The 50 States: from Midwest to the West
(Az 50 állam: Kutúrális földrajz Közép-Nyugattól Nyugatig) in spring 2019
Szabó Éva Eszter
, Thu 14:00–15:30
seminar, 30 h/term
description & set texts
Though the United States of America is one nation, its very name indicates the fact that it is a union of different states. Each of the 50 states has a particular personality based upon its geography, economy, history of settlement and immigration, and thus reflects distinctive cultural traits that make certain regions distinctive. Apart from state allegiance, Americans often describe their country by regions and subregions. This civilization course explores the regional and local characteristics of the United States by examining the cultural regions of the Midwest and the West. Besides the regional and subregional overviews, students will be introduced to the geography, local history, sights, and cultural heritage of 26 states in these two regions. The course can be complemented by a first part that examines the 24 states of the Northeast and the South in the fall semesters.
Reading List: Baird, Lori, Marcel Brousseau, and Amber Rose. Fifty States. All You Need to Know. New York, NY: Hylas Publishing, 2008; Cobb, Russell. “South by Midwest: Or Where Is Oklahoma?” This Land Press. November, 2012. Online; Duncan, Russell, and Joseph Goddard. Contemporary America. New York, NY: Palgrave MacMillan, 2003; Falk, Randee. Spotlight on the USA. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1993; Oxford Guide to British and American Culture. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999; Fiedler, Eckhard, Reimer Jansen, and Mil Norman-Risch. M. America in Close-Up. Harlow: Longman, 1990; Gastil, Raymond D. Cultural Regions of the United States. Seattle, WA: University of Washington, 1975; Speiser, Matthew. “The 11 Nations of the United States”. Business Insider. July 27, 2015. Online; Zelinsky, Wilbur. The Cultural Geography of the United States. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1992.
requirements & assessment
Requirements: Two presentations; completion of homework assignments, set of readings, in-class quizzes and blank maps; coming to class prepared (coming unprepared equals an absence); active participation, and regular attendance (only three absences are tolerated).
Assessment: Grades will be based on the presentations accompanied by a handout with in-text citations and references in MLA (50%), continuous assessment-based regular in-class quizzes that consist of blank maps, geographical and state raids, and the readings (50%).