this course, we will look at different cultural products that result from this cultural hybridity, chronicling the Italian-American journey from Ellis Island to show business.  The examined texts will include novels, memoirs and films, with particular emphasis on the work of female authors such as Helen Barolini, Kym Ragusa, and Louise de Salvo. Throughout the course, we will grapple with questions of gender and race, hybridity and identity, and we will explore the linguistic and visual strategies used by the authors to suggest a feeling of displacement.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Valentina Fulginiti (vf65)
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AMST 2470 Digital Latinxs

Digital technology has been a part of modern life in the U.S. since the Cold War. A growing population of users works, plays, become politically active and fight-off boredom through digital technology. But who are these users? Where do they congregate and how do they emerge? How do they make meaning of their lives? This course focuses on the everyday experiences of Latinxs as users. It examines their participation in digital environments and their engagements with technology while paying attention to their social, political, and cultural contexts. Rather than imagine "users" as a universal category, students will learn about the experiences of Latinxs in digital spaces and their contributions to what scholars call digital culture.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Ivan Chaar Lopez (ic349)
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AMST 2600 Introduction to Native American Literature

The production of North American Indigenous literatures began long before European colonization, and persists in a variety of printed, sung, carved, painted, written, spoken, and digital media. From oral traditions transmitted through memory and mnemonics to contemporary genres and media, Native North American authors offer Indigenous perspectives on social, political, and environmental experience, through deft artistry and place-specific aesthetics. Our attention will focus on the contexts from which particular Native American literatures emerge, the ethics to consider when entering Indigenous intellectual territory, and close attention to common themes and techniques that frequently appear in contemporary Native American literature. Readings will feature a range of novels, poetry, short fiction, graphic novel/comics, and film.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Eric Cheyfitz (etc7)
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AMST 2622 Introduction to Asian American Performance

An introduction to Asian American performance, this course will consider both historical and contemporary examples and forms through the analytics of Asian American studies, theatre studies, and performance studies. Throughout the semester, we will pay equal attention to various forms of performance — plays and other staged performances, performance art, as well as everyday performances — as well as both primary sources and theoretical/critical readings. Students will be introduced to key concepts of Asian American performance studies, such as Orientalism, yellow face, radicalized accents, and the performing body, and will begin to not only map a history of Asian American performance but also situate contemporary examples within this tradition.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Christine Balance (cbb84)
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AMST 2640 Introduction to Asian American History

An introductory history of Chinese, Japanese, Asian Indians, Filipinos, and Koreans in the United States from the mid-nineteenth century to the 1990s. Major themes include racism and resistance, labor migration, community formation, imperialism, and struggles for equality.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Derek Chang (dsc37)
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AMST 2665 The American Revolutionary Era

As we approach the 250th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, this course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the origins, character, and results of the American Revolution, as well as engaging the enduring significance of its memory in contemporary American life - why do we choose to remember the American Revolution in ways that occlude its divisive and bloody events? This course explores many of the key themes of this critical period of American history: the rise of colonial opposition to Great Britain, the nature of the Revolutionary Wars, and the domestic "republican experiment" that followed the Treaty of Paris in 1783. The course emphasizes student interpretations with an eye toward analyzing the comparative experiences of women and men, "everyday people" and famous leaders, Native Americans, African-Americans, and those who opposed the Revolution.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Jon Parmenter (jwp35)
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AMST 2725 Introduction to Latina/o/x Performance

This course is an introduction to Latina/o/x Performance investigating the historical and contemporary representations of Latina/o/xs in performance and media. Throughout the semester, students will critically examine central themes and issues that inform the experiences and (re) presentations of Latina/o/xs in the United States. How is latinidad performed? In situating the class around "Latina/o/x," as both an umbrella term and an enacted social construction, we will then turn our attention to (re) presentations of latinidad within different genres of cultural expressions.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Karen Jaime (kj12)
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AMST 2792 Introduction to Public History

In this course we will examine how we have come to narrate social, cultural, and political history in the United States, investigating the ways scholarly, curatorial, archival, and creative practices shape conceptions of the American past, in particular understandings of racial, gender, sexual, and class oppression and resistance. Students will build skills in historical interpretation and archival research and explore possibilities and challenges in preserving and presenting the past in a variety of public contexts—monuments, memorials, museums, historical sites, movies and television, and community-based history projects. For their final project, students will conduct original research in a digital or material archive, chosen in consultation with the instructor, to produce a draft of an exhibit, providing popularly accessible historical context and interpretation.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Stephen Vider (sv484)
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AMST 2817 America Confronts the World

Donald Trump and Barack Obama give us two visions of America and of the world: xenophobic nationalism and pragmatic cosmopolitanism.  America and the world are thus constituted by great diversity. The first half of the course seeks to understand that diversity in American politics and foreign policy viewed through the prisms of region, ideology, region, race, class and religion. The second half inquires into the U.S. and American engagement of different world regions and civilizations: Europe, Russia, North America, Latin America, China, Japan, India and the Middle East. U.S. hard power and American soft power find expression in far-reaching processes of American-infused globalization and U.S.-centered anti-Americanism reverberating around the world. Advocates of one-size-fits-all solutions to America's and the world's variegated politics are in for great disappointments.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Peter Katzenstein (pjk2)
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AMST 2910 It's All Chinese to Me

In her memoir Woman Warrior, Maxine Hong Kingston identified a conundrum familiar to many US-born children of Chinese immigrants when she asked: "What is Chinese tradition and what is the movies?" What is "Chinese tradition"? Does it mean the same thing to people in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore, or to Chinese diasporic communities in North America?  Does "Chineseness" change across time and space? While there will be occasion to discuss what "Chineseness" means in different Asian contexts, this course will focus primarily on how ideas of "China" and "Chineseness" have been historically constructed by, for, and in the West—particularly in the US. Course materials include readings on the concept of "Chineseness," Chinese American literature and film, and historical studies of East/West relations.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Sunn Wong (ssw6)
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AMST 2980 Inventing an Information Society

Explores the history of information technology from the 1830s to the present by considering the technical and social history of telecommunications (telegraph and the telephone), radio, television, computers, and the Internet. Emphasis is on the changing relationship between science and technology, the economic aspects of innovation, gender and technology, and other social relations of this technology.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Ron Kline (rrk1)
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AMST 3032 Race and Revolution in the Americas: 1776-1900

This course will examine the "age of democratic revolutions" in the Americas from the perspective of the Black Atlantic. During this momentous era, when European monarchies were successfully challenged and constitutional governments created, Blacks fomented their own American revolutions both in the outside of evolving "New World democracies." This course examines the black trajectory in British North America, Latin America, the French (especially Haiti,) the British and the Spanish Caribbean. The course begins with black participation in the U.S. independence War (1776-1781) and concludes with black (non-U.S.) participation in the independence wars against Spain. The course will also briefly address post-emancipation race relations in these American countries. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Margaret Washington (mw26)
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AMST 3033 Politics of Public Policy in the U.S.

Public policies are political outcomes determined by processes that are complex, convoluted and often controversial. The aim of this course is to equip students with the conceptual tools necessary to understand these processes. We will begin with a review of popular approaches to studying policy and then move on to explore the various stages of policy development: agenda-setting, policy design, policy implementation, policy feedback and policy change. We will consider the roles played by both institutions (congress, the bureaucracy and interests groups) and everyday people. Finally, we will closely study several specific policy arenas (a few likely candidates include: education policy, health policy, social welfare policy and housing policy). As we engage all of these ideas, students will be consistently challenged to grapple with the paradoxes of policy making in a democratic polity and to envision pathways for substantive political change.  

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Jamila Michener (jm2362)
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AMST 3082 American Political Campaigns

This course focuses on political campaigns, a central feature of American democracy. We will examine how they work and the conditions under which they affect citizens' decisions. The course looks at campaign strategies and attributes of candidates, as well as how and whether they affect key outcomes such as the decision to turn out, who to vote for, and whether to spend money and volunteer time helping favored candidates win.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Adam Levine (asl22)
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AMST 3155 Prisons, Politics & Policy

Prisons are social and political institutions governed by local, state and national policies. They have a profound influence on American society, especially on our political community.  They amplify inequality and disadvantage. The massive number of people imprisoned in the United States speaks volumes about our policy priorities and about our democracy. How did things get this way? How did we end up being the nation that incarcerates more of its population than virtually any other? What policy processes directly and indirectly account for this? What explains the change that we now appear to be experiencing? What is the future of the U.S. prison system? What is the future of our democracy? This course will tackle these and other pressing questions. Students will gain an empirically grounded and theoretically far-reaching understanding of one of the most fundamental and transformative institutions in America.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Jamila Michener (jm2362)
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AMST 3161 The American Presidency

This course will explore and seek explanations for the performance of the 20-21st century presidency, focusing on its institutional and political development, recruitment process (nominations and elections), relationships to social groups, economic forces, and "political time."  We will also analyze the parameters of foreign & domestic policy making.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Douglas Kriner (dlk265)
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AMST 3230 American Economic History I

Surveys problems in American economic history from the first settlements to early industrialization.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Thomas Lyons (tpl4)
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AMST 3281 Constitutional Politics: The U.S. Supreme Court

This course investigates the United States Supreme Court and its role in politics and government. It traces the development of constitutional doctrine, the growth of the Court's institutional power, and the Court's interaction with Congress, the president, and society. Discussed are major constitutional law decisions, their political contexts, and the social and behavioral factors that affect judges, justices, and federal court jurisprudence.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Dawn Chutkow (dmc66)
Full details for AMST 3281 : Constitutional Politics: The U.S. Supreme Court
AMST 3330 Ways of Knowing: Indigenous and Place-Based Ecological Knowledge

Based on indigenous and place-based "ways of knowing," this course (1) presents a theoretical and humanistic framework from which to understand generation of ecological knowledge; (2) examines processes by which to engage indigenous and place-based knowledge of natural resources, the nonhuman environment, and human-environment interactions; and (3) reflects upon the relevance of this knowledge to climatic change, resource extraction, food sovereignty, medicinal plant biodiversity, and issues of sustainability and conservation.  The fundamental premise of this course is that human beings are embedded in their ecological systems.

Distribution: (KCM-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Karim-Aly Kassam (ksk28)
Full details for AMST 3330 : Ways of Knowing: Indigenous and Place-Based Ecological Knowledge
AMST 3380 Urban Inequality

This is a seminar course on urban inequality in the United States.  The first half of the semester will be dedicated to understanding the political, historical, and social determinants of inequality in America's cities. Politically and socially, cities face unique challenges. Municipalities lack much formal authority to resolve issues that arise within their borders, and their populations are highly heterogeneous in terms of ethnicity, race, and social class. In the second half of the course, we will investigate a number of contemporary facets of urban inequality in-depth, such as residential segregation, urban schooling, immigration, and suburban sprawl.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Kendra Bischoff (kb536)
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AMST 3430 History of the U.S. Civil War and Reconstruction

A survey of the turning point of US. history: The Civil War (1861-1865) and its aftermath, Reconstruction (1865-1877). We will look at the causes, the coming, and the conduct, of the war, and the way in which it became a war for freedom. We will then follow the cause of freedom through the greatest slave rebellion in American history, and the attempts by formerly enslaved people to make freedom real in Reconstruction. And we will see how Reconstruction's tragic ending left questions open that are still not answered in U.S. society and politics.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Edward Baptist (eeb36)
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AMST 3525 Howls and Love Songs: Twentieth Century American Poetry

Our focus in this course will be on the vibrantly varied body of poetry produced in the United States during the 20th century. Encompassing strains of worldly celebration and prophetic rage, visionary ecstasy and minute attention to ordinary life, this poetry breaks new ground in every decade, mixing formal and stylistic innovation with a continuously expanding sense of the national landscape in all its demographic and cultural diversity. Poets to be studied include Robert Frost, Gertrude Stein, Wallace Stevens, William Carlos Williams, Ezra Pound, T. S. Eliot, Marianne Moore, Langston Hughes, Elizabeth Bishop, Gwendolyn Brooks, Allen Ginsberg, A. R. Ammons, Sylvia Plath, Adrienne Rich, and others.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Roger Gilbert (rsg2)
Full details for AMST 3525 : Howls and Love Songs: Twentieth Century American Poetry
AMST 3533 Screen and Story: Script Analysis

This course will consider the history, theory and craft of feature film screenwriting. We will examine the vital elements of effective motion picture narrative (protagonist, pathos, objective, action), along with structural principles, genre conventions and emerging non-linear ideas. This is primarily a readings course (history/theory/criticism rubric), which will address effective screenwriting in a cultural and critical context.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Austin Bunn (ab2346)
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AMST 3560 Modeling Race, Fashioning Beauty

This course explores written and visual biographies of African American and African women in the fashion industry as a launching point for thinking about beauty, race, gender and class. Some of the questions that will be explored during the semester are: How do ethnicity and femininity intersect? How are authenticity and difference commodified? How do women construct identities through narrative or craft themselves through body modification? How do women negotiate their relationships to their bodies, families and nations? Contemporary television programs, global fashion and cultural studies will also be discussed. Students will write self-narratives about their relationships with cultural standards of beauty.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Noliwe Rooks (nmr67)
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AMST 3717 Sitcom Jews: Ethnic Representation on Television and on Stage

"Sitcom Jews" uses close media analysis, theoretical discussion, and student performances or media projects to examine the representation of Jews on television and on the Broadway stage from 1948-2017. We'll ask whether study of performed Jewish identity can serve as a locus for discussion of cultural representation at large, including African American, Latinx, Asian American and LGBT communities on screen and onstage. Starting with classic sitcoms ("The Goldbergs" (1948), "All in the Family", and "Bridget Loves Bernie"), and continuing through current Jewish TV shows ("The Marvelous Ms. Maisel", "Transparent", "Curb Your Enthusiasm"), as well as major theater landmarks ("Fiddler on the Roof", "Cabaret", "Bad Jews", "Indecent"), we will compare these constructed media images to concurrent political, historical and cultural trends.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: David Winitsky (daw2)
Full details for AMST 3717 : Sitcom Jews: Ethnic Representation on Television and on Stage
AMST 3732 Africans and African Americans in Literature

When an African and an African American meet, solidarity is presumed, but often friction is the result. In this course, we will consider how Africans and African Americans see each other through literature. What happens when two peoples suffering from double consciousness meet? We will examine the influence of historical forces including slavery, colonialism and pan-Africanism on the way writers explore the meeting between Africans and African Americans. Specifically we will look at how writers such as W.E.B DuBois, Maya Angelou, NoViolet Bulawayo, Chimamanda Adichie, Richard Wright, Eugene Robinson, Philippe Wamba, Teju Cole, and Malcolm X have understood the meeting.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Mukoma Ngugi (mwn39)
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AMST 3754 Spoken Word, Hip-Hop Theater, and the Politics of the Performance

In this course, we will critically examine the production and performance of race, ethnicity, sexuality, and gender through literature and contemporary performance genres such as spoken word, slam poetry, and hip-hop theatre.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Karen Jaime (kj12)
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AMST 3854 Special Topics in Regional Development and Globalization

This course addresses pertinent issues relative to the subject of regional development and globalization. Topics vary each semester.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Daniella Fridl (df296)
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AMST 3911 Science in the American Polity, 1960 to Now

This course reviews the changing political relations between science, technology, and the state in America from 1960 to the present. It focuses on policy choices involving science and technology in different institutional settings, such as Congress, the court system, and regulatory agencies. The tension between the concepts of science as an autonomous republic and as just another interest group is a central theme.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Stephen Hilgartner (shh6)
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AMST 3980 Independent Research

Affords opportunities for students to carry out independent research under appropriate supervision. Each student is expected to review pertinent literature, prepare a project outline, conduct the research, and prepare a report. Topic and credit hours TBD as arranged between faculty and student.

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AMST 3990 Readings in American Studies

Individualized readings for junior and senior students. Topics, requirements, and credit hours will be determined in consultation between the student and the supervising faculty member.

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AMST 4021 American Conservative Thought

American conservative thought rests on assumptions that are strikingly different from those made by mainstream American liberals.  However, conservative thinkers are themselves committed to principles that are both quite varied and sometimes contradictory.  This course examines the assumptions upon which rest the libertarian, market/economic, and cultural/traditional strains of American conservatism and asks whether the tensions between them weaken or strengthen conservative thought as an alternative to mainstream liberalism.

Distribution: (KCM-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Richard Bensel (rfb2)
Full details for AMST 4021 : American Conservative Thought
AMST 4052 Critical Filipino/Filipino American Studies

This course focuses on three major and interrelated themes within Filipino/Filipino American history: war/empire, labor/migration, and culture/imaginaries. How do we account for the overwhelming number of Filipinos in nursing, domestic work, and the U.S. military? How do filmmakers, visual/theatre artists, and writers continue to remember the oft-forgotten history of U.S.-Philippine relations? In what ways have diasporic and immigrant Filipinos as well as Filipino Americans created their own culture as well as engaged with their counterparts in the Philippines? By reading historical and sociological texts alongside popular cultural texts and artistic examples, this course considers the politics of history, memory, and cultural citizenship in Filipino America.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Christine Balance (cbb84)
Full details for AMST 4052 : Critical Filipino/Filipino American Studies
AMST 4283 Latino Politics as Racial Politics

This class will examine the history and contemporary role of Latinos as a minority group in the U.S. political system. This course is intended as an overview of the political position of Latinos y Latinas in the United States. We place special emphasis on how Latinos became racial group which allows us to focus on political relationships between Latinos and non-Latinos as they relate to political institutions, political parties, voting coalitions, representation and public policy.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Sergio Garcia-Rios (sig35)
Full details for AMST 4283 : Latino Politics as Racial Politics
AMST 4295 US Borders North & South

The borders that separate the United States from Canada and Mexico are among the longest in the world. The southern border with Mexico, however, receives a disproportionate amount of attention from policymakers, journalists, and artists, while our northern border is largely unfamiliar to most Americans. This upper-level seminar offers a necessary corrective: a comparative examination of the political, economic, and cultural history of these two North American borderlands. The US-Mexico and US-Canada border zones are sites of conflict and negotiation, nationalism and globalization, sovereignty and multiculturalism. The seminar examines the continuities and discontinuities in the history and evolution of America's territorial borders from the colonial era to the present.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Maria Cristina Garcia (mcg20)
Jon Parmenter (jwp35)
Full details for AMST 4295 : US Borders North & South
AMST 4519 Toni Morrison's Novels

Nobel Laureate Toni Morrison received her M.A. in English at Cornell University in 1955.  To study her, in a way, is to gain a deeper understanding of how she journeyed on from her days as a student here to become one of the world's greatest writers, how she has helped to transform world literature, and  how she has  shaped  Cornell's great legacy.  In this course, we will engage in close and reflective critical readings of Toni Morrison's eleven novels.  Morrison's writing style is characterized by highly distinctive strategies in the development of narrative and in the use of language.  Furthermore, from novel to novel, she is even known for developing features such as the very first sentence with great contemplation, an approach that also demonstrates her commitment to form.  As we journey across her body of work as readers, we will examine a range of recurring themes, along with the "love trilogy" on which she focused her repertoire for several years.  The course, through a comprehensive, chronological and focused look at Morrison's body of novels, will help students who entirely lack familiarity with it to gain a strong foundation for further research and study.  By the end of the course, even students who already know Morrison's work will walk away with a deeper and more nuanced critical understanding of it.  The course will help students to reinforce their skills in reading fiction, and help them to become more astute and exacting readers of the novel as a genre.  Morrison's novels have placed her at the vanguard of the globalization of the novel itself, and she is, undisputedly, one the most famous and innovative writers in the world.  She emerged as one of the greatest and most prolific writers of the twentieth century, and her audiences have continued to be captivated by her literary genius in this millennial age.  She is one of the most revered writers within the American literary establishment and has helped to reshape it both as a critic and novelist.  Her work can help one to develop more mastery in reading the novel as a genre.  Indeed, her thinking about this area is so original and pivotal that her fiction and critical works are absolutely indispensable for all serious students and scholars in fields such as American literature.  Its impact on African American literature is equally vital.  We will focus on reading the repertoire of novels by Morrison, including The Bluest Eye, Sula (1973), Song of Solomon (1977), Tar Baby (1981), Beloved (1987), Jazz (1992), Paradise (1998), Love (2003),  A Mercy (2008) Home (2012), and God Bless the Child (2014).  We will screen the 1998 film adaptation of her novel Beloved, along with documentaries related to Morrison such as Gail Pellet and Bill Moyers's Toni Morrison:  A Writer's Work and Gary Deans, Alan Hall and Jana Wendt's Toni Morrison: Uncensored.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Riche Richardson (rdr83)
Full details for AMST 4519 : Toni Morrison's Novels
AMST 4525 Twentieth-Century Women Writers and Artists

This course will explore a concern shared by contemporary women writers and artists. In their works, bodily visibility raises questions about sexuality, race, and mother-daughter relations. They also use fiction and visual culture to show ingestion and forced incorporation. For example, many works emphasize scenes of eating and, contrarily, refusing to eat. Texts may include novels by Dorothy Allison, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Edwidge Danticat, Oonya Kempadoo, Jamaica Kincaid, Maxine Hong Kingston, Toni Morrison, Marilynne Robinson, and Leslie Marmon Silko. Artists examined may include Renee Cox, Mary Kelly, Shirin Neshat, Jolene Rickard, Cindy Sherman, Sally Mann, Bernie Searle, and Kara Walker.

Distribution: (LA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Shirley Samuels (srs8)
Full details for AMST 4525 : Twentieth-Century Women Writers and Artists
AMST 4640 Racial Ecologies of Transpacific Nuclearism

This course examines contemporary literary and cultural memory work that mediates the emergence of nuclear energy in Asia and the Pacific after World War Two as a transpacific settler colonial and racial institution and discourse.  Building on current environmental humanities scholarship on the nuclear Pacific, this course foregrounds racial ecologies as well as women of color and queer of color critique as key methods to analyses of geo-cultural politics of transpacific nuclear modernity. For longer description and instructor bio, visit societyhumanities.as.cornell.edu/courses

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Yu-Fang Cho (yc2587)
Full details for AMST 4640 : Racial Ecologies of Transpacific Nuclearism
AMST 4733 The Future of Whiteness

How should anti-racist people respond to the new racialized white identities that have emerged recently in Europe and the United States? What alternative conceptions of whiteness are available? How can we form cross-racial progressive coalitions? How should we understand the nature of our social identities and what they make possible? This course is a wide-ranging introduction to these questions with readings drawn from social and cultural theory, as well as literature and film. Films include Get Out and I Am Not Your Negro, as well as such Hollywood classics as Imitation of Life. Texts by such writers as James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, Danzy Senna and Dorothy Allison, as well as relevant anthropological and social-theoretical work (Strangers in Their Own Land, Whiteness of a Different Color) and memoirs of anti-racist activists. A central text will be the recent book The Future of Whiteness by the Latina feminist scholar Linda Martin Alcoff.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Satya Mohanty (spm5)
Full details for AMST 4733 : The Future of Whiteness
AMST 4944 Biopolitics: New Directions

This course explores the philosophical concept of biopolitics and its diverse translations and/or adaptations across multiple disciplines and across the globe (Africa, Far East, South East Asia, and the Americas). We will trace the concept of biopolitics and its attendant notions-Biopower, Sovereignty, Governmentality-as they emerge in the work of Michel Foucault and analyze the multiple disciplinary and geographical directions in which they have travelled. Throughout the semester, we shall examine 1. the innovative thinking around biopolitics in the works of Arendt, Esposito, Agamben, Hardt and Negri, 2. the connections and entanglements of the concept with postcolonial theory in Mbembe, Samaddar, Sakai, Mezzadra, 3. the extension and complication of biopolitical logistics over to non-human bodies in Uexküll, Sloterdijk, Wolfe, Shukin. Additionally, we will examine theorizations of new stylistics of power as well as emerging forms of agency and political organizing in the biopolitical sphere. Key terms include race, postcoloniality, animality, capture, embodiment, agency, technology.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Naminata Diabate (nd326)
Full details for AMST 4944 : Biopolitics: New Directions
AMST 4993 Honors Essay Tutorial I

To graduate with honors, AMST majors must complete a senior thesis under the supervision of an AMST faculty member and defend that thesis orally before a committee. Students interested in the honors program should consult the AMST director during the junior year and submit an honors application by May 1 of the junior year.

Academic Career: UG Full details for AMST 4993 : Honors Essay Tutorial I
AMST 6202 Political Culture

This course will explore the relationship between popular belief, political action, and the institutional deployment of social power. The class will be roughly divided in three parts, opening with a discussion of how the material world influences the culture of a society. The middle section will connect culture to political ideology, including symbolism and the construction of group identity. The last part of the course will consider ways in which cultural symbols and ideology can be manipulated in order to legitimate government authority. We will then, coming full circle, trace how political regimes can influence the social practices from which culture originates.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Richard Bensel (rfb2)
Full details for AMST 6202 : Political Culture
AMST 6295 US Borders North & South

The borders that separate the United States from Canada and Mexico are among the longest in the world. The southern border with Mexico, however, receives a disproportionate amount of attention from policymakers, journalists, and artists, while our northern border is largely unfamiliar to most Americans.  This upper-level seminar offers a necessary corrective:  a comparative examination of the political, economic, and cultural history of these two North American borderlands. The US-Mexico and US-Canada border zones are sites of conflict and negotiation, nationalism and globalization, sovereignty and multiculturalism.  The seminar examines the continuities and discontinuities in the history and evolution of America's territorial borders from the colonial era to the present.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Maria Cristina Garcia (mcg20)
Jon Parmenter (jwp35)
Full details for AMST 6295 : US Borders North & South
AMST 6631 American Poetry: 1950-2000

This course will explore postwar US poetry through the lens of what might be called micro-periodization. Taking the decade as a privileged frame of reference, we'll ask what recognizable shifts in style, institutional placement, and cultural value occur as we move from the 50s to the 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s. These temporal modulations will serve as an alternative to the spatial demarcations that have typically shaped accounts of postwar poetry—e.g., by region, school, movement, etc.  We'll consider, for example, how the loosely paratactic style that emerges in the 50s (Ginsberg, Lowell, Bishop) gives way in the 60s to a lyric mode that blends epiphany and epigram (Merwin, Wright, Creeley), yielding in turn to a more discursive style in the 70s (Ammons, Ashbery, Rich).

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Roger Gilbert (rsg2)
Full details for AMST 6631 : American Poetry: 1950-2000
AMST 6733 The Future of Whiteness

How should anti-racist people respond to the new racialized white identities that have emerged recently in Europe and the United States?  What alternative conceptions of whiteness are available? How can we form cross-racial progressive coalitions? How should we understand the nature of our social identities and what they make possible?  This course is a wide-ranging introduction to these questions with readings drawn from social and cultural theory, as well as literature and film. Films include Get Out and I Am Not Your Negro, as well as such Hollywood classics as Imitation of Life. Texts by such writers as James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, Danzy Senna and Dorothy Allison, as well as relevant anthropological and social-theoretical work (Strangers in Their Own Land, Whiteness of a Different Color) and memoirs of anti-racist activists.  A central text will be the recent book The Future of Whiteness by the Latina feminist scholar Linda Martin Alcoff.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Satya Mohanty (spm5)
Full details for AMST 6733 : The Future of Whiteness