Conference Preview: American Homes, Consumer Dreams

Good morning, Austin and everywhere!

This week on AMS:: ATX we are excited to feature a series of sneak peeks at the panels that will take place at the upcoming American Studies Graduate Student Conference on Thursday, April 4 and Friday, April 5 here at UT Austin. The theme for this year’s conference is “Reimagining the American Dream,” and we have an incredible line-up of grad student presenters and faculty moderators who will weigh in on everything from power lines and western swing to payday loans, refrigerators, and the zombie apocalypse.

Photograph by Andrew Jones

Photograph by Andrew Jones

First up, we present to you a panel entitled “American Homes, Consumer Dreams,” which takes on the complicated relationship between the American Dream and the domestic landscape of houses, appliances, waste, and work. This panel will take place on Friday, April 5 from 9:00a.m. – 10:30a.m. in the Texas Union, 4.206 Chicano Culture Room

  • Natalie Zelt, “Self-Preservation: Identity, Food Politics and the American Dream in Mark Menjivar’s series ‘You Are What You Eat’”
  • Laura Jacquelyn Simmons, “General Electric’s Monitor Top Refrigerator and the Impossible Dream Kitchen of Tomorrow”
  • Ellen Cunningham-Kruppa, “Trash Talk: Disposable Tableware and the American Dream”
  • Sherri Sheu, “Salvaged Visions of the American Masculinity: Restoration Hardware, American Mythologies, and the Post-Fordist Economy”
  • Jocelyn Wikle, “Cinderella and Cinderelliot: Gender Differences in Adolescent and Young Adult Housework”

This conference is free and open to the public. Conference registration (and breakfast!) begin on Friday, April 5 at 8:00a.m. in the Texas Union, 2.102 Eastwoods Room. Stay tuned all week for a look at the great panels coming to UT next Thursday and Friday!

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