United States

101.016 Spring 2015 International History in the Twentieth Century

International History in the Twentieth Century" is intended for students writing 101 thesis on international, transnational, and comparative topics in the history of the twentieth century. Students will write on topics of their own devising, which may range from diplomacy, strategy, and statecraft to transnational economic, social, and cultural interactions of diverse kinds. Thesis writers may chose to focus on U.S. relations with the broader world, but they are by no means not required to do so. Given the seminar’s scope, we will not be undertaking topical readings as a class.

101.012 Spring 2015 Early America

This seminar is open to senior thesis writers working on Early America from North American colonization to the US Civil War. Our early meetings will focus on the mechanics of project design—identifying a topic, framing a question, and locating sources—and include reading a few exemplary articles and brief reflections on the art and craft of historical research.

101.011 Spring 2015 News in American History

This seminar is a thesis-writing workshop for students engaged in original research that explores or relies primarily on newspapers and other news media sources.  All research questions covering the history of the United States (or the lands that became the United States) before 1945 are acceptable.

285D Fall 2014 Difference, Identity, and Power—The US From 1800-2000

This seminar will allow students to pursue research projects in US History in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The guiding emphases are threefold and interrelated: (1) the development and impact of specific  forms of difference (i.e., race, gender, sexuality, class, place/region); (2) how these differences come to be expressed as identities; and (3) the role of power in these various, at times overlapping, histories of difference and identity formation. I anticipate that research topics will range across social, intellectual, political, and cultural history.

101 Fall 2014 The Mess in the Middle: Intersections of Law, Politics, and Society in American History

There are many “types” of or “approaches” to history – cultural, social, legal, political, intellectual etc. – but some historians have chosen to examine the intersections of these “types” as their methodology.  For example, how do changing interpretations of law influence political debates or social orders?  In what ways do intellectual traditions shape social or political development?  What influence do military events have on popular culture?  The list goes on.

103D.008 Fall 2014 The Free Speech Movement and the Student Movement of the 1960s

Berkeley played a pivotal role in the emergence of the 1960s as an era in which students and youth had an unprecedented influence over politics and culture in the US -- and even globally. This course will explore the rise and fall of mass students protest at Berkeley and beyond and assess the legacy of those movements with regard to politics, youth culture, and the university itself.

103D.007 Fall 2014 Re-Imagining & Remembering:Environments, Communities & the Power of Stories

This course is designed to introduce students to a diverse array of approaches to social, spatial, and environmental history and how all fields benefit from the study of historical memory. We will especially focus on the intersections of these fields to explore how built and natural environments reflect particular cultures and societies at specific historical moments. To this end, we will analyze the stories that structure the identities and shape the historical memory of distinct communities.

103D.006 Fall 2014 Promised Land: Readings in California History

This seminar will explore the idea of California as “America’s America” through some of the latest and most innovative historical scholarship about the region. Topics will include exploration and conquest; frontier labor, economies, and politics; migration and immigration; urban growth and decline; gender, race, and ethnicity; and the changing myths of California and the American West. Students will discuss key historiographical debates while also reviewing research methods and writing styles.

103D.005 Fall 2014 Capitalism and the People in an Age of Reform

A diverse array of political movements strove to reform American capitalism between the first Gilded Age and the Second World War.  Throughout this period a series of grassroots efforts arose that focused on economic questions.  This course will explore how the American public mobilized during this era to reform the nation’s political economy. Unions, Progressives, Populists, Socialists, and others, all struggled to reshape or “tame” capitalism.

103D.004 Fall 2014 E Pluribus Barnum: Popular Entertainment in the United States

This course will explore how ordinary Americans entertained themselves before the early twentieth century. Since 1786, when Charles Wilson Peale founded his museum in Philadelphia as a place for art, lectures, scientific specimens, and natural history objects, Americans have used popular entertainment as a vehicle for both amusement and education. In this class, we will consider how the kinds of entertainment Americans engaged in changed over time, and how the justifications for participating in popular entertainment shifted as well.


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