This course focuses on the spaces, places, and things in the American past which are both markers of cultural change, and also a means of constituting the social, economic, and even political relations in which Americans have lived for 300 years.

Using visual materials, we examine places such as a colonial plantation, and the city of Cincinnati in the early antebellum era, or things like chairs, a church building, or a coat. We will also look at imaginary material culture, such as flying saucers.

Students will read monographs by historians that use space, places, or things as evidence, and write a paper based on their own analysis of a space, a place, or thing from the American past.