The New Orleans Studies minor presents an in-depth study of the history, culture, society, environment, and representations of the city of New Orleans. This offers a model for understanding larger issues of the urban experience through a close examination of a specific place.
Three courses offered in Summer Session 2018 participate in the New Orleans Studies minor.
Like all of the world's great food cities, the culinary image of New Orleans is a reflection of the people who built it. This course explores the relationship between New Orleans and its rich epicurean legacy through an examination of key historical forces, global influences, environmental imperatives, and social transformations. Students will emerge from this course able to tell the story of New Orleans past, present, and future, through the lens of what we eat and drink.
The explores the roots of the New Orleans we know today, peeling back layers of literary traditions. Beginning with contemporary fiction, drama, and verse, we will make our way backwards through the past two centuries of literature about New Orleans. Our literary journey will reveal the tensions in the city’s unique understandings of race, sexuality and identity as it attempts to defend itself against the pressures of Americanization.
It can be difficult to separate myth from reality in a place like New Orleans, particularly when confronted by a popular narrative teeming with Creole exoticism, habitual anachronism, and the exploits of wealthy white men. By taking a critical approach to these and other cherished notions, this course helps students understand the city’s history instead from the diverse vantage points of those people who lived through it and how they, in turn, shaped the city into the global metropolis we know today.