Steven M. Tobias
Each special topics course examines a different subject or problem from a comparative framework.
CHID 270 will examine the diverse array of factors (especially those involving print culture) that typically come together to constitute a modern nation; it will explore which of these have contributed to the formation of American identity and the rise of U.S. nationalism. The first half of the course will consider the factors that deny or make possible an American’s full participation in the national community. We will read texts by Benjamin Franklin, Harriet Jacobs, and Chief Seattle. The second half of the course will consider how American identity is defined in the present (through food, sports, amusement parks, etc.) and will raise questions about what American identity might look like in the future. We will consider such questions in light of issues of “race,” class, and gender.
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