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United States in the World


Courses in United States in the World examine American social, political, legal, cultural, and/or economic practices, institutions, and behaviors from contemporary, historical, and/or analytical perspectives. These will help students to understand this country as a heterogeneous and multifaceted nation situated within an international framework by examining ideas about what it means to be an American, about the persistence and diversity of American values, about the relations among different groups within the United States and between the United States and the rest of the world. Courses may compare the American situation to other societies of the world, or show change over time within the United States. These courses prepare students for civic agency by providing critical tools to understand these issues in a historical and/or comparative context.

United States in the World

United States in the World 11. American Health Care Policy
Catalog Number: 4045
Richard Frank (Harvard Medical School)
Half course (fall term). M., W., 3:30-5, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 8, 9
Health care in America poses fundamental policy challenges to our ability to protect low income Americans from the costs of illness; to produce high quality care; to efficiently use health care resources, and to allow Americans to die without pain, in the company of family, as they desire. This course aims to offer students a solid understanding of the American health care system, the potential impact of new reform legislation, and challenges that will remain in the future.
Note: Students who have taken General Education 186 or Extra-Departmental Courses 186 may not take this course for credit. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

United States in the World 12 (formerly History of Art and Architecture 17y). American Encounters: Art, Contact, and Conflict, 1560-1860
Catalog Number: 8937
Jennifer L. Roberts (History of Art and Architecture)
Half course (spring term). Tu., Th., at 11, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 13
An introduction to early American art from a transnational, cross-cultural perspective. We begin with the global struggle for control of the North American continent, tracing the colliding artistic traditions of multiple European colonial powers, Native American groups, and slave cultures. We then examine the cultural constitution of U.S. nationhood as it developed through (and against) the visual and material cultures of Europe and the Atlantic and Pacific worlds. Icons of a seemingly familiar national heritage—such as Washington’s portrait on the dollar bill—are revealed as complex formal negotiations emerging from international dynamics of commerce, politics, religion, science, and migration.
Note: Expected to be omitted in 2012–13. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for either Literature and Arts B or Historical Study B, but not both.

United States in the World 13 (formerly Historical Study A-34). Medicine and Society in America
Catalog Number: 1552
Jeremy Alan Greene (History of Science)
Half course (spring term). Tu., Th., at 11, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 13
Surveys major developments in the history of American medicine since 1500. Emphasis on setting the practice of medicine and the experience of health and disease into broad social, cultural, and political contexts. Topics include the social and cultural impact of epidemic disease; the nature of demographic and epidemiological change; the development of medical therapeutics and technologies; the growth of health care institutions; the rise of the medical profession; and debates about the allocation of health care resources. Evaluates the role of medicine in addressing social needs as well as the social and economic determinants of patterns of health and disease.
Note: Expected to be omitted in 2012–13. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study A.

United States in the World 15 (formerly Social Analysis 66). Is the American Racial Order Being Transformed?
Catalog Number: 0916
Jennifer L. Hochschild (Government; African and African American Studies)
Half course (fall term). M., W., at 10, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 3
Is a fundamental transformation occurring in the American racial order? If so, are these changes for the better or the worse? We first briefly explore the history of American racial and ethnic dynamics, then examine four transformative forces: immigration, multiracialism, genomics, and the movement of young adults into political and economic power. We then consider blockages to transformation: incarceration of young black men, wealth disparities, and treatment of Muslims and undocumented immigrants. We conclude by considering various ideal futures for race and ethnicity in the U.S.
Note: This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

United States in the World 16 (formerly Historical Study A-86). Men and Women in Public and Private: the US in the 20th Century
Catalog Number: 4182
Nancy F. Cott (History)
Half course (fall term). M., W., at 12, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 5
This course offers historical perspective on the social relations and relative power of the sexes, tracing changes and continuities over the past century in family lives, work, popular culture and politics. We will look at sexuality, masculinity, and femininity, centering these in US social, cultural and political history in the context of a wider world.
Note: Expected to be omitted in 2012–13. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study A.

[United States in the World 17 (formerly Social Analysis 72). Economics: A Critical Approach]
Catalog Number: 1885
Stephen A. Marglin (Economics)
Half course (fall term). M., W., (F.), 1–2:30, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 6, 7
This course critically examines the assumptions of modern economics and how these assumptions mold the ideas and conclusions of the discipline. A principal question is the appropriate scope of the market. This question will be examined both theoretically and through examples drawn from both microeconomics and macroeconomics; possible examples include health care, the environment, international trade, social security, and financial crisis and unemployment.
Note: Expected to be given in 2012–13. Primarily taught in lectures, with section meetings offering a chance both to clarify concepts and to discuss applications. Calculus is not used, and there is no mathematics prerequisite. Unlike Economics 10, this course does not fulfill the introductory course requirement for the Economics Department. Moreover, most upper level courses in Economics normally require Economics 10 as a prerequisite; without this prerequisite, enrollment is at the discretion of the instructor. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

United States in the World 18. Thinking About the Constitution - (New Course)
Catalog Number: 11083 Enrollment: Limited to 150.
Laurence H. Tribe (University Professor, Harvard Law School)
Half course (spring term). Tu., Th., 10–11:30, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 11, 12, 13
What difference does the U.S. Constitution make? Does it matter whether we think about it as a text, as living practice, or as a set of mostly unwritten principles? This course will explore such questions through the lens of several concrete constitutional controversies—about desegregation, abortion and death; about the federal legislation penalizing failure to purchase health insurance; about same-sex intimacy and marriage; about free speech and church-state relations; about informational privacy; and about the limits of executive power in times of emergency. Readings will be drawn from judicial and other writings about the Constitution, its history, and its interpretation.
Note: This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

United States in the World 19. American Food: A Global History
Catalog Number: 43817 Enrollment: Limited to 90.
Joyce E. Chaplin (History)
Half course (spring term). Tu., Th., at 11, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 13
Europeans “discovered” America in search of foodstuffs, specifically spices. And food has been central to the American experience from the starving time in early Virginia to the problem of obesity in the United States today. But what is American about American food? How have individual food choices and national food policies connected Americans to the larger world, both the social worlds of other human beings and the natural world of all other living beings?
Note: Expected to be omitted in 2012–13. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study A.

[United States in the World 20 (formerly Moral Reasoning 74). The Theory and Practice of Republican Government]
Catalog Number: 1489
Daniel P. Carpenter (Government)
Half course (spring term). Tu., Th., at 10, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 12
A theoretical and historical survey of the evolution of republican (representative) government, with a particular focus upon Anglo-American institutions. We will alternate between philosophical treatments and empirical studies of republican regimes. Questions include: How did republican government evolve centuries before mass elections? Did arguments for legislative supremacy prefigure the rise of parliamentary authority? If so, how? What is the role of virtue in a democratic republic? How can government ensure the “rule of the wise” without fostering autocratic power? What institutions besides elections keep the ruled attuned to the people? What critique might republican theory advance of emerging “populist” arrangements?
Note: Expected to be given in 2012–13. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the General Education requirement for either United States in the World or Ethical Reasoning, but not both. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Moral Reasoning.

[United States in the World 23 (formerly English 177). Art and Thought in the Cold War]
Catalog Number: 7704
Louis Menand (English)
Half course (spring term). M., W., at 12, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 5
Culture of the early Cold War (1945-1965) in the context of political events and intellectual developments. We will be particularly interested in the unintended consequences of Cold War policies and in trans-Atlantic cultural exchange. Subjects include the literature of totalitarianism, Abstract Expressionism, the Beats, the philosophy of higher education, the Warren Court, film noir, and the French New Wave.
Note: Expected to be given in 2013–14. No auditors permitted without permission of the instructor. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Literature and Arts C.

United States in the World 24 (formerly Sociology 19). Reinventing Boston: The Changing American City
Catalog Number: 9395
Robert J. Sampson (Sociology) and David Luberoff (Harvard Kennedy School)
Half course (fall term). Tu., Th., 1–2:30, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 15, 16
American cities have changed in extraordinary ways. In the last half of the 20th century, there was gloom about urban life and many cities were projected to decline and decay. Many did but Boston and other cities blossomed, becoming models of urban renaissance. Using Boston as a case, this course considers issues of economic change, technology, neighborhood inequality, political governance, elite relations, cultural institutions, crime, race and ethnic relations, immigration, gentrification and suburbanization. Regular guest speakers. Requirements: 5 short memos on neighborhood visits; 1 term paper; midterm essay and take-home final exam.
Note: May be counted for introductory concentration requirement, if letter-graded. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

[United States in the World 26 (formerly Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality 1000sc). Sex and the Citizen: Race, Gender, and Belonging in the United States]
Catalog Number: 64666
Caroline Light (Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality)
Half course (spring term). M., W., at 11, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 4
Even before the formal establishment of the United States, assumptions about sex have helped determine who is entitled to - and not entitled to - the privileges and protections of full citizenship. This course investigates the roles that sex, gender, and sexuality have played in configuring notions of citizenship over time as well as the ways in which sexual rights remain a site of contestation and struggle in the modern United States.
Note: Expected to be given in 2012–13. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study A. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past.

United States in the World 28 (formerly Historical Study B-43). Slavery/Capitalism/Imperialism: The US in the Nineteenth Century
Catalog Number: 5470
Walter Johnson (History; African and African American Studies)
Half course (fall term). M., W., (F.), at 11, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 4
This course treats the history of the 19th-century US and the Civil War in light of the history of US imperialism, especially the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, and the illegal invasions of Cuba and Nicaragua in the 1850s. Likewise, it relates the history of slavery in the US to the Haitian Revolution, the Louisiana Purchase, Indian removal, Atlantic cotton, land and money markets, and the hemispheric history of antislavery.
Note: This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study B.

United States in the World 29 (formerly Literature and Arts B-20). Designing the American City: Civic Aspirations and Urban Form
Catalog Number: 3243
Alex Krieger (Harvard Graduate School of Design)
Half course (spring term). Tu., Th., at 1, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 15
An interpretive look at the American city in terms of changing attitudes toward urban life. City and suburb are experienced as the product of design and planning decisions informed by cultural and economic forces, and in relationship to utopian and pragmatic efforts to reinterpret urban traditions in search of contemporary alternatives. Topics include: persistent ideals such as the single-family home, attitudes toward public and private space, the rise of suburbs and suburban sprawl, cycles of disinvestment and renewed interest in urban centers, and impacts of mobility and technology on settlement patterns.
Note: This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Literature and Arts B.

[United States in the World 30. Tangible Things: Harvard Collections in World History]
Catalog Number: 21669
Laurel Ulrich (University Professor; History) and Ivan Gaskell (History)
Half course (spring term). M., W., at 11, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 4
People make history through the things they make, collect, exhibit, exchange, throw away, or ignore. Over four centuries, Harvard has not only amassed books and manuscripts but art works, scientific instruments and specimens, ethnographic objects, and historical relics of all sorts. By learning how and why particular things arrived in Cambridge and what happened to them when they got here, students will discover how material objects have shaped academic disciplines, reinforced or challenged social boundaries, and defined America’s place in the world. This is an interactive course, with weekly visits to museums and close-up investigation of specimens and artifacts.
Note: Expected to be given in 2012–13. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study A.

[United States in the World 31 (formerly Social Analysis 54). American Society and Public Policy]
Catalog Number: 6661
Theda Skocpol (Government) and Mary C. Waters (Sociology)
Half course (spring term). M., W., at 11, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 4
In the US compared to other major nations, how have social problems been defined and redefined in recent decades; why do they appear differently to various groups; and how are public policies about problematic social conditions debated, devised, and changed? This course synthesizes various kinds of evidence–demographic, attitudinal, ethnographic, and institutional–to probe the creation and impact of major public policies about social support for families and workers; immigration and citizenship, and access to higher education.
Note: Expected to be given in 2012–13. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

*United States in the World 32 (formerly Religion 1007). The World’s Religions in Multicultural America: Case Studies in Religious Pluralism
Catalog Number: 8833 Enrollment: Limited to 56.
Diana L. Eck (South Asian Studies; Study of Religion)
Half course (fall term). Tu., Th., 11:30–1, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 13, 14
An exploration of the dynamic religious landscape of the US with special focus on Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, and Sikh traditions in the most recent period of post-1965 immigration. How are faith and freedom negotiated in a more complex society? In what contexts do minority religious communities encounter long-dominant Christian and Jewish communities? How is America changing as religious communities struggle with civic, constitutional, ethical, and theological issues, especially in the post-9/11 period? Readings, films, discussion, and class projects will focus on particular cases and controversies.
Note: Offered jointly with the Divinity School as 3847. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the General Education requirement for either United States in the World or Culture and Belief, but not both. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Literature and Arts C.

United States in the World 33 (formerly African and African American Studies 193). Religion and Social Change
Catalog Number: 8058
Marla F. Frederick (African and African American Studies; Study of Religion)
Half course (fall term). M., W., at 1, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 6
Religion has inspired new understandings of social and political engagement. From early protest oriented struggles for civil rights in the US to the more recent personal responsibility calls of neo-pentecostal discourses, this course takes African American religious engagement with the process of democracy as a starting point for thinking about how other communities around the world have employed religion as a means of advancing social change. Through ethnography, auto/biography, and documentary film, this class compares and contrasts the influence that religious moods and motivations have had on calls for democracy and social change in places like Latin America, the Middle East and West Africa. In each instance the course questions the place of the US government and US religious bodies in these global efforts towards change.
Note: Offered jointly with the Divinity School as 3700. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the General Education requirement for either United States in the World or Culture and Belief, but not both. This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study A.

United States in the World 34. The Civil War from Nat Turner to Birth of a Nation - (New Course)
Catalog Number: 43416
John Stauffer (English; African and African American Studies) and Amanda Claybaugh (English)
Half course (spring term). T., Th., at 12, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 14
This interdisciplinary course reframes traditional understandings of the Civil War in three ways. First, by showing that civil conflict in the United States began well before 1861 and ended well after 1865, taking the form of slave uprisings and Klan terrorism, as well as conventional war. Second, by showing that the former Confederacy won this longer Civil War by establishing a new order of black freedom. And third, by placing this war in the context of international politics and trade. "Readings" range from fiction, film, letters, and speeches to poetry, pamphlets, prints and photographs, songs, and history.
Note: This course fulfills the requirement that one of the eight General Education courses also engages substantially with Study of the Past. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Historical Study B.

United States in the World 35. Taking a Stand: Dilemmas of Equity and Excellence in American K-12 Education - (New Course)
Catalog Number: 55027 Enrollment: Limited to 50.
Katherine K. Merseth (Harvard Graduate School of Education)
Half course (fall term). M., W., 1–2:30, and a weekly section to be arranged. EXAM GROUP: 6, 7
Events such as Teach for America’s 20th anniversary and films like Waiting for Superman highlight urgent concerns about the quality and reach of American schooling in the 21st century. Against this backdrop, the course grapples with several dilemmas that have defined American K-12 education throughout history. What constitutes educational excellence? Can excellence be achieved for everyone? Why do we have schools and what is their purpose? Given that families, politicians, and the courts often disagree vehemently about the answers to these questions, the course considers who and what will define the future of American education and its role in society.
Note: This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

United States in the World 36. Innovation and Entrepreneurship: American Experience in Comparative Perspective - (New Course)
Catalog Number: 27723 Enrollment: Limited to 95.
Mihir Desai (Harvard Business School) and Joseph B. Lassiter (Harvard Business School)
Half course (fall term). Tu., Th., 4–5:30. EXAM GROUP: 18
What gives rise to entrepreneurial opportunity and innovative activity? How do innovators and entrepreneurs think about the world? How are organizations born and how do they grow? How can innovation and entrepreneurship address the major challenges facing the world? The course will address these questions by bringing together faculty members of Harvard University to provide a diverse set of perspectives on the nature of innovation and entrepreneurship. The course has three complementary pedagogical methods. Members of the Harvard Business School faculty will provide a set of interactive lectures using case studies that illustrate how for-profit and not-for-profit organizations recognize and capitalize on opportunities. Second, faculty members from around the University will provide lectures on specific areas related to their expertise. Third, a set of group projects that allow students to work in the field with sponsoring organizations will be completed over the course of the semester.
Note: Unlike other General Education courses, this course assumes advanced coursework in a relevant social science and thus is open to freshmen only with permission of the instructor. This course, when taken for a letter grade, meets the Core area requirement for Social Analysis.

Cross-listed courses that satisfy the United States in the World Requirement. Some of these courses may have prerequisites or assume familiarity with the subject matter.

African and African American Studies 10. Introduction to African American Studies
Economics 10 (formerly Social Analysis 10). Principles of Economics
Economics 1356. Economics of Work and Family
Empirical and Mathematical Reasoning 20 (formerly Quantitative Reasoning 24). The Business and Politics of Health
Government 30. American Government: A New Perspective
[*Government 90q (formerly Government 1795). US-Latin American Relations: Seminar]
[History 1445. Science and Religion in American Public Culture]
History 1465. The United States in the World since 1900
Sociology 107 (formerly United States in the World 21). The American Family
Sociology 190. Life and Death in the US: Medicine and Disease in Social Context