Syllabus 3

American Studies 1-A
Fall 1990
San José State University

Professors Apthorp, Kurzweil, Underdal

Course Description: American Studies 1A/1B provides an integrated, interdisciplinary introduction to the origins and development of American civilization. We examine American culture from a variety of perspectives; we seek to understand American values, ideas and institutions holistically and to help you to appreciate the complex strands of our heritage. We hope that this will help you to make better-informed decisions whatever your future may hold.

This semester, after a brief introductory study of Puritanism and of the American Enlightenment, we will concentrate on three periods in American history: 1) the era of the Revolution and of the Early Republic, 2) the Jacksonian era, and 3) the period of the Civil War and of Reconstruction. We will pay particular attention to the following themes: the effects of technology on American society, the relationship of the individual American to the larger society, the pluralist nature of American society, and the role of women and other "minorities."

Required Texts:

Paul Lauter, et al., The Heath Anthology of American Literature, Volume 1

Randy Roberts and James S. Olson, American Experiences, Volume 2 (2nd ed.)

Leonard Dinnerstein and Kenneth T. Jackson, eds., American Vistas, Volume 1 (5th ed.)

Michael Perman, ed., Perspective on the American Past, Volume 2.

Course Reader (Available from Maple Press, 412 E. Santa Clara)

Lecture Sequence:

In the reading assignments listed below, "Heath" refers to the Heath Anthology, "Roberts" refers to American Experiences, "Dinnerstein" refers to American Vistas, and "Perman" refers to Perspectives on the American Past; the Course Reader assignments are identified by author and title.

Aug. 28: Course Introduction

Aug. 30: Puritanism

Heath: Winthrop, 188-203.

Dinnerstein: Morgan, 18-31.

Koehler, "The Salem Village Cataclysm."

Sept. 4: Faith and Experience: Women and Native Americans in Puritan New England

Heath: Bradstreet, 256-279; Rowlandson, 317-342.

Dinnerstein: Axtell, 32-62

Sept. 6: The Enlightenment and the First Great Awakening

Heath: Franklin; Edwards.

Sept. 11: Causes of the Revolution, I

Dinnerstein: DePauw, "Land of the Unfree."

Roberts: Martin, 106-117.

Bailyn, "The Logic of Rebellion."

Sept. 13: Causes of the Revolution, II

Heath: Paine, 936-937, 940-951; Jefferson, 957-971.

Sept. 18: The Constitution, I

Roberts: Commager 118-128.

Dinnerstein: Banning, 100-111.

Sept. 20: The Constitution, II

Heath: Federalist No. 10, 1013- 1018; An Anti-Federalist Paper, 1018-1021.

Hamilton, Encouragement of Manufacturers.

The Constitution of the United States


Sept. 27: Developments in Manufactur- ing, Agriculture, Technology and Transportation, I

Cronon, "Indians, Colonists, and Property Rights."

Pursell, "Cyrus Hall McCormick and the Mechanization of Agricul ture."

Oct. 2: Developments in Manufactur- ing, Agriculture, Technology and Transportation, II

Dinnerstein: Dublin, 208-226.

Archdeacon, "Natives and New- comers."

Oct. 4: The American Adam and the Hudson River School

Roberts: Gorn, 234-251.

Heath: Native American Tradi- tions, 22-52

Oct. 9: Slavery in American Life

Heath: Douglass, 1637-1673.

Oct. 11: Slave Culture

Heath: Douglass, 1673-1704; Jacobs, 1723-1750.

Oct. 16: Black Protest

Heath: Walker, 1781-1791.

Roberts: Levine, 165-179.

Oct. 18: The Second Great Awakening

Weisberger, "Religion on the Frontier."

Smith-Rosenberg, "Beauty, the Beast, and the Militant Woman."

Oct. 23: The Jacksonian Era

Roberts: King, 214-221.

Dinnerstein: Satz, 191-207.


Oct. 25: Transcendentalism I

Heath: Emerson 1471-1475; Thoreau, 1981-1991, 2012-2016.

Oct. 30: Transcendentalism II

Heath: Thoreau, 1967-1981, 2016- 2031.

Nov. 1: Manifest Destiny

Acuna, "Legacy of Hate."

Steiner, "Huie Kin."


Nov. 8: Women at Midcentury I

Roberts: Welter, 150-164.

Heath: Stowe, 2311-2323, 2352- 2354; Truth, 1908-1913.

Nov. 13: Women at Midcentury II

Heath: "Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions," 1893-1899; Grimke, 1834-1838.

Gilman, "The Yellow Wallpaper."

Nov. 15: Native American Voices

Roberts: Olson, 192-211.

Heath: Apes, 1753-1760; Boudinot, 1760-1769; Seattle, 1769-1772.

Nov. 20: Pre-Civil War Politics

Foner, "Free Labor: The Republi- cans and Northern Society."

Hofstadter, "John C. Calhoun: The Marx of the Master Class."

Nov. 27: Melville

Heath: Melville, 2405-2431, 2447- 2465.

Nov. 29: Emily Dickinson and Walt Whitman

Heath: Dickinson; Whitman, 2788, 2804-2807.

Dec. 4: Reconstruction and the New Labor System in the South I

Roberts: Trelease, 330-339.

Jones, "Freed Women? The Civil War and Reconstruction."


Dec. 6: Reconstruction II

Perman: Woodward, 14-24.

Dinnerstein: Daniel, 307-319.

Dec. 11: The Rise of Big Business and Monopoly

Perman: Chandler, 38-48; Noble, 49-62.

Contents, No. IV