Courses

Graduate students may not take courses below the 500 level for credit.

Required Courses for Ph.D. Students

GRS AM 735 Studies in American Culture. Prereq: AM 736 or consent of instructor. Introduction to the handling of primary materials from a number of disciplines in order to develop an American Studies perspective. Spring.

GRS AM 736 Literature of American Studies. Stamped approval required for graduate students outside of AMNESP. Introduction to classic problems in the interpretation of American society and culture. Fall.

American Studies Electives

CAS AM 501 Topics in American Studies Topics vary:  See specific semesters for more information.

CAS AM 502 Topics in American Studies: Popular Culture Topics vary:  See specific semesters for more information.

CAS AM 524 New England Cultural Landscapes, Dempsey. This course examines the historic forces that have shaped our distinctive regional landscape and catalogues the changing forms that make up that landscape. Beginning in the early colonial period, the course moves chronologically to consider how human activity affects the natural as well as the cultural environment and how each new development interacts with the existing landscape, preserving some features while altering and destroying others. Within each historic period, the course considers landscapes large and small and associated with home, work, and public life. Readings will be selected from the fields of social and cultural history, cultural geography, and architectural history, giving students an opportunity for interdisciplinary reading, discussion, and research. TBA.

AM 765 Readings in American Vernacular Architecture, Dempsey. This seminar provides an opportunity to examine influential interpretive frameworks employed in the study of American buildings and the historic landscape, examples of the approach known as vernacular architecture. This approach emphasizes social and cultural forces in the production, use, and understanding of the built environment and examines innovative and interdisciplinary studies that have resulted in a reinterpretation of the forms and meanings of the American landscape. Each semester the course focuses on recent scholarship to examine how a number of authors have contributed to changing definitions, methods, and theories. TBA.

GRS AM 867 American Material Culture, Moore. This course introduces the theory and practice of the study of material culture, the physical stuff that is part of human life. Material culture includes everything we make and use, from food and clothing to art and buildings. We will read a wide range of contemporary scholarship on material culture from a range of disciplines, including anthropology, history, sociology, art and architectural history, and cultural studies. The course focuses particularly on American material culture and on material culture in the context of mass consumption but places it in a larger context of international studies in material culture and material culture in all times and places. Fall.

Courses Offered by Affiliated Departments at Boston University

Please consult the current semester’s listing above and/or each department’s respective website.