Deep History: The Republic of New England and the American Revolution

History 103D.002

Fall 2014
Day & Time: 
W 2-4P

This course offers advanced history majors the opportunity to explore an important and focused topic in considerable depth. It will help to prepare you for History 101 – honors thesis writing – by developing your reading, analytical, research, and writing skills.  In recent years, a wealth of new scholarship has examined the meaning and changing nature of “republicanism” – the belief that the best form of government involves self-rule by means of representatives chosen by the voting public – in early modern England and colonial America.  In this course, we will assess this scholarship by training our sights on New England and its most powerful colony, Massachusetts, which declared itself to be a “commonwealth” and promoted republican forms of government in church and state from its beginnings in the 1630s, and sustained this commitment through the period of the American Revolution and beyond.  This focus will allow us to develop the level of mastery we need to make sense of claims for republicanism as a force in shaping the American Revolution and the new United States that emerged from it.   It will also offer many opportunities for developing significant research topics and questions. 

Course Books

"Negro President": Jefferson and the Slave Power by Wills, Garry Mariner Books. ISBN: 978-0618485376 Required
The Portable John Adams by Diggins, John Patrick, ed. Penguin Books. ISBN: 978-0142437780 Required
Complete Writings by Phillis Wheatley Penguin Books. ISBN: 978-0140424300 Required
Shays' Rebellion: The American Revolution's Last Battle by RIchards, Leonard University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN: 978-0812218701 Required
The Ordeal of Thomas Hutchinson by Bailyn, Bernard Harvard University Press. ISBN: 978-0674641617 Required
The First American Revolution: Before Lexington and Concord by Raphael, Ray The New Press. ISBN: 978-1565848153 Required
A People's Army: Massachusetts Soldiers and Society in the Seven Years War by Anderson, Fred University of North Carolina Press. ISBN: 978-0807845769 Required
King and People in Provincial Massachusetts by Bushman, Richard University of North Carolina Press. ISBN: 978-0807843987 Required
Town Born: The Political Economy of New England from its Founding to the Revolution by Levy, Barry University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN: 978-0812222470 Required
A Reforming People: Puritanism and the Transformation of Public Life in New England by Hall, David D. University of North Carolina Press. ISBN: 978-0679441175 Required
Godly Republicanism: Puritans, Pilgrims, and a City on a Hill by Winship, Michael Harvard University Press. ISBN: 978-0674063853 Required