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American Studies

Hampshire College
4 years
Bachelor's degree
Scholarships available
On campus

About this program

American Studies

Students interested in American studies engage in an interdisciplinary approach to the study of American history, politics, literature, and culture.

Several core seminars on models, methods, and materials for interdisciplinary study, plus courses from other relevant disciplines, provide the groundwork for students to pursue theoretically informed, integrative research into their special interests.

Program content

Sample First-Year Course

Reimagining American Literature and Identity

This class is an introduction to and expands conventional understandings of twentieth-century American literature. It focuses on representations of diverse American experiences. How would typical approaches to American literature change when we incorporate literature written by women, immigrants, and persons of color? How would we consider racial, national, gendered, and classed identities as part of American literature?

We will begin with short stories by Flannery O'Connor, Toni Morrison, Julia Alvarez, and Philip Roth that address these questions. Then we will read novels written by American immigrant and exile writers, such as Jamaica Kincaid, Jhumpa Lahiri, Manuel Puig, and Edwidge Danticat as well as mainstream Anglo- and African-American writers, such as John Updike and Colson Whitehead, to interrogate how these voices engage questions of nation, exile, home, and belonging. This course investigates and recasts what is American literature. It is also writing intensive and includes writing workshops.

Sample Courses at Hampshire

  • American Literary Landscapes
  • American Strings: Old Time and Bluegrass
  • American Voices, American Lives
  • Border Matters: Mexico and the United States
  • The Contested American Countryside
  • Directing Contemporary American Drama
  • Ecology of New England Old Growth Forests
  • Introduction to American Studies
  • The "Good War:" Interrogating the History of the Homefront During WWII
  • Mapping Jewish-American Generations
  • Media in a Time of War: WWII and U.S. Popular Culture
  • One Nation Indivisible: Federal Indian Law, Tribal Sovereignty, and Individual Rights
  • The Politics of the Second World War
  • Southern History and Literature
  • Southern Writers: A Sense of Place
  • This Land is Your Land: Land and Property in America
  • U.S. Labor History
  • U.S. Literature Between the Wars
  • U.S. Literature Since 1960
  • Women's Bodies, Women's Lives: Biocultural
  • Dialogues of Women's Health in America

Through the Consortium

  • The American Dream (AC)
  • Asian Pacific American Studies (AC)
  • Globalization and Culture in the U.S. (SC)
  • Methods in American Studies (SC)
  • Seminar in American Orientalisms (MHC)

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the college website for more information.


Tuition fees per semester: $25,500

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About this institute

Hampshire College

Hampshire College is a small liberal arts college located in Amherst, Massachusetts that has been at the forefront of progressive higher education in the United States for over 50 years. Every Hampshire student designs a customized program of study in...

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Contact info

Hampshire College

West Street
01002 Amherst Massachusetts
United States of America

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