The protest of drastic changes to land and people connects the long history of global development through ongoing movements in American culture. This course considers a variety of large-scale protest movements as referential frames through which to approach and understand historic and present ontological forms. Marking resistance and protest as synonymous with “American” ways of being and becoming, we undertake to look before in time and beyond in space the United States as a nation-state and globalizing neocolonial actor to think with the various peoples and protests that comprise it while also keeping in focus the transnational movement of ideas that protest engenders.

Five thematic areas cluster protest movements into some of the most significant to attract attention over the course of the past few hundred years:

  • Climate emergency
  • Indigenous protection of land, water and nonhuman peoples
  • Prison abolition
  • Movement for Black Lives
  • Revolutions and their afterlives