Graduate Courses

Spring 2018
275B: 20th Century Europe

This course aims to stimulate conversation on a series of provocative questions relating to the history of modern Europe, a continent alternately coming together and tearing itself apart, reminiscent of the old oscillating universe theory. Remarkable is the persistence of the national question and its power to overwhelm every agenda – including that of social welfare – until its demands seem satisfied. Course readings touch upon following issues:

Total War and its causes
Revolutionary era: socialism and national self-determination
Enemies of democracy and their programs
Leninist and fascist "civilizations"
Submersion of the world wars in European collective memory
Collaboration: "Victims" as collaborators.
Collaborators as "democrats"
Intellectuals and the Cold War: totalitarian temptation?
The dialectics of German unity in a divided Europe
Revolutionary era: 1989 and the era of "democratization"
Europe unified and divided: the Bosnian crisis

Throughout the emphasis is on readability and new questions, rather than on panoramic view or systematic geographic and thematic coverage. Students write one twenty page paper on a subject of their choice, as well as a number of short reviews, and make one presentation to the class (on a book of their choice).

John Connelly
2303 Dwinelle
Tu 2-4
Class #: 25022
275F: The Tang Dynasty

Historiographic survey of English-language scholarship on the Tang Dynasty

Nicolas Tackett
3104 Dwinelle
F 12-2pm
Class #: 41966
280A: Greek Economies: The Documentary Evidence

The ancient economy is a particularly vibrant field of study within ancient history now, its dynamism and energy deriving both from methodological innovations and discoveries of new empirical evidence. Much of this new evidence has come to us in the form of inscriptions, while texts long known have been subject to significant reinterpretation in recent years. This course will accordingly introduce participants to the economic activities of the ancient Greek world through a focused study of the epigraphic evidence for them. We shall begin with a discussion of major historiographical approaches to the subject and current methodologies, and then turn to reading a sequence of epigraphic texts, from the Archaic to the early Hellenistic period, organized thematically. The epigraphic evidence will be supplemented by a reading of several ancient literary sources of particular importance to our knowledge of the Greek economy. Topics will include public economies, mining, coinage and money supply, banking and credit, trade, temples and sanctuaries as repositories and managers of wealth, island economies and piracy. Knowledge of ancient Greek is required; secondary source readings will be above all in English and French, with some material in German and Italian as student knowledge allows.

Emily Mackil
308C Doe Library
W 1-4
Class #: 25023
280B: Capitalism

This graduate seminar seeks to provide an overview of recent and established research on the history of capitalism and political economy, roughly from the 18th century to the present. Under the label of “history of capitalism,” historians have recently revisited the history of economic life in all its aspects. Often, such newer contributions are deeply informed by insights about the importance of culture, ideas, law, and social practices. Others have returned to older questions but cast answers in new ways for instance by placing capitalism and the rise of Europe and North America in a global context. Topics include early modern long-distance networks, the Industrial Revolution, capitalism and slavery, speculation, bubbles, and crises, capitalism and empire, Communist/Socialist alternatives, women, gender, and capitalism, humanitarianism and development politics, inequality, and neoliberalism. Readings necessarily includes literature on Europe (and North America) but will deliberately move beyond the ‘West.’ Along the way, the course questions whether capitalism is really a useful category of historical analysis, and what biases and limitations the to date largely Americanist lens on the ‘new history of capitalism’ entails. Students interested in taking this as a research seminar should contact me in advance.

Vanessa Ogle
Evans 65
Tu 12-2PM
Class #: 25024
280B: “Year Books” and Global Early Modern History
  • This course has been cancelled.

This course takes seriously the conceit of academic and popular historical writing that makes use of the unit of the year – annus mirabilus – as a moment or “event” of structural transformation and/or as revelatory of some grand historical process., including globalization itself. This course focuses on “year books” written about the Early Modern period, from the 15 th to the end of the 18 th century. It is organized around canonical years (eg, 1492) and unexpected ones (eg, 1668). We will use these monographs – some more scholarly than others – to reflect on event, process, and structure in a global perspective.

Peter Sahlins
3104 Dwinelle
W 2-4
Class #: 32888
280B: Modern Germany

This graduate seminar will explore the history of everyday life in the 20th century German history. It will trace the origins of the history of everyday life as perspective in the 1970s and 1980s including the early debates on this approach. The seminar seeks to provide an overview of central concepts such as the history from below, social practices, the shift from “the masses” to “the many”, appropriations and Eigensinn. We will then discuss recent case studies focusing on the history of everyday life. Topics include industrial work around 1900, food riots in World War I, popular culture, political milieus in the Weimar Republic, denunciations during National Socialism, consumerism, the history of tourism and of migration after 1945, and the history of private life in the GDR and FRG. Secondary source readings will be in English and German

Isabel Richter
2231 Dwinelle
W 10-12
Class #: 32887
280B/285B: The Christianization of Early Medieval Europe

This seminar will deal with a variety of both classic and novel interpretations of the process of Christianization, beginning in the Gallic and early Frankish period (5th – early 7th centuries) but concentrating on the Carolingian empire, Anglo-Saxon England, and 10th- and 11th-century France and Germany. We will focus particularly on pastoral care; lay piety (particularly the piety of women); missionizing; the relationship between bishops and rural clergy; the thickening network of churches; and local, para-Christian beliefs and practices. Readings will include primary and secondary sources in English, French, German, and Latin; however, readings have been selected so that students can manage with just two of these languages.

  • 280B: Class #32885
  • 285B: Class #25035
Geoffrey Koziol
2303 Dwinelle
Tu 9-12
280B/285B: Antisemitism: From the Age of Tacitus to the Age of Trump

Hatred of Jews and Judaism is an enduring prejudice. Its chronological limitlessness is matched by its apparent lack of geographical boundaries. We will chart that history and Jewish responses to it from the age of Tacitus to the age of Trump. Among the themes we will examine are the old forms of religious anti-Judaism, the many medieval charges brought against Jews, the iconography of antisemitism, as well as modern, racist antisemitism and the myriad conspiracy theories about Jews that still grip the fevered imagination of antisemites. Throughout the course we will pay attention to the multiple ways Jews and Judaism have been used throughout history by religious and social critics to describe their own disaffection with the age in which they lived.

  • 280B: Class #41556
  • 285B: Class #25034
John M. Efron
2303 Dwinelle
Th 10-12
280C: Early Modern Worlds

Strikingly many in number and research interests, early modernists in our department also range across much of the globe: Latin and North America, East and South Asia, and the better part of Europe. Our colleagues in neighboring departments in the Bay amplify this wealth. Anchored by Berry (Tokugawa Japan) and Peterson (Colonial North America), this seminar will draw widely on local expertise to explore some of the great comparative topics in early modern history — including, for example, urbanization and commerce; industrious revolutions and moral economies; climate change and society; law and international relations; transformations in warfare; consumption and material cultures; print and publishing; the family and demographic transitions; religious upheaval. The research interests of student participants will help drive the syllabus. Two short and one longer writing assignments. Auditors who attend regularly are welcome.

Mary Elizabeth Berry, Mark A. Peterson
Dwinelle 3104
Wed 3-5pm
Class #: 42368
280D: Historical Perspectives on Medicine, Health, and Society

This graduate seminar introduces students to the modern history of medicine with a focus on the relationship between medicine and society. The course asks students to engage with recent and established research in the history of medicine roughly from the nineteenth century to the present. Topics include changing concepts of disease and health, medical concepts of the body, race and medical practice, gendered diseases, scientific medicine and its consequences, exclusion and inclusion in the emergence of the medical profession, the rise of the hospital, practices of medicalization and pathologization, medical technology and identity, power and medical institutions, capitalism and medicine, and biological citizenship. We will pay special attention to the ways in which race, gender, and sexuality have intersected the history of medicine since the 19th century. History graduate students interested in the history of medicine and science, US history, the history of health and health care, the history of the body, and the history of race, gender, and class as well as graduate students from any discipline in the humanities, the social sciences, and the natural sciences are welcome.

Sandra Eder
2231 Dwinelle
Tu 10-12
Class #: 25025
280E: The Atlantic World

This seminar offers a selective introduction to recent literature on the history of the Atlantic world, c. 1400-1888. We will explore the linked histories between and among the various “Atlantic worlds” scholars have identified operating in this vast region, ranging from Europe to West Africa to North and South America and the Caribbean. Topics include empires and states; war, trade, and slavery; maritime history; capitalism and Atlantic economies; environmental history; migration, identity, and diaspora; cultural encounter and religion; the interrelated histories of gender, sexuality, and race; and revolt, rebellion, and revolution.

Elena A. Schneider
3104 Dwinelle
W 12-2
Class #: 25027
280F: Historiography of South Asia

This seminar will explore different historiographical approaches to the study of South Asian history, stressing both the historical anthropology of historiography (beginning with pre-colonial forms of historical representation, as described for example in "Textures of Time," then examining Chakrabarty's account of Sir Jadunath Sarkar, and then moving on to post-colonial and even more contemporary forms of historical writing), and how the work of students in the class reflects and reworks these historical examples, precursors, and currents. This will be a working seminar for graduate students engaged in thinking through and experimenting with their own historiographic trajectories.

Nicholas Dirks
2303 Dwinelle
T 4-6pm
Class #: 41968
280F: Civic Culture in Late Imperial and Modern China

From the literati art of “doing good” to the communist slogan to “serve the people,” various notions of civic virtue and vice have shaped public life in Chinese society. This course explores the evolution of discourse and practice concerned with the public good in China from the seventeenth through the twentieth century. We will engage foundational and recent scholarship on such topics as charity and disaster relief, civic education and citizenship, public ritual and religion, commercial wealth and respectability, public health and hygiene, and wartime mobilization and militarization. Requirements include weekly responses, oral presentations, and a final paper on a selected theme.

Brooks Jessup
2231 Dwinelle
Th 2-4
Class #: 32340
280H/285H: Africa From The Eighteenth to The Twentieth Century

This seminar investigates major themes and historiographic debates of African history from about 1700 to the end of the twentieth century. It begins with an exploration of the making and transformation of 18th century communities. Some of the topics in this section include slave trade and slavery; processes of precolonial political formation and administration; social-cultural organization, production, commerce and accumulation. Topics on the colonial encounter and its aftermath will include a re-evaluation of colonial systems of administration; reflections on African intermediaries; colonialism and multiracial subjectivities; idioms of health, disease and colonial medicine; gender, education and notions of respectability; land, migrant labor and colonial economies; ethnicity, religion and the makings of genocide; nation states, civil wars and democratic shifts. A long paper (25-35 pages) and periodic oral presentations will be required. The seminar is also offered as a 285H. This option requires participation in the first six weeks of the seminar. For this group, the balance of the semester will be devoted to the preparation of their research paper.

  • 280H: Class #25030 
  • 285H: Class #41217
Tabitha Kanogo
122 Wheeler
Tu 2-4
280U: Mary: A Global Icon

The objective of this graduate seminar (undergraduates are welcome) is to offer a global view of the Virgin Mary that cuts across periods and faiths as well as national and geographic divides. The first part of the seminar traces the conography and veneration of the Virgin Mary from theological and historical perspectives. The Byzantine, Western medieval, and the Islamic traditions are to be examined. The second part considers the later history of Marian images and veneration through case studies from around the world: the Black Madonna, the Virgin of Guadalupe, icons of Mary in Ethiopia, and the miraculous statue of the Virgin in the Philippines.

Diliana Angelova
2303 Dwinelle
W 10-12
Class #: 41570
280U/285U: Politics, Culture and the City at the Dawn of the Modern World

What is the relationship between the built environment of the city, the cultures of its inhabitants, and the practices of their politics? How did cities around the world become the crucible in which modern political regimes were forged? This course examines these questions through the study of the politics and cultures of the early modern city. It has two related objectives. We will study the ways in which historians have narrated the history of early modern cities; in this way, we will seek to understand differing paths to the modern world through the city as both spatial and conceptual entity. As part of this inquiry we will read a wide variety of historical studies of early modern cities around the globe, paying close attention to themes of both comparison and connection. This course will require regular weekly responses from all participants and culminate in a twenty-page final research paper on either a city or a theme of particular interest.

  • 280U: Class #25031
  • 285U: Class #32944
Abhishek Kaicker
3104 Dwinelle
Th 12-2
283: How to Write an Academic Article in History

This course will have both practical and theoretical components. On the practical side, students will begin the course with some piece of research that they have written previously—a 285 paper, an undergraduate thesis, etc.—and over the course of the semester we will work to turn these drafts into publishable articles. This will involve careful consideration not only of the students’ own research and writing, but of the formal characteristics of academic articles and what makes for a successful scholarly intervention. On the theoretical side, we will examine the genre of the article itself, its history and politics, so that students emerge with a better understanding of an academic genre that we tend to take for granted. By the end of the semester, I hope that each student will have an article ready for submission, and that each student will have a better understanding of our scholarly ecosystem and what publishing an article means.

Ethan H. Shagan
3104 Dwinelle
M 2-5
Class #: 25032
285D: Nineteenth-Century America

This seminar will serve as a writing workshop for students engaged in independent historical research projects set in the United States (or in lands that would later fall under the sovereignty of United States) during the long nineteenth century. Research projects need not overlap in theme, focus, or approach, and we will not discuss secondary literature on the period. Instead, our group meetings and collective work will be geared entirely toward the task of helping one another produce an interesting, original, and well-written essay on a historical question of individual interest.

David Henkin
2231 Dwinelle
W 2-5
Class #: 25037
285U: European Cultural History

This is a workshop course broadly centered on cultural history although all are welcome. I offer hands-on, step-by-step guidance through the process of identifying, researching, and presenting the fruits of a manageable research project. In the first few weeks we will concentrate on basic structural and esthetic choices: finding articles that might serve as models; writing a first paragraph and a last paragraph and eventually an introductory and concluding section; deciding on an audience and on a narrative voice; articulating the paper’s relationship to an existing historiography Later in the seminar we will constitute ourselves as an editorial collective that will read rough drafts and suggest revisions aimed at making the paper acceptable to our imaginary “journal.” The aim is to have a draft of a publishable paper for a real journal by May. For those topics on which I can offer no expertise we will rely, as I have in the past in my 285s, on the expertise of colleagues in this and other departments. Small grants-in-aid for research material will be available as needed.

Thomas W. Laqueur
3104 Dwinelle
Tu 9-12
Class #: 41571
290: Science Colloquium: History of Science

This is a 1-credit S/U graduate course in history of science, accompanying the history of science colloquium and the activities of the working groups. It meets on Thursday, 4-6 pm (see the calendar on the CSTMS website). Meetings consist of: invited lecture on special topics, followed by an extended session of questions and answers; informal discussions over the work of affiliated scholars; and roundtable sessions on broader methodological issues in the history of science and technology. The course brings you up to the research front in these topics, interacting with historians on subjects that currently engage their scholarship. Attendance is compulsory.

Massimo Mazzotti
470 Stephens
Th 4-6
Class #: 41572
C251: Science and Technology Studies Research Seminar

This interdisciplinary seminar is aimed at graduate students in the field of science and technology studies who are undertaking significant writing projects, such as dissertation chapters, journal articles, or conference papers. This seminar will serve two functions. First, it will act as a writing lab in which students will share their projects for discussion, critique, and feedback from the perspective of science and technology studies literature as well as students’ home
disciplines. Second, it will help develop students’ professional skills, particularly the ability to speak across academic disciplines about one’s areas of expertise. Above all, the seminar will be grounded in a collaborative learning community where students will share their knowledge, ideas, and tips with each other in a highly interdisciplinary, constructive environment.

This is one of the two required courses for the designated emphasis in STS, and these students are given enrollment priority. However, graduate students are welcomed from any discipline in the humanities, the social sciences, engineering, the natural and physical sciences, and professional schools across campus, even if they are not in the designated emphasis, subject to the availability of space in the class. Ideally students will have passed their PhD examinations and
advanced to candidacy.

Morgan G. Ames
2303 Dwinelle
M 12-2
Class #: 25021