This course takes a multidisciplinary approach to examining and analyzing U.S. global dominance since the end of World War II. The class has been developed in collaboration with history professor Peter Kuznick and filmmaker Oliver Stone. Students seek to understand the US-led world order and its discontents, including exemplars of the Black Radical Tradition and Quaker activists. Special focus is placed on three grave problems facing humanity: the climate crisis, the nuclear Doomsday Machine, and vast economic inequality. History is considered in conjunction with cinema, as students explore the ways in which motion pictures have influenced, reflected, and challenged Americans’ understandings of the U.S. and its role in the world. Antiwar poetry and graphic art are explored and analyzed as well. College-level academic texts are used, and coursework includes group projects, presentations, tests, and written assignments. At points, students choose between writing a paper and completing a project-based assignment.
Open to: Juniors and seniors
(Not offered in 2021-22)