WiSe 14/15: Rhetorics of Continuity and Change: American Cultural History from the Late 19th Century to today
This course provides an extended overview of American cultural history from the Reconstruction Era in the late 19th century to recent developments in the U.S. We will read influential texts ... Lesen Sie weiter
This course provides an extended overview of American cultural history from the Reconstruction Era in the late 19th century to recent developments in the U.S. We will read influential texts (speeches, legal documents, essays, etc.) by authors such as Frederick Jackson Turner, Randolph Bourne, Martin Luther King, Betty Friedan, Joan Didion, and Barack Obama. Throughout our readings, we will explore social and political rhetoric as key factors shaping the cultural trajectory of the United States in this period of intense modernization. After a brief introduction to basic methodologies of cultural analysis, students will investigate the rhetorical, structural, and discursive features of the primary texts through close readings. We will also explore select representations from the fields of visual culture and art. In addition, students need to do independent research on a selection of key terms that are essential for understanding the evolution of American public discourse and intellectual history. -
Reading Material: All primary texts will be made available online via Blackboard. For contextualization and background, the recommended reading is Paul Boyer, The Enduring Vision (7th ed. or later). -
Course Requirements: In order to obtain a certificate of participation or a full course certificate, you are required to register for this course on Campus Management. Additionally, you need to enroll in the course on Blackboard to access the material and receive announcements via email. The course requirements to get full credit for the class are: thorough preparation of all reading assignments and the key terms for each session, being member of an "expert group" for one session, active participation in class discussions, regular attendance (at least 85% of the "Präsenzstudienzeit"), and the successful passing of the 90-minute final exam.
The course will be held in English.