Main Page

From fifties

Jump to: navigation, search


Days and Times: Monday/Wednesday 6:00-9:30 and Saturday, May 3 10:15-12:00 in Sem II A 1105. 1:30-3:00 Lecture Hall 3 Meets in Seminar II E1105, 2107 and 2109

Faculty: Susan Preciso ( X6011) Marla Beth Elliott ( X6096)

Prerequisites: None Enrollment: 50

[edit] Description:

Popular culture has recast the 1950s, creating a picture of stability, predictability, and tradition in the decade that preceded the turbulence of the 1960s. Students in this program will study the history and culture of the 1950s in the United States, examining a more complicated picture of the decade. The Civil Rights Movement changed American lives; the Cold War shaped politics; music helped define new identities. Only years after the end of WWII, the United States was involved in the brutal conflict in Korea. Constitutional guarantees were challenged by the House UnAmerican Affairs Committee, with Joseph McCarthy (and Richard Nixon) assuming lead roles. Artist and writers pushed conventional boundaries while televisionenshrined the conventional. Students in this program will read history, fiction of the decade, and cultural analysis. We’ll study film, television, and music. We’ll explore the decade within the context of its own history and time—and think about how it has influenced us today. '

Possible credits include American History, American Literature, American Studies

Students in the 8 credit Fifties program are also encouraged to enroll in Spring quarter’s Evergreen Singers, a 2 credit class for anyone who wants learn about and participate in choral work—taught and directed by Marla Elliott. The singers will be learning and performing music from the 1950s .

Book List: Bertrand, Michael. Race, Rock and Elvis. U of Ill Press. ISBN 97802507203 Baldwin, James. Another Country. Vintage. ISBN 9780679744719 Halberstam, David. The Fifties. Ballantine. ISBN 978044990331 Yates, Richard. Revolutionary Road. Methuen. ISBN 9780413757104 Ginsberg, Allen. Howl. Harper Perennial ISBN 9780061137 Metalious, Grace. Peyton Place. Time Warner ISBN 9781860499296 Williams, Juan. Eyes on the Prize. Penguin. ISBN 0140096531

Reading Response Essays Length about 500-800 words. Choose one quotation (short) that best illustrates the book’s impact or importance. Begin your essay with that quotation. Then, in your own words, summarize the theme or central ideas in the book in one paragraph. Then, discuss how the context of the author’s times may have influenced the direction of her/his work. How does the author create the meaning?—think about the imagery, dominant themes, style and tone. Essays are due on the final seminar for each book, so on those books with more than one seminar, be sure to come with detailed reading notes and questions you want to bring to the discussion.

Group Research Project and Presentation: Students will choose from a list of possible subjects and join one or two others to form a research group. Each group will collaborate to research their topic and create a display for the end of the program Fifties Fab and Fraught Fair. They will use the program wiki to facilitate their collaboration, but will also create a wiki page on their topic. Each member of the research group will also turn in a short (2 pages or so) description of their contribution to the group, including a bibliography of the sources they brought to the final product.

A Note About Plagiarism We will follow the college policy as stated in The Evergreen State College Student Advising Handbook regarding academic honesty. See the program covenant for details.

[edit] Other Pages






  • note—changes will occur

Week 1 Monday, March 31 Introductions What do we know about the 1950s and how do we know it? Start timeline project Music –listen and reflect (turn in reflections)

Wednesday, April 2 How to Read a Movie Watch High Noon Discuss film in seminar groups Wiki orientation in Mac Lab/ Computer Center with Frank Barber Assignment: Read The Fifties, chapters 1-16 (take detailed notes for seminar)

Week 2 Monday, April 7 Mug shots Watch section of The Fifties Documentary Seminar Halberstam preface & chs. 1-16 Possible project topics handed out

Wednesday, April 9 Watch Rebel Without a Cause Discuss the movie Choose project topic and affiliate with group Assignment: Read The Fifties, chapters 17-31 (take detailed notes for seminar)

Week 3 Monday, April 14 Seminar on Halberstam chs. 17-31 Workshop: Declaration of Human Rights

Wednesday, April 16 Watch Man in the Grey Flannel Suit Discussion of the movie Assignment: Read The Fifties chapters 32-conclusion. Write essay response.

Week 4

Monday, April 21 Seminar on Halberstam chs. 32-end Look at cookbooks Lecture: The Feminine Mystique -Susan

Wednesday, April 23 Magazine workshop Watch Pillow Talk --with running commentary by class and faculty 50’s potluck Assignment: Read Eyes on the Prize for workshops and seminar next week. Write essay response due May 3.

Week 5 Monday, April 28 Watch Video: Eyes on the Prize and seminar Rehearse Civil rights songs Assignment: Read Another Country for seminar May 5. Write essay response due May 5.

Wednesday, April 30 Civil Rights Movement: Workshop, video Eyes on the Prize, poster presentation

Saturday, May 3 We meet 9:00-4:00 with Justice at Work. Guest: Rev. James Lawson Civil Rights Songs—Marla Seminar: Eyes on the Prize

Week 6

Monday, May 5 Seminar: Another Country Watch TV—workshop on fifties televison Project Time—report out on progress Assignment: Read Race, Rock, and Elvis for seminar May 12. Write essay response due May 12

Wednesday, May 7 Guest Lecturer: Olivia Archibald on Elvis as Icon Mid-quarter reflections Timeline Updates

Week 7 Monday, May 12 Seminar: Race, Rock & Elvis? Active listening: jazz, pop, rock, etc.

Wednesday, May 14 TBA Assignment: Read Howl (no essay response, but take notes)and Revolutionary Road for seminar May 21. Write essay response RR, due May 21

Week 8 Monday, May 19 Poetry night Howl Guest Lecture: Kate Crowe on Beat poetry

Wednesday, May 21 Suburbia Seminar: Revolutionary Road Redlining Levittown Assignment: Read Peyton Place and write essay response for seminar May 28

Week 9 Memorial Day—No Class

Wednesday, May 28 Seminar: Peyton Place Project time

Week 10 Monday, June 2 Self eval workshop Timeline project sum up

Wednesday, June 4 Potluck The Fifties: Fab And Fraught Fair