Initiative on Labor and Culture at Yale University
 

Labor Studies at Yale

Courses by ILC Directors and Affiliates

 

AMST 192/ER&M190

Work & Daily Life in Global Capitalism

Michael Denning

An introduction to the worlds of twentieth-century capitalism, from Ford to Sony, Unilever to Microsoft, with particular attention to transformations in work and daily life. Topics include the metal-working cities and industrial plantations of the first decades of the century; the social and cultural upheavals of the global Great Depression and World War; the mid-century challenges of Communism, social democracy and decolonization; the rise of service economies and the shifts in women' work; the popular uprisings and cultural revolutions of the 1960s and 1970s; and the conflicts over "globalization" and neo-liberalism in the last quarter century.

HIST 776

Class and Capitalism in 20th Century America

Jennifer Klein

This is an intensive readings course. These readings will mostly be oriented around the concept of political economy. In some cases, the emphasis is on the relations between business, labor and the state, in others, the connections between community, work, and the state. In so far as this is a 20th century course, we focus on U. S. capitalism in its modern form—corporate, concentrated in ownership, global in reach, constitutive of state, market, families, and class. Readings will enable us to look at how regionalism, race, and class power shaped the development of American capitalism. We’ll consider the continuum of free and coerced labor well after the end of slavery in the U.S. We’ll look at indigenous communities, the environment, and on-going struggles with the state. This mix of labor history, social theory, intellectual history, social history, and geography will also impel us to imagine the workings of American capitalism beyond the borders of the nation—to think about how capitalists and workers move through space and reshape space. What creates a market? How did political reformers, intellectuals, labor activists, immigrants, managerial elites think about markets and political power at different moments in time? How have citizenship and rights been fundamentally linked to labor hierarchies or modes of production? What is the role of the state in class formation, trade and commerce, and natural resource appropriation? What has been the relationship between global and domestic political economy?

AMST 622

Working Group on Globalization and Culture

Michael Denning

The Working Group on Globalization and Culture is a continuing collective research project, a cultural studies 'laboratory,' that has been running since the fall of 2003. The group is made up of graduate students and faculty from several disciplines. The working group meets regularly to discuss common readings, to develop collective and individual research projects, and to present that research publicly. The general theme for the working group is globalization and culture, with three principal aspects: (1) the globalization of cultural industries and goods, and its consequences for patterns of everyday life as well as for forms of fiction, film, broadcasting, and music; (2) the trajectories of social movements and their relation to patterns of migration, the rise of global cities, the transformation of labor processes, and forms of ethnic, class, and gender conflict; (3) the emergence of and debates within transnational social and cultural theory. The specific focus, projects, and directions of the working group are determined by the interests, expertise, and ambitions of the members of the group, and change as its members change.

HIST 463

Urban History in the United States, 1870-Present

Jennifer Klein

An investigation of the history of work, leisure, consumption, and housing in American cities. Topics include formation and re-formation of ethnic communities; the segregation of cities along the lines of class and race; the impact of federal policy; the growth of suburbs; and cities in the global economy.

HIST 469

Labor and Democracy in the Twentieth-Century US

Jennifer Klein

A history of work, labor relations, social movements, and labor policy in the United States since 1890; the history of class politics and economic development in modern America. Racial and gender hierarchies from farms to factories to sweatshops; labor rights as part of broader struggles over citizenship rights and democracy. Topics include various forms of labor organizing and protest, limits and possibilities of solidarity, braceros and migrant workers, civil rights, the Cold War, politics and policy, and Wal-Mart.

AMST 327/ER&M292

Workers in the Twentieth Century

Michael Denning

An exploration of working-class history in the twentieth century and the emergence of a global labor force. Topics include patterns of migration, changes in work and working-class culture, representations of work and workers in fiction and film, and forms of labor unrest and struggle.

AMST 349/ER&M288/WGSS434

Border Feminism

Alicia Schmidt Camacho

An examination of the experience of women of Mexican descent in the United States in relation to cultural and political movements in the Third World.

AMST 635/WGSS706

Cultural Studies in the Americas

Alicia Schmidt Camacho

A bilingual seminar with readings from Latin America, the Caribbean, and the United States devoted to culture, popular movements, and social theory. The course pairs cultural texts with theoretical readings and historical monographs. We consider questions of global political and economic transformations in the region; discourses and practices of migration and displacements; nationalism and transnational movements; processes of racial, gender, class, and sexual formation; and vernacular and official discourses of rights and justice. We address these themes through an examination of popular movements and expressive cultures, and mass media.

HIST 764/AMST764

Histories of Latinas/os in the Twentieth Century

Stephen Pitti

Readings on topics such as community formation, cultural politics, racialization, and the international migration of Mexican American (Chicana/o), Puerto Rican, Cuban American, and other Latina/os in the United States since roughly 1898. Attention to recently published works in these fields, to the connection with broader concerns in American Studies and Latin American history, and to the intersections between Latina/o history and current scholarship in African American Studies and Asian American Studies.

AMST 213 Mexicans, Mexican Americans, and the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands since 1848

Stephen Pitti

Mexicans and Mexican Americans in the United States since the Mexican War. Particular attention to communities and conflicts in the U.S.-Mexico border region. Topics include the rise of Latino immigration since the mid-nineteenth century, the influence of the Mexican Revolution on the United States, patterns of ethnic and racial conflict in the Southwest, and struggles by immigrant and native-born residents to create new labor and civil rights movements.

 

Other Yale Courses Related to Labor Studies

 

AFST 356/INTS326/PLSC356/SOCY246

Collective Action and Social Movements

Elisabeth Wood

Analysis of the emergence and evolution of various forms of protest, including strikes, demonstrations, and revolutions. Case studies include the civil rights movement, the women’s movement in the United States, and social movements in Central America, South Africa, and elsewhere. Several theoretical approaches are used, ranging from ethnographic to mathematical models.

AMST 131/HIST 131

U.S. Political and Social History

Glenda Gilmore

An examination of the social, political, and economic changes that transformed American society from the turn of the twentieth century through World War II.

AMST 190/HIST112

Formation of Modern American Culture, 1876-1919

Jean-Christophe Agnew

An introduction to the cultural history of the United States from Reconstruction through the First World War, with special attention to the persistence of popular culture, the transformation of bourgeois culture, and the birth of mass culture during a period of rapid industrialization.

AMST 273/WGSS342

Black Women's Literature

Naomi Pabst

Examination of literary and critical writings of black women of the post-civil rights generation. Exploration of the ways these writers construct and contest the cultural, ideological, and political parameters of black womanhood. Topics include narrative strategy, modes of representation, and textual intersections of race, gender, sexuality, color, ethnicity, nationality, class, and generation. Texts placed within the context of black women’s literary legacies.

AMST 423/AFAM443/HIST437

Black Intellectuals in the Twentieth Century

Jonathan Holloway

An examination of the traditions, contexts, and trajectories of black intellectual and social activist discourse since 1895. Topics include racial authenticity politics, intraracial class conflict, high versus low culture, protest forms, and the complicating narratives of gender and class in racialist thought.

AMST 438/AFAM352/ER&M291/LITR295/ WGSS343

Caribbean Diasporic Literature

Hazel Carby

An examination of contemporary literature written by Caribbean writers who have migrated to, or who journey between, different countries around the Atlantic rim. Focus on literature written in English in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, both fiction and nonfiction. Writers include Caryl Phillips, Nalo Hopkinson, and Jamaica Kincaid.

ANTH 236

Anthropology of Politics

Exploration of how political relations are imagined and of the relationship between culture and power. Focus on the influence of anthropology and comparative studies on understandings of political power, the state, legality, and locally embedded political practices.

ANTH 541/F&ES753/HIST965/PLSC779

Agrarian Societies

An interdisciplinary examination of agrarian societies, contemporary and historical, Western and non-Western. Major analytical perspectives from anthropology, economics, history, political science, and environmental studies are used to develop a meaning-centered and historically grounded account of the transformations of rural society. Team-taught.

EP&E 356/SOCY358

Class and Culture

Exploration of the ways in which culture (identities, practices, meanings, and aesthetics) relates to the lived experience of class and to the persistence of inequality in the United States. Topics include cultural capital, subculture, conspicuous consumption, and the culture of poverty.

EP&E 357

Modernity and Beyond

Analysis of transformations that societies worldwide have undergone since the 1970s through critical examination of the debates on modernity and modernization, postmodernism, and globalization.

EP&E  413/ECON470

Topics in American Economic History

Examination of various topics in the economic history of the United States. Topics include the distribution of wealth and income, changes in the standard of living, immigration, government intervention in markets, and the experiences of women and minorities in the U.S. economy.

ER&M  320

Globalization and Resistance in the Americas

An interdisciplinary study of the changing global economy, its impact on distinct regions, and ways that people are responding to rapid globalization and economic change. Examination of resistance movements that seek both to challenge and to transform neoliberal globalization throughout the Americas. Topics range from the Zapatista rebellion in Chiapas and the Landless Movement in Brazil to the WTO protests in Seattle and the role of the IMF in Jamaica.

ER&M 342/HIST472

Revolutionary Change in Twentieth-Century Latin America

Gil Joseph

Although North Americans have become preoccupied with revolutionary movements in Latin America over the past several decades, they have often developed misconceptions about them. A critical examination of popular images and orthodox interpretations using a variety of propositions about these revolutionary processes. A study of the process of revolutionary change at the grassroots level that draws upon materials across several disciplines.

HIST 461

Communism and Anticommunism in the Twentieth- Century United States

Beverly Gage

An examination of the intertwined histories of domestic communism and anticommunism in the twentieth-century United States. Topics include McCarthyism, the communist relationship with the Soviet Union, civil liberties, Cold War culture, and communist activism. Focus on connections between foreign policy and domestic political culture, the effect of anticommunism on political and social reform movements, and questions of American exceptionalism.

Prospective junior History majors should apply for seminars for the following term on forms provided by the department. Forms will be available in 237 HGS after midterm in the fall and after break in the spring. On these forms students indicate their first three choices of seminars for each term. All students who wish to preregister must declare their major and take the mandatory History library orientation by the end of the first week after midterm in the fall and by the end of the first week after break in the spring. Lists of assignments for the following term will be made available as soon as possible, posted outside 237 HGS. In September and in January, application for admission should be made directly to the instructors of the seminars, who will admit students to remaining vacancies in their seminars. Priority is given to applications from juniors, then seniors, majoring in History, but applications are also accepted from qualified sophomores and from students majoring in other disciplines or programs.

HIST 465

Peasants and Nation in the Middle East

Michael Gasper

The impact of the emergence of modern nation-states upon Middle Eastern peasants. Focus on the material conditions of rural populations and the ideological representation of peasants as national icon and reservoir of cultural authenticity.

Prospective junior History majors should apply for seminars for the following term on forms provided by the department. Forms will be available in 237 HGS after midterm in the fall and after break in the spring. On these forms students indicate their first three choices of seminars for each term. All students who wish to preregister must declare their major and take the mandatory History library orientation by the end of the first week after midterm in the fall and by the end of the first week after break in the spring. Lists of assignments for the following term will be made available as soon as possible, posted outside 237 HGS. In September and in January, application for admission should be made directly to the instructors of the seminars, who will admit students to remaining vacancies in their seminars. Priority is given to applications from juniors, then seniors, majoring in History, but applications are also accepted from qualified sophomores and from students majoring in other disciplines or programs.

SOCY 015

Social Relations and Society

Hannah Brueckner

A study of how social roles and social status are constituted by social relations in everyday life; how boundaries between groups of people are constructed and maintained; and how group membership structures the opportunities and well-being of individuals. Consideration of the conditions under which individuals and groups engage in collective action and the resulting characteristics of contemporary societies.

May count toward the Sociology major as an introductory course.

SOCY 395/EAST408

Wealth and Poverty in Modern China

Deborah Davis

Discussion of how access to property, capital, education, and political power have affected poverty and the distribution of wealth in China since 1911, with emphasis on contemporary inequality and social stratification. Extensive use of documentary and online sources.

Optional discussion section conducted in Chinese.

Advanced Sociology courses are open to students who have completed one intermediate course and any other specified requirement, or by permission of the instructor. Preference is given to Sociology majors in their junior and senior years.

AMST 645/AFAM723/CPLT949

Black Intellectuals of the Caribbean Diaspora

Hazel Carby

This course examines work by writers of Caribbean descent from different regions of the transatlantic world. In response to contemporary interest in issues of globalization, the premise of the course is that in the world maps of these black intellectuals we can see the intertwined and interdependent histories and relations of the Americas, Europe, and Africa. Thinking globally is not a new experience for black peoples and we need to understand the ways in which what we have come to understand and represent as 'Caribbeanness' is a condition of movement. Literature is most frequently taught within the boundaries of a particular nation, but this course focuses on the work of writers who shape the Caribbean identities of their characters as traveling black subjects and refuse to restrain their fiction within the limits of any one national identity. We practice a new and global type of cognitive mapping as we read and explore the meanings of terms like black trans-nationalism, migrancy, globalization, and empire. Diasporic writing embraces and represents the geopolitical realities of the modern, modernizing, and postmodern worlds in which multiple racialized histories are inscribed on modern bodies.

AMST 750

Culture of Work

Kathryn Dudley

Focusing on ethnographic studies of work in America and elsewhere, this course examines the cultural processes through which capitalist forms of production and consumption give rise to the subjectivities and knowledges that inhabit conditions of modernity, globalization, and neoliberalism.

  

CPLT 928/FILM824/GMAN611/RUSS746

Alternative Cultures in Communist Central and Eastern Europe

Katerina Clark

Katie Trumpener

Exploring a range of textsófrom film and media culture, literary and visual culture, to youth culture and popular musicófrom across Communist (and post-Communist) Europe, this course examines a range of dissident cultures, subcultures, and countercultures. Topics to include the relationship between official and experimental modes of culture, transnational circuits of influence, the construction of subcultural worlds, and the range of dissident ideologies (nationalist, liberal, religious, and reform-Marxist).

HIST 894

Making Colonial Subjects in British India

Mridu Rai

This course investigates how British colonialism established itself in India through cultural technologies of rule. It explores how legal, political, and social categories such as those of race, caste, class, religion, and gender were deployed to make the Indians available for imperial control. It also examines how these categories may in turn have shaped anti-colonial resistance.

SOCY 625

Analysis of the Social Structure

Scott Boorman

This course develops and integrates a variety of the most promising contemporary approaches to the study of social structure and social organization. Building in part on research viewpoints articulated by Kenneth J. Arrow in The Limits of Organization (1974), by Janos Kornai in an address at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences published in 1984, and by Harrison C. White in Identity and Control (1992), four major types of social organization are identified as focal: (1) social networks, (2) competitive markets, (3) hierarchies/bureaucracy, (4) collective choice. Study of each of the four types has its own scholarly traditions and lineage of key contributors; its own species of, and approaches to, data; its own concepts and theoretical viewpoints; and its own major scientific findings. Contemporary complex social structure contains densely packed multiple levels and expressions of all four types. This lecture course uses mathematical and related models and comparisons of their scientific styles and contributions as analytical vehicles of choice in synchronized development of the four areas.

 

 
copyright 2005 Yale University
Initiative on Labor and Culture at Yale University