Undergraduate Courses

Fall History
108: Byzantium
The Staff
TBD
TBD
Fall 2016
R1B.001: Empire in the Era of Nationalism (1789-Present)
  • 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.

Recent years have underscored the enduring force of nationalist politics, whether in secessionism in Ukraine, the revival of the European far right, or even in the current presidential election. In each case, national assertion or the supposed threat posed by ‘foreignness’ have exercised a powerful influence. This course will examine the encounter of state power with ethnic diversity during the 19th and 20th centuries. During this period, discourses of nationalism and self-determination increasingly challenged the stability and legitimacy of Empire. Yet simultaneously states undertook more ambitious projects of imperial expansion. We will focus our attention on three central themes. First, we will historicize the concept of nationalism. Does nationalist conflict result from deep cultural difference, or can it be traced to specific conditions or changing ideas of nationhood? When, and why, did nationalism begin to hate? Secondly, we will examine how states have tried to adapt to challenges posed by nationalism, in order to preserve domestic unity or to project state power abroad. What new justifications and strategies reinforced multinational-empire? Why were some of these options discarded, while others were adopted? Finally, we will examine why some multinational states disintegrated. Were multinational empires naturally unstable, or were immediate causes more relevant to their collapse?

Mark Kettler is a PhD Candidate in the History Department. Mark’s research interests include nationalism, ethnic politics, and empire in Central and Eastern Europe. His dissertation focuses on the German occupation of Poland in WWI and how German interpretations of this experience shaped subsequent attitudes towards ethnic management.

Mark T Kettler
225 Dwinelle
MWF 2-3
CCN: 16420
R1B.003: Across Borders: United States and Latin American Relations during the 20th Century
  • 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 will look at the dynamics between countries in the Western Hemisphere from the turn of the 19th century to the Free Trade Agreements of the 1990s. Because of their geographic proximity the course will mostly—but not exclusively—discuss themes of the northern part of the hemisphere (Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean). Although some attention will be given to diplomatic and economic relations, the main focus of the course will be the transnational connections between communities and individuals. What perceptions did local and foreign people have of each other? How did they change over time? What interactions did migrants, exiles, artists, businessmen, and tourists have with local communities? How did they adapt to this different environment? Were the communities shaped or changed with these new arrivals? In what ways did different commercial products, cultural practices, and political ideas travel and translate between the different countries? Throughout the semester student will read a broad array of primary and secondary sources that will help them engage critically with these questions and will provide different ways to historicize and contextualize these themes.  The emphasis of the R1B is on reading, analysis, and learning how to write research papers. In addition to discussion of the readings, seminars will include workshops on writing techniques and argumentation strategies.

Camilo Lund-Montano received his bachelor's degree in History in the National University of Mexico, where he wrote a thesis on the regional dynamics within the Zapatista army during the Mexican Revolution. In 2012, he earned his MA in Historical Studies of the New School for Social Research in New York.  He is currently a PhD candidate here at Berkeley, writing a doctoral dissertation on left wing lawyers who defended radical movements in the United States during the second half of the 20th century.  Mr. Lund-Montano's main areas of focus are social movements, US and Latin American relations, transnational networks, and politics of solidarity.

Camilo Lund-Montano
233 Dwinelle
MWF 4-5
CCN: 16422
R1B: Capitalism and Inequality, 1500-Present

From the Occupy protests of 2011 to the 2015 State of the Union address, economic inequality has become one of the central concerns of our time. Is inequality a natural and inevitable characteristic of human society, or can it be historicized to a specific origin in time and place? What are its determinants and how has it changed over time? Most fundamentally, as the economic historian David Landes once wrote, “Why are some so rich and other so poor?” Answering these questions requires bringing a knowledge of history to contemporary economic debates.

Trevor W Jackson
0204 DWINELLE
MWF 100-200
CCN: 39003
R1B: Religious Violence and Toleration in Early Modern Europe (1450-1750)
For the modern secular state, the real or imagined specter of fanatical religious violence and intolerance has long served a legitimizing function. From the image of the ghoulish medieval inquisitor burning heretics to the obsession with Islamic terrorism of recent years, religious intolerance and extremism reinforces the wisdom of a pluralistic, rational, and secular order. This course will explore the history of religious intolerance and theories of toleration and pluralism as they emerged from the confessional conflicts of the early modern period. We will try to understand both what we mean by “toleration” and what early modern Europeans understood by the term and in what ways they did or did not practice it. Readings will include literature describing the ideas, tensions, and structures shaping early modern religious violence as well as the reflections of contemporaries on toleration. We will also discuss the historiography of the idea of toleration. For many years, historians accepted the narrative that the harrowing religious violence of the Reformation period ebbed as enlightened religious and political thinkers such as Sebastian Costello, John Locke, and Voltaire popularized arguments for toleration and influenced states to pass laws such as the Toleration Act of 1688. More recently, however, historians have questioned this narrative. This new perspective deconstructs the myths surrounding religious fanaticism (such as the exaggerated image of the inquisition) and reevaluates just how ‘tolerant’ and important theories of toleration were for the emergence of modern religious pluralism. Ordinary people and local communities often succeeded and often failed to find pragmatic accommodations to the reality of religious difference. Historians are much more inclined now to see western institutions, laws, and notions of pluralism as emerging through this uneven process of trial and error as opposed to great men drafting and implementing theories of toleration.  
 
The emphasis in R1B is on reading, analysis, and learning to write. In addition to discussion of the readings, seminars will include workshops on writing techniques and fundamentals and argumentation strategies.
Timothy Wright
0210 DWINELLE
TuTh 500-630
CCN: 39006
R1B: Deus Ex Machina: Technology, Complexity and Religion in Modern European and American Intellectual History

This course will examine some of the ways modern European and American intellectuals have sought to grapple with the relationship of basic philosophical concepts to technology, science and religion. Philosophers, social theorists and scientists over the last three centuries have posed the relationship between religion and technology at the center of their ruminations on modernity and the limits of human existence. We will look not only at a sampling of philosophers’ reflections on the nature and significance of technology and religion, but also at how scientists and engineers have made sense of their own work in similar terms. Themes may include but are not limited to: transcendence and immanence, freedom and determinism, self-organization, complexity, thermodynamics and heat death, evolution, contingency, artificial life, cybernetics, computing, biotechnology, and space travel.
This course will aim to foster and develop critical thinking, reading and writing skills by offering students a chance to engage with topics familiar from everyday life from unfamiliar and challenging historical perspectives. Students will read a wide range of short primary and secondary texts surveying the major themes of the course, focusing on the manifold ways historians can interpret and contextualize these resources. In addition to a brief diagnostic essay, several short papers and one final research paper will be assigned.

Ari S Edmundson
0210 DWINELLE
MWF 300-400
CCN: 39009
4A: Origins of Western Civilization: The Ancient Mediterranean World
  • Note new room.

This course offers an introductory survey of the history of the ancient Mediterranean world, from the rise of city states in Mesopotamia c. 3000 BC to the transformation of the Roman Empirein the 4th century AD. The emphasis will be on the major developments in the political and social history of the ancient Near East, Egypt, Greece, and Rome, with special attention to those institutions, practices, ideas, and objects that have had an enduring influence on the development of western civilization. A key theme for the course as a whole will be the changing configurations of power in the ancient Mediterranean world, not only political (cities, states, empires), but also socio-economic (personal wealth and status) and ideological (religion and belief systems). Lectures and textbook readings will provide an essential historical narrative as well as interpretations of central problems, while readings in primary sources (epic poetry, historiography, public documents, biography, etc.) will give students an opportunity in discussion sections to grapple with some of the evidence on which such narratives and interpretations are based.

Carlos F. Noreña
160 Kroeber
TuTh 12:30-2P
CCN: 16425
4B: Medieval Europe

As a period, the middle ages 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, Latin American, and even East Asian societies. The first half of the course begins with the fall of the Roman Empire and the church's role in stabilizing the chaos of the period. We will then turn the conversion to Christianity of northern pagan society, the evolution of kingship in Anglo-Saxon society, and the creation of a Frankish empire on the continent that gave Europe a lasting belief in its historical destiny. In the second half of the course we will 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 women's piety. With the exception of a fairly straightforward textbook, readings are entirely translated primary sources — generally whole works rather than excerpted snippets. Students should note that this year's syllabus is substantially revised from that of 2014, with a different, simpler textbook, the return of Beowulf, and the deletion of some excessively difficult readings.

Geoffrey Koziol
0150 GSPP
TuTh 1100-1230
CCN: 39015
5: Modern Europe
  • Note new room.

This course introduces students to European history from around 1500 to the present. During this time, a small, poor, and fragmented Europe became a world civilization, whose political, cultural, and economic power now touch the four corners of the globe. Our course will ask how and why this happened. How, in other words, did "modernity" become "western" for better and worse? As we cover this half-millennium, we will look at major landmarks in European cultural, intellectual, social, political, and economic development: the Renaissance, the epochal expansion of Europe into the new world, the break-up of Latin Christianity into competing religious communities, the construction of the modern state, the formation of overseas empires, the coming of capitalism, the Scientific Revolution, the French Revolution, liberalism and the Industrial Revolution, socialism and the rise of labor, modern colonialism, the world wars, communism and fascism, decolonization, the Cold War, and the European Union. Our readings will include learned treatises in religion, classics in political theory, fiction, and other documents from the past, as well as a textbook. Work in sections centers on reading and discussion of original sources and of lectures, and on the improvement of writing skills. Three hours of lecture and two hours of section (required) per week.

Ethan H. Shagan
105 North Gate
TTh 1230-2
CCN: 16208
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
0160 KROEBER
TuTh 200-330
CCN: 39036
6A: History of China: Origins to the Mongol Conquest

Origins to the Mongol Conquest. The history of China from its beginnings to the destruction of the Song Dynasty by the Mongols in the 13th century. Topics to be covered include the emergence of Chinese civilization, the Chinese language, early philosophy, the creation of the first empire, Buddhism and religious Daoism, the Silk Road, ethnicity, the socioeconomic revolution of the 10th to 12th centuries, lyric poetry, and painting and calligraphy.

Nicolas Tackett
101 Moffitt
TTh 11-1230
CCN: 16099
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
0160 KROEBER
TuTh 1230-200
CCN: 39063
7A: United States History to 1865
  • Note new room.

This course surveys U.S. history from the contact era to the end of the Civil War. Early American history was defined first and foremost by interactions between populations that had developed in isolation from one another for millennia. As Native Americans, Europeans, and Africans interacted in North America from the sixteenth through the nineteenth centuries, their lives were transformed in fundamental ways. Our lives today are still shaped by the opportunities and challenges these people faced, and by the choices they made.

Mark A. Peterson
245 Li Ka Shing
TTh 930-1100
CCN: 16531
7B: The United States from Civil War to Present

This course also meets the American History and Institutions Requirement.

This course is an introduction to American history since the Civil War. It is also an introduction to the way historians think and write. We will cover the major events of the past 150 years, including such topics as the Civil War, industrialization, eugenics, the Great Depression, immigration, the Cold War, the suburbs, human rights, and 9/11. While broadly surveying major developments, we will focus on three major themes. The first theme, Slave Society and Its Consequences, traces how the legacy of slavery and emancipation has shaped American ideas about racial hierarchy, multiculturalism, and model minorities. The second theme, Capitalism and Its Critics, follows the rise of industrial society, the growth of consumer economy, and finally the creation of finance capitalism—and how Americans experienced and managed these transitions. Finally, Dechristianization of America, follows how the United States was understood as a Protestant nation, then a Judeo-Christian one, and, finally, as a post-Christian country. Students will sharpen their analytical and critical thinking skills through their engagement with these three themes in lectures, readings, movies, music, and art.

Daniel M Robert
102 Moffitt
MWTh 10-12 P
CCN: 31502
7B: The United States: Civil War to the 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 will stress various parts of these stories and also sharpen critical reading, interpretation, research, and writing skills.

Robin L. Einhorn
WHEELER AUD
MWF 1000-1100
CCN: 39084
8A: Becoming Latin America, 1492 to 1824

This class is an introduction to the key trends, people and events that shaped the emergence of Latin America and the Caribbean. Beginning with a brief treatment  of Amerindian societies and cultures prior to 1492 and the earliest encounters  between Europeans and diverse Amerindian peoples, we will consider the mutual  misunderstandings that characterized these early encounters, the subsequent "conquest"  of complex American civilizations, the establishment of colonial rule, and the formation of diverse colonial societies. How were these colonial societies both inclusive and  exclusive, both rigidly hierarchical and surprisingly flexible, at the same time? How did the actions of Europeans, Native Americans, and Africans shape a New World for all and  help Latin America to “become Latin American”? Our most general concern will be to  understand that while the concept of "conquest" suggests political permanence, intent and  social stability, in many ways colonial "spaces" remained highly contested territories; the processes of establishing colonial governance were heavily negotiated and fraught with tension and uncertainty. By focusing on controversies and multiple perspectives, students will develop a more sophisticated understanding of the complexities associated with early modern colonialism: how societies and cultures take shape because and in spite of disparities in power among all the actors involved

Margaret Chowning
155 Donner Lab
TTh 2-330
CCN: 16371
8B: Modern Latin America

This introductory course to Latin American history, after presenting some of the region's geographical and colonial background, will narrate, with broad brush, Latin American history in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.  Because of the enormous range of nations, of histories, of geographies, we will not be able to "cover" all of Latin America's history.  Indeed, coverage is impossible.  Nonetheless, by the time we complete the course, the engaged student will have been introduced to some of the central themes of this dramatic and turbulent period and how these themes play themselves out in a variety of regions from Mexico to Chile, from the Andes to Brazil, from Central America to the Caribbean to the dissolving borders of the 21st-century.  Some of the central themes of the modern period which we will address in this course are colonial legacies and the multiple meanings of independence, ethnicity and class in the new nations and mutating nationalisms, the dynamism of the North Atlantic economy and the deformations of Latin America's arrested economic development, differing Latin American strategies to address long-term structural inequalities in the twentieth century, the cycles of revolutionary movements and repressive military governments, and the powerful forces of neoliberal globalization and Latin American resistance. Grades will be based quizzes, a midterm, and a final that will include a term paper and an in-class exam.

Rebecca Herman
0160 KROEBER
MWF 200-300
CCN: 39162
14: Introduction to the History of Japan
This survey of Japanese culture from the period of origins until today will focus on the great texts that illuminate the political, religious, and economic experiences of all social classes.  Readings include the Shinto creation myth, Buddhist tales and Zen tracts, samurai literature (such as Tales of the Heike, Hagakure, and shogunal laws), aristocratic classics (such as The Tale of Genji), the literature of urban commoners (such as kabuki drama and merchant codes), major modern sources (from Imperial Rescripts to accounts of wartime travail), and examples of contemporary pop culture.  We shall also discuss two films (Double Suicide and Jiro Dreams of Sushi).  Our emphasis throughout will fall on the urgent subjects of war and peace, ethical and political values, urbanization and market revolutions, international relations and crises, and the changing conceptions of both selves and families.  Japan is a reasonably small country, separated from neighbors by treacherous seas, that contains very little farmable land and limited natural resources.  We shall grapple with the question of how it developed such remarkable cultural, economic, and military power. All are welcome.
Mary Elizabeth Berry
0101 MOFFITT
TuTh 930-1100
CCN: 39189
24: Freshman Seminar: Endangered Children and Youth in Contemporary Africa - Documentaries
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

This is an 8-week course, ending on October 19, 2016.

Scheduled to meet for the first half of the semester only, this once a week two hour seminar will analyze documentaries that explore and expose the endangerment of children and youth in contemporary Africa. Documentaries on child trafficking and enslavement, child brides, child laborers, street children and youth, victims of FGM, child soldiers, HIV/AIDS orphans and urban youth gangs will be viewed in class. The goal of the seminar is to examine the complex local, regional, and at times global factors behind the extensive abuse and endangerment of children and youth in Africa. In order to historicize and contextualize the study, we shall, in addition to the documentaries, refer to a limited number of published articles. P/NP

Tabitha Kanogo
3205 Dwinelle
Tu 10-12
CCN: 16161
24: Freshman Seminar: The Uses and Abuses of History -- CANCELLED
  • This course has been cancelled.
Anthony Adamthwaite
204 Dwinelle
W 3-4P
CCN: 16162
24: Freshman Seminar: African American Activism in History
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

This seminar will explore the history and politics that shape contemporary African American concerns as expressed in movements like Black Lives Matter. Centering the enduring African American Freedom Struggle, our principal focus will be twofold: 1) the fundamental role of African American activism; and 2), the impact of beliefs in and practices of democracy and equality. We will also necessarily explore the historical origins, development, meanings, and consequences of contemporary colorblind racism: the persistence and depth of structural white supremacy in our own time. One of our core readings will be Bryan Stevenson, Just Mercy: the On the Same Page text.

Waldo E. Martin
2303 Dwinelle
Tu 1-2
CCN: 34210
24: The Story of Berkeley and the University of California in a Global Context

The university as a self-governing corporation has the second longest unbroken history in western society.  Only the Roman Catholic Church is older. The university began almost imperceptibly in the 12th century. Within a short period, it found a home throughout Europe.  Colonial expansion took the university form to the New World.  Today it is to be found everywhere, educating millions of students. China in particular, the second largest economy in the world, is expanding higher education at almost an unprecedented rate.  The university is sometimes referred to as the powerhouse of modern society. How can we account for its triumph and supremacy? A good part of the answer lies in the fact that it is unique.  It is different from other institutions: different from business corporations, churches, the military or government.  Within the global world of universities, UC and Berkeley stand out, our campus in particular ranked amongst the top four research universities in the world.  We will explore the nature of this achievement, even its mysteries and odd rituals, in discussions, presentations, visits to special collections and walks around the campus, which has one of the most unusual designs to be found anywhere,.  The seminar is especially designed for freshmen because they are the newest of our students and the least acquainted with the extraordinary riches and mysteries of the university, but sophomores are welcome.  Attendance at the first meeting of the class is mandatory in order to secure a place in the seminar. 

Sheldon Rothblatt is Professor of History Emeritus.  He was Associate Dean of Students, L&S, Chair of the Department of History and Director of the Center for Studies in Higher Education at Berkeley.  His specialty is the comparative history of universities.  He is a Foreign Member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (the body that grants Nobel Prizes), a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society of Britain, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a Member of the National Academy of Education. Upon retirement, he received the Berkeley Citation for "distinguished achievement and for notable service to the University." He has also been knighted by the King of Sweden as Knight Commander of the Royal Order of the Polar Star (founded in 1748).

Sheldon Rothblatt
279 Dwinelle
Thu 200-300
CCN: 39209
24: Museums of Berkeley

This seminar is about museums in general and the rich museums of Berkeley in particular. Students will be introduced to the history of museums, to social policy questions relating to them, and to some current political debates about collections (the status of Native American artifacts, for example). The core of this seminar however is a series of museum visits that will be led by the instructor and by curators in each venue. We will go to the Berkeley Art Museum, the Pacific Film Archive, the Berkeley Botanical Garden, the Lawrence Hall of Science, the Hearst Museum, the Bancroft, the paleontology and insect collections in VLSB, and the  Magnes museum.  Our last meeting will be dinner and a tour of the SF Moma if it is open again by then or top another SF museum. No reading outside class is required.

Thomas Laqueur is a cultural historian who has written on the history of education, religion, medicine, human rights and working class politics as well as, more recently, on sexuality (two books)  and on questions of memory and memorialization. His moist recent book is called The Work of the Dead: A Cultural History of Human Remains.

Thomas W. Laqueur
3104 DWINELLE
W 200-400
CCN: 39212
24: Disease in History

Is civilization bad for our health? We will explore this and other questions raised by the human experience of disease in history through short readings and weekly discussion. Topics include the nature of disease and the roles of doctors, hospitals, and public health measures, the impact of laboratory science and the germ theory, vaccines and the vaccination controversy, the pharmaceutical revolution, epidemics such as the 1918 influenza and HIV/AIDS, and the role of globalization. 

John Lesch is Professor Emeritus of History. He has a long-standing interest in the history of the life sciences and medicine. His publications include Science and Medicine in France: The Emergence of Experimental Physiology, 1790-1855; and The First Miracle Drugs: How the Sulfa Drugs Transformed Medicine.

John Lesch
225 Dwinelle
Wednesday 1000-1100
CCN: 39215
24: How Wars Begin: Europe and the World, 1700-1945

“How do wars begin?" This is perhaps the most constant theme of the historian. Wars make up most of European history. In every civilization, there have been wars. Wars have come in all kinds of ways—wars of conquest, wars of imperial rivalries, wars of family disputes, religious wars.” These words were written by the late British historian, A.J.P. Taylor thirty years ago, and they apply with equal force to the world of today. This course will examine the origins of seven wars—more from an immediate, than from a long-range standpoint, though the latter will be considered as well. The immediate origins of wars, that is, the time when government officials set their hands to the declarations of them, often have little do with the long-range causes. Some examples: accidents of time, personal rivalries between senior officials of a government, mistaken assumptions about the intentions of the enemy. This course will examine the immediate origins of the wars noted by Taylor above, while not ignoring their long-range causes and, above all, the personalities, some of the most striking of all time, of those who brought them on.

David Wetzel
0210 DWINELLE
W 200-300
CCN: 39204
24: Poor and Working Children in the United States, 1880-1939

In this seminar we will examine the problem of child labor and child poverty in the United States through texts, photographs and autobiographies. Students who have read Katherine Boo's book on child poverty in India in the present day may find comparisons to the historical experience of the United States revealing and eye-opening. I am eager to have students in class who have read Katherine Boo's Behind the Beautiful Forevers.

Paula S. Fass is Professor of the Graduate School and Margaret Byrne Professor of History Emerita, University of California at Berkeley.  She has been at Berkeley for over 40 years, teaching a variety of courses in American social and cultural history, including courses on the history of childhood. She was the President of the Society of the History of Children and Youth from 2007-2009.   Her many books include Children of a New World:  Society, Culture, and Globalization (2007); Kidnapped: Child Abduction in America (1997); Outside In: Minorities and the Transformation of American Education (1989); The Damned and the Beautiful: American Youth in the 1920s (1977).  She is the editor, most recently of Reinventing Childhood After World War II (2011)with Michael Grossberg and The Routledge History of Childhood in the Western World  (2013).  She is currently completing The End of American Childhood  to be published in 2016.

 
Paula S. Fass
0201 WHEELER
W 1100-1200
CCN: 39207
30: Science and Society

Modern scientific thought arose from the chaotic encounters between European and non-European cultures during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. As a result, scientific knowledge has been a constant companion to each major event in modern world history. This course provides a survey of the history of science from the Late Middle Ages to present. Students of the humanities will gain a richer understanding of science's influence on modern human thought. Students of science will learn techniques for historical analysis and gain a deeper appreciation for the production of scientific knowledge. This course will also prepare students for advanced coursework in the history of science.

Rodolfo John Alaniz
370 Dwinelle
MWF 11-12
CCN: 16163
39N: Freshman/Sophomore Seminar: The Chinese Detective

An inquiry into traditional Chinese conceptions of law and justice through the eyes of the official detective: the district magistrate. Primary source readings include Chinese detective fiction, moral treatises, legal codes, forensic manuals, and criminal casebooks. All readings are in English translation. There are no prerequisites.

Alexander C. Cook
2070 VLSB
W 12-2
CCN: 16467
39R: Freshman/Sophomore Seminar: The History of Heaven

Higher Learning begins with the study of heaven. Heaven provides humanity the foundation of its knowledge and political order. One simply cannot understand what knowledge is or how politics function without basic understanding of the ways of heaven. This course examines those ways. Specifically, it examines the function heaven serves in the founding of order against the void in nature through the establishment of conventional systems of time and space and the role heaven has played in the promulgation of political propaganda. It does so from a cross-cultural, interdisciplinary perspective that covers the course of Eurasian history. We will study the various celestial systems of different peoples, representations of heavenly figures in iconography, mythology, and typology, and the expression of heaven and hell in literature and art. In so doing we will see heaven unfold through the developments, technical and political, that leave us with the world we have today.

Brian Baumann
3104 Dwinelle
W 4-6
CCN: 35074
84: Sophomore Seminar: Was Ancient Judaism a Religion or an Ethnicity?
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

This seminar will explore a question whose roots lay in antiquity but whose significance remains of central concern today: were the ancient Jews considered (and did they consider themselves) as an ethnic group or as adherents of a religion? In short, how does one define Jewish identity in the ancient world? We shall investigate this question through reading various biblical stories such as those of Isaac and Ishmael, Jacob and Esau, Tamar, Ruth, and Esther, some Jewish writers of the Greco-Roman period like Philo and St. Paul, and selections from Roman authors, like Cicero and Tacitus, who commented on Jews.

Erich S. Gruen
2303 Dwinelle
Tu 10-12
CCN: 34317
88: How Does History Count?

In this connector course, we will explore how historical data becomes historical evidence and how recent technological advances affect long-established practices, such as close attention to historical context and contingency. Will the advent of fast computing and big data make history “count” more or lead to unprecedented insights into the study of change over time? During our weekly discussions, we will apply what we learn in lectures and labs to the analysis of selected historical sources and get an understanding of constructing historical datasets. We will also consider scholarly debates over quantitative evidence and historical argument.

Andrej Milivojevic
105 Cory
Tuesdays 200-400
CCN: 40083
98BC: Berkeley Connect in History
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.
  • HIST 98BC Section 2, Course ID 16050, Mon 4-5pm (lower division) GSI TBD
  • HIST 98BC Section 3, Course ID 16051, Tue 5-6pm (lower division) GSI TBD
  • HIST 98BC Section 4, Course ID 16052, Tue 6-7pm (lower division) GSI TBD

People learn best when they learn together. That premise underpins all our activities at Berkeley. Berkeley Connect seeks to enhance learning by strengthening contacts between undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty outside of the classroom.

We invite you to connect with undergraduates, graduates and faculty in lively conversation about history and the Berkeley experience. Meet a fantastic group of peers.  Ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask. Learn about the practice of history, and explore the Berkeley campus with a dedicated mentor.  Discover a new Berkeley!

The core of the Berkeley Connect program is a one-credit, pass-fail course that is designed to create a community of students with similar intellectual interests. There is no homework associated with Berkeley Connect: no exams, no papers, no quizzes.  Berkeley Connect links undergraduate students with experienced mentors in History through small groups of 10-20 students that meet regularly. Small group meetings help students share ideas and learn new skills, as well as foster friendships and provide a supportive intellectual community. Participants will also meet with mentors one-on-one for academic guidance and advice.

The only requirement for joining Berkeley Connect is that you have an interest in the field of study. You do not have to be a major in order to participate! Undeclared freshmen and sophomores are welcome, along with entering junior transfers and juniors and seniors. 

Thomas James Dandelet
3205 Dwinelle
CCN: see below
98BC: Berkeley Connect in History
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

People learn best when they learn together. That premise underpins all our activities at Berkeley. Berkeley Connect seeks to enhance learning by strengthening contacts between undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty outside of the classroom.

We invite you to connect with undergraduates, graduates and faculty in lively conversation about history and the Berkeley experience. Meet a fantastic group of peers.  Ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask. Learn about the practice of history, and explore the Berkeley campus with a dedicated mentor.  Discover a new Berkeley!

The core of the Berkeley Connect program is a one-credit, pass-fail course that is designed to create a community of students with similar intellectual interests. There is no homework associated with Berkeley Connect: no exams, no papers, no quizzesBerkeley Connect links undergraduate students with experienced mentors in History through small groups of 10-20 students that meet regularly. Small group meetings help students share ideas and learn new skills, as well as foster friendships and provide a supportive intellectual community. Participants will also meet with mentors one-on-one for academic guidance and advice.

The only requirement for joining Berkeley Connect is that you have an interest in the field of study. You do not have to be a major in order to participate! Undeclared freshmen and sophomores are welcome, along with entering junior transfers and juniors and seniors.

Alberto M Garcia
3205 DWINELLE
M 500-600
CCN: 39237
98BC: Berkeley Connect in History
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

People learn best when they learn together. That premise underpins all our activities at Berkeley. Berkeley Connect seeks to enhance learning by strengthening contacts between undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty outside of the classroom.

We invite you to connect with undergraduates, graduates and faculty in lively conversation about history and the Berkeley experience. Meet a fantastic group of peers.  Ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask. Learn about the practice of history, and explore the Berkeley campus with a dedicated mentor.  Discover a new Berkeley!

The core of the Berkeley Connect program is a one-credit, pass-fail course that is designed to create a community of students with similar intellectual interests. There is no homework associated with Berkeley Connect: no exams, no papers, no quizzesBerkeley Connect links undergraduate students with experienced mentors in History through small groups of 10-20 students that meet regularly. Small group meetings help students share ideas and learn new skills, as well as foster friendships and provide a supportive intellectual community. Participants will also meet with mentors one-on-one for academic guidance and advice.

The only requirement for joining Berkeley Connect is that you have an interest in the field of study. You do not have to be a major in order to participate! Undeclared freshmen and sophomores are welcome, along with entering junior transfers and juniors and seniors.

Maggie Jane Elmore
3205 DWINELLE
Tu 600-700
CCN: 39240
98BC: Berkeley Connect in History
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

People learn best when they learn together. That premise underpins all our activities at Berkeley. Berkeley Connect seeks to enhance learning by strengthening contacts between undergraduate students, graduate students, and faculty outside of the classroom.

We invite you to connect with undergraduates, graduates and faculty in lively conversation about history and the Berkeley experience. Meet a fantastic group of peers.  Ask the questions you’ve always wanted to ask. Learn about the practice of history, and explore the Berkeley campus with a dedicated mentor.  Discover a new Berkeley!

The core of the Berkeley Connect program is a one-credit, pass-fail course that is designed to create a community of students with similar intellectual interests. There is no homework associated with Berkeley Connect: no exams, no papers, no quizzesBerkeley Connect links undergraduate students with experienced mentors in History through small groups of 10-20 students that meet regularly. Small group meetings help students share ideas and learn new skills, as well as foster friendships and provide a supportive intellectual community. Participants will also meet with mentors one-on-one for academic guidance and advice.

The only requirement for joining Berkeley Connect is that you have an interest in the field of study. You do not have to be a major in order to participate! Undeclared freshmen and sophomores are welcome, along with entering junior transfers and juniors and seniors.

Ti Ngo
3205 DWINELLE
Th 500-600
CCN: 39243
N100.001: Special Topics in History: Short Course- "Hip Hop and History"

The class will treat rap lyrics selected from multiple times periods as texts that students will read in conjunction with historical scholarship, which will offer the broader context for the themes that emerge in these songs. Although the first week will begin by providing an overview of rap and hip-hop, this is not a history of hip-hop class. We will not be studying the history of the musical genre. Rather, the aim is to illuminate the many ways that history, and African-American history in particular, inform the themes and subject matter upon which the selected lyrics focus. Some possible weekly themes include: slavery; racism; the war on drugs, police brutality, and mass incarceration; the exoticization of mixed race and light skinned women, and the commodification of women more broadly; rap, whiteness and cultural appropriation, sexuality; religion; capitalism; and revolution.

Students do not need to purchase any books for this class. All required materials will be available via bCourses.

Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
219 Dwinelle
TuTh 4-6 P
CCN: 31512
N100.002: Japanese Pop Culture: from Postwar to Postmodern

 

 

Over the past three decades, Japanese popular culture and its most famous products and characters have become familiar worldwide. This course looks at the history of Japanese popular culture since 1945 and explores how the pillars of the Japanese "contents industry"--manga, anime, video games, and light novels--came to play their current central role in the Japanese media ecosystem and global pop culture. We will consider a wide range of topics including fan cultures, modes of capitalism, manga and anime production, Pokémon and gaming, and the media mix in order to question the work that pop culture does in society to make it popular. We will also watch and read historically significant examples of these media as part of the course.

 
 
Andrea J Horbinski
31 Evans
TuTh 10-12
CCN: 31513
N100.003: Special Topics in History: Short Course - "Energy: An American History"
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
Robert N. Chester
170 Barrows
TuTh 10-12 P
CCN: 31514
100AC.001: The History of Women in the United States before 1900

This course is a survey of the history of women in America from the pre-colonial period to the turn of the twentieth century.  It examines the significant cultural, economic, and political developments that shaped the lives of American women but places gender at the center of historical analysis.  The course also stresses the variety of women's experiences, acknowledging the importance of race, ethnicity, and class in shaping female lives.

Topics we will cover include European-indigenous encounters; colonial settlement in the North and South; women and witchcraft; women and captivity; sex, early medical innovation and the female body; women and the American Revolution; women and the law; voluntary and involuntary migration to the West; the Civil War; the impact of Reconstruction on women; and the migration of Chinese women from their homelands to the United States.

Some of the questions that will animate our class discussions are:  What was it like to be a woman in the colonial period and the nineteenth century?  How did race, ethnicity, religion, and class shape women's experiences? What made their experiences distinct from men's?  What were relations between different groups of women like and how did relations of power shape these interactions?  How have women contributed to the development of the United States?  And how have they shaped its politics, economy, society, and culture?

Students will leave this class with a clear understanding of the history of women in American from pre-colonial contact to 1900, they will possess the ability to critically analyze primary documents as well as secondary sources, and they will be equipped with a historical perspective that enables them to better analyze the current experiences of American women.

Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
2040 VLSB
TTh 930-11A
CCN: 16107
100AC: Special Topics in the History of the United States: "Defiant Women: Gender, Power and Violence in American History"

Taking as its focus diverse groups of women who have shaped the course of North American history, this class will explore the relationship between gender, power and violence from the colonial period to the modern era. We will discuss how women have challenged conventional notions of “womanhood” through their words and their deeds, how their respective communities understood their behavior, and we will contemplate the ways in which these women simultaneously constructed narratives of power that do not conform to contemporary conceptualizations of their lives. Moreover, students will contemplate prevailing narratives of powerlessness which render these women, and their acts, invisible to us and the role gender ideologies played in their construction. Students will read about famous and less well-known cases of “deadly women” and in the process, they will understand how different bodies of law, social customs, and economic systems affected the lives of men and women differently and allocated disproportionate amounts and kinds of power to them. We will evaluate how these hierarchies of power facilitated women’s defiant, revolutionary and sometimes murderous acts. Conversations about the impacts that race, ethnicity, economic class, and religion had upon the lives of these women will be central to the course as well. Themes that will be covered include: involuntary servitude, witchcraft, interracial and same-sex love and relationships, infanticide, prostitution, murderesses, female victims of lynch mobs, and female members of revolutionary, terrorist, and racist/supremacist groups.

Students do not need to purchase any books for this class. All required materials will be available via bCourses.

 

Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
106 Moffitt
TuWTh 1-3:30 P
CCN: 31516
100AC: History of American Capitalism
What is capitalism? And when did it come to characterize the American economy? This course will explore the economic history of the United States, from the colonial period to the present. We will analyze the dramatic changes that catapulted a chain of colonies from the fringe of the global economy to its center. As the semester progresses, we will seek out the sources of this dramatic transformation, exploring a variety of overlapping and sometimes conflicting explanations for the coming of capitalism. Is this primarily a story about ideas and economic outlook? Is it about entrepreneurship and innovation? Or about exploitation and expropriation? What role did the government play? What role the individual?
 
Major themes will include the rise of the factory system, slavery and emancipation, technological innovation, the development of banking and finance, and economic inequality. Rarely was the “invisible hand” colorblind or gender neutral. We will examine capitalism both from above and from below, seeking to understand the causes and consequences of economic change for different groups of Americans. We will debate the role of famous businessmen and inventors, but we will also look at the ways largely forgotten workmen, mothers, and even slaves shaped the course of American economic development.
Caitlin C. Rosenthal
2040 VALLEY LSB
TuTh 200-330
CCN: 39246
100AP: Shipwrecked – Conversion, Redemption, and Salvation in Ship-wreck Narratives
The course will focus  on several crucial shipwreck narratives, in the Odyssey,  the Acts of the Apostles and other Christian writings referring to the Apostle Paul, in Shakespeare’s Tempest and Dafoe’s Robinson Crusoe, to identify how narratives of ship-wreck and similar naval catastrophes encapsulate encounters with the divine, conversion experiences, questions of religious identity, and concepts of paradise. We will focus on the narrative pattern of these classic shipwreck accounts (that is, we will read the texts!) and then use approaches from cultural anthropology and literary theory to identify how the narrators use shipwrecks to talk about the relation between nature, the divine, and humans.
Susanna Elm
223 Dwinelle
TuTh 330-5P
CCN: 39267
100BP: The Viking World

In the late eighth century Europe was rocked by the first of the Viking attacks. Over the next two centuries they left a legacy that has been immortalized in books, TV shows, movies and sports teams. But what drove these renowned seafarers to set sail from Scandinavia to shores as far as North America and the Black Sea? In this course we will examine the world of the Vikings, looking at the social, cultural, and political changes that the Viking Age ushered in not just in Scandinavia but across Europe. We will discuss how raiding and trade went hand in hand, how new ideas of kingship and worship crossed cultural boundaries, and the ways in which history and legend overlap, coloring our ideas of the medieval past.

Daniel F. Melleno
0310 HEARST MIN
MWF 900-1000
CCN: 39269
100D: The Nature of History
Although History is frequently classified as one of the humanities, many natural sciences, from evolutionary biology to climate science, also focus on historical change. How did these different disciplines evolve? Why are we all in different parts of campus? How do those histories shape contemporary practice, in the academy but also in public life? This course is a history of historical thought and practice in the historical sciences, from stratigraphy and historical source criticism in the 18th century, to climate history in the early 21st. 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 philosophical and logistical challenges that the interaction of human and natural environments have posed for theory and research. Students will acquire an introduction to the evolution of historical method in different disciplinary traditions. Since we will be ending in present-day California, one of our goals is to help students acquire the sort of skills and knowledge that could be useful in policy as well as academic settings.  This course will fall someplace between a lecture and a seminar. Although we will have brief lectures, we will also have regular discussion and devote class time to problem-based instruction on student projects.
Kerwin L. Klein
88 Dwinelle
TTh 12:30-2pm
CCN: 16262
100D.001: Staging the American City: A Cultural History of Broadway

This course weaves together two stories that are ordinarily told separately: the history of popular theatrical productions in the United States and the history of American urban life. Both stories focus on New York, and on the meaning of Broadway - as a place, an institution, and a cultural symbol. What does the history of Broadway from 1800 to the present teach us about popular culture, big city living, racial and ethnic identity, mass spectacle, and everyday life in modern America? Requirements include regular attendance, timely completion of reading assignments, two midterms, and one cumulative final examination.

David Henkin
0390 HEARST MIN
TuTh 1230-200
CCN: 39270
100D.002: Digital Humanities and Topics In Black History: The Mapping of Black Historical Events From the Beginning of Slavery to Reconstruction

This class examines classic themes and topics in African-American History, from the beginning of slavery to Reconstruction. Often literary bias has kept black history hermetically sealed in a vault of printed texts. Now, however, scholars in Digital Humanities have  developed tools that are beginning to liberate historical events from the printed text and set them free in a fresh digital environment. By using these new techniques we are now able to plot the events of black history in space and time.  Recognizing that enslaved black people were not allowed to tell their own story in writing because literacy was illegal, scholars have realized that black enslaved people expressed their culture in the language of music (spirituals), storytelling, dance, and games. By employing tools of the Digital Humanities, which allows access to these nonliterate forms of cultural expression, students will better understand black history.  In this class students will produce their own interactive timelines and maps of black history.  Each student will receive a Google “Cardboard” that allows the student to see historical events in Virtual Reality.  This study will provide the student with insight with which they may write informed essays, an important focus of the class.

Cecil M. Brown
30 Wheeler
MW 400-530
CCN: 39272
100E: Special Topics in Latin American History: "Environmental History in Latin America"

How have human beings shaped the natural world? How have natural forces impacted the patterns of human life? This class will consider both of these questions in the context of Latin America, looking at the impact of humans on the environment and at climate, topography, plants, animals, and microorganisms as a factor in human history. The course spans from the colonial encounter to global capitalism in the 20th century—from the biological impact of the European conquest of the Americas to recent social movements and the roots of the current global ecological crisis. Despite the dramatic changes in technology and infrastructure over this time, we will also see continuities such as the continuing struggles of indigenous communities negotiating with other local, national, and international groups and institutions demanding the right to control resources and set the terms of their relationship with the natural world. Topics will include the division and distribution of agrarian land, resource extraction, urbanization, the exchange of commodities, and the development of infrastructure across Latin America. We will also consider how ideas about development and modernization have become manifest on the physical environment and how these forces have interacted with both nature and political power to shape local and national histories. We will look closely at the role of the state in managing the environment and mediating conflicts as well as the ways that the relationship between civilization and nature reflects or exacerbates problems of inequality and access. These questions and others will reflect on the ways cultural, scientific, political, and philosophical attitudes toward the environment have changed over time. Students will develop an understanding of major environmental issues across Latin America and the history of environmental activism.

Sarah Selvidge
56 Barrows
MTuWTh 10-12 P
CCN: 31520
100E.002: Special Topics in Latin American History: 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.  Today it stands at the precipice of a new post-Cold War relationship with the United States.  Throughout its history, 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
370 Dwinelle
TTh 1230-2
CCN: 32355
100E: A History of Film in Latin America

This class posits that films are primary documents, and thus, can be used as the basis of historical inquiry and analysis. We will consider aspects of the content, form, and execution of a set of outstanding films from Latin America from about 1940 to about 1970, focusing on this period of cultural and political development primarily in the countries with major film industries: Mexico, Brazil, Cuba, and Argentina. Our readings will include histories of the film and culture industries, more general examinations of the political and social issues raised in the movies we watch, and film criticism of the period. Students will be expected to attend several movie nights or make arrangements to see movies outside of class time at the Media Resource Center. The course will include two short papers based on the films as well as a final paper.

 
Sarah Selvidge
0056 BARROWS
MWF 900-1000
CCN: 39296
100F.001: Special Topics in Asian History: The Politics of Modern Tibet

For over a hundred years, the political status of Tibet has commanded a level of attention on the international stage – and within China – seemingly disproportionate to the size of its population and economy, and in spite of its reputation as a remote periphery. This course will examine the historical, cultural, and economic assumptions underlying contemporary discourses of Tibetan politics, and relate them to discourses of global power and peripheries more generally. Grounding discussion in primary sources and critical works from across regions and disciplines, we will examine the roots of current conflict and the ways in which contending Buddhist, nationalist and internationalist projects have contributed to the making of modern Tibet.

 
Stacey Van Vleet
HFAXB5
TuTh 1230-2P
CCN: 30718