Daniel L. Hanson's American Studies doctoral defense of "Western American Spectral Studies"
- Thursday, April 16, 2020 from 9:50am to 12:30pm
In this defense, Hanson merges poswestern scholarship with spectral studies theories to develop a "spectral lens" that fowards an interdisciplinary American Studies consideration of narrative power structures. Utilizing the ghost as an entity which potentially expresses repressed cultural voices, this work examines a variety of cultural constructs--film, literature, and place-based heritage sites--to better understand how haunting interacts with the Westen narrative. This study is important since the Western has functioned as the dominant narrative for America's foundational identity and because, while this narrative has always been haunted in some respects, ghosts have more explicitly arisen in the post-WWII era in a way that suggests the Western and the West are in deep conversation with the previous narrative iterations that lost, neglected, and/or pathologized certain voices and ideas in the rush to celebrate an "exceptional" American identity.
- American Studies