University of Massachusetts Boston Department of American Studies

American Studies Department

American Studies MA student, Linda Henry, who is doing research for her MA essay on a black family of fiddlers in Tennessee, has her work featured in The Southern Standard newspaper!

Welcome to the homepage for the American Studies Department at UMass Boston! We offer an undergraduate major as well as a graduate MA program. Our courses encourage students to think about American culture in all its diversity using a variety of interdisciplinary methods: literary criticism, historical analysis, film studies, music analysis, and art history, just to name a few. We are particularly interested in thinking carefully about the relationship between culture and identity, especially in relation to race, ethnicity, sexuality, class, and gender. Students in our undergraduate courses are likely to encounter texts across media in the classroom – it is common to find literature, popular music, film, television, and art all on the same syllabus. Our majors and minors tend to be inquisitive students who are passionate about culture: many bring with them a great interest (and often some expertise) in thinking about how cultural texts both transmit and are shaped by broader social meanings. We are a small department with a strong commitment to our students, and we offer close one-on-one advising that allows our majors (some of whom double-major in traditional disciplines) to really get to know their professors and each other. Our graduates find work in a range of fields including media, education, government, and nonprofits.

If you have questions about the American Studies major or minor, I encourage you to make an appointment to speak with me or any of the professors listed on our faculty page, or to just stop by our office on the 5th floor of Wheatley. We are excited about the students we serve, and we hope you will feel free to visit our department and take some classes to figure out if American Studies might be a good fit for your undergraduate studies. We also host numerous events during the academic year that are open to all students; check on the events page of our website for information on upcoming events. Feel free to email me with any questions or if you want to learn more about the exciting things happening in UMass Boston’s American Studies Department, and thanks for visiting our web page.

Aaron Lecklider
Associate Professor and Department Chair of American Studies

Giving to UMass Boston

Support the American Studies Department with a gift to the UMass Boston Fund.