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HNR 340 – American Parsifal

Course Schedule:

T TH 9:30 – 10:50 am

Location:

Please check MySlice for the latest class location.

Instructor:

Prof. Andrew Waggoner

Counts toward:

HNR Hum, Interdisciplinary

MySlice Info:

Class #: 32273
Section: M002
# Credits: 3

Course Description:

The United States has both a great and longstanding intellectual and artistic tradition, and a deep-seated mistrust of and hostility toward artists and intellectuals. We’ll examine this strange dichotomy, one that has been both invigorating and debilitating, crippling even, for our cultural development, and our standing on the world stage, through American music, literature and popular culture. We’ll want to know which aspects of their own culture Americans have invested in, which ones have been successfully exported, and which currently serve as icons of a recognizably American sensibility. Over the course of the semester we’ll encounter a broad range of works by William James, W.E.B. DuBois, Walt Whitman, Jack Kerouac, Louis Menand, William Faulkner, Cormac McCarthy, Elizabeth Bishop, John Ashberry, Mark Rothko, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Charles Ives, John Cage, Elliott Carter, John Adams, Charles Mingus, Brad Mehldau and Miles Davis, among others. Through it all we’ll consider America’s desire to be a kind of cultural Parsifal, the “wise fool” who rescues the world from impotence and shame, and the implications of that role for us as contemporary citizens. Counts toward the Arts & Sciences Critical Reflections requirement.

Notes about this course:

Notes about this section:

Counts toward the Arts & Sciences Critical Reflections requirement.

Class times and locations often change. Please verify your class schedule in MySlice as these will not be updated after their initial posting.