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Why Choose American Studies?

What exactly is “America”? America as we’ve known it is changing. The nation is experiencing greater racial and ethnic diversity. Concerns about the environment, food and poverty, and sustainability are being addressed, and solutions sought. The public is demanding greater equality for all, regardless of sexual preference or socioeconomic status. American culture is becoming increasingly diverse and its population more transnational. What are the meanings and boundaries of American citizenship? Who is “American” and who determines this? Read More »

The Department of American Studies at KU engages you in these discussions to equip you with a broad understanding of history, society and culture so that you can intelligently participate in the complex issues of the present day. We offer you a major, minor or double major in American Studies, a minor in Latina/o Studies, and soon a minor in social justice. We’ll give you a sure footing in a diverse 21st century — one that demands critical skills in verbal and written communication and research, the ability to examine and understand varied perspectives, and multicultural and multinational awareness and understanding.

We interact with our community beyond the classroom, especially in areas of justice and civic engagement. For instance, one of our majors, Emma Halling, recently helped organize and lead the student demands for changes to KU’s sexual assault policy. Many current and former students and faculty members are involved in the local Just Foods, as well as the Sunrise Project and other activities to end hunger and provide affordable healthy foods to residents of Douglas County.

We don’t shy away from the hard questions. We engage in activities and difficult national conversations concerning ethnic and race relations, such as those in gun violence; workers’ rights and union labor; children and immigration; and even the decline in affordable housing for KU graduate students . Our alumni are employed in varied careers such as: book and magazine editing, journalism, social service work and administration, human resource management, sales and marketing, law, museums, public radio and other environments that are enriched by a liberal arts background.

Why choose American Studies? Because America is changing and you have an important part to play in our global future.

Jennifer Hamer, Professor and Chair


Announcements
  • Congratulations to Ph.D. candidate Hannah Bailey for being awarded the 2017 Graduate Studies Summer Scholarship.
  • Ph.D. candidate, Rachel Schwallerhas been awarded the Hall Center's Sias Fellowship for Spring 2018.  Congratulations, Rachel!
  • KU Special Education Department: With Ray Pence
  • Seizing Freedom: With David Roediger and Peter St. Clair
  • Tribute Or Tribulation? How do we commemorate history? What is the best way to remember a conflicted and painful past? And who gets to decide? Listen here »
  • CLAS names 1st associate dean for diversity, equity and inclusion (KU News link)
  • Congratulations to Ph.D. student Marilyn Ortega for being selected as one of the inaugural National Humanities Without Walls Predoctoral Fellows for 2017.
  • Ben Schmack won the Best Ph.D. Paper Award at the 2016 Northern Illinois University History Graduate Student Conference.  Congratulations, Ben!
  • Congratulations to Kathryn Vaggalis who received the Center for Migration Research Graduate Student Grant.
  • Ph.D. student Gamze Kati was one of the winners of the second annual IEHS graduate student blog competition this year.  Congratulations, Gamze!
Upcoming Events
Nichole T. Rustin-Paschal
​"'The Kind of Man I Am': Jazzmasculinity and the World of Charles Mingus"
Thursday, March 2, 2017 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM
Murphy Hall Room 238

Hall Center Humanities Lecture Series
A forum for interdisciplinary dialogue between renowned speakers, the university and the surrounding communities.
Schedule of Lectures

 

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