9.0017 Web: USIA American Studies Initiative (1/96)

Mon, 15 May 1995 10:56:42 EDT

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 9, No. 0017. Monday, 15 May 1995.

Date: Thu, 11 May 95 9:44:03 -0400
From: "Lakritz, Andrew" <alakritz@usia.gov>
Subject: USIA Syllabus Initiative


For Immediate Release:

The US Information Agency is undertaking a new American Studies
Initiative in connection with its WEB/Gopher page, to place the
latest curricular information at the finger tips of scholars,
teachers, and students worldwide.

Five years ago, the Division for the Study of the U.S. within the
USIA organized a syllabus project in American Studies, directed
by Professor Alan Davis of Temple University. Scholars from all
over the U.S. were asked to donate their American Studies syllabi
to the project, and the office received hundreds of responses.
These materials have recently been made available to the Salzburg
Seminar, in Austria, for use in American Studies workshops, but
the original intent was to make the material available to
Fulbrighters going overseas who were being asked to teach courses
outside their routine teaching duties. The materials would
function as a teaching resource for those who could not otherwise
get such materials on short notice.

Now these syllabi are out of date, and we are hereby calling for
the academic community to respond again to this "call for
materials." With the new technology available, we have the
capability to expand our reach even further, making available
world-wide materials that would otherwise simply not exist. These
materials will be available to anyone with Internet/e-mail
access. Users without access to Gopher or the web will be
able to acquire the syllabi easily by sending simple
commands via e-mail to a file storage facility.

With this project we are looking to expand our reach in another
way: we'd like to have scholars of American Studies contribute
their materials from wherever they teach, whether in the U.S. or
outside. We are especially keen to see materials from all regions
of the world, where ever there is an interest in the study of the
U.S. We particularly encourage materials that call for a
comparative approach, either between the U.S. and one other
country, or placing the U.S. in a context among several countries
or within a region.

By American Studies, or the Study of the U.S., we mean all
disciplines that have a major U.S. component, including political
science, history, literature, economics, business, cultural
studies, women's studies, African American studies, music, law,
architecture, geography, art history, urban history, material culture,
interdisciplinary American studies, ethnic studies, immigration,
among many others. The idea is for this resource to be both
inclusive and expansive.

The syllabus archive will be housed and made available in two
locations: (1) the raw files will be placed on a file server
associated with H-AMSTDY; (2) the archive will also be made available
on the World Wide Web in enhanced electronic form through the
American Studies Electronic Crossroads (ASEC), the WWW site for the
American Studies Crossroads Project.

All contributors to the archive will receive notice at an appropriate
time about where the files are and how one can get access to them.
Please forward this message to your colleagues who might also
have an interest in contributing to this project.

If you would like to contribute material to this archive, please
follow the steps listed below.

1. Submit a cover page indicating name, address, institution,
position, phone, fax, and e-mail address, and a list of academic
specialties and interests.

2. Submit a syllabus (with any collateral material, including
exams, bibliography, position papers, lecture notes, definitions,
annotations--whatever you use in class that either exists in
electronic format, or can be scanned into such a format), one
that includes a descriptive title, name of instructor, date of
course, and a paragraph placing the course within the context of
the departmental or interdepartmental curriculum. Remember that
the more useful syllabus will be the one that is clear and specific
to audiences beyond your classroom.

3. If possible, submit these materials on disk (WP5.1 is the
preferred format) as well as in hard copy format. Or, you can send them
to me over the Internet.

Send materials to:

Dr. Andrew M. Lakritz, Scholar-In-Residence
Division for the Study of the U.S.
United States Information Agency
301 Fourth Street SE, Room 252
Washington, D.C. 20547
(Telephone) 202-619-5951
(FAX) 202-619-6790