Home About UH Academic Calendar Courses Undergraduate Education Graduate Education Degrees, Minors, & Certificates Colleges, Schools, & Academic Units






American Studies (AMST)

College of Arts and Humanities

Sophomore standing or consent is required for all 300-level courses except as noted.

AMST 110 Introduction to American Studies (3) Introduction to different types of college-level writing through analyses of contemporary American culture and to the main themes and approaches used in American Studies and the humanities. DH

AMST 150 America and the World (3) Examines America’s role in world history and the influence of world affairs on U.S. culture and society. Focuses on U.S. interdependence with African, European, Native American, Asian, and Polynesian civilizations, from 1492 to present. FG

AMST 201 American Experience: Institutions and Movements (3) Interdisciplinary course that examines diversity and changes in American values and institutions--political, economic, legal, and social. DH

AMST 202 American Experience: Culture and the Arts (3) Interdisciplinary course that examines diversity and changes in American values and culture--literature, film, visual arts, and architecture. DH

AMST 211 Contemporary American Domestic Issues (3) Interdisciplinary exploration of such current American domestic issues topics as politics, economics, civil rights, family life, the justice system, and the environment. DS

AMST 212 Contemporary American Global Issues (3) Interdisciplinary exploration of such current global issues as international diplomacy, economic development, national security, demographic change, and the environmental protection. DS

AMST 310 Japanese Americans: History, Culture, Lifestyles (3) Explores the experiences of Japanese Americans in Hawai‘i and the USA at large: historical and cultural heritage, biographical portraits, changing family ties, ethnic lifeways, gender relations, local identity, and the future of island living. DH

AMST 313 African Americans: Issues, Culture, History (3) Traces the history and culture of African Americans and outlines contemporary issues. Topics include: slavery and racism, community formation and resistance, cultural expression, African American diversity, civil rights, gender and class relations. DH

AMST 315 U.S. Women’s History to 1890s (3) A survey of history of U.S. women and gender relations up to 1890s. Emphasis on women’s labor, women’s involvement in social movement, development of suffrage movement, women’s literary and popular culture. Pre: 201, 201A (or concurrent) or 202, 202A (or concurrent) or WS 151, WS 151A (or concurrent), or consent. (Cross-listed as HIST 360 and WS 310) DH

AMST 316 U.S. Women’s History Since 1890s (3) A survey of history of U.S. women and gender relations since 1890s. Emphasis on social reform, suffrage and the New Woman, women’s wartime labor, gender and the Cold War, second wave feminism, divisions among women. Pre: 201, 201A (or concurrent) or 202, 202A (or concurrent) or WS 151, WS 151A (or concurrent), or consent. (Cross-listed as HIST 361 and WS 311) DH

AMST 318 Asian America: Survey (3) History of selected Asian immigrant groups from the 19th century to the present. Topics include: immigration and labor history, Asian American movements, literature and cultural productions, community adaptations and identity formation. Pre: junior standing and one of 201 (or concurrent), 202 (or concurrent), SOC 100 (or concurrent), or SOC 214 (or concurrent); or consent. (Cross-listed as ES 318) DH

AMST 319 America, Hawai‘i and World War II (3) Examines WWII as a watershed in American and Hawai‘i history and culture. Topics include: Pearl Harbor, Japanese American internment, sex and racial tensions, Anti-Semitism and the Holocaust, and the dawn of the Atomic Age.

AMST 320 American Environments: Survey (3) Survey of social, political, and cultural relations in diverse, contemporary American environments, including: island societies,urban centers, suburbs, Indian reservations, farming communities, and national parks. Special emphasis on contemporary environmental issues in Hawai‘i. DS

AMST 321 The American City (3) Evolution since 17th century; role in contemporary American culture; related problems, perceptions, values. (Cross-listed as HIST 375) DH

AMST 343 American Thought and Culture (3) Politics, family, philosophy, technology, etc.; their interrelationship with the total society. Pre-Colonial to end of Reconstruction. Pre: 150 or 201 or 202 or 211 or 212 or HIST 151 or HIST 152 or consent. (Cross-listed as HIST 373) DH

AMST 344 American Thought and Culture (3) Continuation of 343: 20th century. Pre: 150 or 201 or 202 or 211 or 212 or HIST 151 or HIST 152 or consent. (Cross-listed as HIST 374) DH

AMST 350 Culture and Art in America: Survey (3) Popular attitudes toward arts, travel, fashions, craft and industrial productions, recreation. Past used to explain the present. DH

AMST 353 Television in American Life (3) Explores the changing role of television and new media technologies in American society and culture. Special focus on media in Hawai‘i. Pre: 201, 202, or consent. DH

AMST 365 American Empire (3) Examines the interplay between an “American culture of empire” and the rise of the United States as a superpower. Topics: imperialism and political culture, social movements and international affairs, race, gender and class relations. (Cross-listed as HIST 379) DH

AMST 373 Filipino Americans: History, Culture and Politics (3) An introduction to the study of Filipino Americans in the United States and the diaspora. The course pays special attention to labor migration, cultural production and community politics. Pre: junior standing. (Cross-listed as ES 373)

AMST 381 Junior Seminar (3) Materials and methods for the study of American life and thought. For American studies majors and minors only. DH

AMST 382 Junior Seminar (3) Continuation of 381. For American studies majors and minors only. DH
Junior standing or consent required for all 400-level courses.

AMST 401 Filipino Americans: Research Topics (3) A research seminar on the study of Filipino Americans. Special themes in film/video/media, the performing arts, or literature may be offered. (Cross-listed as ES 443)

AMST 410 Asian American Music Cultures (3) An exploration of how Asian American music making is related to community formation, labor migration, and cultural sensibilities throughout the twentieth century.

AMST 411 Japanese Americans: Research Topics (3) Research and thematic seminar on Japanese American culture, issues, and history. Pre: 310 or consent. DH

AMST 413 Regionalism: The South (3) Definition of a Southern identity and its relation to the larger U.S. culture, using literary and polemical works of 19th– and 20th–century. DH

AMST 414 The American West (3) Surveys the U.S. colonization of the American West, exploring the region’s diverse cultures and the conflicts between them. Topics include: European-Native contact, Western myths, natural resources, race, class, and gender. (Cross-listed as HIST 474C) DH

AMST 415 Nonethnic Minorities (3) Survey of nonethnic minority group movements, e.g., the blind, the aged, homosexuals. Common denominators, traditional “mistaken identity,” contemporary search for new identity. DS

AMST 418 Hawai‘i’s Multiculturalism (3) A multidisciplinary examination of the dynamics of the Hawaiian Islands’ racial and cultural diversity from the perspectives of historical trends, social processes, and contemporary political, social, and economic issues as they impact interracial relations. DS

AMST 419 Community, Culture and Change (3) As a complement to AMST 418, the course objective is to learn about Hawai‘i’s multi-racial and multicultural diversity firsthand through various field study projects. Pre: 418 (or concurrent) or consent. DS

AMST 420 American Ideas of Nature (3) The natural world in American thought from Native Americans to modern ecologists. DH

AMST 423 History of American Architecture (3) History of American architecture in terms of style, techniques, and symbolic meaning. (Cross-listed as ARCH 473) DH

AMST 425 American Environmental History (3) Survey history of the complex relations between American societies and diverse U.S. ecosystems, from European contact and colonization to the present. DH

AMST 431 American Labor History (3) Conditions of labor in major phases of American development; response of labor and community to changing work environment. Capitalism, unionism, race, gender, law, etc. Emphasis on 20th century. (Cross-listed as HIST 477) DH

AMST 432 Slavery (3) Examines the origins, practices, and historical evolution of slavery from the 18th to the 20th century. Considers diverse forced labor regimes: chattel slavery, plantation agriculture, convict labor, “wage slavery,” and patriarchal domination. (Cross-listed as HIST 473) DH

AMST 434 Politics in Hawai‘i (3) Discussion of modern politics against the background of recent history and major contemporary issues. DS

AMST 435 History of Crime & Punishment (3) History of American crime and punishment from 18th century to the present. Topics: changing crime patterns, evolving punishment methods, penal reform movements, convict resistance, growth of prison industrial complex, racism, class, and gender. DS

AMST 436 Gender, Justice and Law (3) Past and present roles of women in American political and legal institutions; common law, judicial decisions, and federal and state legislation affecting women of various socioeconomic groups. A-F only. (Cross-listed as POLS 436 and WS 436) DS

AMST 438 Asian Women (3) History, culture, and contemporary reality of Asian women in Asia and the United States. Includes critical analysis of American feminist methodology and theory. Pre: one of 310, 316, 318, 373, 455, POLS 339, WS 360, WS 361, WS 439; or consent. (Cross-listed as POLS 372 and WS 462) DS

AMST 440 Race and Racism in America (3) Racial ideas and ideologies, and their effects, throughout American history. DH

AMST 442 Radical Traditions (3) Varieties of radicalism that have provided a continuing critique of prevailing values and structures. DH

AMST 445 Racism, American Culture and Film/Media (3) An exploration of the critique of racial ideologies in American film. The course also examines how aggrieved communities develop cultural sensibilities, aesthetic choices and politicized identities through film, video and media work.

AMST 451 Popular Culture (3) Major themes, modes, and media of popular or mass culture in the United States; emphasis on cultural trends and social implications. DH

AMST 452 The ’20s and ’30s (3) Novelists, painters, poets, jazz musicians as examples of culture of the 1920s and 1930s in America. DH

AMST 453 Culture, Society, and Literature (3) Literary and non-fictive exploration of the intellectual and moral response of Americans to institutions and culture of 20th–century marketplace economy. DL

AMST 455 U.S. Women’s Literature and Culture (3) Reading of selected works of U.S. women’s literature and cultural texts (such as art and film). Emphasis on historical and cultural context and diverse expressions of women’s gendered identities. Pre: 202 (or concurrent), ENG 250 (or concurrent), or WS 151 (or concurrent); or consent. (Cross-listed as ENG 455 and WS 445) DL

AMST 456 Arts of the United States (3) Emphasis on the 18th and 19th centuries. Pre: 202 or ART 176 or consent. (Cross-listed as ART 472) DH

AMST 457 Museum Interpretations (3) Studies the interpretive strategies and methods used by museums to communicate with visitors in museums, art galleries, historic sites, parks, and related places. Considers how interpretations contribute to cultural knowledge. Repeatable one time. Pre: consent. (Cross-listed as ART 481) DH

AMST 458 Film in American Culture (3) Comprehensive survey of varieties of film experience from historical and contemporary points of view. DL

AMST 459 Sports in America (3) Sports as reflected in literature, films, and TV. DS

AMST 461 America’s World Role (3) Examination of America’s role in modern world affairs, against the background of history, perceptions, and values. DS

AMST 464 America and Africa (3) American attitudes toward Africa, as well as how Africa has functioned within the dynamics of American culture and history. DH

AMST 465 American Experience in Asia (3) Comparison of American experiences in Japan, China, and Southeast Asia within historical and perceptual framework. (Cross-listed as ASAN 465) DH

AMST 475 Documentation of Historic Architecture (V) Study and documentation of existing buildings, structures, sites of historic and/or cultural significance, including field measurements and drawings, historical research, photo documentation, and preparation of archival drawings to be deposited in the Library of Congress. Documentation conducted according to standards of the Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record (HABS/HAER). Repeatable. Pre: consent. (Cross-listed as ARCH 472).

AMST 481 Senior Research Seminar (3) Capstone course for American Studies students to undertake a major research project. Pre: consent.

AMST 490 (Alpha) Topics in American Studies (3) Themes, problems, and issues not addressed in other American studies undergraduate courses, focused within these areas: (B) social structure and interaction; (C) thought and belief; (D) arts and environment; (E) historic preservation. Repeatable with consent.

AMST 499 Readings in American Studies (V) Directed readings and research for majors. Pre: consent.

AMST 500 Master’s Plan B/C Studies (1) Graduate standing or consent required for all 600-level courses.

AMST 600 Approaches to American Studies (3) Introductory survey of methodological issues underlying research in American studies.

AMST 601 Patterns of American Cultures (3) American cultural origins and development. Beginnings to civil war.

AMST 602 Patterns of American Cultures (3) American cultural origins and development. Civil war to present.

AMST 611 Asian America (3) The Asian American experience from an interdisciplinary and humanities perspective. Asian American history, literature, media, and theater arts. Comparative study of Hawai‘i and the Continental United States.

AMST 612 Women in American Culture (3) Historical/contemporary status of women in the United States; women’s roles as defined by legal, educational, political, economic, and social institutions; implications for social science method. (Cross-listed as WS 612)

AMST 614 Advanced Topics: American West (3) Examination of the U.S. colonization of the American West. Topics include: European-indigenous relations, migration and labor, regional literature, frontier ideology, ethnic conflict, and new community formation. (Cross-listed as HIST 639F)

AMST 615 Performance, Culture, and Theory (3) A survey of major critical works in fields of performing arts and public culture (e.g., dance, theater, music, commemoration). Topics include: theoretical application for the discipline of American studies, and the impact of social movements and labor migration on the performing arts.

AMST 617 Social and Cultural Diversity in America (3) Examination of selected subcultures in America.

AMST 618 American Sexualities (3) Aspects of sexual identity within the context of American culture.

AMST 623 American Architecture (3) Cultural analysis of the evolution of American architecture from the Colonial period to the present involving sociopolitical and economic, as well as aesthetic, considerations. (Cross-listed as ARCH 671)

AMST 624 Wilderness in America (3) American wilderness as both physical setting and social construction. A-F only. Pre: graduate standing or consent.

AMST 625 Material Culture (3) Physical artifacts considered as documents of American cultural and regional development. (Cross-listed as ARCH 625)

AMST 626 Environment and Society (3) Technological development in cultural perspective; its relation to the American environment, science, capitalism, public policy, and values.

AMST 627 The American City (3) Urban life and culture in contemporary and historical perspective; emphasis upon promises and problems of city in American culture. (Cross-listed as ARCH 627 and HIST 639E)

AMST 632 Mass Media (3) Appraisal of major media of communications in American society with attention to political, educational, cultural, and ethical implications.

AMST 635 Public History and Commemoration (3) Approaches to public presentations of history and examination of various ways in which historic memory is constructed in sites such as museums, memorials, and theme parks.

AMST 638 American Punishment (3) Examines the history of American criminal punishment, from the birth of the penitentiary to the rise of the prison-industrial complex. A-F only. (Cross-listed as SOC 638)

AMST 643 Critical Traditions in America (3) Examination of various dissident movements in American history.

AMST 646 Advanced Topics: Social/Cultural/Intellectual (3) Readings and research on American social and intellectual history. Repeatable. (Cross-listed as HIST 639B)

AMST 647 Advanced Topics: Business/Labor/Technology (3) Readings and research on American business, labor, and technological history. Repeatable. (Cross-listed as HIST 639K)

AMST 649 American Intellectual Traditions (3) Examination of intellectual figures and movements in American history.

AMST 656 Film in America (3) Examination of various roles of motion picture film in America with particular respect to art form, cultural artifact, document, and myth.

AMST 659 Arts in America: Modern to Post-Modern (3) Survey of the literature of the field.

AMST 664 America in Asia (3) Topics in U.S. economic, political, military, and cultural relations with East and Southeast Asia, from the 18th century to the present.

AMST 668 Globalization and Transnationalism (3) Examines the socioeconomic and cultural meanings of globalization and transnationalism. Emphasis on how the deployment and flows of power beyond the nation-state have an impact on regional, national, and/or local communities and cultures.

AMST 669 Advanced Topics: America and the World (3) Historical and contemporary issues in America’s global relationships.

AMST 671 19th Century U.S. Literature (3) Selected works of 19th-century literature as cultural documents.

AMST 672 20th Century U.S. Literature (3) Selected works of 20th-century literature as cultural documents.

AMST 673 African American Literature (3) Cultural and social imagination of blacks and whites as revealed in literature, poetry, and drama.

AMST 674 Harlem Renaissance (3) Politics and literature of culture and race with the focus on Harlem in the 1920s.

AMST 675 Preservation: Theory and Practice (3) History and philosophy of historic preservation movement. Analysis of values and assumptions, methodologies and tactics, implications for society and public policy. (Cross-listed as ARCH 628 and PLAN 675)

AMST 676 Recording Historic Resources (3) Techniques in recording and evaluation of historic buildings and other resources, with an emphasis on field recordings and state and federal registration procedures. (Cross-listed as PLAN 676)

AMST 677 Community Preservation (3) Local-level historic preservation, with an emphasis on historic districts, design guidelines, regulatory controls, and community consensus-building. (Cross-listed as PLAN 677)

AMST 679 Elements of Style (3) The manifestations, visual characteristics, and social/cultural meaning of “style” in American architecture and decorative arts from the early settlement period through the present.

AMST 680 Historic Building Technology (3) History of buildings, building technologies, materials, and finishes, including construction techniques and methods of investigating older buildings. Emphasis on North American building practices c.1600–c.1960.

AMST 681 American Vernacular Traditions (3) Methods and approaches in the study of vernacular architecture, cultural landscapes, and material culture, with an emphasis on traditions and innovations in the Americas. (Cross-listed as ARCH 650)

AMST 683 Museums: Theory, History, Practice (3) History and theory of museums and related institutions (art galleries, historic houses, zoos, parks). Relationship between museums, collections, and communities. Introduction to governance, planning, legal, and ethical concerns.

AMST 684 Museums and Collections (3) Work of museums and professionals (registrars, collections managers, conservators, curators and others) in the care of collections, interpretive studies of museum displays and collections and fieldtrips. Pre: 683 (or concurrent) or consent.

AMST 685 Museums and Communities (3) Public role of museums and their responsibilities, museum education and outreach programs, representation of Native peoples, legal issues, budgets and finances, marketing and public relations. Pre: 683 (or concurrent) or consent.

AMST 686 Museum Studies Practicum (3) Applies coursework in museum studies to hands-on activities under the direction of practicing professionals and university faculty. Museum studies certificate students only. Pre: consent.

AMST 690 Research Seminar (3) Themes, problems, and issues not addressed in other American studies graduate courses; emphasis upon research methods. Repeatable.

AMST 695 Historic Preservation Practicum (3) Applies course work in historic preservation to hands-on activities under the direction of practicing professionals and University faculty. Historic preservation certificate students only.

AMST 696 (Alpha) Preservation Field Study (6) On-site historic preservation field study. Site will rotate. Academic and hands-on preservation training. (B) Hawai‘i; (C) Asia; (D) Pacific. Repeatable in each alpha to a maximum of 18 credit hours. Pre: consent.

AMST 699 Directed Reading/Research (V)

AMST 700 Thesis Research (V)

AMST 800 Dissertation Research (V)