American Studies Major, B.A.–Southern Studies Concentration

Department of American Studies

http://amerstud.unc.edu

204 Greenlaw Hall, CB# 3520

(919) 962-5481

Elizabeth Engelhardt, Chair

Gabrielle Berlinger, Director of Undergraduate Studies

amstdus@unc.edu

The Southern studies concentration focuses critical attention on the history, society, culture, and expression of the American South with its regional, state, and local distinctiveness. It allows students to examine the American South from many disciplinary perspectives, including anthropology, art, architecture, communication studies, cultural tourism, ecology, environment, folklife, foodways, geography, history, journalism, language, law, literature, material culture, myth and manners, music, oral history, politics, public health, religion, values, and more. Students may petition the director of undergraduate studies to have courses not listed approved to fulfill major requirements; such courses will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Department Programs

Majors

Minors

Graduate Programs

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the American studies program, students should be able to:

  • Apply critical skills of analysis to a variety of primary historical sources and/or cultural expressions
  • Exercise advanced writing skills that demonstrate clear articulation of ideas and effective expression of understanding
  • Assess the value of interdisciplinary learning by engaging with a variety of disciplinary perspectives on the study of America within their major elective courses
  • Interpret national traditions and ideals from different local, regional, transnational, and/or global situations and from diverse ideological and/or ethnic perspectives
  • Report satisfaction with the American studies major and its value for their postgraduate academic and professional careers

Requirements

In addition to the program requirements listed below, students must

  • attain a final cumulative GPA of at least 2.0
  • complete a minimum of 45 academic credit hours earned from UNC–Chapel Hill courses
  • take at least half of their major course requirements (courses and credit hours) at UNC–Chapel Hill
  • earn a minimum of 18 hours of C or better in the major core requirements (some majors require 21 hours).

For more information, please consult the degree requirements section of the catalog.

The concentration in Southern studies consists of nine courses. Courses listed more than once can be counted for only one category. At least one course must be at the 300 level or above.

Core Requirements
Introduction:
AMST 210Approaches to Southern Studies: A Historical Analysis of the American South3
or AMST 211 Approaches to Southern Studies: The Literary and Cultural Worlds of the American South
One AMST course 101 or above other than those that count in the categories below.3
Core content courses (at least two from the list below)6
Thematic courses (at least five other courses; choose at least two from each of the following two lists)15
History and Social Sciences
Art and Expressive Culture
Total Hours27

American Studies (AMST) course descriptions.

Core Content Courses

AMST 210Approaches to Southern Studies: A Historical Analysis of the American South3
AMST 211Approaches to Southern Studies: The Literary and Cultural Worlds of the American South3
AMST 283American Home3
AMST 410Senior Seminar in Southern Studies3
FOLK 560Southern Literature and the Oral Tradition3
FOLK 587Folklore in the South3
FOLK/ANTH 340Southern Styles, Southern Cultures4
FOLK/HIST 571Southern Music3
COMM 374The Southern Experience in Rhetoric3
ENGL 373Southern American Literature H3
GEOG 261The South3
HIST 586The Old South3
HIST 587The New South H3
MEJO 458Southern Politics: Critical Thinking and Writing3
PLCY 349Immigration Policy in the 21st Century3
SOCI 115Regional Sociology of the South3
H

Honors version available. An honors course fulfills the same requirements as the nonhonors version of that course. Enrollment and GPA restrictions may apply.

Thematic Courses

History and Social Sciences

AMST 259Tobacco and America3
AMST 283American Home3
AMST 350Main Street Carolina: A Cultural History of North Carolina Downtowns H3
AMST 394The University in American Life: The University of North Carolina3
AMST 398Service Learning in America3
AMST 475Documenting Communities H3
AMST 486Shalom Y'all: The Jewish Experience in the American South3
AMST/HIST 671Introduction to Public History3
AAAD 130Introduction to African American and Diaspora Studies3
AAAD 159The History of the Black Church and Social Change3
AAAD 254Blacks in North Carolina3
AAAD 258The Civil Rights Movement3
AAAD 385Emancipation in the New World3
AAAD 430African American Intellectual History3
ANTH 121Ancient Cities of the Americas3
ANTH 250Archaeology of North America H3
ANTH 451Field School in North American Archaeology H6
ANTH 454The Archaeology of African Diasporas3
ANTH 538Disease and Discrimination in Colonial Atlantic America3
ANTH 550Archaeology of the American South3
GEOG 261The South3
GEOG 262Geography of North Carolina3
HIST 278The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade H3
HIST 366North Carolina History before 18653
HIST 367North Carolina History since 18653
HIST 376History of African Americans to 18653
HIST 377History of African Americans, 1865 to Present H3
HIST 382The History of the Civil Rights Movement3
HIST 565Civil War and Reconstruction, 1848-19003
HIST 568Women in the South3
HIST 569African American Women's History3
HIST 586The Old South3
HIST 587The New South H3
HIST 670Introduction to Oral History3
MEJO 458Southern Politics: Critical Thinking and Writing3
PLCY 349Immigration Policy in the 21st Century3
POLI 419Race and Politics in the Contemporary United States H3
SOCI 115Regional Sociology of the South3
H

Honors version available. An honors course fulfills the same requirements as the nonhonors version of that course. Enrollment and GPA restrictions may apply.

Art and Expressive Culture

FOLK 560Southern Literature and the Oral Tradition3
FOLK 587Folklore in the South3
FOLK/AAAD 480Vernacular Traditions in African American Music4
FOLK/ANTH 340Southern Styles, Southern Cultures4
FOLK/HIST 571Southern Music3
FOLK/ANTH/ENGL 202Introduction to Folklore3
FOLK/ANTH/RELI 342African-American Religious Experience3
AAAD 237/ARTH 287African American Art Survey3
AAAD 330/ARTH 38720th-Century African American Art3
ARTH 481American Art and the Civil War3
ARTH 487African Impulse in African American Art3
COMM 374The Southern Experience in Rhetoric3
ENGL 367African American Literature to 1930 H3
ENGL 368African American Literature, 1930-1970 H3
ENGL 371The Place of Asian Americans in Southern Literature3
ENGL 373Southern American Literature H3
ENGL 374Southern Women Writers3
ENGL 375Contemporary North Carolina Literature3
ENGL 475Southern Literature--Contemporary Issues3
MUSC 144Introduction to Country Music3
MUSC 145Introduction to Jazz3
RELI 141African American Religions H3
H

Honors version available. An honors course fulfills the same requirements as the nonhonors version of that course. Enrollment and GPA restrictions may apply.

Special Opportunities in American Studies

Honors in American Studies

The American studies major offers a two-course honors program: AMST 691H in the fall semester and AMST 692H in the spring semester. Students must propose their thesis and contract with a faculty advisor during the semester prior to the beginning of their senior year. For each semester of honors work, thesis students must submit a signed learning contract to the Department of American Studies during the registration period. During the two semesters devoted to honors work, students conduct individual research and prepare an honors thesis under the supervision of a faculty member. Students also will attend a weekly seminar at the discretion of the advisor. Students must maintain a 3.3 cumulative grade point average to be eligible. With the approval of the associate or the assistant dean for honors, students with a slightly lower average who have a reasonable expectation of meeting the requirement within one more semester may embark upon the honors thesis, understanding that if they do not attain the 3.3 standard they may continue the research project as independent study but are not eligible to graduate with honors or highest honors.

Experiential Education

The Department of American Studies offers a seminar on Service Learning in America (AMST 398) and offers credits for approved internship projects (AMST 493). Students have learned about American studies by serving the community in museums, schools, social agencies, and other cultural institutions.

Study Abroad

The Department of American Studies encourages students to consider a semester or more of study abroad and has developed close relations with several American studies programs in different countries. Studying American experience in international contexts is an integral part of understanding the place and influence of the United States in the world. Student learning is enhanced by the perspectives gained by examining how American subjects are taught in universities around the globe as well as by encountering the international students who enroll in American studies courses in Chapel Hill. Study abroad offers students of folklore the opportunity to understand the rich vernacular and traditional cultures of other parts of the world from both a local and a comparative perspective. Students can receive American studies major credit for selected study abroad programs and are encouraged to make study abroad part of their academic plans. Study abroad courses can count toward the international American studies major or minor. Students interested in this experience should consult with the director of undergraduate studies or with the Study Abroad Office about international exchange programs sponsored by UNC–Chapel Hill.

Undergraduate Awards

The department awards Julia Preston Brumley Travel Scholarships to help fund international travel and study abroad. The Peter C. Baxter Memorial Prize is awarded annually to the outstanding senior majoring in American studies.

Undergraduate Research

The department offers credit for AMST 396 and FOLK 495. Majors can develop a two-semester honors thesis project (AMST 691H and AMST 692H) in consultation with an advisor. Students have received summer undergraduate research fellowships, earned research support and travel awards, and presented their work at the Annual Celebration of Undergraduate Research each spring.