General information

Course type AMUPIE
Module title A History Of Entertainment In The Usa
Language English
Module lecturer dr hab. Christopher Korten
Lecturer's email
Lecturer position
Faculty Faculty of History
Semester 2022/2023 (summer)
Duration 30


Mondays at 14:00 in room 3.132 in the History building on the Morasko Campus.

Module aim (aims)

This course will offer a general history of the key points in American cultural history in the 20th century. It will trace the rather primitive beginnings of Vaudeville and Burlesque to more advanced art forms on the stage: musicals, opera and orchestra concerts. It will also chart the growth of music from the blues to jazz to rock n roll to rap and hip hop. In analyzing this period of cultural history in the United States, key questions will be considered. First, does the quality of one’s culture reflect its economic and political strength? Second, how did cultural advancements reflect technological ones? And finally, how did entertainment combat racism?

Pre-requisites in terms of knowledge, skills and social competences (where relevant)


Introduction: overview of the course and a discussion of the American Cultural Experience in the 20th c.


Burlesque and Vaudeville


Later Stage performances: Frank Sinatra and his milieu




Jazz: inside the US and Exported (Cold War)


From Radio to Television (silent)


The era of televisionHollywood


Rock n’Roll1980-1990s


Modern musical forms: rap and hiphop

Reading list

Michele Hilmes, Only Connect A Cultural History of Broadcasting in the United States (Wisconsin, 2011).

Ted Gioia, The History of Jazz (Oxford, 1997).Select articles.