Summer 2012 - Graduate Course Descriptions

Ring, Natalie
Discipline and Number
HIST 6390 Section 59M
MW Time 5:30 PM - 10:00 PM
Course Title
Slavery in Amer Popular Culture

Description of Course:

Slavery in American Popular Culture will explore the cultural production and reproduction of images of slavery in American popular culture with a focus on several historical periods: the antebellum era, the New South, the Civil Rights Movement/post-Vietnam War era, and contemporary America. The class will pay particular attention to the politics of historical memory and how it has shaped both white and black understandings of the African American experience in slavery.

The course will be interdisciplinary in focus, examining many different sources: films, documentaries, novels, primary documents, scholarly articles, and digital archival media on the internet. Students will be expected to think critically about issues of race and gender in particular.

Required Texts:


Peter Kolchin, American Slavery, 1619-1877
ISBN# 978-0809016303
(not required but suggested)

Alice Randall, The Wind Done Gone
ISBN # 978-0618219063

Frederick Douglas, Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglas and Harriett Jacobs, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
ISBN # 978-0345478238

Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom's Cabin
ISBN # 978-1551118062

William Styron, The Confessions of Nat Turner
ISBN # 978-0679736639

Annette Gordon Reed
Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings: An American Controversy
ISBN # 978-0813918334

In addition, many primary and secondary sources will be available on electronic reserves (roughly about 30 ranging in size from 2 pages to full article length). Students are expected to purchase a 3 ring binder to keep the material from reserves as these texts will be referred back to in discussion and used in the final paper.

Course Requirements/Evaluation Criteria:

Attendance, class discussion, viewing of films, short writing assignments, final paper in conjunction with daily readings.

If you have enrolled in this course after June 20, please email the professor at [email protected] for additional information about how to prepare yourself for the class.

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