What do Americans want? What do they fear? What is an "American"? How do we draw the line between those who belong and those who do not? How do we define citizenship, its rights and responsibilities? How do race, gender, class and other differences affect the drawing of these boundaries, and the contents of consciousness? This course introduces some of the exciting and innovative approaches to cultural analysis that have emerged over the last three decades. Students apply these methods to a variety of texts and practices (stories, movies, television shows, music, advertisements, clothes, buildings, laws, markets, bodies) in an effort to acquire the tools to become skillful readers of American culture, and to become more critical and aware as scholars and citizens.