Global Culture Syllabus

Monday 4-7pm                            Office: HOB 334

Purpose: To investigate the question of the situation of culture in an age of increasing planetary exchanges. By dint of advanced communication and transportation technologies cultural objects are easily disseminated across the globe and cultural differences are increasingly juxtaposed and mixed. Phenomena such as the EuroDisney theme park, Les Magiciens de la Terre art exhibit, Internet performances of Stellarc and the Rolling Stones concert, world music, television shows like Dallas and I Love Lucy bespeak an emerging global culture. What are the political, economic and social conditions that inform these phenomena? Is there a new aesthetic mixing the imaginary with electronic space/time continuums? What are the epistemological and theoretical practices that allow the revealing of such art?

Students will prepare a paper of some twenty pages exploring the class readings and discussions. Where appropriate the paper will engage the student's ongoing research project.

Course Readings:

Karl Marx, "The Communist Manifesto" (1848) (Internet)

Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer, Dialectic of Enlightenment (Continuum)

Lisa Lowe, Immigrant Acts (Duke 1996)

Jean Baudrillard, The Gulf War Did Not Take Place (Indiana University Press 1995)

Arjun Appadurai , "Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy," Public Culture 2:2 (Spring 1990) pp. 1-24

Jean-Marie Guéhenno, The End of the Nation State (University of Minnesota 1996)

Paul Virilio, The Art of the Motor (University of Minnesota 1995)

Jacques Derrida, Specters of Marx (Routledge 1994)

Mark Poster, "Textual Agents," "Virtual Ethnicity"

Fredric Jameson, The Geopolitical Aesthetic: Cinema and Space in the World System (Indiana University Press 1995)

Pierre Lévy, "Toward Superlanguage" (Internet) 

Sadie Plant, "The Virtual Complexity of Culture," in George Robertson, et al, eds., FutureNatural (Routledge 1996) pp.203-217

Félix Guattari, Chaosmosis (Indiana University Press 1995)

David Morely and Kevin Robins, Spaces of Identity: global media, electronic landscapes and cutural boundaries (Routledge 1995)

Weekly Topics and Readings: 

March 31: Introduction: Bourgeois Culture, Mass Culture, Micro-Tribal Culture

April 7: Internet as Global Culture April 14: Transnational Economies April 21: New Genders April 28: Enlightenment and Mass Culture May 5: Culture, Dominant and Subaltern: I May 12: Politics May 19: Global Events May 26: Holiday - no class meeting

June 2: New Space-Time Orders June 9: Culture, Dominant and Subaltern: II Paper Assignments: 

Write a 20 to 25 page paper on a topic related to the readings and class discussion.