Michael K. Honey
Analyzes selected themes in the study of modern culture, such as health and medicine, sexuality, consumption, television, advertising, film, literature, art, music, architecture, and social, or cultural history.
Themes in the Interpretation of Culture: History and Memory
TIAS 515 analyzes selected themes in the study of modern culture. Our sub-theme for this course is History and Memory, in an exploration of why, what and how we remember, and the interplay between memory and history. We will focus on oral history and learn how to make use of the memories all around us in our families and communities. We will read a number of historical works and reflections, see and hear how historians present their work, and the role that oral memory plays in the process of creating history.
This is a graduate course, but includes a number of undergraduates with the instructor’s permission. The course requires initiative in completing readings; writing your reflections; doing primary research; locating people to interview; and carrying a research project to completion. It requires writing short reflection papers and a major paper that follows graduate-level academic standards. We will look at models of how to do an oral history, locate people to interview, do research, prepare questions and the person to be interviewed, conduct and transcribe interviews, get feedback from the person interviewed, and edit the interview. Last, the paper will present oral history in historical context. More details will be given out in the form of handouts throughout the course, which you should collect as an appendix to the syllabus.
Student learning goals
Learn how to read, think, and research historically and to separate myth from history and analyze modern culture from an historical perspective.
General method of instruction
Individual and group discussion and research.
BA degree, unless with permission of instructor.
Class assignments and grading
Several short thought papers and a 15-page term paper.
Excellence in writing, conception, and carrying out a research project with a significant oral history component.