Amid this week's reminders that it is a moral imperative for America make higher education a priority for all, here is one illustration of why that is so important: Students at Duke University can now take a course in The O.C., Josh Schwartz's mid-'00s teen dramedy exploring the universal human condition of being wealthy and having shitty friends. Much like previous pop-culture courses on shows such as Buffy The Vampire Slayer, The Simpsons, The Wire, The Sopranos, and other things that will cause visible pain on the faces of your totally out-of-touch parents when you mention that you're taking them and then ask for more money, "California Here We Come: The O.C. & Self-Aware Culture of 21st Century America" aims to "explore the 'hyper self-awareness' unique to The O.C. and analyze Californian exceptionalism and singularity in history and popular culture, girl culture, 21st century suburban revivalism, the indie music scene, the meta-series, and more."
This exploration will take place primarily, it sounds, by watching the show a lot—appended by episodes of Laguna Beach, The Hills, Real Housewives, and Gossip Girl—then writing essays entitled, say, "Death Cab For Duty: Form And Function In The Seth Cohenization Of Indie Rock" (You can have that one!), while also having class debates over the pointlessness of Marissa's brief dalliance with bisexuality. "Welcome to a pseudo-intellectual analysis of The O.C., bitch!"—your instructors, on the day college finally becomes worth it.
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