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Introduction to Cultural Studies SOC 2550F

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					Introduction to Cultural Studies SOC 2550F

Instructor: Dr Gary Genosko, RB 2039, phone x. 8391

Overview of Topics:
Several key traditions of cultural studies are introduced and strategies for
interpreting contemporary everyday cultures of sport, food, music, collecting and
technology are developed.

Management of the Class Hours:
Normally, Tuesday’s class will consist of a lecture based on – but moving through
and beyond - the assigned readings. In the first half hour of the Thursday class,
questions and discussion will take place about the previous Tuesday’s material
and/or the lecture will be completed. This leaves the final hour of the Thursday
class for a combination of lecture and open discussion of the special topic -
cultural studies of sports.

Required Texts:
Reading Kit. Selected articles.
Gary Genosko, Contest: Essays on Sports, Culture and Politics. Winnipeg:
Arbeiter Ring, 1999.

Grading
In-Class Test #1: 25% Short answers.
In-Class Test #2: 25% Short answers.
Essay: 30% Topics assigned by the instructor.
Participation: 20% Includes attendance and directed requests for recapitulations
of the main themes of the previous day’s lecture.

Class Meetings:
Tuesday and Thursday 8:30-10:00
RC 1002

Outline of Topics:
Thursday, September 7: Introduction

Tuesday, September 12: Early Cultural Studies, Part I
Readings: McLuhan, “Know-How” and “The Mechanical Bride”; Barthes,
“Operation Margarine” and “The New Citroën”

Thursday, September 14: Hockey and Culture
Readings: “Hockey and Culture,” Contest, pp. 79-105; Abdel Shedid, “Writing
Hockey Thru Race: Rethinking Black Hockey in Canada”

Tuesday, September 19: Early Cultural Studies, Part II
Readings: Hoggart, “Invitations to a Candy-Floss World: The Newer Mass Art”;
Denney, “The Plastic Machines”

Thursday, September 21: Hockey and Music
Readings: Genosko, “The Case Against Punk”; Mahtani and Salmon, “Site
Reading?: Globalization, Identity, and the Consumption of Place in Popular
Music”

Tuesday, September 26: Subcultures, Part I
Readings: Hebdige,“The Function of Subculture” and “The Meaning of Mod”;
McRobbie and Garber, “Girls and Subcultures”

Thursday, September 28: How to Do Things with Hockey Sticks
Readings: “Furniture and Sport,” Contest, pp. 106-11

Tuesday, October 3: Subcultures, Part II: Fandom
Readings: Jenkins, “Television Fans, Poachers, Nomads”; Radway, “The Act of
Reading the Romance: Escape and Instruction”; Ang, “Dallas between reality and
fiction”

Thursday, October 5: Film Screening: Trobriand Cricket

Tuesday, October 10: Resignification: Indigenous Resistance
Readings: Genosko and Bryx, “After Informatic Striation: The Resignification of
Disk Numbers in Contemporary Inuit Popular Culture”

Thursday, October 12: Street Hassles
Readings: “Skateboarding” and “Bike Messengers,” Contest, pp. 56-59 and 74-
78

Tuesday, October 17: Communication and Cultural Studies
Readings: Hall, “Encoding/Decoding”

Thursday, October 19: In-Class Test

Tuesday, October 24: Subcultures, Part III: Hackers
Readings: Genosko, “The Case of Mafiaboy and the Rhetorical Limits of
Hacktivism:”

Thursday, October 26: Subcultures, Part IV
Readings: “The Protagonist” and “Memorabilia,” Contest, pp. 50-3 and116-19;
Bloom, “Conclusion” to A House of Cards

Tuesday, October 31: Cyborg Professor
Readings: Genosko, “(Im)possible Exchanges: The Arts of Counter-
Surveillance”; Mann and Niedzviecki, “How WearComp Works”
Thursday, November 2: Bodies: Wet, Ripped, Cute and Queer
Readings: “Let’s Throw Everything Into the Pool,” Contest, pp. 17-32 “Queer” and
“Gymnastics” and “Bodybuilding,” Contest, pp. 54-5; 67-73; 112-15.

Tuesday, November 7: How to Read a Journal: The Border/lines Project
Readings: Genosko and Marcellus, “Dead Downtown: Writing the Cultural
Obituary of the Alternative Press in Border/lines”

Thursday, November 9: Hockey and Food
Readings: Penfold, “’Eddie Shack Was No Tim Horton’: Donuts and the Folklore
of Mass Culture in Canada”

Tuesday, November 14: How to Read a Journal, Again: Canadian Telos
Readings: Genosko, Gandesha, Marcellus: “A Crucible of Critical
Interdisciplinarity: The Toronto Telos Group”; Genosko and Gandesha: “Telos in
Canada: Interview with Paul Piccone”

Thursday, November 16: In-Class Test

Tuesday, November 21: Everyday Methodologies: Walking, Wandering, and
Trespassing
Readings: De Certeau, “Walking in the City”; Ninjalicious, “Tentanda Via:
Tunneling at York University” and idem, “An Explorer’s Guide to University of
Toronto”

Thursday, November 23: Losers and Fallen Heroes
Readings: “A Mars Bar A Day” and “The Joy of Defeat” and “Boxing,” Contest,
pp. 38-9; 43-48 and 60-3; Oates, “The Cruelest Sport”

Tuesday, November 28: Rap Tech: Turntablism and Sampling
Readings: Toop, “HIPHOP: Iron Needles of Death and a Piece of Wax”;
Coleman, “Adventures on Wheels of Steel”

				
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