Comparative American Studies
Department Chair:
Shelley Lee

Administrative Assistant:
Linda Pardee

Department Email:

Phone: (440) 775-8390
Fax: (440) 775-8644

King 105
10 N. Professor Street
Oberlin, OH, 44074-1095

Shelley Lee's courses

Shelley Lee's courses

HIST 104.  American History, 1877 to the Present: Major Problems of Interpretation - 3 hours
This course will explore American politics, society, and culture from the post-Civil War era to the present. We will focus on changes in power relations in American society produced by social and political movements. We will also examine the construction and contestation of gender, race, ethnic, and class. This course will emphasize the use of primary sources, different modes of historical analysis and interpretation, and scholarly controversies.  Co-Instructor with C. Koppes. Enrollment Limit: 60

243.  Race, Gender, and American Social Movements - 3 hours
We consider theories of social movements and take a comparative approach to the study of the black freedom struggle, the Asian American movement, and Latina/o movement, among others. We also discuss struggles that cross (and complicate) ethnic and racial identity such as feminism, gay rights and third world liberation.  This course is cross-listed with HIST 243.  Enrollment Limit: 40.

246.  American Orientalism - 3 hours
This course may also count for the major in (consult the program or department major requirements): GSFS
Asking how ideas about “Orientals” shaped articulations of American identity, this course examines the cultural and intellectual history of American Orientalism beginning in the late 1700s. We focus on domestic discourse and Asians and Asian Americans in the U.S. Topics include: writings about Chinese “coolies” after the Civil War; inscription of abnormal sexuality on Asian bodies during America’s modernization; Cold War origins of the Model Minority; return of the “Yellow Peril” in contemporary life.  This course is cross-listed with HIST 246.  Enrollment Limit:

256.  Im/migration in U.S. History - 4 hours
History of immigration and migration in the United States, from nineteenth to early twenty-first centuries. Includes international context of migration, migrants’ encounters with American society, policy responses, and significance of immigration in American culture. Also covers internal migrations such as the “Great Migration” of blacks from the South. Aim is to provide introduction to major developments in history of U.S. im/migration, historicize contemporary debates, and develop comparative understanding of experiences among Asians, Blacks, Europeans, Latinos. This course is cross-listed with HIST 256.  Enrollment Limit: 40.

260.  Asian American History - 3 hours
This course is an introduction to the history of peoples of Asian ancestry in the United States and the construction of an Asian American collectivity. Major themes will include the place of Asian Americans in the American imagination, migrations, labor, communities, and responses to social and legal discrimination. The categories of race, ethnicity, gender, class and sexuality will figure prominently as we explore similarities and differences among Asian American experiences.
This course is cross-listed with HIST 260.  Enrollment Limit: 35.

342.  Race, Gender & Am Soc Movement - 3 hours
This course may also count for the major in (consult the program or department major requirements): GSFS
This course examines social movements in the U.S. in the second half of the twentieth century, particularly those addressing racial and gender inequalities in American society. Thinking comparatively, the course includes study of the black freedom struggle, American Indian Movement, and the “Yellow Power” and “Brown Power” movements. We also consider struggles that cross (and complicate) ethno-racial identity such as feminism, gay rights, worker rights, and third world liberation.  Consent by instructor is required.
This course is cross-listed with HIST 342.  Enrollment Limit: 12.

443.  Colloquium:  Crisis of Confidence: American History and Culture in the 1970's - 4 hours
Explores the decade between the ‘groovy 60s’ and ‘Age of Reagan’ as a distinct era in American history and a critical period whose legacies continue to inform our contemporary world. Through consideration of developments including Watergate, the oil crisis, white backlash, the ‘Battle of the Sexes,’ and punk music, we interrogate how such moments shed light on contestations over national identity, inclusion, and power in an era regarded as a high point of American cynicism.  Consent of the Instructor Required.  This course is cross-listed with HIST 343.
Enrollment Limit: 12