Like Barry Bonds, Baseball Widow hasn't retired; she's just not playing.
Enjoy the archives. . .

Sunday, May 16, 2004

And They Say You Can't Teach Great Baseball

Baseball Widow was in Borders today with Hubby browsing (what else?) the baseball section. There are some great baseball books out there, and there are some terrible baseball books as well. Baseball Widow isn't sure what makes a baseball book good, but she knows what makes one bad: a shallow understanding of baseball's interaction with society.

Baseball is one of the greatest lenses through which to study America. At Baseball Widow's college there was a very popular course on Baseball and American History. Baseball Widow never took the course, but she was inspired by it nonetheless. As a matter of fact, I've written my own course description for a class on baseball. Now if only I can find a school that will let me teach it. . .

Bats, Balls and Business: The History of Baseball and America
Politics, economics, international relations, race relations, labor relations, gender wars, World Wars, drug wars, business, literature, architecture, film, fashion, food. . . if it involves American history and culture, it involves baseball. This course will use baseball as a lens for examining and understanding America. We will explore all aspects of the game, studying its cultural significance rather than the history of teams or players. Through readings (fictional and non-fictional, contemporary and historical), films, fieldtrips, and class discussion, we’ll learn of baseball’s origins, its rise to national prominence and we’ll discuss its continuing significance to America. No prior baseball knowledge necessary.

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