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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Susan A Glenn
HIST 590
Seattle Campus

Topics in History

Seminar on selected topics in general history, with special emphasis on preparation for field examinations. Topics vary according to interests of students and instructor.

Class description

Visual Culture: Images and Ideology in Modern Life

Description: This interdisciplinary course examines the production, exhibition, circulation, and interpretation of various forms of visual culture--including photography, advertising, film, painting, architecture, and graffiti. Readings explore the national,transnational, and global proliferation of images and forms from the turn of the twentieth century to the present and their impact on the creation of social narratives and political understandings about national and ethnic identity, race, class, power, gender, war, atrocity, and historical memory, as well as their status as historical evidence. The course is open to interested all graduate students in history and other disciplines. Readings include:Vanessa Schwartz, Spectacular Realities: Early Mass Culture in Fin-de-Siecle Paris *Vanessa Schwartz, “Walter Benjamin for Historians” Alan Trachtenberg, Reading American Photographs Richard Bolton, The Contest of Meaning: Critical Histories of Photography Shawn Michelle Smith, Photography on the Color Line Uta Poiger, et. al. ed. The Modern Girl Around the World *Lucy Fischer, “The Image of Woman as Image” William Stott, Documentary Expression and Thirties America Linda Gordon, Dorothea Lange: A Life Beyond Limits Jordana Mendelson, Documenting Spain: Artists, Exhibition Culture, and the Modern Nation, 1929-1939 *Caroline Brothers, War and Photography (chapters) Susan Sontag, Regarding the Pain of Others Barbie Zelizer, Remembering to Forget: Holocaust Memory Through the Camera’s Eye Annabelle Jane Wharton, Building the Cold War Susan A. Phillips, Wallbangin’: Graffiti and Gangs in L.A.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

Class discussion and papers.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Susan A Glenn
Date: 02/19/2010