Monday, December 10, 2007

PLEASE USE NO. 2 PENCILS AND FILL IN THE CIRCLES COMPLETELY: Well, we've reached the end of the semester. I hope you've enjoyed HIS 2781, "Popular Culture in the United States." Since you all are just auditing this course, I've decided that you're officially exempt from the final exam -- but you are still expected to fill out the student evaluations. In the comments, please let me know what you thought of our little virtual classroom. Which topics worked best and worst? Which subjects did you want to spend more or less time discussing? Which topics did I leave out? Would you have organized the course differently? (It might also be useful to discuss various ways to frame the whole concept of a "lecture series," seeing as the ALOTT5MA management has solicited proposals for future guest posters.)

FYI, and in case you missed anything, here are all of my posts in chronological order, with main themes highlighted.

  1. Introduction
  2. Theories of Pop-Culture Studies (and the Pop-Culture Autobiography)
  3. Early American Bestsellers
  4. Shakespeare and/as/in Popular Culture
  5. Blackface Minstrelsy
  6. P.T. Barnum
  7. Westerns
  8. Coney Island
  9. Vaudeville
  10. Tin Pan Alley and the Phonograph
  11. The Birth of Motion Pictures
  12. Birth of a Nation
  13. The First Movie Stars
  14. The "New Woman" in Movies and the Blues
  15. Radio
  16. Amos 'n' Andy on Radio
  17. Amos 'n' Andy on Film and TV
  18. Gangsters and Detectives
  19. Jazz and Swing
  20. Mickey, Bugs, and Cartoons
  21. Hollywood's Golden Age
  22. Wartime Hollywood
  23. Television
  24. Movies in the 1950s
  25. Comic Books
  26. Rock 'n' Roll
  27. Elvis
  28. Boomer Girls' Pop Culture
  29. Boomer Women's Pop Culture
  30. Counterculture and Counterrevolution
  31. The 1970s Revival of Hollywood
  32. Punk and Disco
  33. VCRs and Cable
  34. MTV
  35. Rap and Hip Hop
  36. Content Ratings Systems
  37. Media Consolidation
  38. Reality Television
  39. Video Games
  40. "Smarter" TV
  41. Is Pop Culture Really Good for You?

Many thanks to Adam & Company for generously agreeing to host this pedagogical experiment, and to all of you for your witty and thoughtful contributions to our discussions. I've learned a lot from this experience, and I hope that you have, too. See you in the comments section.

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