Book Discussion: American Nations by C. Woodard (2011)*Class members will be responsible for purchasing a copy of the book and will read assigned chapters in preparation for discussion in each class session. This book offers a fascinating and well-researched historical alternative to the prevailing mythology of a unified American cultural identity that existed from early European colonization of the N. American continent, through revolution and expansion. Woodard traces 11 distinct rival cultural identities that constitute geopolitical power struggles and explain varying alliances since early colonization. Woodard discusses how the conflicting cultural values, beliefs and priorities of these original geopolitical identities underlie and helps explain the deep social conflicts of contemporary United States. This course will be a book reading and class discussion format (not a lecture format). Dr. Donna Armstrong is a professor emeritus of epidemiology, specializing in social/environmental sustainability, community food security and permaculture. After retiring, she practiced sustainable farming in KY. She now practices permaculture design and community sustainability in Harrisonburg, VA.
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