American Studies

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  • CAS AM 200: Introduction to American Studies
    An exploration of the multi-faceted themes of American society and culture in selected historical periods using a variety of approaches to interpret such topics as American art, literature, politics, material culture, and the mass media. Required of majors and minors. Carries humanities divisional credit in CAS.
  • CAS AM 202: What's Boston?
    What's Boston? explores Boston's complex urban and natural world. University faculty share cutting-edge research, focusing on Boston as a PLACE and a guiding IDEA, introducing the perspectives of disparate scholarly disciplines. Discover where you stand and where you might go! This course carries humanities divisional credit in CAS. This course fulfills one unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Aesthetic Exploration, Historical Consciousness.
    • Aesthetic Exploration
    • Historical Consciousness
  • CAS AM 250: American Arts and Society
    Investigates key issues and themes in American arts and letters. Topic for Spring 2018: Empire in American Literature and Culture, 1776-1945. Explores how U.S. imperialism has shaped American culture over time. Examines, in particular, how American authors have responded to imperialism in their writings and considers what role these responses have played in the construction of a national narrative and identity.
  • CAS AM 301: Perspectives on the American Experience
    American history and society as viewed by those who made it. Topic for Fall 2018: American Identities and Hamilton: An American Musical. Uses Lin-Manuel Miranda's transformative hip- hop musical to explore American identities past, present, and future. Like the play, the course grapples with founding documents and founding fathers; race and immigration; gender and power; writing and music, and memory and identity.
  • CAS AM 313: Internships in Public History
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: consent of instructor.
    Students undertake supervised work in Boston-area institutions dedicated to the public presentation of America's past. Students meet with the instructor to discuss themes in public history theory and practice that, together with the internship experience and related readings, inform a final research project and class presentation. Also offered as CAS HI 313.
  • CAS AM 369: American Folk Art
    Explores the objects that collectors and museums identify as "American Folk Art." Examines how this label developed throughout the twentieth century; familiarizes students with major collections and genres including painting, sculpture, textiles, and other media. Also offered as CAS AH 369.
  • CAS AM 385: American Buildings and Landscapes
    An introductory analytic survey of American buildings and landscapes within their historical and cultural contexts. Students examine forces that have shaped the American built environment. Topics range from Indian mounds to commercial strips, Spanish missions to skyscrapers. Also offered as CAS AH 385.
  • CAS AM 501: Special Topics in American Studies
    Topic for Fall 2018: Reading and Envisioning Historical Landscapes. A project-based seminar using Boston Central Waterfront and Government Centre to trace the often controversial twentieth and twenty-first century developments of its public realm. Methods to research, document, analyze, and envision these evolving historical landscapes are explored.
  • CAS AM 502: Special Topics in American Studies
    Topic for Spring 2018: The American Cultural Landscape. This seminar provides an introduction to analyzing and interpreting the American cultural landscape and acquaints students with the historiography of the field.
  • CAS AM 505: The American South in History, Literature, and Film
    Explores the American South through literature, film, and other sources. Considers what, if anything, has been distinctive about the Southern experience and how a variety of Americans have imagined the region over time. Also offered as CAS HI 505.
  • CAS AM 546: Places of Memory: Historic Preservation Theory and Practice
    Covers key aspects of the history, theory, and practice of historic preservation. Preservation is discussed in the context of cultural history and the changing relationship between existing buildings and landscapes and attitudes toward history, memory, invented tradition, and place. Also offered as CAS AH 546 and CAS HI 546.
  • CAS AM 554: Preservation Planning
    Introduces students to local, state, and national government policies and practices intended to protect historically, culturally, and aesthetically meaningful structures. Covers preservation approaches aimed at protecting significant properties, and general planning approaches to managing redevelopment of neighborhoods.
  • CAS AM 555: Boston Architectural and Community History Workshop
    This course focuses on class readings, lectures, and research on a single neighborhood or community in Boston (or Greater Boston). Greatest emphasis is on using primary sources-- land titles and deeds, building permits, fire insurance atlases and other maps. Also offered as CAS AH 554 and CAS HI 569.