ENAM 802:
American Studies Colloquium I

v 0.9
last updated 08/29/04
  • Summer Reading:
    • John Berger, Ways of Seeing.
    • Paul Fussell, Class: A Guide Through the American Status System.
    • James Hunter, Culture Wars.
    • Michael Kammen, Mystic Chords of Memory
    • Neil Postman, Technopoly.
    • Raymond Williams, Keywords
    • HTML for Dummies (quick reference edition)
  • Additional Texts:
Calendar of Meetings

09/01: Organization and Introduction
  • AS@UVA
  • New Paradigms
  • Subscribe toH-AMSTDY, and two other listserves in related fields of interest to you fromH-NET
  • For Friday, compose a self-inventory, an enumeration of your skills, abilities, interests, knowledge, and objectives. No false modesty or self aggrandizement allowed.
  • For Monday, choose the book from the summer reading you liked best. Identify an idea in the book that seems interesting, powerful, useful-- or all three. Write a brief but complete description of the idea as if you were explaining it to an intelligent peer who has not read the book and who has a appointment he/she needs to leave for.

09/06: Summer Reading I
  • Raymond Williams, Keywords
  • Read the entries for three of the following: Culture, Democracy History, Ideology, Myth, or Nature. At the end of each of these definitions is a short series of pointers to related terms; read those as well
  • Michael Kammen, Mystic Chords of Memory
  • James Hunter, Culture Wars.

09/13: Summer Reading II
  • Paul Fussell, Class: A Guide Through the American Status System.
  • John Berger, Ways of Seeing
  • Neil Postman, Technopoly.
09/20: Classic Paradigms I:In the Beginning. 
  • Sacvan Bercovitch,The Puritan Origins of the American Self.
  • Daniel Boorstin,The Americans: The Colonial Experience.
  • Oscar Handlin,The Uprooted.
  • Howard Mumford Jones,O Strange New World
  • Michael Kammen,The Machine that Would Run by Itself: The Constitution in American Culture.
  • Perry Miller,Errand into the Wilderness.
  • David Potter,People of Plenty.
  • Ernest Lee Tuveson,Redeemer Nation.
  • Gary Wills,Inventing America: Jefferson's Declaration of Independence
09/27: Classic Paradigms II: The Middle Ground 
  • Alexis deTocqueville, from Democracy in America 
    • * Origin of the Anglo-Americans and the Importance of their Origins in Relation to Their Future Condition, 
    • * The Necessity of Examining the Condition of the States Before That of the Union at Large, 
    • The Federal Constitution,
    • Liberty of the Press in the United States, 
    • * Government of Democracy in the United States
    • Main Causes Tending to Maintain a Democratic Republic in the United States,
    • The Present and Probably Future condition of the Three Races that Inhabit the Territory of the United States, 
      Influence of Democracy on the Action of Intellect in The United States, 
    • Philosophical Method of The Americans
    • Of the Principal Source of Belief Among Democratic Nations
    • Why the Americans Show More General Aptitude and Taste for General Ideas than their Forefathers, The English,
    • Why the Americans have never been so Eager as the French for General Ideas in Political Affairs,
    • How Equality Suggests to the Americans the Indefinite Perfectibility of Man,
    • In What Spirit the Americans Cultivate the Arts,
    • Literary Characteristics of Democratic Times, 
    • How American Democracy has Modified the English Language, 
    • * Why Democratic Nations show a More Ardent and Enduring Love for Equality than Liberty, 
    • * Of Individualism in Democratic Countries, 
    • * Of the Uses which Americans make of Public Associations, 
    • Of the Taste for Physical Well-being in America
    • What Causes Almost All Americans to Follow an Industrial Calling, 
    • * How an Aristocracy may be Created by Manufacures, 
    • How Customs are Softened as Social Conditions become more Equal, 
    • Influence of Democracy on the Family,
    • How Americans Understand the Equality of the Sexes, 
    • Of Honour in the United States and in Democratic Communities, 
    • Why Democratic Nations Naturally Desire Peace and Democratic Armies War,
    • Why the Idea of Democratic Peoples about Government Naturally Favors the Concentration of Political Power,
    • * What Sort of Despotism Democratic Nations have to Fear, 
    • General Survey of the Subject. 

  • Daniel Boorstin,The Americans: The National Experience.
  • F.O. Matthiessen,American Renaissance
  • Arthur M. Schlesinger,The Age of Jackson
  • Gary Wills,The Gettysburg Address


10/04: Classic Paradigms III: Modern Times
10/13: Modern Times (continued)
Note: Reading Days 10/11-10/14
  • The Social Sciences and the New Historicism

  • Marxism, Postructuralism, and Postmodernism

  • Gender, Race, Ethnicity

  • Christopher P. Wilson,Containing Multitudes: Realism, Historicism, American Studies.


    10/18: Modern Times (Continued)
    10/25: Persistent Paradigms: The West 

    11/01: Persistent Paradigms: Industrialization and Urbanization. 

    11/08: Persitent Paradigms: Mediation and Modernism.
    • Miles Orvell, The Real Thing
      • Lawrence H. Levine,William Shakespeare in America,fromShakespeare in America. 
      • Tom Gunning,Tracing the Individual Body: Photography, Detectives, and Early Cinemain Leo Charney and Vanessa R. Schwartz, eds., Cinema and the Invention of Modern Life (C)
      • Ben Singer,Modernity, Hyperstimulus, and the Rise of Popular Sensationalism,in Charney and Schwartz. (C)
      • Erika D. Rappaport,'A New Era of Shopping;' The Promotion of Women's Pleasure in London's West End, 1909-1914in Charney and Schwartz. (C)
      • Alexandra Keller,Disseminations of Modernity: Representation and Consumer Desire in Early Mail-Order Catalogsin Charney and Schwartz. (C)
      • Miriam Bratu Hansen,America, Paris, the Alps: Kracauer (and Benjamin) on Cinema and Modernity,in Charney and Schwartz. (C)
    • Walter Benjamin, Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction.
    • Daniel Boorstin, The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-events in America.
    • Neil Harris, Humbug: The Art of P. T. Barnum. 
    • T. J. Jackson Lears, Fables of Abundance : A Cultural History of Advertising in America. 
    • Susan Sonntag, On Photography. 
    • Susan Strasser, Satisfaction Guaranteed: The Making of the American Mass Market
    • Alan Trachtenberg, Brooklyn Bridge: Symbol and Fact.
    • Alan Trachtenberg, Reading American Photographs.

    11/15: Persitent Paradigms: Postmodernism.
    • Stephen Fjellman, Vinyl Leaves


    • The World's Columbian Exposition. 
    • John Cawelti,America on Display: The Worlds' Fairs of 1876, 1893, 1933,in F. Jaher, ed.,The Age of Industrialism in America.
    • Sigfried Gideon,Mechanization Takes Command.
    • John Higham,Strangers in the Land.
    • Oscar Handlin,The Uprooted.
    • Howard Mumford Jones,The Age of Engergy.
    • Neil Harris,Grand Illusions : Chicago's World's Fair of 1893
    • T.J. Jackson Lears and Richard W. Fox, eds.,The Culture of Consumption.
    • David Noble,America by Design.
    • Alan Trachtenberg,Brooklyn Bridge: Fact and Symbol.
    • Sam Bass Warner,The Urban Wilderness.
    • Mike Wallace,Mickey Mouse History

    11/22: Workshop I: Proposals.
    • Note: Thanksgiving Recess 11/24-11/28

    11/29: Workshop II: Project Design.
    12/06: Workshop III: Story Boards and Drafts.

    Note: Classes end 12/10; Exams: 12/13-12/21

    Revisons of Yellow Pages and all other ASLAB projects due 12/10; hypertext extensions to Incorporation of America due 01/17/05.   

    Vacation Reading: TBA.