Provides students with the opportunity to critically analyze popular culture, its production, and its consumption from an interdisciplinary perspective. Coursework broadly explores how popular culture reflects and challenges American cultural values, practices and norms, and institutions. In addition, courses focus on the study of technologies and material culture, production of popular culture, consumption practices, and the role of popular culture in creating and disseminating ideologies. The two foundational courses, respectively, introduce cultural studies and provide a concluding experience with the minor through acquisition and application of key concepts and theories. Students in the minor will design and complete a project in the last foundation course. Students will acquire the skills to analyze popular culture artifacts in contexts related to public life, media, cultural history, and industry production (film, music, toys/games, literature, fashion, food, etc.) as well as individualized practices. Students graduating with a minor in American Popular Culture Studies will be well-suited to think critically about the complex role of popular culture in our lives. This minor will serve students who have an interest in pursuing graduate school, teaching, writing, or working in creative industries (game design, film and television, etc.).
Student Learning Objectives
With the American Popular Culture Studies Minor, students will:
- Demonstrate an ability to critically analyze popular culture texts and artifacts in social and political contexts
- Demonstrate an understanding of the production and reception of popular culture
- Demonstrate an understanding of how cultural meaning is created, and how studying popular culture can provide us with multiple ways of making power visible
- Analyze and synthesize material from primary and secondary sources in order to create a coherent, evidence-based argument
- Employ methodologies from the humanities and the social sciences to analyze a variety of historical, cultural, social and political questions.
25 credits, 15 credits must be upper division - 15 credits must be taken outside major requirements.
Foundational American Popular Culture Coursework (10 credits)
- TAMST 220 Introduction to Popular Culture (formerly TCULTR 210).
- TAMST 410 Studies in U.S. Popular Culture (formerly TCULTR 410). Students are required to take TAMST 410, Studies in U.S. Popular Culture, as the culminating experience at the end of the minor coursework.
Topical Coursework in American Popular Culture Studies (15 Credits)
- TAMST 250 Science Fiction in American Culture
- TAMST 430 Queer Performances
- TAMST 440 Gender and American Childhood
- TAMST 450 Monstrous Imagination (Formerly TCULTR 450)
- TARTS 311 History of Rock and Roll
- TARTS 314 Rap Music, Identity, and Culture
- TARTS 404 Art in a Time of War
- TARTS 411 History of Jazz
- TARTS 480 Contemporary Art and Society - 1945 to Present
- TCOM 247 Television Studies
- TCOM 258 Children and Television
- TCOM 312 Nature, Inequality, and Popular Culture
- TCOM 347 Television Criticism and Application
- TCOM 353 Critical Approaches to Mass Communication
- TCOM 440 Advertising and Consumer Culture
- TEGL 271 American Indians in Film
- TFILM 201 Film Studies (Formerly TFILM 272)
- TFILM 481 Film Theory and Aesthetics
- TFILM 483 Film Directors (5, max. 10)
- TFILM 485 Media Genres (5, max. 10)
- TFILM 486 Feminist Perspectives in Film and Literature
- TFILM 488 Gender and Sexuality in Film
- THIST 333 Early American Music, Art, Literature, and Theater
- THIST 336 Black, Labor, and Protest Music in Historical Perspective
- THIST 441 Black Freedom Movement in Perspective
- TLAX 250 Images of Latinos/as in the Movies
- TLAX 376 Latin American Film
- TLAX 441 Mexican Cinema and Society
- TLIT 406 Children's and Young Adult Literature
- TLIT 438 American Folklore
- TSPAN 361 Mexican Film
- TSPAN 374 Hispanic Culture Through Film
- TWOMN 251 Popular Culture and Gender
- TWRT 382 Writing Popular Fiction
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