HIST 364 -Angry White Male Studies

Instructor: Christopher Forth

Day & Time:
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM

Category Fulfillment: I
Capture from the movie Fight Club. Brad Pit with a cigarette in his mouth, bleeding, stands in front of a group ready to fight.

Angry White Male Studies 

Does it really matter who you are? Let’s face it, we’re all angry these days, or supposed to be, and encouraged on a daily basis to become angrier still. It’s sometimes said that white men are the angriest of all, that they feel aggrieved and unable to adjust to changing realities of gender and race for fear of losing their privilege. Like it or not, “the angry white male” is a prominent figure in our cultural imagination and, as such, a phenomenon worthy of study. Where does he come from? What's he angry about? Is his anger misplaced? Is he blaming the right people? How long has this been going on? Is he a global phenomenon? And how do we move forward? This course seeks to answer these and other questions by exploring the historical background to white male anger in modern America and how it is manifested in the wider world today.

HIST 364 explores the messy world we live in. To do so it employs tools from disciplines like history, sociology, philosophy, social psychology, and gender studies. Critical thinking, careful reading, informed reflection, and methodological empathy are all skills that will be developed, along with the ability to entertain different points of view and discuss them in a civil manner. Heck, you might even learn a bit of empathy. Although each week will feature at least one lecture, discussion is strongly encouraged. Coursework includes brief response essays, discussions, and a research project.

Above all, this course does not shrink from ambiguity and paradox. It resists the polarizing tendencies of so much that passes for “debate” these days and offers no easy answers. Can’t deal with that? Then this course isn’t for you.