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AMSTUD 57Q: 10 American Photographs

Preference to sophomores. ¿The humor, the sadness, the EVERYTHING-ness and American-ness of these pictures!¿ wrote Jack Kerouac of photographer Robert Frank¿s iconic collection, The Americans. This seminar takes Kerouac¿s enthusiasm and applies it to ten American photographs, a new one each week. Examples span the medium¿s history and were taken as art, science, commerce, journalism, or personal mementos. Close study of the photo of the week will address how it looks and why; its history, from initial responses to later reception; and its relationship to the larger American visual and cultural context. Also under discussion: What story does this set of pictures tell about Americanness? What might another set of photos convey?
Terms: Aut | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
Instructors: Kessler, E. (PI)

AMSTUD 68N: Mark Twain and American Culture (ENGLISH 68N)

Preference to freshmen. Mark Twain defined the rhythms of our prose and the contours of our moral map. He recognized our extravagant promise and stunning failures, our comic foibles and  tragic flaws. He is viewed as the most American of American authors--and as one of the most universal. How does his work illuminate his society's (and our society's) responses to such issues as race, gender, technology, heredity vs. environment, religion, education, art, imperialism, animal welfare, and what it means to be "American"?
Terms: Aut | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-AmerCul, WAY-A-II, WAY-ED | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Fishkin, S. (PI)

AMSTUD 93: Food and Popular Culture

This course introduces students to the social history, political economy and aesthetics of eating in America, paying particular attention to representations of food in popular culture over the last hundred years. Though firmly grounded in American Studies, an interdisciplinary perspective draws from the material and methods of anthropology, cultural studies, art history, and history. Topics include the California citrus industry, competitive eating, food art, utopias, and edible landscapes. Students will actively engage with primary sources including cookbooks, paintings and art installations, diet books, TV shows, film, and advertisements.
Terms: Win | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Johnson, A. (PI)

AMSTUD 94: Topics in Food Studies

This course examines food in the United States over the last hundred years as it relates to the broad themes of nature, disease, technology, and labor. Though firmly grounded in American Studies, an interdisciplinary perspective draws from the material and methods of anthropology, cultural studies, art history, and history. Specific topics include diet-related disease, tipping and the subminimum wage, the concept of agrarian democracy, supermarkets, and food preservation. Creative assignments include writing a menu, conducting a food observation, and reviewing a restaurant. Students will actively engage with paintings, sculpture, film, advertisements, restaurant reviews, commercials, and music videos.
Terms: Spr | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Johnson, A. (PI)

AMSTUD 95: Consumer Culture

This course will examine consumerism in the United States, first focusing on the rise of advertising, mass market goods, catalogues, and department stores at the turn of the 20th century. We will then examine post-WWII suburbia and the rise of the "good life" and the ensuing backlash in 1960s counterculture anti-consumerist movements. Our topics will include the annual no-shopping day, back to nature movements, urban homesteading, thrift, slow food activism, and the efforts to resist mass production in food, clothing, and housing. Sources include novels, films, magazines, music, and advertisements.
Terms: Spr | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Johnson, A. (PI)

AMSTUD 101: American Fiction into Film: How Hollywood Scripts and Projects Black and White Relations

Movies and the fiction that inspires them; power dynamics behind production including historical events, artistic vision, politics, and racial stereotypes. What images of black and white does Hollywood produce to forge a national identity? How do films promote equality between the races? What is lost or gained in film adaptations of books?nLimited Enrollment, Instructor¿s Consent Required. Class meetings held in Manzanita Multipurpose Room.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-AmerCul, WAY-A-II, WAY-ED | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

AMSTUD 102: Art and Social Criticism (AFRICAAM 102B, ARTHIST 162B, CSRE 102A, FEMGEN 102)

Visual artists have long been in the forefront of social criticism in America. Since the 1960s, various visual strategies have helped emergent progressive political movements articulate and represent complex social issues. Which artists and particular art works/projects have become key anchors for discourses on racism, sexism, economic and social inequality, and immigrant rights? We will learn about a spectrum of political art designed to raise social awareness, spark social change and rouse protest. The Art Workers¿ Coalition¿s agit-prop opposing the Vietnam War and ACT-UP¿s emblematic signs and symbols during the AIDS/HIV crisis of the 1980s galvanized a generation into action. Works such as Judy Chicago¿s The Dinner Party (1979), Fred Wilson¿s Mining the Museum (1992), and Glenn Ligon¿s paintings appropriating fragments from African-American literature all raised awareness by excavating historical evidence of the long legacy of marginalization and modeled ways of resisting that marg more »
Visual artists have long been in the forefront of social criticism in America. Since the 1960s, various visual strategies have helped emergent progressive political movements articulate and represent complex social issues. Which artists and particular art works/projects have become key anchors for discourses on racism, sexism, economic and social inequality, and immigrant rights? We will learn about a spectrum of political art designed to raise social awareness, spark social change and rouse protest. The Art Workers¿ Coalition¿s agit-prop opposing the Vietnam War and ACT-UP¿s emblematic signs and symbols during the AIDS/HIV crisis of the 1980s galvanized a generation into action. Works such as Judy Chicago¿s The Dinner Party (1979), Fred Wilson¿s Mining the Museum (1992), and Glenn Ligon¿s paintings appropriating fragments from African-American literature all raised awareness by excavating historical evidence of the long legacy of marginalization and modeled ways of resisting that marginalization. For three decades feminist artists Barbara Kruger and the Guerilla Girls have combined institutional critique and direct address into a provocative form of criticality. Recent art for social justice is reaching ever broadening publics by redrawing the role of artist and audience exemplified by the democratization of poster making and internet campaigns of the Occupy and #BlackLivesMatter movements. Why are each of these examples successful as influential and enduring markers of social criticism? We will also consider the visual culture of new protest strategies in the Post-Occupy era. What have these socially responsive practices contributed to our understanding of American history? We will conclude with an investigation into large-scale transnational participatory projects, including Tania Bruguera¿s Immigrant Movement International and Ai Weiwei¿s @Large on Alcatraz Island.
Terms: Aut | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-ED | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Hertz, B. (PI)

AMSTUD 117R: Christianity in 21st-century America (RELIGST 117)

As the largest religion practiced in the United States, Christianity not only shapes the lives of a large number of its citizens but also impinges on public discourse, policies, and debates. This course investigates the ways in which Christianity in America is changing and what these changes bode for its role in the public and private spheres. Issues include shifting demographics lead to declining numbers in 'mainline' denominations; the polarization of Christian conservatives and religious 'nones'; interfaith toleration and cooperation alongside interreligious conflict; the rise of 'spiritual, not religious' young adults; the effects of immigration; religion and science.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-AmerCul, WAY-A-II, WAY-ED | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Pitkin, B. (PI)

AMSTUD 124A: The American West (ARTHIST 152, ENGLISH 124, HISTORY 151, POLISCI 124A)

The American West is characterized by frontier mythology, vast distances, marked aridity, and unique political and economic characteristics. This course integrates several disciplinary perspectives into a comprehensive examination of Western North America: its history, physical geography, climate, literature, art, film, institutions, politics, demography, economy, and continuing policy challenges. Students examine themes fundamental to understanding the region: time, space, water, peoples, and boom and bust cycles.
Terms: Spr | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-AmerCul, WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

AMSTUD 127: American Style and the Rhetoric of Fashion (ARTHIST 165B, FILMSTUD 165B)

Focus on the visual culture of fashion, especially in an American context. Topics include: the representation of fashion in different visual media (prints, photographs, films, window displays, and digital images); the relationship of fashion to its historical context and American culture; the interplay between fashion and other modes of discourse, in particular art, but also performance, music, economics; and the use of fashion as an expression of social status, identity, and other attributes of the wearer. Texts by Thorstein Veblen, Roland Barthes, Dick Hebdige, and other theorists of fashion.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 4-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
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