A Companion to American Cultural History
April 2008, Wiley-Blackwell
- 30 essays explore the history of American culture at all analytic levels
- Written by scholarly experts well-versed in the questions and controversies that have activated interest in this burgeoning field
- Part of the authoritative Blackwell Companions to American History series
- Provides both a chronological and thematic approach: topics range from British America in the Eighteenth Century to the modern day globalization of American Culture; thematic approaches include gender and sexuality and popular culture
Introduction (Karen Halttunen).
Part I: Early America.
1. Cultural Encounters: Americans and Europeans (Peter C. Mancall, University of Southern California).
2. Cultures of Colonial Settlement (Carla Gardina Pestana, Miami University).
3. British America in the Eighteenth Century (Karin Wulf, The College of William and Mary).
4. The Revolution and the Early Republic (Catherine E. Kelly, University of Oklahoma).
Part II: The Nineteenth Century.
5. Antebellum Cultural History (James W. Cook, University of Michigan).
6. Religion and Reform (Lewis Perry, St. Louis University).
7. African American Culture in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries (Demetrius L. Eudell, Wesleyan University).
8. The Civil War in American Culture (Alice Fahs, University of California, Irvine).
9. The West (Ann Fabian, Rutgers University).
10. The Gilded Age (Scott A. Sandage, Carnegie Mellon University).
11. Immigration and Ethnic Culture (Hasia R. Diner, New York University).
12. Cultural Watersheds in Fin de Siécle America (Janet M. Davis, University of Texas, Austin).
Part III: The Twentieth Century.
13. Consumer Culture and Mass Culture (Charles F. McGovern, The College of William and Mary).
14. Modernism (Joel Dinerstein, Tulane University).
15. Politics and Culture in the 1930s and 1940s (Julia L. Foulkes, The New School).
16. The 1950s and 1960s (Daniel Belgrad, University of South Florida).
17. The Globalization of American Culture (Petra Goedde, Temple University).
Part IV: Thematic and Methodological Approaches.
18. Cultural Theory, Dialogue, and American Cultural History (George Lipsitz, University of California, Santa Barbara).
19. Situating Visual Culture (Sally M. Promey, University of Maryland, College Park).
20. Material Cultures (J. Ritchie Garrison, University of Delaware).
21. Performance and Display (M. Alison Kibler, Franklin & Marshall College).
22. Gender and Sexuality (Jane H. Hunter, Lewis and Clark College).
23. Race and Ethnicity (Eric Avila, University of California, Los Angeles).
24. Popular Culture (Nan Enstad, University of Wisconsin, Madison).
25. History and Memory (David Glassberg, University of Massachusetts, Amherst).
Part V: The Cultural Turn in Other Fields.
26. Culturalist Approaches to Intellectual History (Casey Nelson Blake, Columbia University).
27. The Impact of the Culture Concept on Social History (Lawrence B. Glickman, University of South Carolina).
28. Religious History and the Cultural Turn (Leigh E. Schmidt, Princeton University).
29. Political History and the Tool of Culture (Joanne B. Freeman, Yale University).
30. The Cultural History of Foreign Relations (Andrew J. Rotter, Colgate University).
Karen Halttunen is Professor of History and American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California, and former president of the American Studies Association. She is the author of Confidence Men and Painted Women: A Study of Middle-Class Culture in America, 1830–1870 (1986) and Murder Most Foul: The Killer and the American Gothic Imagination (2000).
• Written by scholarly experts well-versed in the questions and controversies that have activated interest in this burgeoning field
• Part of the authoritative Blackwell Companions to American History series
• Provides both a chronological and thematic approach: topics range from British America in the Eighteenth Century to the modern day globalization of American Culture; thematic approaches include gender and sexuality and popular culture
"The thirty bibliographies of the most influential work in American cultural history would by themselves make the book very helpful to a wide audience. But the essays' historiographical and thematic overviews provide the most valuable contribution, for each essay is aimed squarely at the ways that the best works in the field have been in conversation with each other." (A Journal of Southern History, February 2010)
"A monumental achievement. The breadth of coverage is staggering, and the depth of insight a credit to its multifarious authors. Rarely can one book offer so much." (Reviews in History, April 2009)
“This excellent reader in US cultural history for undergraduates may also be useful to specialists as a general overview of the field as it has evolved, especially over the past four decades. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All levels/libraries.” (CHOICE, March 2009)
"A guide for scholars and students who are interested in developments over the past quarter-century … No reader should come away from it without a good springboard to further study. It is an appetite-whetter, a conspectus and a guide." (Reference Reviews, January 2009)
"The contributors to this indispensable volume have applied to scholarship in American cultural history the same keen imagination and appreciation for complexity that has made the field so exciting in recent years."
–Joan Shelley Rubin, University of Rochester
"This important collection of original essays provides a most useful and accessible survey of a new approach to United States history. It is not just a companion but a text in its own right, a new survey of the American past from many cultural perspectives."
–Alan Trachtenberg, Yale University
"This volume marks a major contribution to the field of American cultural history. Illuminating, accessible, and authoritative, it will indeed prove a trusty companion for students and
–John Kasson, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
"This well-wrought collection is a must-read. Its essays do more than any other book to clarify the multiple meanings of cultural history and to document the thorough penetration of cultural approaches to all the sub-fields of American historical scholarship."
–Richard W. Fox, University of Southern California
"A comprehensive and timely overview of American cultural history, from its first pioneering examples to its most recent linguistic, visual, transnational, and performative turns. Students looking for a lucid and lively introduction to the themes, methods, and impact of the culturalist perspective on US history will find this volume indispensable."
–Jean-Christophe Agnew, Yale University
"This collection is a marvel of intelligent synthesis and concise interpretation. Karen Halttunen has assembled some of the best cultural historians in the United States and they have cast unprecedented light on their contentious field from a rich variety of chronological and conceptual perspectives. The result is an indispensable scholarly resource."
–Jackson Lears, Rutgers University