American Studies
American Studies

B. Duncan Moench


Doctoral Student
B. Duncan Moench

Contact

Interests


American politics and intellectual history. Louis Hartz and the comparativist historical approach

Courses


AMS 311S • Left And Right In America

30145 • Spring 2018
Meets MWF 4:00PM-5:00PM BUR 436A

description:

Is the United States a “liberal society”—why or why not? This course will examine the philosophical origins of contemporary American political culture and retrace the country’s often contradictory relationship with liberal philosophy.

      American political culture produces ethical constructs—such as “the personal is political or “government is the problem, not the solution—which guide one’s perceptions of political events and historical causation. Together we will excavate the intellectual history behind the ethical frameworks of American politics and search for the causes of the country’s current political divide. In 2004, Barack Obama, then a candidate for the US Senate, proclaimed there was not “a Liberal America” and a “Conservative America” but “one United States of America.” What was Obama referring to? Are there underlying agreements in American political culture that reach across both the left and right? This course will address this debate by examining the political and ethical commitments behind the core texts of America’s past and present.     

possible texts:

A course pack will be assigned that includes short selections from John Locke, Adam Smith, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Bernard-Henri Levy, Malcolm X, and Ronald Reagan.

 

assignments:

Attendance: 5 percent

Participation: 5 percent

Research summary papers: 15 percent

Mid-term paper: 30 percent

Final paper: 35 percent           

AMS 311S • Left And Right In America

30830 • Fall 2017
Meets MWF 2:00PM-3:00PM SZB 524
(also listed as CTI 310)

description:

Is the United States a “liberal society”—why or why not? This course will examine the philosophical origins of contemporary American political culture and retrace the country’s often contradictory relationship with liberal philosophy.

      American political culture produces ethical constructs—such as “the personal is political or “government is the problem, not the solution—which guide one’s perceptions of political events and historical causation. Together we will excavate the intellectual history behind the ethical frameworks of American politics and search for the causes of the country’s current political divide. In 2004, Barack Obama, then a candidate for the US Senate, proclaimed there was not “a Liberal America” and a “Conservative America” but “one United States of America.” What was Obama referring to? Are there underlying agreements in American political culture that reach across both the left and right? This course will address this debate by examining the political and ethical commitments behind the core texts of America’s past and present.     

possible texts:

A course pack will be assigned that includes short selections from John Locke, Adam Smith, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Bernard-Henri Levy, Malcolm X, and Ronald Reagan.

 

assignments:

Attendance: 5 percent

Participation: 5 percent

Research summary papers: 15 percent

Mid-term paper: 30 percent

Final paper: 35 percent           

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Political Belief

43605 • Spring 2015
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM GAR 0.132

What does it mean to be a “liberal” today? What does it say when we call ourselves  “conservative”? Where did these words come from and how does their modern usage relate to their origin? In this course, we will explore how the rhetorical constructions of different political belief systems often mirror their values and ideology. Political ideals are not based in fact, or even historical events, but abstract belief and arguments, which tend to be only superficially understood. The course will empower students by providing the tools and history to understand their own beliefs as well as other people’s. We will discuss the major political belief systems of the Western world beginning with an exploration of the origins of the democratic ideal, proceeding to classical liberalism, socialism, conservatism, and lastly fascism.

Every section will include readings from primary sources, i.e. John Locke as a representative of liberalism and Karl Marx as a representative of communism and socialism. We will break down the arguments and examine their rhetorical construction. Students will complete each section by taking a contemporary controversy and writing as  “conservatives,” “liberals,” “socialists,” and even “fascists.” By writing about current events from the perspective of each political belief system students will gain both a firm grasp of how each political belief system thinks as well as the basics of argumentation and how to apply it to future papers, presentations, or proposals.

Assignments and Grading

Drafting assignments: 5%

Research Summaries: 10%

Essay 1.1: 10%

Essay 1.2: 10%

Essay 2.1: 10%

Essay 2.2: 15%

Essay 3.1: 10%

Essay 3.2: 15%

Presentation: 10%

Participation: 5%

Texts

Sharon Crowley and Michael Stancliff. Critical Situations. Custom Edition for The University of Texas at Austin ed. New York: Pearson Longman, 2011.

Andrea Lunsford. Easy Writer. Fourth Edition ed. Boston: Bedford/. Martin’s, 2010.

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal. Eighth ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Ideals and Ideologies: A Reader.Eighth Ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Political Belief

44632 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM GAR 1.126

What does it mean to be a “liberal” today? What does it say when we call ourselves  “conservative”? Where did these words come from and how does their modern usage relate to their origin? In this course, we will explore how the rhetorical constructions of different political belief systems often mirror their values and ideology. Political ideals are not based in fact, or even historical events, but abstract belief and arguments, which tend to be only superficially understood. The course will empower students by providing the tools and history to understand their own beliefs as well as other people’s. We will discuss the major political belief systems of the Western world beginning with an exploration of the origins of the democratic ideal, proceeding to classical liberalism, socialism, conservatism, and lastly fascism.

Every section will include readings from primary sources, i.e. John Locke as a representative of liberalism and Karl Marx as a representative of communism and socialism. We will break down the arguments and examine their rhetorical construction. Students will complete each section by taking a contemporary controversy and writing as  “conservatives,” “liberals,” “socialists,” and even “fascists.” By writing about current events from the perspective of each political belief system students will gain both a firm grasp of how each political belief system thinks as well as the basics of argumentation and how to apply it to future papers, presentations, or proposals.

Assignments and Grading

Drafting assignments: 5%

Research Summaries: 10%

Essay 1.1: 10%

Essay 1.2: 10%

Essay 2.1: 10%

Essay 2.2: 15%

Essay 3.1: 10%

Essay 3.2: 15%

Presentation: 10%

Participation: 5%

Texts

Sharon Crowley and Michael Stancliff. Critical Situations. Custom Edition for The University of Texas at Austin ed. New York: Pearson Longman, 2011.

Andrea Lunsford. Easy Writer. Fourth Edition ed. Boston: Bedford/. Martin’s, 2010.

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal. Eighth ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Ideals and Ideologies: A Reader.Eighth Ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Political Belief

44935 • Spring 2014
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM PAR 104

What does it mean to be a “liberal” today? What does it say when we call ourselves  “conservative”? Where did these words come from and how does their modern usage relate to their origin? In this course, we will explore how the rhetorical constructions of different political belief systems often mirror their values and ideology. Political ideals are not based in fact, or even historical events, but abstract belief and arguments, which tend to be only superficially understood. The course will empower students by providing the tools and history to understand their own beliefs as well as other people’s. We will discuss the major political belief systems of the Western world beginning with an exploration of the origins of the democratic ideal, proceeding to classical liberalism, socialism, conservatism, and lastly fascism.

Every section will include readings from primary sources, i.e. John Locke as a representative of liberalism and Karl Marx as a representative of communism and socialism. We will break down the arguments and examine their rhetorical construction. Students will complete each section by taking a contemporary controversy and writing as  “conservatives,” “liberals,” “socialists,” and even “fascists.” By writing about current events from the perspective of each political belief system students will gain both a firm grasp of how each political belief system thinks as well as the basics of argumentation and how to apply it to future papers, presentations, or proposals.

Assignments and Grading

Drafting assignments: 5%

Research Summaries: 10%

Essay 1.1: 10%

Essay 1.2: 10%

Essay 2.1: 10%

Essay 2.2: 15%

Essay 3.1: 10%

Essay 3.2: 15%

Presentation: 10%

Participation: 5%

Texts

Sharon Crowley and Michael Stancliff. Critical Situations. Custom Edition for The University of Texas at Austin ed. New York: Pearson Longman, 2011.

Andrea Lunsford. Easy Writer. Fourth Edition ed. Boston: Bedford/. Martin’s, 2010.

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal. Eighth ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Ideals and Ideologies: A Reader.Eighth Ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Political Belief

44770 • Fall 2013
Meets MW 2:00PM-3:30PM FAC 7

What does it mean to be a “liberal” today? What does it say when we call ourselves  “conservative”? Where did these words come from and how does their modern usage relate to their origin? In this course, we will explore how the rhetorical constructions of different political belief systems often mirror their values and ideology. Political ideals are not based in fact, or even historical events, but abstract belief and arguments, which tend to be only superficially understood. The course will empower students by providing the tools and history to understand their own beliefs as well as other people’s. We will discuss the major political belief systems of the Western world beginning with an exploration of the origins of the democratic ideal, proceeding to classical liberalism, socialism, conservatism, and lastly fascism.

Every section will include readings from primary sources, i.e. John Locke as a representative of liberalism and Karl Marx as a representative of communism and socialism. We will break down the arguments and examine their rhetorical construction. Students will complete each section by taking a contemporary controversy and writing as  “conservatives,” “liberals,” “socialists,” and even “fascists.” By writing about current events from the perspective of each political belief system students will gain both a firm grasp of how each political belief system thinks as well as the basics of argumentation and how to apply it to future papers, presentations, or proposals.

Assignments and Grading

Drafting assignments: 5%

Research Summaries: 10%

Essay 1.1: 10%

Essay 1.2: 10%

Essay 2.1: 10%

Essay 2.2: 15%

Essay 3.1: 10%

Essay 3.2: 15%

Presentation: 10%

Participation: 5%

Texts

Sharon Crowley and Michael Stancliff. Critical Situations. Custom Edition for The University of Texas at Austin ed. New York: Pearson Longman, 2011.

Andrea Lunsford. Easy Writer. Fourth Edition ed. Boston: Bedford/. Martin’s, 2010.

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal. Eighth ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Ideals and Ideologies: A Reader.Eighth Ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

RHE S306 • Rhetoric And Writing

87654 • Summer 2013
Meets MTWTHF 10:00AM-11:30AM CLA 1.102

Multiple meeting times and sections. Please consult the Course Schedule for unique numbers.

This does NOT meet the Writing Flag requirement.

This composition course provides instruction in the gathering and evaluation of information and its presentation in well-organized expository prose. Students ordinarily write and revise four papers. The course includes instruction in invention, arrangement, logic, style, revision, and strategies of research.

Course centered around the First-Year Forum (FYF) selected readings. Students focus on the foundational knowledge and skills needed for college writing. In addition, they are introduced to basic rhetoric terms and learn to rhetorically analyze positions within controversies surrounding the FYF readings.

RHE 306 is required of all UT students. Contact the Measurement and Evaluation Center, 2616 Wichita (471-3032) to petition for RHE 306 credit.

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Political Belief

44335 • Spring 2013
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM PAR 104

What does it mean to be a “liberal” today? What does it say when we call ourselves  “conservative”? Where did these words come from and how does their modern usage relate to their origin? In this course, we will explore how the rhetorical constructions of different political belief systems often mirror their values and ideology. Political ideals are not based in fact, or even historical events, but abstract belief and arguments, which tend to be only superficially understood. The course will empower students by providing the tools and history to understand their own beliefs as well as other people’s. We will discuss the major political belief systems of the Western world beginning with an exploration of the origins of the democratic ideal, proceeding to classical liberalism, socialism, conservatism, and lastly fascism.

Every section will include readings from primary sources, i.e. John Locke as a representative of liberalism and Karl Marx as a representative of communism and socialism. We will break down the arguments and examine their rhetorical construction. Students will complete each section by taking a contemporary controversy and writing as  “conservatives,” “liberals,” “socialists,” and even “fascists.” By writing about current events from the perspective of each political belief system students will gain both a firm grasp of how each political belief system thinks as well as the basics of argumentation and how to apply it to future papers, presentations, or proposals.

Assignments and Grading

Drafting assignments: 5%

Research Summaries: 10%

Essay 1.1: 10%

Essay 1.2: 10%

Essay 2.1: 10%

Essay 2.2: 15%

Essay 3.1: 10%

Essay 3.2: 15%

Presentation: 10%

Participation: 5%

Texts

Sharon Crowley and Michael Stancliff. Critical Situations. Custom Edition for The University of Texas at Austin ed. New York: Pearson Longman, 2011.

Andrea Lunsford. Easy Writer. Fourth Edition ed. Boston: Bedford/. Martin’s, 2010.

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal. Eighth ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Ideals and Ideologies: A Reader.Eighth Ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

RHE 309K • Rhetoric Of Political Belief

44170 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM PAR 6

What does it mean to be a “liberal” today? What does it say when we call ourselves  “conservative”? Where did these words come from and how does their modern usage relate to their origin? In this course, we will explore how the rhetorical constructions of different political belief systems often mirror their values and ideology. Political ideals are not based in fact, or even historical events, but abstract belief and arguments, which tend to be only superficially understood. The course will empower students by providing the tools and history to understand their own beliefs as well as other people’s. We will discuss the major political belief systems of the Western world beginning with an exploration of the origins of the democratic ideal, proceeding to classical liberalism, socialism, conservatism, and lastly fascism.

Every section will include readings from primary sources, i.e. John Locke as a representative of liberalism and Karl Marx as a representative of communism and socialism. We will break down the arguments and examine their rhetorical construction. Students will complete each section by taking a contemporary controversy and writing as  “conservatives,” “liberals,” “socialists,” and even “fascists.” By writing about current events from the perspective of each political belief system students will gain both a firm grasp of how each political belief system thinks as well as the basics of argumentation and how to apply it to future papers, presentations, or proposals.

Assignments and Grading

Drafting assignments: 5%

Research Summaries: 10%

Essay 1.1: 10%

Essay 1.2: 10%

Essay 2.1: 10%

Essay 2.2: 15%

Essay 3.1: 10%

Essay 3.2: 15%

Presentation: 10%

Participation: 5%

Texts

Sharon Crowley and Michael Stancliff. Critical Situations. Custom Edition for The University of Texas at Austin ed. New York: Pearson Longman, 2011.

Andrea Lunsford. Easy Writer. Fourth Edition ed. Boston: Bedford/. Martin’s, 2010.

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Political Ideologies and the Democratic Ideal. Eighth ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

Terence Ball and Richard Dagger, Ideals and Ideologies: A Reader. Eighth Ed. Pearson Longman, 2010

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