GEOG 160, American Landscapes: History, Culture, and the Built Environment

Catalog Description: This course introduces ways of seeing, describing, interpreting, and speculating on how everyday American built environments have given shape and meaning to social life. To that end, it surveys transformations in the country’s vernacular urban, suburban, and (to some extent) rural landscapes, at several scales: houses, yards, storefronts, parks, street patterns, workplaces, transit infrastructures, billboards, gas stations, and more. Addressed at one level to landscape as material culture, the course also assembles an eclectic intellectual history of lay and official attempts to study, define, critique, make sense of, represent, and intervene on ordinary Americans and their space. Readings include primary as well as secondary sources.

Units: 4.0

Prerequisites: None


Fall and/or Spring: 15 weeks - 3 hours of lecture and 1 hour of discussion per week

Grading Basis: Letter

Final Exam Status: Final exam required

Berkeley Academic Guide listing