|Taught by Michael A. Dennis at Cornell University, Spring
Description and Textbooks back to top
This is a course about the 'fallout' from the history of nuclear weapons. We are interested in understanding how these weapons, to which few people have had access, have become part of our political and popular culture. Beginning with the debate over the Smithsonian's Enola Gay exhibit, we revisit the history of the Manhattan Project and the use of the atomic bomb to end World War II. We will then study the development of the post war nuclear complex, including the development of the hydrogen bomb, the Oppenheimer case, and the evolution of the U.S. military as the bomb became part of the American arsenal. We also want to understand the bomb's cultural and social effects, as well as the way the bomb affected U.S. society and culture. To that end we will use a variety of materials-- books, newspapers and magazine articles, motion pictures, and novels. Students are encouraged to bring materials of interest to the professor's attention. A class web page [http://instruct1.cit.cornell.edu/courses/sts350] will offer other resources.
Requirements: Attendance at lecture is essential for understanding
the class and the materials. Given that the class is larger than ever before
this term, there are two optional discussion sections. These are optional,
but students should find them helpful in completing the course's writing
assignments. There will be three graded writing assignments, including
the take home final examination/essay. Students are also required to keep
a journal, consisting of a single entry for each week of the semester.
Students may write on whatever topics interest them, preferably related
to the course in some way. In other words, you write a page each week on
the readings, the movies we view, or your general thoughts on the course.
Journals will be collected without warning, so you should bring your journal
to class. You can keep it in on your computer, but print it out each week
and bring it with you. Although journals will not be graded, a record will
be kept of those who perform this important task.
Required Books back to top
Available at the Campus Store or Amazon.com:
K Dick, The Man in the High Castle
Leo Szilard, Voice of the
Outline of Topics back to top
Start reading the script in Nobile; also, related articles in Reader.
Jayne Loader, who made The Atomic Cafe has also
made a fascinating CD-ROM about the nuclear era, Public
Shelter, which is well worth checking out. Two other CD -ROMS
that might interest members of the class are:
Week 9 Spring Break
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