From Walden Pond to Jurassic Park: Activism, Culture, and American Studies / Edition 1

From Walden Pond to Jurassic Park: Activism, Culture, and American Studies / Edition 1

by Paul Lauter
     
 

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ISBN-10: 082232671X

ISBN-13: 9780822326717

Pub. Date: 04/17/2001

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

Paul Lauter, an icon of American Studies who has been a primary agent in its transformation and its chief ambassador abroad, offers a wide-ranging collection of essays that demonstrate and reflect on this important and often highly politicized discipline. While American Studies was formerly seen as a wholly subsidiary academic program that loosely combined the

Overview

Paul Lauter, an icon of American Studies who has been a primary agent in its transformation and its chief ambassador abroad, offers a wide-ranging collection of essays that demonstrate and reflect on this important and often highly politicized discipline. While American Studies was formerly seen as a wholly subsidiary academic program that loosely combined the study of American history, literature, and art, From Walden Pond to Jurassic Park reveals the evolution of an independent, highly interdisciplinary program with distinctive subjects, methods, and goals that are much different than the traditional academic departments that nurtured it.
With anecdote peppered discussions ranging from specific literary texts and movies to the future of higher education and the efficacy of unions, From Walden Pond to Jurassic Park entertains even as it offers a twenty-first century account of how and why Americanists at home and abroad now do what they do. Drawing on his forty-five years of teaching and research as well as his experience as a political activist and a cultural radical, Lauter shows how a multifaceted increase in the United States’ global dominion has infused a particular political urgency into American Studies. With its military and economic influence, its cultural and linguistic reach, the United States is—for better or for worse—too formidable and potent not to be understood clearly and critically.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822326717
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
04/17/2001
Series:
New Americanists
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.13(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction1
Part 1.Practicing American Studies
Chapter 1.Reconfiguring Academic Disciplines: The Emergence of American Studies11
Chapter 2.American Studies, American Politics, and the Reinvention of Class34
Chapter 3.Versions of Nashville, Visions of American Studies64
Chapter 4.Culture and Conformity in Wartime America: My Junior High School Songbook82
Chapter 5.Dinosaur Culture: From Mansfield Park to Jurassic Park99
Part 2American Studies in a Racialized World
Chapter 6American Studies and Ethnic Studies at the Borderlands Crossroads119
Chapter 7.Of Chadors and Capital139
Chapter 8.Fiction as Exploration: The Novels of Charles Chesnutt153
Part 3.Revisiting the Canon: The Question of Modernism
Chapter 9.Reflecting on The Heath Anthology of American Literature175
Chapter 10.Melville Climbs the Canon199
Chapter 11.And Now, Ladies and Gentlemen, May I Present Miss Amy Lowell221
Chapter 12.Cold War Culture and the Construction of Modernism234
Notes251
Index281

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