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Week 1: An Introduction to True Crime

Tues 8/27 Introduction to the Course

Thurs 8/29 Introduction to the True Crime Genre


Week 2 Colonial Crimes

Tues 9/3 Pillars of Salt


  • Link to the email sent to all students with links to the readings, expectations, etc.
  • Pillars of Salt: An Anthology of Early American Crime Fiction, Daniel E. Williams Introduction
  • Cotton Mather’s collection of “Pillars of Salt” narratives. Please note: the third set of pages (82-83) in this pdf are mistakenly duplicated here, simply disregard them.

Thurs 9/5 Sexuality, Crime, and Gender


Week 3 Colonial Crimes: Discipline and Punish

Tue 9/10: Theorizing the Nature of Crime

Thu 9/12: Pyrates, Negroes, and Thieves

Week 4 Crime, Punishing, & the Early Republic

Tuesday 9/17: Theives, Scandal, & Murder

Thursday 9/19: From Domestic to National Abuses

Week 5: True Crime as National News

Tue 9/24: Crime on Display

Thu 9/26: Muckraking

Week 6: Video Production-Episode 1 of "True Crime: America's Most Wanted"

Tue 10/1: No Class

  • This time should be used for the groups to work on their ideas for their video segments

Thu 10/3: Video Production

Week 7: Fred & Allie and Murder Ballad

Tue 10/8. The Ballad of Fred & Allie

Mad Love: The Ballad of Fred & Allie 

Thu 10/10. Murder Ballads

Week 8: Fall Break

Week 9: More and Better Psychopaths

Tues 10/22. Torso

Thurs 10/24 More and Better Psychopaths & Execution

Week 10: "The Black Dahlia" & In Cold Blood

Tues 10/29. The Black Dahlia and My Mother's Killer

Week 11: In Cold Blood & Video Production

Thurs 10/31: ''In Cold Blood''

  • Truman Capote's In Cold Blood Part 1

Tues 11/5: "In Cold Blood"

  • Truman Capote's "In Cold Blood" Part 2

Thu 11/7: Working and recording details to be decided

Week 12: Helter Skelter

Tue 11/12 Helter Skelter (the movie)

Thu 11/14 Hippies, Vietnam, and the 1960s

Week 13: The Stranger Beside Me

Tues 11/19 ''The Stranger Beside Me'' part 1

Thurs 11/21 "The Stranger Beside Me" part 2

Week 14: Goodfellas/Monster

Tues 12/3 "Goodfellas"

Thurs 12/5 "Monster"