A/P Ian Gordon History AS NUS

HY4219 American Intellectual History
Semester 2 2004-2005
A/P Ian Gordon
Ph. 6874 3838

Monday 9am - 12 noon

Course Description

Teaching Format Assessment Readings

Seminar Schedule

Seminar 1 Seminar 2 Seminar 3 Seminar 4 Seminar 5
Seminar 6 Seminar 7 Seminar 8 Seminar 9 Seminar 10
Seminar 11 Seminar 12 Seminar 13 Study Guides Listen

upModule Description, Aims, and Objectives
The module is an advanced overview of major approaches and themes in American intellectual history. Students will explore the diversity of American thinkers. The module will focus on the twentieth century and pivotal decades and analyses American thinkers in their social contexts. Students will also explore how non-elites have shaped American thought. As such, this course provides a diverse and multifarious look at American intellectual history. Students will gain an understanding of the complexity of American intellectual traditions. Students will critically assess the place of intellectuals in American society.

upTeaching Format
A weekly three hour seminar.

The module is structured in such a manner that it is accessible to all History honours students regardless of prior modules taken. Each week I will set a short piece of reading of approximately 20-40 pages by the intellectual we are considering. We shall discuss this work together. Given that there will be approximately 35 students in this module 3 students will be assigned to each of the topics from week 2 onwards. One or two students will present an introduction each week and one of these students will run the class discussion that follows. The other student will run the IVLE discussion forum on that week's intellectual, which will take place after the Monday seminar. Deails will be discussed in the first seminar. Click here for schedule


A course reader will be available containing the required reading for each week. Reading Packet

Students might wish to consult the following reference work for general background information:

Richard Wightman Fox and James T. Kloppenberg eds, A Companion to American Thought. CL Reference 1 E169.1 Com

Students are expected to attend seminars in accordance with university policy and to actively participate. Assessment is based on continuous assessment (60%)  and an open book final exam (40%).  The 60% for continuous assessment consists of Book Review (10%), Essay (20%), Discussion Forum (15%) and Seminar Participation (15%).

Essay due: April 1, 5pm. (3000 words) How to submit soft copy

Book Review due: February 14, in class at 9am. (500 - 750 words)
Here is a model book review <http://www.historycooperative.org/journals/jah/86.3/br_93.html>

You must follow this link to the essay guide page.

upSeminar Schedule
Be sure to follow the individual seminar links to the schedule of readings and other resources for each lecture.

Seminar 1 (January 10)
What is Intellectual history? What is an intellectual?

Seminar 2 (January 17)
Randolph Bourne

Seminar 3 (January 24)
W.E.B. Du Bois

Seminar 4 (January 31)
Lewis Mumford

Seminar 5 (February 7)
Gilbert Seldes

Seminar 6 (February 14)
Dwight Macdonald

up Midsemester Break

Seminar 7 (February 28)
Betty Friedan

Seminar 8 (March 7)
Martin Luther King

Seminar 9 (March 14)
Susan Sontag

Seminar 10 (March 21)
Joan Didion

Seminar 11 (March 28)
Christopher Lasch

Seminar 12 (April 4)
Greil Marcus

Seminar 13 (April 11)
Reconsidering Intellectuals

Top of Page

Visitors since December 7, 2004

Last update December 7, 2004                                         National University of Singapore - Department of History
                                                                                                            Contact: Ian Gordon