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Studies in Literature, 20th Century and Beyond: American Cultures After 1945

This course is a survey of United States literary and cultural production from 1945 to the present, organized by specific publics and cultures that these products have precipitated, mediated, or represented. In particular, we will consider four loose groupings: Protest Cultures [especially antiwar and antiracist art and literature from the 1950s-1960s], Sex Cultures [1960s-1970s work from the “sexual liberation,” including in its feminist and pro-queer varieties], Trauma Cultures [work memorializing racial, ethnic, and sexual violence in the 1980s-1990s], and Polarized Cultures [artistic production typical of the “culture wars” from the 1990s to the present]. The course is therefore structured both chronologically and thematically, inviting students to make historically specific but culturally expansive connections across media, identity categories, political affiliations, and the high/low art divide. We will read novels, poems, plays, comics, magazines, music videos, and films.

Course Number

ENGL 258 C1

Course Number (Cross Listing 1)

MDST 270 C1


Dango, Michael T.





Course Format


Course Format Description

Synchronous online course meetings twice a week (about 4 hours/week). Students must attend at the assigned course time. Asynchronous work will include small group assignments, videos, worksheets, and short writing assignments. Students will also meet in small groups by themselves.

Time Slot

Mid Morning



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