Unpacking the 1950s

In Decade of Decision 1950s I'm continuing a pattern of project centered assignments for lower division courses. I've been intrigued by the idea of breaking from the "repeat back to me" mode of historical learning that defines a lot of history for students. Moving toward applied projects that use primary source to create more exploratory and descriptive assignments using an inquiry driven model seems like a good idea.  I can experiment two semesters in a row, but after that, I need to unpack the process and identify the elements worth keeping and what to jettison. One element that seems to be working is to incorporate full in class viewing of archival film.  D.O.A. is my choice to explore the intersections around themes in the decade. In many ways, the films is perfect for students. It is fast paced, has pretty clear cues around gender expectations and strong tropes linked to social anxieties from the period.