Undergraduate Courses

Spring 2014
R1B.001: Reading and Composition in History: Religion and Power in Modern American History
  • This course satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement.
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

Why does religion have such a prominent place in American politics and society? Compared to other industrialized countries, America is uniquely devout. By virtually every measure—belief in God, church attendance, frequency of prayer, for example—Americans are more religious than people in comparable societies. Religion in the United States is also unusually public. In recent elections, both Democrats and Republicans have publically touted their religious credentials. The American electorate has repeatedly expressed that they would vote for a woman, a Jew, an African American, a lesbian, or a Muslim before they would vote for an atheist. Why does religion occupy such a position of power in the United States? This class will focus on the theme of religious power in American history. We will explore the cultural and political authority of religious leaders from 1860 to the present in order to understand the origins of our contemporary cultural and political landscape. Among the themes we will discuss are: how religious leaders responded to Darwinism and evolution; the debates over religious practice in schools; how the United States transitioned from a “Protestant” country to a “Judeo-Christian” nation; how the government mobilized religion during the Cold War; and how the rise of Evangelicals transformed American politics.

This course satisfies the second half of the university’s reading and composition requirement. We will focus on developing the basic skills of a liberal arts education: reading critically and writing persuasively. The course will also serve as an introduction to historical research and will focus on the components of historical thinking: change over time, causality, context, complexity, and contingency. The first half of the class will require students to write brief essays focused on developing these basic skills. These short writing assignments will ask students to analyze one or more of the assigned texts. In the second half of the course, students will write a longer research essay based on texts of their choosing. At the end of the course students will demonstrate their mastery of the various components of historical thinking in a clearly written essay.

Gene Zubovich
134 DWINELLE
WF 4-530
CCN: 39002
R1B.002: Reading and Composition in History: Ethnicity, Nationalism, and History in Modern East Asia
  • This course satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement.
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

This is a reading and composition seminar that examines the interrelated and oft-conflated concepts of ethnicity and nationalism in China, Japan, and Korea for the Twentieth and Twenty-First centuries. What does it mean to belong to one of these groups? How do they relate to each other, or to non-East Asian states and societies? How can their understanding of these terms be historically compared? We will attempt to grapple with these and other abstract questions in a grounded and coherent way, in order to develop critical thinking, reading and writing skills. 

This course satisfies the second half of the university’s reading and composition requirement. We will focus on developing the basic skills of a liberal arts education: reading critically and writing persuasively. The course will also serve as an introduction to historical research and will focus on the components of historical thinking: change over time, causality, context, complexity, and contingency. The first half of the class will require students to write brief essays focused on developing these basic skills. These short writing assignments will ask students to analyze one or more of the assigned texts. In the second half of the course, students will write a longer research essay based on texts of their choosing. At the end of the course students will demonstrate their mastery of the various components of historical thinking in a clearly written essay.

Jonathan Tang
233 DWINELLE
TuTh 8-930
CCN: 39003
R1B.003: Reading and Composition in History: A History of Nature: Exploitation, Guardianship, and Awe
  • This course satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement.
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.
There is a growing global consensus that humans must take better care of the environment.  Rarely, however, do we stop to ponder what we mean by environment or, indeed, nature. In this course we will examine histories of rapacious exploitation, fierce conservation, and contemplative wonderment that gave us the very words we use today. By comparing evolving ideas of what 'nature' meant to different civilizations we will seek to uncover how the natural world has been represented philosophically, culturally, and politically over time.  In addition to providing a conceptual overview of nature in global history, this course will focus on three case studies of 'environmental history' from the United States, China, and Southeast Asia.  In the process, we will discover how our current understanding of the natural world as a global system full of abundant resources worth conserving is the result of many hard fought battles and daring conceptual leaps.  

The aim of the seminar is to develop critical thinking, reading and writing skills. The class will be writing intensive and satisfies the second half of the university's reading and composition requirement. In the first half of the semester, students will undertake short writing assignments – responding to the readings or analyzing particular archival sources - to develop their expository and analytic writing skills. In the second half of the semester, students will produce an 8 and a 10 page research paper using several sources and we will critique each others work in class. By the end of the course, students will have learned how to assess source material and use it to construct historical arguments. Through the development of critical reading skills and writing techniques, students will learn to take positions on the broad historical issues addressed in the class.

Matthew Berry
233 DWINELLE
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39006
R1B.004: Reading and Composition in History: Ancient Medicine and the Pre-Modern Body: Sex, Drugs and Disease
  • This course satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement.
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

This course examines ancient theories and practices of medicine, that is, how Greeks and Romans understood their own bodies and put that knowledge to use. We will investigate ancient views on pathologies, treatment, nutrition, psychology, sexual health, and psychotropic substances. Considerable attention will be given to how perceptions of the body were socially constructed and reinforced norms within these societies, e.g., gender roles, sexual dynamics, and social hierarchies. The course will also cover the reception of ancient medicine and the ultimate shift towards modern medical practices. Students will leave the course with a general understanding of ancient biological knowledge and medical techniques, as well as a familiarity with the most important authorities on these subjects. 

This course satisfies the second half of the university’s reading and composition requirement. We will focus on developing the basic skills of a liberal arts education: reading critically and writing persuasively. The course will also serve as an introduction to historical research and will focus on the components of historical thinking: change over time, causality, context, complexity, and contingency. The first half of the class will require students to write brief essays focused on developing these basic skills. These short writing assignments will ask students to analyze one or more of the assigned texts. In the second half of the course, students will write a longer research essay based on texts of their choosing. At the end of the course students will demonstrate their mastery of the various components of historical thinking in a clearly written essay.

Norman Underwood
TuTh 3-530P
202 Wheeler
CCN: 39009
R1B.005: Crime, Alienation, and the Street: Cities in South Asia
  • This course satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement.
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.
When Gandhi said that “India does not live in its towns but in its villages,” he was agreeing with the conventional wisdom of his contemporaries, both Indian and British. In this class, we will disregard this view and focus instead on South Asia’s mesmerizing, contentious cities. We will read a love poem about a watermelon; watch movies about gangsters and bored housewives; and encounter shrewd slackers and homicidal, telepathic detectives. Alongside the work of historians and other scholars, these texts will help us think about what makes modernity modern, what makes cities urban, and what makes a colony colonial.
 
The aim of the seminar is to develop critical thinking, reading and writing skills. The class will be writing intensive and satisfies the second half of the university's reading and composition requirement. In the first half of the semester, students will undertake short writing assignments – responding to the readings or analyzing particular archival sources - to develop their expository and analytic writing skills. In the second half of the semester, students will produce an 8 and a 10 page research paper using several sources and we will critique each others work in class. By the end of the course, students will have learned how to assess source material and use it to construct historical arguments. Through the development of critical reading skills and writing techniques, students will learn to take positions on the broad historical issues addressed in the class.
David S. Boyk
186 BARROWS
WF 4-530P
CCN: 39012
R1B.006: The Kind of Problem a City Is: Premodern Urban Growth and Development
  • This course satisfies the second half of the Reading and Composition Requirement.
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

Early urban centers were crucial to the creation and dissemination of cultural, political, religious, and socioeconomic developments.   We will look at primary and secondary source materials on early urban centers around the world as we consider questions such as:   what criteria do we use to determine what a “city” is, what are urbanism and urbanization and how do they differ, how do we interpret the data of early sources which often do not collect data directly relevant to the questions modern historians ask.  We will discuss what tools and methodologies enable us to interpret available data on patterns of development and socialization, economic activity, crime, disease, resource management, and systems of administration and control.  A comparative perspective is encouraged.

The aim of the seminar is to develop critical thinking, reading and writing skills. The class will be writing intensive and satisfies the second half of the university's reading and composition requirement. In the first half of the semester, students will undertake short writing assignments – responding to the readings or analyzing particular archival sources - to develop their expository and analytic writing skills. In the second half of the semester, students will produce an 8 and a 10 page research paper using several sources and we will critique each others work in class. By the end of the course, students will have learned how to assess source material and use it to construct historical arguments. Through the development of critical reading skills and writing techniques, students will learn to take positions on the broad historical issues addressed in the class.

Amanda D Buster
TuTh 8-9:30
222 WHEELER
CCN: 39014
4B: Medieval Europe

A saint picked up worms from the road to keep them safe from harm. A ruler executed 4500 prisoners of war. Jerusalem was conquered in a bloodbath. Flagellants bloodied their own bodies to prepare for the Millennium. Such incidents are all representative of the middle ages. The period is puzzling, contradictory, difficult, and endlessly fascinating. It is also profoundly important, because its 1000 years saw the development of principles and institutions fundamental to later European, American, and Latin American societies. We will begin with the fall of the Roman Empire and then follow the history of one particular people (the Franks) whose own empire gave Europe a lasting belief in its historical destiny. We will then discuss the First Crusade, changing expressions of religious belief and practice (including heresy and the church's responses to it), the rise of states, the appearance of popular rebellion, and the literary culture of the aristocracy. A good deal of attention is also given to the position of women in society and the distinctive social values and religious piety that grew out of it. Other than a good, dense textbook, readings are entirely translated primary sources – generally whole works rather than excerpted snippets.  

Geoffrey Koziol
101 BARKER
TuTh 11-1230
CCN: 39015
5: European Civilization from the Renaissance to the Present

This course introduces students to the history of Europe since the late Renaissance, surveying the landmark events, dates, people, and historical processes of European history over the last half-millennium.  We begin in 1492 with the European conquest of the New World and the development of the “new monarchies” in Europe, and move rapidly through the Protestant and Catholic Reformations and Religious Wars, the development of strong and increasingly national states, the intellectual revolutions in science and philosophy, the French Revolution, industrialization, liberalism and socialism, colonial empires, the world wars of the 20th century, the Cold War, decolonization, and the formation of the European Union.  Throughout the course, we will focus on the reading and interpretation of primary sources, using an array of documents to introduce students to the sources of historical knowledge and the interpretive practices of historical thinking  – from theological tracts to accounts of conquest, from philosophical texts to political treatises, from descriptions of social conditions to speeches, memoirs, letters, and visual artifacts.  Themes on which we shall focus include the changing nature of political authority and practices and the changing expressions of collective identities in Europe.  Requirements include attendance at two weekly lectures and a two-hour section meeting devoted to discussing primary sources, several short papers, a midterm, and a final.  

Peter Sahlins
120 LATIMER
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39033
6B: Introduction to Chinese History from the Mongols to Mao

This survey of early modern and modern Chinese history covers the rise and fall of three major conquest dynasties (the Mongol Yuan, the Chinese Ming, and the Manchu Qing), the ultimate collapse of the dynastic system, and the emergence of the nation-state in the twentieth century (first under the Nationalist Party, then under the Communist Party). Along the way, we will examine encounters between the latter territorial empires and the maritime empires of the West, increasing commercialization and urbanization, and the impact of various social revolutions. Students will be required to attend lectures, take part in discussion sessions, and read up to 150 pages each week in a variety of materials, with a strong emphasis on primary sources in English translation. Graded assignments will include weekly reading responses, active participation in discussion, two short papers, and two exams. There are no prerequisites.

Alexander C. Cook
126 BARROWS
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39063
7B: The United States from Civil War to Present

This course is an introduction to the history of the United States from the Civil War to the present. It is also an introduction to the ways historians look at the past and think about evidence. Rather than a matter of memorizing names and dates, history is about framing the truest and most complete stories we can to explain wide ranges of human experience. Although this course will touch on many subjects, it will track three main narrative lines. One, from the abolition of slavery to the election of Obama, will trace changing regulations of and ideas about race, ethnicity, gender, religion, and other cultural and political markers of identity. The second, the rise and fall of industrial society, will examine major economic transitions, as the fulcrum of U.S. economic life shifted from agriculture to industry and then to services. The third, from Sand Creek and Little Bighorn to 9-11 and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, will focus on the rise and uses of American power in the world. Lectures, readings, discussions, films, and writing assignments (and, yes, midterm and final exams) will stress various parts of these stories and also sharpen critical reading, interpretation, research, and writing skills.

Syll, spring 2014.pdf
Robin L. Einhorn
WHEELER AUD
MWF 11-12P
CCN: 39084
8A: Becoming Latin America, 1492 to 1824

This course covers the history of Latin America from the time of Columbus to around 1870. It thus reckons with almost four centuries of encounter, colonization, accommodation, and struggle that frame the ways that Latin America was becoming Latin American. The approach is a blend of narratives (of conquest, reform, independence) and eight themes: land, labor, and demography; race and ethnicity; religion; Church and Crown; trade and global economic systems; gender and family; urban life and culture; and identity (creole, indigenous, mestizo). Each theme will be taken up twice: once for the period roughly 1550-1700, and once for the period roughly 1700 to 1810. Lectures and a mix of secondary and primary source readings and images produced during the colonial period serve as points of entry for discussion in section meetings. Final grades are based on two short papers, a mid-term exam, a final exam, and participation in section meetings.

Margaret Chowning
180 TAN
TuTh 330-5P
CCN: 39168
11: India
  • This course has been cancelled.
The Staff
223 Dwinelle
MWF 10-11A
CCN: 39183
12: The Middle East

The current popular uprisings in the Middle East underscore the dynamism and vitality of a region that has played a central role in human history since ancient times. This course introduces students to the major historical developments in this region from the rise of Islam to the present. It is designed to help you contextualize current developments and to give you the tools to educate yourself on your own. It also prepares you for more advanced courses in the Dept. of History (such as 109C) or courses in other departments that require some background in the history of the Middle East. There are two other benefits to this course. First, it explores what it means to do history by explicitly referring to various approaches and methodologies used to construct narratives about change over time. Second, the cultivation of a historical sensibility is backed up by training in critical thinking, writing, and thematic synthesis -skills that you will need regardless of career path.

Themes: The diverse peoples of Southwest Asia/North Africa (a region recently labeled "The Middle East") have a rich and remarkable history. They established some of the earliest centers of agriculture-based civilizations and urban life, carried the messages of the world's three monotheistic religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam), and served as the economic and cultural middlemen of the world system during the medieval and early modern periods. The first part of this course provides a brief outline of these and other themes up to the Seventeenth Century. The second part focuses on the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, an era of intense social, economic and cultural transformation that led to the demise of the Ottoman and other empires and the emergence of a new state system, most of it under the colonial domination of Britain and France. The remainder of the course (Parts III, IV) is devoted to an exploration of the forces that have shaped the Middle East during the Twentieth Century such as the colonial encounter and rise of nationalist movements, the discovery of oil, regional conflicts and the Cold War, the rise of political Islam, and U.S. military intervention. Throughout, the major themes will be illustrated through case studies of specific countries as well as through the study of the causes and consequences of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the Iranian Revolution, and the Gulf Wars.

Requirements: Mid-term and final exams, brief writing assignments, attending lectures, and participation in discussion sections.

12 Syllabus 2014.pdf
Thomas W. Hill
3106 Etcheverry
MWF 12-1P
CCN: 39192
24: A Superpower Transformed: History, Strategy, and American Foreign Policy in the 1970s

The United States began the 1970s mired in the Vietnam War and ended it waylaid by oil crises, economic disarray, and resurgent Cold War hostilities. For historians and others, the 1970s have long been a forgotten—and forgettable—decade. This seminar suggests a different perspective. The 1970s, students will learn, brought great changes, especially for the role of the United States in the world. The decade forced Americans to confront the stirrings of globalization, and it encouraged them to contemplate the possibilities of universal human rights—as both an ideology and a foreign-policy goal. While the Cold War still endured, the maligned 1970s forged new and distinctive patterns of "post-Cold War" politics, some of which endure through to the present day. Students will encounter the 1970s through a book manuscript that Professor Sargent is currently preparing for publication. Besides engaging the history and historiography of the 1970s, the seminar will also give students the opportunity to see how a historian goes about the work of writing a book manuscript. Reading will comprise approximately one chapter per week plus one or two historical documents. This is a Course Threads Theme Seminar. This seminar is part of the Food for Thought Seminar Series.

Daniel Sargent
3104 Dwinelle
F 3-4P
CCN: 39213
24: Chinese Film on Contemporary Issues

This seminar will examine Chinese films (documentaries, semi-autobiographical ruminations, and feature films) that speak to contemporary political concerns.
The movies of Jia Zhangke will be featured prominently, along with the early films of Zhang Yimou, and more recent blockbusters (e.g. "Confucius" with Chow Yun-fat). Taiwanese movies will be featured alongside Chinese movies. If this seminar is over-subscribed, we will depend upon instructor approval, but otherwise the course is open. This seminar is a Berkeley Arts Seminar. Admission to the on-campus arts events included in this course will be provided at no cost to students.

Michael Nylan
3205 Dwinelle
W 11-12P
CCN: 39222
30: Science and Society

Science as we know is the product of a historical process. This course examines the relationship of science and society from antiquity to the present. We will trace theories and thoughts about the natural world through ancient Greece, the Middle Ages, the Scientific Revolution, the Enlightenment, and the modern era. During the course, we will explore the development of the concept of science as practiced and understood in our culture today, the historical role of science, and its relationship with society, culture, politics, economy, religion, and the environment through lectures, readings, and discussions.

Rebecca Kaplan
160 Dwinelle
MWF 2-3P
CCN: 39225
39P: Sex, Sexuality and Society

This course will explore, in historical perspective, why and how the nature of sexual difference, the control of reproduction, and the policing and regulation of sexual desires, practices and pleasures have loomed so large in the organization of society and culture. We will discuss the history of foundational concepts—sex, sexuality, desire, —as well as more specific topics: the history of erotic literature and art, east and west; the regulation of specific practices and norms—homosexuality, auto-eroticism, birth control, abortion, age of consent; the origins of modern sexual identities (LGBT); the role of science and medicine in the history of sex, sexuality and society. Many weeks we will have a guest for our second session.

Thomas W. Laqueur
3205 Dwinelle
TuTh 12-2
CCN: 39242
39Q: Education in Society: Universities as Agents of Change, Ivory Towers, or Knowledge Factories

 

From their medieval origins to the present, universities have been among the most admired and most criticized institutions. What are their functions? What is the role of higher education and free speech on campus and in society? Who should universities serve? Do they increase social mobility or social stratification? To what uses should they put the knowledge they create? How should they interact with government agencies and corporations? Through discussions of readings, this seminar will explore the structures and functions of universities, their multiple and changing roles in society, and the reasons why they have often become the battlegrounds for new ideas about the purposes of education, the uses of knowledge, and the future directions of society.

 

Judith Brown
3205 Dwinelle
MW 12-2P
CCN: 40092
84: The Origins of Historical Writing in the Ancient West

The first historians of western civilization emerged in Israel, Greece, and Rome in the first millennium BC. They preserved information about the great empires, major personalities, and crucial events now lost to us; they established our major narratives of archetypal events such as the battle of Marathon, the foundation of Rome, and the spread of Christianity; and they have all been accused repeatedly of gross dishonesty in their portrayal of events. They are worthy of the attention of all students of both ancient history and historical writing.This course will explore how these historians constructed and presented their narratives. 

David J. DeVore
3205 DWINELLE
F 10-12P
CCN: 39243
100E.001: Cuba in World History

This course surveys Cuban history, culture, and politics from the fifteenth century to the present.  We will examine both the outsized role the island has played in world history and the dramatic ways world history has refracted through the island’s turbulent past.  Over this long timespan, Cuba has had relationships of colonial status with Spain, a client role with the United States, and dependency with the Soviet Union.  At the same time, the island has played a critical part in global flows of capital, goods, people, and ideas that have profoundly altered world politics, economics, demographics, and cultures.  How has Cuban history and culture been shaped by its unique position in global geopolitics, at the crossroads of Europe, the Americas, and Africa?  How have inhabitants of Cuba struggled against recurring and ongoing relationships of colonialism and dependency with foreign powers? And finally, how have inhabitants of Cuba defined what it means to be Cuban both because of and in spite of these global forces?  In answering these questions, we will draw on a wide array of texts (historians’ interpretations, contemporary accounts, speeches, literature, art, music, dance, and film) from long before the famous Revolution of 1959 to well after.  Our goal will be to interrogate the broad sweep of Cuba’s past and the ongoing and fiercely contested process of its interpretation.

Elena A. Schneider
110 WHEELER
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39298
100E.002: Latin America and the World

If anything knits together the diverse region known as Latin America, it is a shared experience of imperialism and neo-imperialism on the world stage. This course will examine the ways in which the nations of Latin America have managed that fate: resisting it, embracing it, and trying to reform it. We will examine cases of clear interventions by foreign empires, from France in nineteenth-century Mexico to the U.S. in Central America and Chile in the late twentieth. But we will also look at more subtle forms of economic and cultural influence, and consider the ways that Latin American nations from Cuba to Costa Rica tried to limit the power of the U.S. and project their own influence. We will end with a discussion of transnational issues in contemporary Latin America, including the drugs trade. Class will feature frequent debates with student participation.

Patrick Iber
88 Dwinelle
MWF 11-12P
CCN: 40095
100H: A Short History of New Social Agents in Post-Cold War Africa

At the end of the Cold War in 1989, Francis Fukuyama declared “the end of history”, asserting the ideological triumph of Western liberal democracy over all other political forms. Has history ended? Nearly 25 years later, it appears that the imposition of the neo-liberal market around the world has not eliminated, but expanded forms of political contestation. This is especially true of Africa.

This course begins by problematizing Fukuyama’s claim. We will do this by exploring the multiple, nonlinear, interconnected paths of new social agents, who have come into being against the backdrop of intensified global integration and capitalist development. Since the end of the Cold War, parts of Africa have experienced the dissolution of previously functioning local and vernacular economies, precipitating mass migrations both within and across national borders. Likewise, many of Africa’s urban metropolises have seen the proliferation of slums due to de-industrialization, jobless growth, and the increasing inaccessibility of formal economic opportunities. Such major historical and geographical changes have produced various forms of politics and social actors capable of contesting the status quo.

The course, therefore, seeks to explore the living history of everyday agency and contestation in Africa, which offer a distinct challenge to Fukuyama’s claim. We will focus on non-state social actors across the continent –social movements, community organizations, millenarian movements, youth groups, “terrorist” groups, pirates, gangs and mobs as well as NGOs and aid organizations – that powerfully articulate local needs. Discussions will seek to reveal the everyday realities of Africans in conditions of poverty, from which such actors often emerge. We will explore the threats social agents face and present in terms of political and human security – and how these in turn, provide challenges to governance, and the broader global political economy. Primary topics will include struggles over land and natural resources; labor and livelihoods; ethnicity and religion; urban and rural social movements; and other challenges to the state and market that vividly illustrate the rich contemporary history of Africa.

 
Leopold Podlashuc
100 WHEELER
MWF 3-4P
CCN: 40104
100U.001: Ideas of Sexuality. From Antiquity to the Present

In this introduction to the critical study of sexuality, we will examine the ways in which notions of body, gender, and sexuality have been organized from Antiquity to the present. Focusing on the geographical regions of Europe and the United States, we will use history, literature, and theory to deepen our understanding of these transformations.

The course will follow a chronological order with emphasis on five historical time-periods: Antiquity, Middle Ages, Enlightenment, 19th century and 20th century. In these time-periods, we will pay special attention to political, religious, intellectual, medical, and social factors. We will examine the emergence, transformation, and contestation of various sexual categories and gender relations: the cultural norms of heterosexuality, gender performance, bodily perceptions, as well as how the carnevalesque has been used to create and disturb norms of gender and sexuality.

By focusing our attention on the challenged and changing meanings of sexuality, this course aims to strengthen your skills of critical analysis.

We also expect to have lots of fun!

Monica Libell
200 Wheeler
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39299
100U.002: Big History
A growing body of interdisciplinary scholarly work has begun to attempt an integrated history of the universe from the Big Bang to the 21st century. Varieties of “big history” or deep history” have been especially influential among scholars working across the humanities and various physical sciences. Since the physical sciences have generally devoted themselves to the non-human past, and since most historians have confined themselves to the study of human events, we will be paying special attention to the difficulties that the interaction of human and natural environments have posed for theory and research. This course will introduce students to current debates by tracing the intellectual history of “big history” from the heyday of Universal History in the 18th and 19th centuries to its newfound popularity today. The course will be divided between lecture and class discussion of weekly materials. Students will be responsible for discussions, two brief papers, and a final blue-book exam.
Kerwin L. Klein
110 WHEELER
TuTh 1230-2P
CCN: 40098
100U.003: Frontier History
From Hadrian's Wall and the Roman limites, to the American West in the 19th c., to contemporary Chinese jurisdictional claims in the South China Sea, borders and frontiers are universal phenomena best understood from a broadly comparative perspective. On the basis of case examples from all regions and time periods, this course will explore a variety of related topics: territorialization as a historical process; frontier law; the conflicting military and political needs on the frontier; representations of the frontier in literature; the nature of borderland societies; theories and approaches used historically to legitimate boundaries and territorial claims (from natural border theories to modern international law); etc. Course requirements: occasional quizzes (to encourage keeping up with readings & lectures), as well as weekly assignments and presentations that build up to a final project/paper organized around a specific case study. Group collaboration will be encouraged. We will have discussions on Fridays..
Nicolas Tackett
3205 Dwinelle
MWF 9-10A
CCN: 40101
104: The Craft of History

History 104 is a course designed for history majors, or prospective majors, to master the skills necessary to succeed in their chosen discipline and to enhance their understanding of the nature of historical inquiry.   By taking this course, you will improve your ability to meet the challenges of upper level history courses and prepare yourself for the advanced research and writing expected in History 103 and 101, the senior honors thesis sequence.   History 104 is taught in one lecture and two section meetings per week, emphasizing hands-on learning. There will be no exams, and the reading assignments are relatively light, in order to give you time to work with the professor and GSIs on asking historical questions, finding research topics, locating and organizing primary and secondary source materials, developing an argument, experimenting with various forms of writing, and crafting a polished essay.  Grading will be based on section participation and a series of writing assignments building toward a 10-12 page original historical essay.

Mark A. Peterson
101 MOFFITT
Tu 3:30-5:00P
CCN: 39500
106A: The Roman Republic

“I found Rome city of brick and left it a city of marble,” boasted the first Roman emperor, Augustus. It was to be the end of the Republic. In this class, we shall investigate how Rome grew from a village of farmers into an Empire of provinces between the eighth and first centuries BCE, but not without destroying its beloved Republic in civil war. The lecture course familiarizes students with Rome’s expansionist success into an empire, first within Italy, and later across Europe and throughout the Mediterranean. Within this narrative framework, we pay close attention to the political, economic, social, and culture impact Rome had on its territories, but also the influence foreign people, especially Greeks, had on Roman daily life. We will want to explore excitingly new models of power, for cities, kings, usurpers, and pirates and investigate more closely the dealings of ordinary people and their lived, albeit anonymous, experience – that is, history from the top down and history from the bottom up.

 

In addition to attendance and participation, there will be short written assignments, a midterm, and a final.

Jelle Stoop
141 MCCONE
MWF 12-1P
CCN: 39501
111C: Political and Cultural History of Vietnam
  • A complete description is forthcoming. Please check back.
Alec G. Holcombe
88 DWINELLE
MWF 3-4PM
CCN: 39507
112B: Modern South Africa, 1652 - Present

This course will examine three centuries of South African history that account for the origin and development of the recently dismantled apartheid regime. Our aim is to understand the major historical forces that progressively shaped what became a turbulent socio-cultural, economic, political, and racial frontier. We will look at the nature of indigenous African societies in South Africa on the eve of European arrival; initial European settlements and the origins of competition for resources; expansionist trends among Dutch settlers and the responses of African societies; mfecane/difacane and its aftermath; the role of the frontier in shaping race relations; emergence of Afrikanerdom and the creation of Afrikaner republics; competing African/Boer/British nationalisms; corporate mining and its impact on labour migrancy; the Anglo-Boer war and the creation of the Union. The 20th century witnessed the formulation, articulation, and racialization of trade unions, the emergence of increased political mobilization among African, Afrikaner, and Indian populations. The course will examine the complex relationship between key protagonists, and the creation and dismantling of the apartheid apparatus. Course requirements will include a midterm exam (40%), one review paper (20%), and a final exam (40%).

Tabitha Kanogo
110 WHEELER
TuTh 11-1230P
CCN: 39516
116D: Twentieth-Century China

This course offers a narrative history of China from the first Sino-Japanese War (1894) to the present. Presentations will be organized in three ways: a chronological history of major events from 1895 to 2008, biographical studies of the lives of top political leaders (Sun, Chiang, Mao, Deng), and examinations of textual and non-textual materials. Attention will be focused on the transformation of China from empire to nation in the 20th century, Chinaís changing place in East Asia, and Chinese identity and aspirations in the globalizing world. Students are expected to attend lectures and discussion sections and complete the required readings (about two hundred pages each week) on schedule. Course assignments consist of an hour-long mid-term, three response papers based on the assigned readings, and a final examination. Final course grade will be assigned on the basis of 20% for the mid-term, 15% for each paper (3-5 pages) and 35% for the final examination.

Wen-hsin Yeh
126 BARROWS
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39525
118A: Japan, Archaeological Period to 1800

An exploration of society and ecology from the period of earliest settlement until the construction of the Tokugawa shogunate c. 1600. Includes the development of the classical imperial state, the formation of the medieval warrior governments, and the experience of mass civil war during the 16th century. We are concerned with the complex sources of power-land and food control, violence, family and class structures, literacy and knowledge, social contracts. We are also concerned with the complex expression of culture-in buildings and material objects, Shinto and Buddhist belief, myth and historical writing, poetry and fiction, drama and popular storytelling. The course draws on a rich variety of original texts (such as Tales of the Heike and The Tale of Genji) and includes extensive visual evidence. Two very short essays, one longer essay, a mid-term and a final examination. No prerequisites, all welcome.

Mary Elizabeth Berry
2 LECONTE
TuTh 9:30-11A
CCN: 39533
118C: Empire and Alienation: The 20th Century in Japan
 
After nearly two centuries of decline, China is quickly resuming its former position as the political, economic, and cultural center of East Asia. During the interim, that position was held by Japan. Having become the first non-Western society to successfully modernize itself in the late nineteenth century, twentieth-century Japan emerged as a fully modern power that exerted a transformative influence on East Asia and the world. After a brief overview of Japan’s nineteenth-century modernization, we will survey Japan’s twentieth-century history from the 1905 Russo-Japanese War through the Interwar, Pacific War, and Cold War periods. Special attention will be given to the particular forms of capitalism, imperialism, colonialism, fascism, democracy, and modernism that emerged as a result of Japan’s historical path to modernity. Taking a broader view, we will also assess the permanent imprints Japanese modernity has left on East Asia and the world.
George Lazopoulos
210 WHEELER
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39534
121B: The American Revolution

This course will explore the history of eastern North America and the West Indies in the second half of the 18th century, in order to determine what was "revolutionary" about this history, as well as what was not. We will, of course, examine the causes and consequences of the rebellion staged by thirteen of Britain's American colonies in the 1770s, including the makeshift construction of the United States, but we will also investigate the broader Atlantic context in which these events occurred, and consider their reverberations for places and peoples that did not voluntarily join the new United States.

Mark A. Peterson
213 Wheeler
TuTh 12:30-2 PM
CCN: 39537
122AC: Antebellum America: The Advent of Mass Society

Though the Civil War is often regarded as the second American Revolution, many of the institutions, ideologies, and practices that make up modern society and culture in the U.S. emerged more gradually during the decades that preceded the War.To understand the origins of such contemporary phenomena as the mass media, corporate capitalism, wage labor, the two-party system, “family values,” and racism, we need to trace their evolution in the first half of the nineteenth century.This course examines half a century of life in the United States (roughly from 1800 until the secession of the South), focusing on everyday life, popular culture, race relations, westward expansion, urbanization, class formation, participatory politics, religion, sexuality, print culture, and competing claims to wealth and power.Assigned readings will emphasize first-person narratives in which women and men of a range of ethnic and cultural backgrounds try to make sense of their own experiences against the backdrop of major social change.

Course requirements include two short papers on assigned readings, two in-class exams,and a standard, cumulative examination during finals week.

David Henkin
245 LI KA SHING
TuTh 330-5P
CCN: 39540
124B: The "American Century": The United States from World War II to the Great Recession

Please note: the course's required book list indicated here on the history website has been updated. For an accurate reading list, see the course website: http://www.feliciaviator.com/history124B

World War II is considered a watershed moment in American history for good reason. It marks the beginning of the “American Century,” when the United States emerged as a true world power. It was a country that had delivered a victory for the Allies, ended its Great Depression, and realized its capacity to advance its values around the globe. That the U.S. boasted an evolving economy, political stability, and military might meant it held a unique position on the world stage. But in spite of, and also because of, its new position as a global superpower, America’s future was more tenuous than ever before. This course will explore the American Century, its origins, its promises, its failures, and its triumphs. We will look closely at the principal economic, social, cultural, political, and geopolitical changes that the nation experienced as it moved from the heady postwar years through the sobering Great Recession, which marks the end of the American Century.

Felicia Viator
100 LEWIS
MWF 11-12P
CCN: 39543
125B: Soul Power: African American History 1861-1980

This course will examine the history of African Americans and race relations from the Civil War and Emancipation (1861-1865) through the modern African American Freedom Struggle (1954-1980), concluding with the post-Civil Rights-Black Power era (1980-2008). Social, cultural, and Social Change; the Harlem Renaissance; Civil Rights; Black Power; and, Beyond Civil Rights-Black Power. Possible texts: W.E.B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk; Booker T. Washington, Up From Slavery; Jacqueline Royster, Ida B. Wells; James Weldon Johnson, The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man; Assata, An Autobiography; Barack Obama, Dreams From My Father. There will be two exams -- a mid-term and a final -- and two short response papers.

Waldo E. Martin
106 Stanley
TuTh 11- 12:30 PM
CCN: 39546
127AC: California

After explaining how people have viewed California throughout its history, this course explores the unique environmental diversity of the region. Then, we examine the settlement of distinct regions of California and the particular indigenous communities that emerged in these places. Students will also explore the motives for and consequences of Spanish exploration, colonization, and the establishment of missions. From the arrival of the Spanish through the end of the nineteenth century, changes in the treatment and demography of the California Indians figure prominently. From the hide and tallow trade and the Mexican-American War to the Gold Rush, this course explores the expansive influence of Americans and how they conquered, dispossessed, exploited, and persecuted the region's old and new inhabitants. We will study the ways that the Gold Rush transformed, and students then learn how railroads, agriculture, immigration, and populist and progressive political movements continued to shape California and the nation. This course also examines the growth of San Francisco and Los Angeles in the first half of the twentieth century with special emphasis on the importance of water and the rise of Hollywood. The Great Depression and World War II also reflected periods of rapid change with the ";Okie"; migration, the Bracero Agreement, the Zoot Suit Riots, and the explosion of war industries jobs and urban populations. After World War II, we will turn our attention to the tensions between opportunity and exclusion, as demonstrated by the Watts Riots, the rise of the Chicano movement and the UFW, the impact of propositions on politics, and the causes and consequences of the Los Angeles Riots of 1992. Assigned readings include selections by Stephen Hackel, Louise Amelia Knapp Smith Clappe, Lawson Fusao Inada, Judy Yung, Elizabeth Armstrong, and D.J. Waldie.

Robert N. Chester
100 Lewis
MWF 12-1PM
CCN: 39561
130B: The United States and the World Since 1945

The number will change to History 130

This course will explore the history of U.S. relations with the external world during the second half of the twentieth century. It will emphasize the reciprocal nature of the American Republic's international relations, asking both how the external world has affected the historical development of the United States and how the U.S. has impacted the course of larger global events. This course will encompass the political and military interactions that have traditionally constituted diplomatic history, but it will also engage intellectual, cultural, social, and economic exchanges between Americans and non-Americans since the Second World War. The course will cover the U.S. role in the construction of postwar international order; the advent of the Cold War with the Soviet Union and its consequences for American society; the struggles to deal with foreign policy challenges outside the Cold War framework, including globalization and decolonization; and the search for an effective foreign policy after 1991, through to 9/11 and beyond. Students will be encouraged to consider how knowledge of the history of U.S. interactions with the world might inform the conduct of foreign policy in the future.

Daniel Sargent
2060 VALLEY LSB
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39564
C132B: Intellectual History of the United States since 1865

In this course we will examine key developments in U.S. thought since the middle of the nineteenth century, roughly beginning with the reception of Darwin in the 1860s. The story told in the class weaves together the history of science, the arts and popular culture, philosophy, and education. Our goal is to trace the effects that ideas--whether they are dominant, challenging, or nostalgic--have had on how Americans live together. The sciences and the arts have provided raw material for an on-going reconstruction of how to understand and interpret the world. They have inspired legislation and regulatory policies. We will consider how intellectual theories have contributed to the growing power of the U.S., to inequality and injustice, and to efforts to reform the nation. Key topics to be addressed include nineteenth-century revolutions in science and religion; the emergence of pragmatism, the first original contribution to philosophy developed within the United States; early twentieth-century debates about modernity, urbanization, economic development, democracy, and pluralism; the impact of psychoanalysis, other new theories of psychological development, and existentialism on U.S. life and thought after World War II; debates at the end of the twentieth century over race and multiculturality, national security and the military-industrial-academic complex, economic policy and growing income inequality relate to earlier debates covered in the class.

Richard Cándida-Smith
155 DONNER LAB
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39567
134A: The Age of the City, 1825-1933

This course examines the century of urban growth between 1825 and 1933, a period that witnessed the advent of big cities in the United States. With an emphasis on large metropolitan spaces (such as New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles), but also considering smaller ones (such as Boston, Pittsburg, and New Orleans), we will explore the ways that cities fostered unprecedented forms of personal interaction, popular culture, and class and social conflict. Elevated railroads, sports arenas, ethnic and “bohemian” enclaves, peep shows, taverns, skyscrapers, settlement houses, parks, parades, and other sites will illustrate the ways in which urban living was experienced and theorized. We will also explore a series of tensions centering on urban life: The city will be examined as a place of new, liberating opportunities, but also a strange environment that could elicit anxiety over the loss of traditional communal arrangements; a place of social, cultural, and economic diversity, but also of stratified lifestyles. But even as we trace common developments and experiences that informed life in big American cities, we will also explore how the city functioned within its region and within the nation at large, both in terms of economic and political developments and cultural configurations and trends. Indeed, a key theme of the course will be how common national or regional developments—such as war, economic depression, industrial capitalism, Jim Crow, and the advent of consumer culture—were uniquely experienced in an urban milieu.

Gabriel F. Milner
3108 ETCHEVERRY
MWF 2-3P
CCN: 39576
136AC: Gender Matters in 20th Century America

It’s easy to think of the 20th included flappers in short skirts chugging bootleg liquor, “Rosie the Riveter” with perfect lipstick wielding a sledgehammer, housewives popping Valiums and Birth Control Pills, magazines advertising sex in everything from condoms to refrigerators, hippies lying naked and high in Golden Gate Park, angry women burning bras, proud men parading down city streets in women’s ball-gowns, and the government perpetually trying to barge into bedrooms. Yet the 20th century did not invent gender matters. It was, however, the first century in which people began to argue that gender matters. For the first time, Americans began to see gender—and, by implication, sexuality—as a fundamental aspect of identity, something they demanded control over and increasingly defined as a public rather than a private matter. We will therefore view all the major events of the 20th context of gender, and we will do so as inclusively as possible. We will view the experiences of American men as well as women, and take into account the varying experiences of different races as well as those of different sexual orientations. We will also analyze the relation of gender to sex and sexuality, and examine the transformation of American society’s relationship to sex from the 19th century as the period that invented sex. The century that century—not just the most famous ones listed in this intro—in the to the 20th to the 21st century.

Alison Weiss
160 DWINELLE
MWF 1-2P
CCN: 39579
C139B: The American Immigrant Experience
  • A complete description is forthcoming. Please check back.
Mason, C
110 Barrows
MWF 3-4PM
CCN: 39582
C139C: From the Civil Rights Era to the New Gilded Age

From the Civil Rights Era to the New Gilded Age: Struggles for Racial and Economic Equality from "Double Victory" to "Occupy"

World War II lifted the United States from the Great Depression, launching it on a course of economic expansion that would endure for a quarter century afterwards. This long economic boom, in turn, helped underwrite and propel efforts on behalf of greater racial and economic equality. By the late 1960s, however, as the long economic boom fizzled out, America's march toward greater racial equality began to founder, while its march toward greater economic equality began to reverse course. The Civil Rights Era gave way to the New Gilded Age, a period marked by an increasing concentration of income and wealth in the hands of a decreasing percentage of the overall population. The course will explore the political, legal, and economic history of America's struggles for racial and economic equality - and the relationship between them - from the World War II-inspired "Double Victory" campaign roots of the Civil Rights Era to the "Occupy Wall Street" protests of 2011 that finally brought national attention to the growing income and wealth polarization that defined the then decades-old New Gilded Age.

Mark Brilliant
101 Barker
TuTh 9:30-11 AM
CCN: 39591
140B: Modern Mexico

This course provides a general, critical introduction to the history of Mexico from the end of the colonial period to the present. Students interested in Mexican problems and issues will come away with a deeper understanding of how present-day Mexico came to be. Rather than a chronological summation of events and great leaders, emphasis will be placed upon certain themes and trends with respect to economic, social and cultural development and change. We will be particularly interested in the patterns of conflict and negotiation that shaped Mexico’s history and emphasis will be given throughout the course to the ways in which “common people” participated in and influenced the political events of their times. In addition, we will be attentive to the important regional, class, ethnic, and gender differences that have figured prominently in Mexico’s history as well as to the history of Mexico in the wider world.

 

Kinga Novak
20 WHEELER
MWF 10-11A
CCN: 39611
151C: Maker of the Modern World? Imperial Britain, 1750 to the present

151C Modern Britain, 1750 to the present. This class will examine how Britain became modern. It will explore everything from the industrial revolution to deindustrialization, the spectacular growth and mobility of populations, urbanization and suburbanizaiton, the emergence of the idea of the individual and nuclear family, the expansion and eventual collapse of an empire  upon which the sun once famously never set.  The class explores a number of key questions.  How did Britain become modern and yet remain a deeply traditional society unable to rid itself of ancient institutions like the monarchy, the aristocracy and the established church? How did Britons think of themselves as an essentially liberal people, bringing trade, prosperity, democracy and civilization to the rest of the world and yet become associated with the spread of immense poverty, imperial violence and exploitation. And how did this liberalism lay the foundations for the enormous growth of Britain's decolonizing welfare and security state in the twentieth century let alone the emergence of multi-culturalism and neo-liberalism?  The class combines economic, social, political and cultural history.

James Vernon
110 Barrows
TuTh 12:30-2 PM
CCN: 39615
159B: European Economic History

This course surveys major trends in economic history of Europe from the beginning of the Industrial Revolution to the outbreak of World War I. It will focus on the spread of modern industry From Britain to continental Europe, North America, and Japan; the development of an integrated international economy, or “early globalization"; the gold standard; and the economic impact of imperialism and colonial empires.

Jan De Vries
145 MOFFITT
TuTh 330-5P
CCN: 39630
160: The International Economy of the 20th Century

History 160 is an upper division course that traces the tremendous pace and scope of economic change since the late 1800s. The twentieth century saw unprecedented levels of international economic integration through market-based exchange as well as numerous experiments, left and right, at economic independence from reigning financial superpowers. National governments and international organizations they created alternatively relied on market mechanisms and on planning to spur economic growth, raising the living standards of millions in some instances but also fueling mass unemployment, famine, environmental degradation and even genocide in other instance. Topics include the gold standard, the Great Depression, the economics of the two World Wars and of the post-war international orders. Some background in economics is beneficial as is a good grasp of modern history.

Andrej Milivojevic
100 GPB
MWF 10-11A
CCN: 39645
162B: War and Peace: International Relations since 1914

The bulk of the period this course surveys—namely, twentieth century-- was the most devastating in the history of humankind. The course examines the major developments that led to the wars and revolutions for which that century is famous. It stresses the supreme importance of the commanding actors on the political stage as the century unfolded--Lenin and Stalin, Mussolini and Hitler, Churchill and de Gaulle, Walesa and Thatcher and Gorbachev. The course will seek to squeeze every ounce of drama out of the century's most famous -- and infamous -- events: Europe's last summer -- the incredible days of July 1914; the slaughter of World War I; the rise of Communism, Fascism, and Nazism ; Munich; the Nazi-Soviet Pact of 1939; the decimation of World War II; the bombing of London and Dresden; the destruction of the European Jewry; the German invasion of Russia; D-Day, the suicide of Hitler, the origins and development of the Cold War; the fall of the Berlin Wall; the revolutions of 1989; the disintegration of the Soviet Union; the collapse of Yugoslavia; and the first and second Gulf wars. But we will also pay full attention to developments in parts of the world outside Europe—including but not limited to, imperialism and decolonization in Africa and Latin America, wars in the Middle East, the rise of the Asian tigers, China and Japan, as well as the post-1990 international order and the approaches taken by American presidents to international affairs from Wilson to Obama.

David Wetzel
145 Dwinelle
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39648
164A: European Intellectual History from Renaissance to Enlightenment

Between 1500 and 1800, European thought helped to build the foundations of modern culture, politics, economy, government, law, and religion. This course will introduce students to this transformative period in intellectual history. It will showcase the interactions of ideas and their wider cultural contexts. Its content will range from the Renaissance rediscovery of antiquity to the Scientific Revolution, from the theological innovation of the Reformation to the new forms of political theory that accompanied both French and American Revolutions. Readings will consist principally of primary texts from the period, and will range among a series of writers, including: Erasmus, Martin Luther, Niccolò Machiavelli, John Calvin, Michel Montaigne, Thomas Hobbes, Benedict Spinoza, Rene Descartes, Jean Jacques Rousseau, and others.

Jonathan Sheehan
123 WHEELER
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39651
164C: European Intellectual History 1870 to the Present

 

 

In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Europeans developed radically new ways of thinking about the challenges presented by a rapidly modernizing, industrializing, and urbanizing society. The questions they raised, and the answers they developed, have had a profound influence on the way people have conceived of modern life ever since, and provide a crucial starting point for further inquiry in the humanities and social sciences. This course offers an introduction to this rich body of intellectual activity, and does so by showing how such activity arose in engagement with broader historical developments. We will focus primarily on social and political thought, but will also look more broadly at cultural, aesthetic and philosophical currents. Specific topics will include the varieties of socialism after Marx; the development of the social and human sciences (especially sociology and anthropology); critical theory and the Frankfurt School; psychoanalysis; existentialism; feminism; the linguistic turn in philosophy and beyond; structuralism and post-structuralism, and anti-colonial and post-colonial thought. Each week we will read and discuss texts by key figures such as Nietzsche, Weber, Durkheim, Freud, de Beauvoir, Arendt, Foucault and Fanon.

Grahame Foreman
110 WHEELER
MWF 11-12P
CCN: 39654