This course will enhance students’ critical and analytical reading and writing skills through an interdisciplinary study of literary, historical, and sociological representations of critical issues in the United States social history. The emphasis will be on “American” writers’ strategies for articulating an “American” experience and on the role of literature as metaphor for social reality as well as a catalyst for social and political change. This course consists of a multicultural cross section of people’s stories, as authors and as members of diverse social groups. Throughout the course we will not only investigate different definitions of what “American” means, we will also address the multiplicity of identity. That is, we will analyze gender, race, class, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, age and the intersections among these categories.