Elspeth Brown,

Historian: markets, visual culture, gender, sexuality

Undergraduate Resources

Students who are just beginning their undergraduate education or who are transitioning from first and second year lectures to more intimate third and fourth year seminars can benefit from acquainting themselves with the following academic resources. While they are centered on students interested in American Studies, anyone researching the United States will find them useful.

American Studies Specific Resources & Associations

Sometimes undergraduate students organize programming outside of regular coursework offered through the American Studies program which I direct. This year, American Studies students have organized a reading group around questions regarding critical reading.

2011-2012 American Studies Undergraduate Discussion Group: "How I Read"

This online discussion group is part of larger conversations about critical reading practices in the humanities and social sciences. There is no single way to perform critical reading.  Consequently, the purpose of this group is to provide American Studies students with a forum to discuss their own experiments with critical reading practices. Such experiments might include new ways of “mining” a text, or the making of personal reading “systems” that concentrate the act of reading around a specific goal, object, or task. Our discussions will be guided by two animating questions: (1) How do different reading practices produce different cognitive effects in the mind of the reader? (2) Can the act of “reading” be updated, re-designed, or innovated? As part of tackling those two questions, this student-organized initiative aims to be a lively and playful site of undergraduate research, exchange, and dialogue. All current UofT American Studies students and recent graduates are welcome to join at any point during the year.

If you would like to join or have any questions, please contact the Coordinator, Lauren Kilgour (lauren.kilgour[@]utoronto.ca).

Academic & Scholarly Resources

USA300: Theories and Methods in American Studies Research Guide.

This research guide outlines primary and secondary source databases across a variety of fields relating to American Studies.  Every year, our subject librarian (Debbie Green) subscribes us to new resources. Most notably, the America: History & Life database is the major index for research on American culture and history. 

Undergraduate Journal of American Studies sponsored by CSUS. 

Every year, the undergraduate journal of American Studies is produced by two senior students enrolled in our program. The journal features article length publications from senior undergraduate students. 

Directory of Graduate Programs in American Studies from the American Studies Association.

For undergraduate or MA students interested in pursuing advanced research in American Studies, this directory lists all programs in the field with links to their corresponding departmental websites. While it is organized by the American Studies Association (The ASA), you should contact specific departments with inquiries about their programs.