Special Topics in History: Short Course - "Energy: An American History" Session D

History N100.002

Summer 2015
Second 6 Week Session
102 Moffitt
Day & Time: 
MW 8-10AM
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.
  • This course will examine how the predominant sources of energy and how the uses of those different types of energy changed over time and across American geographies. We will start by analyzing the diets of hunter-gatherer societies, as well as the domestication of fire, plants, and animals. We will explore the origins and consequences of the dam building frenzy in the first half of the twentieth century, the expansion of the fossil fuel economy, and the social history of electricity and automobiles and their impacts on consumer culture. We will also analyze the ways that WWII and the Cold War created the context for the development of nuclear weapons and nuclear power plants and the controversies and legacies these industries have generated. Finally, we will examine how increased consumption of energies helped contribute to the rise of current controversies over fracking, climate change, and renewable energy projects.
    This is a two-unit course.  There are no prerequisites

    Course Books

    Routes of Power by Christopher F. Jones Harvard University Press. ISBN: 978-0674728899 Required