A New York native, Peter M. Rutkoff has been teaching at Kenyon since 1971. From 1999-2001 he held the National Endowment for the Humanities Distinguished teaching chair at Kenyon and from 2009-12 he was the Robert Oden Distinguished Professor of American Studies. Together with William B. Scott of the Kenyon history department, Rutkoff developed the North By South course that served as the senior seminar in American studies.

With several colleagues, Rutkoff helped develop the American Studies program, first in 1990 as an interdisciplinary program and since 2002 as an interdisciplinary major. His current scholarly interests include African-American cultural studies and the African-American migrations that are the subject of his new book with Professor Scott, Fly Away; The Great African-American MigrationsHe is also the author of several books of fiction including the recently released novel Irish Eyes (2012).

Rutkoff also serves as the executive director of the Kenyon Academic Partnership (KAP), which links the college with a network of thirty secondary schools in Ohio. Students in KAP take dual-credit courses, for high-school graduation and Kenyon transcript credit.

Education

1971 — Doctor of Philosophy from University of Pennsylvania

1965 — Master of Arts from University of Pennsylvania

1964 — Bachelor of Arts from St Lawrence University

Courses Recently Taught

This course introduces students to the principles of American studies through the exploration of American history and culture during the 1900's. We will explore the nature of American society in this critical period through the study of the race relations, women and gender, music and youth culture. Guest lectures, films and student presentations complement the course and students will be asked to engage actively in its development. Open only to first-year and sophomore students. Juniors need permission of instructor. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement. No prerequisite. Offered every year.

The great African American playwright August Wilson set his cycle of plays in Pittsburgh's once-dynamic neighborhood, the Hill. Students will read a series of Wilson's plays, including Joe Turner's "Come and Gone," "The Piano Lesson" and "Fences," and will locate them in time and place in African American history. This course is intended for first-year students with AP or KAP credit in American history or American studies and a critical aspect of the course will be a three-day fieldwork experience in the Hill district of Pittsburgh. Permission of instructor required. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement. No prerequisite.

This course will introduce students to the major theoretical writings about education—Dewey, Kozol, Ravitch and Freire. We will inquire about the "global achievement gap" and "cultural literacy" and interview teachers from a broad range of educational backgrounds — public, private, parochial and charter. The seminar will meet weekly and students will engage during the week in Moodle discussions about issues raised in the readings. Students also will have a participant-observer experience in a public high school, with an introductory day in early January break and a week-long residency the second week of spring break. Credits given only for attending all components of the course. Permission of instructor required.This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement. Prerequisite: junior standing.

The course will provide a setting for advanced guided student work in American studies. Students will work collaboratively to assist one another in the development of individual research projects that represent the synthesis of the six courses they have crafted for the major in American studies. The course is required of all American studies senior majors and concentrators. Permission of instructor required. No prerequisite. Offered every year.

This course will look at the wide range of representations of the national game in American culture. The course will examine literature, poetry and drama as well as the visual arts as a way of understanding the power of baseball on our cultural imagination. The seminar will focus on group discussion, collaborative presentations and individual analysis. Permission of instructor required. No prerequisite.

Individual study is an exceptional opportunity available to junior or senior majors who find that the ordinary course offerings at Kenyon do not meet their needs for the major. Individual study may be taken only for 0.5 units of credit. Students must have the approval of the department chair in order to apply to enroll in an individual study. Students must present a detailed reading list and syllabus, including a schedule of assignments/projects and due dates, to the American studies faculty member with whom they choose to work. The faculty member who agrees to supervise and direct the individual study will confirm the syllabus and schedule in writing to the director of the program. The student project must culminate in a public presentation. The overall evaluation is a combination of student self-evaluation and faculty assessment of the student’s performance, both of which will be reported to the department chair along with the final grade assigned in the course. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study preferably the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval before the registrar’s deadline. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

Individual study is an exceptional opportunity available to junior or senior majors who find that the ordinary course offerings at Kenyon do not meet their needs for the major. Individual study may be taken only for 0.5 units of credit. Students must have the approval of the department chair in order to apply to enroll in an individual study. Students must present a detailed reading list and syllabus, including a schedule of assignments/projects and due dates, to the American studies faculty member with whom they choose to work. The faculty member who agrees to supervise and direct the individual study will confirm the syllabus and schedule in writing to the director of the program. The student project must culminate in a public presentation. The overall evaluation is a combination of student self-evaluation and faculty assessment of the student’s performance, both of which will be reported to the department chair along with the final grade assigned in the course. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study preferably the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval before the registrar’s deadline. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

Individual study is an exceptional opportunity available to junior or senior majors who find that the ordinary course offerings at Kenyon do not meet their needs for the major. Individual study may be taken only for 0.5 units of credit. Students must have the approval of the department chair in order to apply to enroll in an individual study. Students must present a detailed reading list and syllabus, including a schedule of assignments/projects and due dates, to the American studies faculty member with whom they choose to work. The faculty member who agrees to supervise and direct the individual study will confirm the syllabus and schedule in writing to the director of the program. The student project must culminate in a public presentation. The overall evaluation is a combination of student self-evaluation and faculty assessment of the student’s performance, both of which will be reported to the department chair along with the final grade assigned in the course. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study preferably the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval before the registrar’s deadline. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

Individual study is an exceptional opportunity available to junior or senior majors who find that the ordinary course offerings at Kenyon do not meet their needs for the major. Individual study may be taken only for 0.5 units of credit. Students must have the approval of the department chair in order to apply to enroll in an individual study. Students must present a detailed reading list and syllabus, including a schedule of assignments/projects and due dates, to the American studies faculty member with whom they choose to work. The faculty member who agrees to supervise and direct the individual study will confirm the syllabus and schedule in writing to the director of the program. The student project must culminate in a public presentation. The overall evaluation is a combination of student self-evaluation and faculty assessment of the student’s performance, both of which will be reported to the department chair along with the final grade assigned in the course. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study preferably the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval before the registrar’s deadline. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

Individual study is an exceptional opportunity available to junior or senior majors who find that the ordinary course offerings at Kenyon do not meet their needs for the major. Individual study may be taken only for 0.5 units of credit. Students must have the approval of the department chair in order to apply to enroll in an individual study. Students must present a detailed reading list and syllabus, including a schedule of assignments/projects and due dates, to the American studies faculty member with whom they choose to work. The faculty member who agrees to supervise and direct the individual study will confirm the syllabus and schedule in writing to the director of the program. The student project must culminate in a public presentation. The overall evaluation is a combination of student self-evaluation and faculty assessment of the student’s performance, both of which will be reported to the department chair along with the final grade assigned in the course. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study preferably the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval before the registrar’s deadline. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

Individual study is an exceptional opportunity available to junior or senior majors who find that the ordinary course offerings at Kenyon do not meet their needs for the major. Individual study may be taken only for 0.5 units of credit. Students must have the approval of the department chair in order to apply to enroll in an individual study. Students must present a detailed reading list and syllabus, including a schedule of assignments/projects and due dates, to the American studies faculty member with whom they choose to work. The faculty member who agrees to supervise and direct the individual study will confirm the syllabus and schedule in writing to the director of the program. The student project must culminate in a public presentation. The overall evaluation is a combination of student self-evaluation and faculty assessment of the student’s performance, both of which will be reported to the department chair along with the final grade assigned in the course. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study preferably the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval before the registrar’s deadline. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

Individual study is an exceptional opportunity available to junior or senior majors who find that the ordinary course offerings at Kenyon do not meet their needs for the major. Individual study may be taken only for 0.5 units of credit. Students must have the approval of the department chair in order to apply to enroll in an individual study. Students must present a detailed reading list and syllabus, including a schedule of assignments/projects and due dates, to the American studies faculty member with whom they choose to work. The faculty member who agrees to supervise and direct the individual study will confirm the syllabus and schedule in writing to the director of the program. The student project must culminate in a public presentation. The overall evaluation is a combination of student self-evaluation and faculty assessment of the student’s performance, both of which will be reported to the department chair along with the final grade assigned in the course. Because students must enroll for individual studies by the end of the seventh class day of each semester, they should begin discussion of the proposed individual study preferably the semester before, so that there is time to devise the proposal and seek departmental approval before the registrar’s deadline. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

The Honors Program in American studies entails a two-semester sequence of independent work integral to the elective-study program in the major, taken during the senior year. Students enrolled in this course will be automatically added to AMST 498Y for the spring semester. Permission of instructor and department chair required. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.

The Honors Program in American studies entails a two-semester sequence of independent work integral to the elective-study program in the major, taken during the senior year. Permission of instructor and department chair required. This interdisciplinary course does not count toward the completion of any diversification requirement.