Undergraduate Courses

Fall 2015
R1B: The Socialist City: Urban Life in the 20th Century from Havana to Pyongyang
  • Note new room.

 

In the twentieth century, socialist governments came to power, first in Europe and then in countries throughout the world. From the USSR to China, Cuba to Mozambique, leaders sought to radically transform the daily lives of their citizens. This transformation was to be achieved in large part through urban redevelopment and planning schemes. In this class, we will explore the history of attempts throughout the socialist world to build “socialist” cities, distinct in their appearance, economy, and infrastructure from capitalist urban spaces. We will read and discuss primary sources (including letters, memoirs, and urban plans), secondary sources (written by historians, geographers, and anthropologists), and fiction. In the course we will cover a wide geography, traveling in our readings each week from the streets of Moscow and East Berlin, before moving to other cities, including Havana with its state-owned ice-cream parlors and Dar Es Salaam, home to the world’s only socialist drive-in cinema. Key questions that we will pose throughout the semester include: How did city planners deal with the legacy of pre-socialist urban spaces? How did socialist architecture and plans shape people’s everyday lives in the twentieth century? And how does socialist urban design continue to shape cities today, long after the end of the Cold War?

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.

Katherine Zubovich
35 EVANS
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39003
R1B.001: Reading and Composition in History: "From Reformation to Revolution: Religion and Early Modern Political Thought"
  • 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.
Maxwell R Staley
201 WHEELER
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39003
R1B.002: Reading and Composition in History: "Justice in Modern China"
  • 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.
Paulina Hartono
202 WHEELER
TuTh 330-5P
CCN: 39006
R1B: U.S. Cultural History: Domestic and Global Contexts

This course will explore the range of "culture concepts" from artistic expression and consumer consumption, to beliefs and rituals in United States history. Questions involving "Whose culture?" and issues surrounding transnational or global circulation of culture, "Globalization or Americanization?" will also be topics in our discussions and readings. The goal of this course is to learn how to think historically. Thinking historically is a particular type of critical thinking, and it should inform your reading and writing, ultimately helping you to both formulate a thesis (argument) and back up your thesis with evidence derived from primary and secondary sources. Because this is a class on cultural history, learning how to "read" and analyze cultural primary sources such as music, film, commercials, photographs, etc. will be a component of this class.

Kim Nalley
45 Evans
TTh 11-12:30
CCN: 39009
R1B.004: Reading and Composition in History: "Ghosts of the Holocaust: Working through Trauma in Germany, 1945 to the 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.
Jennifer Allen
201 WHEELER
TuTh 11-1230P
CCN: 39012
R1B.005: Reading and Composition in History: "Jack the Ripper: Gender, Sex, and Violence in the Modern City"
  • 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.
Katharine L. Harper
233 DWINELLE
TuTh 1230-2P
CCN: 39015
3: Byzantium & Near East

This course is designed as a general introduction to the study of history in general, and the study of Byzantium and the Islamic world in particular. It focuses on the two medieval successors to the Roman empire in Eastern Mediterranean and the Near East, and has three aims: to provide a rough outline of the events that transpired in this geographic area between the 4th and the 15th centuries; to explain how a modern historian can approach and understand medieval sources in order to reconstruct various aspects of the past; to discuss what pre-industrial societies have in common, and therefore how lessons learned in this class can be applied to the study of other time periods and/or geographic locations.

Maria Mavroudi
101 BARKER
TuTh 11-1230P
CCN: 39042
4A: Origins of Western Civilization: The Ancient Mediterranean World

This course offers an introductory survey of the history of the ancient Mediterranean world, from the rise of city states in Mesopotamia circa 3000 BC to the emergence of the Byzantine Empire in the sixth century AD.  The course has three main foci.  The first is to survey the major events and developments in the social, economic, and political history of the ancient Near East, Egypt, Greece, and Rome.   The second focus is to consider, very much along the way, the origins and development in the ancient world of ideas, practices, and institutions that have had an enduring influence on the development of western civilization.  These will include the emergence of cities, kingship, organized religion, and written law in the Near East and Mesopotamia; dynastic rule and priestly power in Egypt; tyranny, democracy, citizenship, imperialism, colonization, slavery, freedom, religious persecution and martyrdom in the Greek and Roman worlds.  The third focus will be the Mediterranean itself, for it was on and around its deep waters that all of these developments took place, and it left on each of them its distinctive mark.

Lectures and textbook readings will provide an essential historical narrative as well as interpretations of central problems. Primary source readings (including epic poetry, songs of labor and lamentation, political propaganda, narrative history, public documents, and biography) will give students an opportunity in discussion sections to grapple with some of the evidence on which our narratives and interpretations are based. There will be two short papers, three map quizzes, a midterm, and a cumulative final exam. Regular attendance and participation in discussion section is required.

Emily Mackil
101 MORGAN
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39057
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 turns to 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
101 MOFFITT
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39021
5: The Making of Modern Europe, 1450 – Present

This course introduces students to European history from around 1500 to the present as an aspect of global history. During this period, a small, poor, and fragmented outcropping of Asia became a world civilization, whose political, cultural, and economic power touched the four corners of the world. 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 as they played out on a local and on a global scale: the Renaissance, the epochal expansion of Europe into the new world, the break-up of Latin Christianity into the competing religious communities; the construction of the modern state; the formation of overseas empires and the coming of capitalism; the Scientific Revolution as a claim to universal knowledge; the French Revolution; liberalism and the industrial revolution;  socialism and the formation of the working class; the role of women in various contexts and the rise of feminism; modern colonialism; the world wars; communism and capitalism, decolonization, and the Cold War and the European Union. Our readings will range from learned treatises in religion and classics in political theory to novels and plays and documents from the past to exemplary articles by modern historians.. There will be no textbook. Work in sections focuses on discussions of the readings and on the improvement of writing skills. Three hours of lecture and two hours of section (required) per week.

Thomas W. Laqueur
159 MULFORD
TuTh 1230-2P
CCN: 39084
5: European Civilization from the Renaissance to the Present

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
390 Hearst Mining
TuTh 11-1230P
CCN: 39042
6A: History of China: Origins to the Mongol Conquest

This introductory course, designed for lower-division undergraduates with little or no background in Chinese history, celebrates key features of early and middle-period Chinese civilization, including its distinctive writing system, its compelling forms of historiography and philosophy, its construction of the social and heavenly orders, and the density of its urban life in antiquity, partly through the incredibly rich material record revealed by scientific excavations (mainly since 1949) and also through the hallowed literary traditions.  Upon occasion, lectures will contrast the imperial order of early China with that of Rome under Augustus and Hadrian, in order to highlight the diametrically opposed premises on which these two empires operated; sometimes lectures will contrast conditions in early China with those seen in today's China.

Michael Nylan
150 GSPP
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39123
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
141 MCCONE
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39063
7A: US to the Civil War

This course surveys American history from its first peopling through the Civil War. It approaches this history in part from a continental perspective, mindful of those regions of colonial and early national North America not dominated by English-Speakers. Major themes include the experiences and historic significance of the continent's native peoples; the centrality of African slavery to early American history, and the demographic, economic, and political transformations of the late 18th and early 19th centuries that would have such profound consequences for all the continent's peoples. Aside from the main task of understanding the key events and processes that shaped early American history, students will explore the craft of history, through focused discussion of primary sources and through short research papers based on those sources.

Brian DeLay
100 LEWIS
MW 4-5:30
CCN: 39144
7B: The United States Since the Civil War - Session C

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.

Gene Zubovich
101 MOFFITT
MWTh 10-12P
CCN: 52505
7B: Introduction to the History of the United States: The United States from Civil War to Present

New Discussion Sections recently added. 

This course is an introduction to the history of the U.S. from the Civil War to the present. It will cover a wide range of topics organized around a few central themes. One: it will examine the changing dimensions of American identity, paying close attention to the roles of race, ethnicity, religion, region, class, politics, ideology, and gender in defining “American-ness.” Two: it will examine American capitalism, looking at it through the lens of industrial growth and decline, labor and immigration, the environment, consumerism, government power, and globalization. And, three: it will examine American power in the world, focusing on its rise in the late 19th century, on its uses from westward expansion through the recent wars in the Middle East, and on its meanings for American culture, politics, and society. To all of these ends, the course will draw upon traditional kinds of historical narratives. Yet, it will also incorporate mass media, technological innovation, popular entertainment, and material culture as a way to provide an updated version of the American history survey. Through lectures, readings, discussions, films, written assignments, and exams, students will not only explore the changing contours of American life, but they will also have the opportunity to develop as writers, researchers, critical thinkers, and problem solvers.

Felicia A. Viator
150 WHEELER AUD
MWF 10-11A
CCN: 39081
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.

Kinga Novak
20 WHEELER
MWF 12-1P
CCN: 39165
10: African History

Combining a chronological and thematic approach, this course will examine select themes of African history from the 16th Century to the present. The first four weeks of the semester will be devoted to pre-colonial Africa. The rest of the semester will focus on the colonial and post-colonial periods. Among the topics that the course will explore are: Images of Africa in Western scholarship; pre-colonial social and political organization; economic production and pre-colonial trade. Colonialism was a brief but very intensive interlude in the long history of Africa. Themes in this section include: imperialism and the scramble for colonies; White settler colonies and colonial economies; Africa and the two World Wars; the missionary project, formal education and socio-cultural changes; urbanization; women, gender and colonialism; apartheid, liberation struggles and decolonization. Rather than the euphoria that followed the attainment of independence, the last segment of the course will focus on some of the crises confronting the continent including civil war conflicts and child soldiers; and the HIV/Aids crisis. Grading will be based on section attendance and participation (15%), 2 map quizzes (5%) Midterm (30%), one research paper (20%), and a final examination (30%).

Tabitha Kanogo
56 BARROWS
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39216
11: India
This course presents an overview of the history of the Indian subcontinent (today’s India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh) over the last 4,500 years. We will concentrate on a number of topics, including the region’s economic and political structures, religious communities and traditions, gender and social hierarchies, links with other parts of the world, and developments in literature, art, and everyday life. As we examine all of these histories, we will also spend some time thinking about how we know what we know, and why people have thought differently about the past.
 
We will begin in the cities of the Indus Valley Civilization, then move on to examine early states, the formation of great religious traditions, and the subcontinent’s links with southeast Asia. In the medieval period, we will look at a wide range of interactions with people from central and western Asia and at the growth of new religious and regional communities. The early modern period saw the rise of the Mughal empire, which left behind countless remnants, many of which persist today. We will look carefully at India’s colonization beginning in the eighteenth century and, finally, discuss colonial India’s transformation—perhaps incomplete!—into independent countries with intertwined destinies.
David S. Boyk
223 DWINELLE
MWF 10-11A
CCN: 39226
12: The Middle East

There was no Middle East one hundred years ago. Neither the regional name nor the countries we associate with it now existed.  Where did the states and identities we hear about in the news come from — and how?  What frameworks and sources have historians and political analysts used to shape their versions of the region’s past?  How have ideologies played a part?  How do those narratives shift when we try to understand the Middle East from the perspectives of its inhabitants?  This course aims to provide students with a general overview into basic themes and issues in Middle Eastern history from the rise of Islam until the 21st century. It explores the nature of state-building, the role of religion, and influence of trade.  By highlighting the circulation of  people, goods and ideas across, into and out of the region, it seeks to further challenge our notion of what constitutes Middle Eastern boundaries of space and time.  The course begins with the spread of Islam, the expansion of the Caliphate and the Mongol invasions.  It continues by exploring Ottoman territorial expansion, the rise of the Safavids, the Ottoman’s alleged decline and Safavid collapse.  What follows is an analysis of European economic and political intervention into Middle Eastern societies, which led ultimately to European colonization.  Lastly, the course examines Middle Eastern and Islamic responses to social, economic and political developments that took place over the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries.  

 

Megan Dean Farah
3108 ETCHVERRY
MWF 2-3P
CCN: 39180
12: The Middle East

The class will introduce students to key concepts, terms, and debates in the history of the modern Middle East, particularly in the 19th and 20th centuries. The first part of the class will briefly present the history of the region since the rise of Islam in the 7th century and up to the modern period. The second and bulk part of the course, will examine chronologically and thematically an array of topics related to the history of the modern Middle East, including the definition of the term Middle East; the debate about when the modern age started in the Middle East; the influence of the West; efforts of modernization in the 19th century; World War I and the end of the Ottoman Empire; the creation of the current borders in the Middle East; Arab nationalism and Pan-Arabism; the Israeli-Arab conflict; the rise of political Islam; women’s status; Bedouins; the oil economy and more.

Yuval Ben Bassat
101 BARKER
MWF 9-10A
CCN: 39227
L&S23: The Humanities

"The Humanities" were once considered the core of a liberal arts education, but today they often find themselves forced to justify their very existence. Some fifty years ago, Ronald Reagan, then Governor of California, described "liberal education" as "certain intellectual luxuries that we could do without for a year or two"; "intellectual curiosity," he said, "is not something taxpayers should be subsidizing." How did this sort of thinking come about, and is it valid? What does it mean for the university and for the kind of education it offers? In response to such challenges, the humanities have increasingly endeavored to make themselves more professional and more "scientific." What has been lost and what has been gained in this process? Can we still think of the humanities as aiming at the self-examination of the human by the human?

Through the lens of six representative disciplines (History, History of Art, Anthropology, Archaeology, Religion, and Rhetoric), this course will address these very issues, introducing students to the basic approaches, dilemmas, and vocabularies of current disciplinary research in the humanities at major American research universities like Berkeley. In each two-week block on a separate discipline, the first week employs readings that sketch the history of the discipline itself, including its original and present-day objectives and typical working methods; in the second week, students will find a unit of readings that illustrate and sometimes problematize the work of the some of the most prominent thinkers in that particular discipline. Conversations with faculty, fellow students, and guest lecturers will invite students to sharpen their awareness of the range of disciplines housed within the humanities, so that students may come to recognize themselves as heirs of rich intellectual, artistic, and ethical traditions. The course instructors believe this: The humanities still offer students an entryway into different experiential worlds, for the humanities open our eyes to the distinctive ways that people in different places and in different times, in different cultures and in different groups, have imagined what it means to be human. We welcome you to join the exploration, widening your horizons and inciting your sense of curiosity.

Daniel Boyarin
Michael Nylan
159 Mulford
TuTh 5-6:30p
CCN: 51944
24: Endangered Children And Youth In Contemporary Africa: Documentaries
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

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. Course ends October 6th. Limited to freshmen. Not applicable to the History Major.

Tabitha Kanogo
3205 Dwinelle
Tu 10-12P
CCN: 39242
24: Human Rights in Documents
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.

What are human rights?  Where do they originate?  To whom do they apply?  Human Rights in Documents will explore the evolution and applications of human rights through an examination of primary sources.  From Locke to the Universal Declaration and beyond, this course will invite students to engage with the texts that have created contemporary human rights sensibility.  Readings will be short and will be drawn from a variety of legal, political, cultural, and intellectual sources.

Daniel Sargent is assistant professor of history at the University of California, Berkeley.  He received his BA from Christ's College, Cambridge in 2001 and his PhD from Harvard University in 2008.  He is the author of A Superpoer Transformed: The Remaking of American Foreign Relations in the 1970s (Oxford University Press, 2015) and a co-author of The Shock of the Global:  The 1970s in Perspective (Harvard University Press, 2010).  Faculty website: http://history.berkeley.edu/people/daniel-sargent.  Lynsay Skiba will in 2015-16 be a PhD graduate of the University of California, Berkeley and a lecturer in the Department of History.  P/NP.

Daniel Sargent, Lynsay Skiba
238 KROEBER
W 3-4P
CCN: 39243
24: Freshman Seminar: How Wars Begin: Europe and the World, 1789-1991

“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
186 BARROWS
Th 1-2P
CCN: 39210
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
180 TAN
MWF 11-12P
CCN: 39245
39P: Freshman/Sophomore Seminar: Topic TBA
  • This course has been cancelled.
The Staff
224 WHEELER
MW 2-4P
CCN: 39251
8A: Becoming Latin America, 1492 to 1824
  • This course has been cancelled.
The Staff
101 Moffitt
TTh 12:30-2p
CCN: 39200
98BC: Berkeley Connect for Lower Division Students
  • HIST 98BC Section 2, CCN 39254, Mon 5-6pm (lower division) GSI Brandon Schechter
  • HIST 98BC Section 3, CCN 40062, Tues 6-7 (lower division) GSI Javier Cikota
  • HIST 98BC Section 4, CCN 40065, Thurs 5-6pm (lower division) GSI Amanda Buster

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. 

Victoria Frede Montemayor
3205 Dwinelle
N100.001: Special Topics in History: Short Course - "Slavery in the Ancient Greek and Roman World" -- Session A
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.
The institution of slavery was deeply embedded in the political, legal, social, economic and cultural framework of the ancient Greek and Roman world.  Among societies that have tolerated or supported the domination and ownership of human beings by other human beings, ancient Greece and Rome stand out as two of the few that can properly be considered “slave societies.”  In order to examine the impact of slavery on state and society in the ancient Greek and Roman, world we will consider a wide range of topics including the origins and maintenance of the slave system, slave labor, family life, resistance and slave rebellions, manumission and freedom, and Greek and Roman ideas about slavery.  Discussion of slavery in the antebellum U.S. South will help us to place ancient slavery in a broad historical and comparative perspective.
 
This is a two-unit course.  There are no prerequisites
Carlos F. Noreña
88 DWINELLE
TuTh 4-6P
CCN: 52530
N100.002: Special Topics in History: Short Course - "Energy: An American History" Session D
  • This course does not count for credit toward the History Major but may fulfill other requirements.
This course will examine how the predominant sources of energy and how the uses of those different types of energy changed over time and across American geographies. We will start by analyzing the diets of hunter-gatherer societies, as well as the domestication of fire, plants, and animals. We will explore the origins and consequences of the dam building frenzy in the first half of the twentieth century, the expansion of the fossil fuel economy, and the social history of electricity and automobiles and their impacts on consumer culture. We will also analyze the ways that WWII and the Cold War created the context for the development of nuclear weapons and nuclear power plants and the controversies and legacies these industries have generated. Finally, we will examine how increased consumption of energies helped contribute to the rise of current controversies over fracking, climate change, and renewable energy projects.
 
This is a two-unit course.  There are no prerequisites
Robert N. Chester
102 Moffitt
MW 8-10AM
CCN: 52535
100AC: Special Topics in the History of the United States: Defiant Women: Gender, Power, and Violence in American History
  • Note new room.

photo of rosa parks being booked into jail

 

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 are not required to purchase textbooks for this class. All materials will be made available via the bCourses site.

 

Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
101 Morgan
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39318
100AC: Special Topics in the History of the United States: The United States West, 1789-1915

This course will introduce students to the history of the United States West. The "West" describes both a specific geographic region as well as a process of diverse peoples coming together. Drawing on recent historiography and primary sources, students will explore how peoples who belonged to competing empires, nations, and indigenous political structures navigated this shared space. Themes include race, religion, gender, and the increasing power of the federal government.

Keyes 100AC Syllabus 10_8_14.pdf
Sarah Keyes
101 LSA
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39255
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.

Stephanie E. Jones-Rogers
145 MOFFITT
TuTh 11-1230P
CCN: 39257
100B: Yugoslavia

This course considers the emergence and decline of the Yugoslav state (1918 - 1991) from two different but closely related standpoints – that of history and politics, and that of language, literature and culture. Throughout Eastern Europe, but especially in the former Yugoslavia, these two aspects have been so interconnected that it is not possible to understand one without some comprehension of the other. Literature and other means of artistic expression take as their primary topics historical or current politically charged events, major political actions are often precipitated by or at least closely connected with literary events or figures, and conceptions of national identity are so closely entwined with the idea of language as to be inseparable.

John Connelly
160 DWINELLE
MWF 2-3P
CCN: 39339
100B: Special Topics in European History: Berlin and the Twentieth-Century

There is probably no other city in the world that bears the marks of twentieth-century modernity as much as Berlin. Pivotal site for the collapse of four different Germanies between 1918 and 1989, Berlin has been the capital of Empire, war and revolution, democracy, social, artistic and cultural experimentation, Nazism, genocide and urban warfare, Cold War confrontation, student radicalism in the West and Soviet-style Socialism in the East, and finally re-united Germany, haunted by the presence of the past. While our analysis will be buoyed by close readings of short primary texts (among others, from the collection Metropolis Berlin 1890-1940) and recent scholarship on Berlin’s ruptured twentieth-century history, careful analysis of visual sources (architecture, urban design, film and photography) will be at the heart of this course. As we ourselves journey through Berlin’s history, we will pay close attention to the ways in which contemporaries envisioned modernity as well to the darker side that these visions entailed. There will be two short papers, a mid-term and a final exam, which can be replaced by a research paper. Primary sources and short readings will be available on bCourses. Guest speakers will include Greg Castillo (College of Environmental Design), Deniz Göktürk and Anton Kaes (German Department). In preparation, please purchase a copy of Brian Ladd, The Ghosts of Berlin (1998) and listen to Berlin’s music of the last century from cabaret to techno: http://www.berlin-sampler.com.

Stefan-Ludwig Hoffmann
102 WURSTER
TuTh 2-330P
CCN: 39258
100B: Special Topics in European History: Gdańsk/Danzig/Gedanu, A City Shaped—Histories and Cultures

In this course we will examine the fascinating, competing histories and cultures of the Baltic coast city known variously as Danzig and Gdańsk (among other spellings and forms).  First a medieval Slavic (Polish/Kashubian) fishing village, then a growing port city under the rule of the Teutonic Knights of the Cross (XIV century), then the largest city of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (XV century to 1795).  Freed from the hated overlordship of the Teutonic Order and, as the chief city of Royal Prussia (a semi-autonomous district of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, Gdańsk (still largely German speaking and a Hanseatic city) was Poland’s main access to the wider world through export and import.  Except for a brief period of intendant status as, once again, a “Free City” in Napoleonic times (1807–1814), from 1795 (the Third Partition of Poland) to 1918 (end of WWI), Danzig  was a city of diminished significance in the Kingdom of Prussia and later the German Empire.  In the twentieth century, it became a focal point of German-Polish tensions.  The Treaty of Versailles (1918) did many things:  among them it created a “Free State (not “City”) of Gdańsk,” governed (loosely) by the League of Nations; it also resurrected a free and independent Second Polish Republic, still a multi-ethnic federation, but with much changed borders, and with a promise of “free and secure access to the sea.”

Course materials will include close examination of maps of the city throughout its existence, coupled with lectures (with a few short readings) on the city’s history.  These will accompany us throughout the course.  The main body of reading material for students will be from novels (1959–2001), both German and Polish (in English translation), produced by citizens of the city; these works deal directly with the city’s topography, social, political, and religious divides, historical memory; and in the Polish case, the problem of inhabiting and making Polish, a city that, for centuries, had not been “ours” in any direct sense.  On the German side, we will read four of the novels of Danziger and Noble Prize winner for literature (1999), Günter Grass.  On the Polish side we will read three novels by writers of the next generation, sons of those who took up residence in the abandoned houses of post-war Danzig/Gdańsk:  Paweł Huelle and Stefan Chwin.  Both Polish writers, in different ways, could be said to be involved in a dialogue in their works with those of Günter Grass.

 

David Frick
243 DWINELLE
TuTh 1230-2P
CCN: 39260
100D: Crime, Punishment, and Power in US History

This upper division lecture course explores the history of the modern American criminal justice system and the people who have shaped and been shaped by its colossal, life-altering powers. We begin by examining three distinct spaces in which new ideas about crime, policing, race, and punishment were articulated and given material force after the American Revolution: the prison, the city, and the slave plantation. From there, we’ll trace the emergence of a new law enforcement state in the early 20th century, and assess the extent to which earlier ideologies and practices influenced this fledgling system. History is rarely a straight or unbroken line from past to present, and the history of American criminal justice is no exception: we’ll also study alternative practices of policing and corrections that were, if only for a moment, politically viable and even quite popular during America’s “Unfinished Revolution” (Reconstruction), the Progressive Era, and the Long Civil Rights Era. Turning in the last few weeks of the semester to the “post-industrial” era (1970s to the present), we’ll examine the retreat from earlier decarceration policies and the move to mass incarceration, “zero tolerance” policing, and the War on Drugs. Finally, as part of our effort to think historically about crime, punishment, and the possibility of change, we’ll meet two filmmakers whose new documentary, Last Day of Freedom, powerfully draws the historical connections among war, crime, and capital punishment. 

 

Rebecca M. McLennan
102 WURSTER
TuTh 11-1230P
CCN: 39342
100D: American Lives, American History: Oral History and the Understanding of Social Change

This course provides an introduction to oral history as a research method generating primary sources with distinctive information about the past.  Primary and secondary readings will help students explore the potential of oral history interviews to augment historical understanding, with focus on how social change marks the lives of those it touches, as reflected in the stories they are willing to share.  We will examine the ways in which memory and identity are continually changing responses to historic events and processes that are always simultaneously personal and collective.  Students will receive training in preparation, conduct, and analysis of interviews.  Students will conduct a short interview for the course and write a brief analysis of what they learned and what the record might contribute to historical understanding.

Richard Cándida-Smith
229 DWINELLE
TuTh 1230-2P
CCN: 40098
100U: Special Topics in Comparative History: The Second World War
  • Note new room.

The Second World War was true to its name. It was not the first war fought on a world scale or to shake the established order among powerful states and their empires. Indeed the second followed the first by less than two decades and is inexplicable without reference to that conflict, including its terms of settlement. But the second, which merged two vast conflagrations in Europe and Asia, was destructive on a scale all its own. This was the first ideological war, not simply about territory, but about conflicting ideas on how governments should organize lives of their citizens. The war tested fascism, socialism and liberal democracy. Because of the furies unleashed, the war harnessed entire populations—men, women, children—in sacrifice, suffering and in some cases profit. It left in its wake the Holocaust, the massive destruction of cities from the air, and the first use of atomic weapons in warfare; it was followed by the liquidation of European and Japanese colonialism, the advent of the Cold War, the undermining of racism in political and public life and the emergence of human rights as a norm in the conduct of international relations.

This new lecture course invites students to think through the Second World War in three stages, considering first its causes, then the course of conflict in all its theaters, and finally its consequences, into our day. Readings will include major works of historical synthesis along with selected documents, literary treatments, oral histories, and films.

Andrew E. Barshay, John Connelly
101 MOFFITT
TuTh 1230-2P
CCN: 39273
100U: From Plato to NATO: Great Books, Big Ideas
  • This course has been cancelled.
Janaki Bakhle
141 Giannini
MW 4-5:30p
CCN: 39351
100U: Special Topics in Comparative History: Big History
  • Note new room.

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
210 Dwinelle
MW 4-530P
CCN: 39276
101: Seminar in Historical Research and Writing for History Majors

See http://history.berkeley.edu/undergraduate/history-101-faq for full listings.

The Staff
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 evaluating historical arguments, 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.
Brian DeLay
145 MOFFITT
M 4-530P
CCN: 39480
105A: Archaic and Classical Greek History

This course will represent an overview of the history of the Greek world from the Bronze Age to the end of the Peloponnesian War in 404BC. Major themes will include: the ecology of the Meditteranean; the emergence of communities and states; the expansion of Greek settlement abroad; tyranny and democracy; religion; warfare; agriculture and commerce; interstate relations; the Persian wars; Sparta and the Peloponnesian League; Athens and the Athenian Empire. Most readings will be in translated primary sources, including Homer, Hesiod, Herodotus, Thucydides, lyric and tragic poetry, and documentary evidence such as laws, treaties, and decrees. There will be two short papers (5-7pp), a midterm, and a cumulative final exam.

Emily Mackil
130 WHEELER
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39494
106A: The Roman Republic

This course offers an introduction to the history of the Roman Republic, from the foundation of the city in the 8th century BC to the cataclysmic civil wars that destroyed the Republic in the 1st century BC.  The central theme of the course is Rome’s imperial expansion, first within Italy and then throughout the Mediterranean, with special attention to the political, economic, social, and cultural impact of Roman imperialism, both on conquered territories and on Rome itself.  Lectures will provide an essential historical narrative and interpretations of central problems in Roman Republican history, and primary-source readings will give students an opportunity in discussion sections to engage with key texts and documents from the period.  There are no prerequisites for this course.

Carlos F. Noreña
2040 VALLEY LSB
MWF 11-12P
CCN: 39546
N106B: The Roman Empire - Session A

This course offers an introduction to the history of the Roman empire, from the advent of monarchy in Rome in the first century BC to the breakdown of central state authority in the fifth century AD.  Major themes include the overlapping networks of social power in the Roman empire (institutional and personal); the unity and diversity of Roman imperial culture; the changing relationship between state and society; the political economy of the Roman empire; and the geography and ecology of the Mediterranean world.  Lectures will provide an essential historical narrative and interpretations of central problems in Roman imperial history, and discussion sections will give students an opportunity to engage with key texts from or about the Roman empire, from Tacitus to Gibbon.  There are no prerequisites for this course.

Carlos F. Noreña
102 MOFFITT
TuWTh 1-330P
CCN: 52540
108: Byzantium
This course surveys the political, economic, social, and intellectual history of the Eastern Roman empire (Byzantium) from the fourth to the fifteenth centuries. 
Maria Mavroudi
145 MOFFITT
TuTh 930-11A
CCN: 39501
N109C: The Modern Middle East from the 18th Century to the Present - Session D

This course surveys the key processes, events and personalities that have shaped the societies, states and economies of the Middle East since the 18th century. It is designed to help contextualize current developments, to identify various interpretative frameworks for approaching history in general and for understanding the Middle East in particular, and to acquaint students with a variety of useful sources ranging from film to specialized academic articles. Students are expected to attend every class to hear the lecture, ask questions and participate in discussion.

Berkeley109C_ST2015_Strieff.pdf
Daniel Strieff
242 DWINELLE
MTuWTh 10-12P
CCN: 52545
111B: Modern Southeast Asia
This introductory course surveys major themes of modern Southeast Asian history. Lectures will be organized topically and chronologically with an emphasis on cross-country comparisons. Starting with a consideration of pre-colonial political and economic legacies, we will examine local responses to imperial conquest and colonial state formation, the impact of capitalist penetration, the transformation of indigenous elites, the growth of "plural societies," anti-colonial resistance and the development of nationalism, war and Japanese occupation, decolonization and the erection of post-colonial regimes. Emphasis will be placed on the region's largest and most populous countries: Thailand, Burma, Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines. Requirements include class attendance, participation in discussion sections, several short essays, a mid-term and a final.
Peter B. Zinoman
122 WHEELER
TuTh 11-1230P
CCN: 39519