Fall 2010 Course Descriptions
SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE! Always check the University online schedule for the latest changes.
HIS 505 - Introduction to Archival Management
(Offered by LIS department, cross-listed with HIS)
Principles of archival management, featuring both classroom instruction in archival theory and practical experience in manuscript repositories and public and private archives. (Same as LIS 505.) Pr. permission of instructor
HIS 508 - Latin American History: "The Great Debates of Colonial Latin America, 1492-1830"
This course addresses the legal, moral, and political debates arising from the European conquest and colonization of the Western Hemisphere after 1492, especially within the first great American empires, those of Spain and Portugal. For over three centuries in colonial Latin America, Africans, Europeans, and native peoples both fought and cooperated with one another, exploited and traded, and segregated and intermixed. In doing so, diverse thinkers of all backgrounds contemplated their societies and argued over, among other issues, the nature of racial differences, the morality of slavery, and the justice of European imperialism itself. While historians have traditionally focused on the European participants in these debates, in this course we seek to represent the true diversity of colonial Latin America by also including and comparing the perspectives of native peoples, Africans and their descendants, mixed-race individuals, women, and foreigners. Discussions and written assignments will involve the analysis of newly uncovered and translated primary sources.
HIS 511B - Seminar in Historical Research and Writing: �Democracy and Its Discontents�The Weimar Republic, 1919�1933�
Writing and Speaking Intensive. Pr. one 300-level research intensive history course. Written permission required. Restricted to senior history majors.
Part of a widespread democratic belt that extended across Central Europe to the Balkans following the Treaty of Versailles in 1919, Germany�s Weimar Republic has also been labeled the �gamble that didn�t stand a chance.� But despite its ultimate decline, the Weimar Republic created one of the first integrative modern cultural worlds that included film, literature, theater, architecture, and increased gender awareness. This seminar examines the origins, rise, and ultimate fall of the first democratic experiment in Germany between 1919 and 1933 as an example of �modernity.� Drawing on sources from Roth, Gropius, Mann, Schmitt, Hitler, among others in literature, philosophy, film, fine arts, architecture, and music, class discussions and research papers will attempt to reconcile Weimar�s political unrest with these tremendous cultural achievements.
HIS 511C - Seminar in Historical Research and Writing: "Popular Protest in Chinese History"
Writing and Speaking Intensive. Pr. one 300-level research intensive history course. Written permission required. Restricted to senior history majors.
This course will examine the nature of popular protest in Chinese history. Topics examined during the semester will include the role religion played as a source of social volatility in traditional Chinese culture and society, peasant revolutions, the May Fourth Movement, popular protest in the rise of nationalism and communism, and domestic political protest since the 1949 founding of the People�s Republic of China. Most importantly, students in this course will be responsible for individual research projects, for which they will locate and use historical source materials, written and oral, published and unpublished. Comparing and analyzing a variety of primary source materials, students will write their own histories of Chinese popular protest and in the end develop their skills in observing societies with different origins than their own.
HIS 524 - 20th Century U.S. Selected Topics: "The U.S. in the 1970s"
This course will explore U.S. history in the 1970s, challenging the common view that it was a boring decade in which nothing of great importance happened. Paying particular attention to social movements such as feminism and the New Right but also exploring key topics surrounding public policy, the economy, and foreign affairs, students will explore how the events of the 1970s shaped many of the struggles that the U.S. faces today.
This is a readings course in which students will explore a range of primary and secondary sources. The course will be conducted as a seminar and students will be expected to participate actively in the discussion each week. Students will submit many short pieces of written work and will also write longer papers based on the assigned readings.
HIS 543 - Historic Preservation: Principles and Practices
Change in historic preservation theory and practice since the 1800s with emphasis on preservation of built environment and development of philosophical approach for designers to contemporary preservation projects. (Same as IAR 543)
HIS 559 - Doing Visual History
Charles Bolton and Matt Barr
This is an interdisciplinary course that will be crosslisted with MST 559 and will be team-taught by Charles Bolton (History) and Matthew Barr (Media Studies). The course will examine the interstices of history, documentary production, and personal narratives. Students will explore a wide variety of issues, including interviewing techniques, the interactions between historians/documentarians and informants, the role of memory and recall in personal testimony, the methodology of conducting video recordings, the ethical and legal issues surrounding the collection of personal narratives, the technique of nonlinear editing of visual recordings, DVD production, and the preservation of visual narratives as archival data. In addition to classroom instruction, a primary component of the class will be fieldwork conducted by students, who will work in teams to conduct video oral histories and produce a menu-driven DVD based on those interviews.
HIS 567 - French History: "America, France, and the Cold War"
The focus of this course will be on how Europe experienced the early cold war, with special attention to the relations between France and the US. We will begin with a historical account of the dramatic events of the early cold war from its roots in the Second World War to the death of Stalin. Next we turn toward an examination of heated debates among leading writers and intellectuals from both sides of the Atlantic over the larger issues raised by the cold war�political freedom, social justice, and the specter of nuclear annihilation. Finally, in the concluding section we will look at another aspect of the cold war that has stimulated much recent interest�namely, the increasingly important part that perceptions of America have played in European society, politics, and culture. The French in particular have been highly ambivalent concerning the impact of America�s military and economic power, her popular culture, and her consumer society.
HIS 581 - African History Selected Topics: "Images of Africa in Print Media and Film"
This course examines the ways Africa and Africans have been portrayed in a variety of print media and film genres over time. We will be especially concerned with issues of content -- that is, messages that have been conveyed about Africa and Africans -- although we will have to familiarize ourselves with analyses of print and film as media in order to learn how those messages have been conveyed, how to decode them, and how to evaluate them. In other words, this is a course primarily about Africa and African history and it is also an extended exercise in critical thinking. We will survey a variety of stereotypes about Africa in print and in film, and we will discuss where those stereotypes have come from, and how and in what forms they have persisted over time. Students will also be introduced to critiques of and responses to those stereotypes by politically aware and engaged journalists, scholars, and filmmakers.
Prerequisite for all 600- 700 level History courses: Admission to a graduate program in history or interior architecture, or written permission of instructor.
HIS 624 - History of American Landscapes & Architecture
This course is designed as an advanced reading seminar in the history of American landscapes and architecture. The course will introduce you to a variety of methods developed by architectural and cultural historians to interpret buildings and landscapes as cultural artifacts with historically specific meanings that must be understood in particular context over time. An important objective of the course is to go beyond classroom reading and discussion to application of specific scholars' arguments and methodologies through analysis of particular buildings and landscapes. (Same as IAR 624)
By the end of the semester you should be able to do the following:
- Identify and evaluate major periods in the development of the American landscape from the colonial era through the mid-twentieth century.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the ways that buildings and landscapes document cultural and social change over time.
- Define particular architectural styles, use specialized architectural vocabulary/terminology, and explain the differences between vernacular and academic building traditions.
- Compare and contrast the methodologies developed by a variety of scholars to interpret landscape and architecture as historical evidence.
- Use different interpretive approaches to evaluate a particular landscape or building in historical context.
HIS 627 - Museum and Historic Site Interpretation: Principles and Practice
This seminar explores the relationship between history and public audiences, focusing on the theory and practice of telling stories through museums and historic sites. It introduces students to the tools that public historians use to interpret the past, explores key dilemmas in public interpretation and community collaboration, and examines contemporary models for how best to reach audiences in ways that make history meaningful. Topics include learning theory, audience evaluation, oral history, photography and material culture, living history, historic houses, and exhibits. The course will culminate in a local history project, produced by the students for a public venue. Same as IAR 627.
HIS 629 - Museum Education
This course surveys the basic principles and practices of museum education, emphasizing facilitated experiences. Through reading works by researchers and practitioners in the field, students will explore the kinds of learning that occur in museums and how that learning takes place. As well, students themselves will practice the skills and techniques utilized by museum educators. Prerequisite: Admission to a graduate program in history or interior architecture.
See the M.A. FAQ for more information about the following:
HIS 690 - Internship
HIS 692 - Advanced Topics
HIS 697 - Independent Study
HIS 699 - Thesis
HIS 701 - Colloquium in US History to 1865
701-01 Phyllis Hunter M 3:30-6:20
The purpose of this colloquium is to give graduate students a knowledge of the historiographic themes and debates that structure much of the interpretation of American History up to (and in some cases beyond) 1865. Students will read and interpret several �classic� works of history as well as several books representing new issues and/or methods. The class will be run as a seminar with weekly discussions led by groups of students.
701-02 Greg O'Brien W 6:30-9:20
This required graduate course exposes students to the major historiographical trends and debates on topics in US history before 1865. The format is a discussion class where a student and the professor lead the discussion on that week's readings. Students will read the equivalent of at least a book a week, lead a discussion, complete several weekly papers in response to the readings, and take a final exam. By the end, students should have mastered the principal historical interpretations of American history before 1865.
HIS 703 - Seminar in US History
Research and writing on selected topics in American history.
HIS 705 - Colloquium in European History to 1789
This course comprises the first half of the Graduate Colloquium in European History. Our imagined task is a huge, even impossible one: we are tasked with trying to make sense of the methods, techniques, and approaches used by historians who study Europe from Rome to the French Revolution. Obviously we cannot do justice to every period and/or every topic, and our approach must inevitably be somewhat episodic. Rather than follow a haphazard and incomplete chronology through this vast span of time, I have organized the course methodologically. In essence we are going to examine some of those methods, techniques, and approaches rather than a series of events, periods, or persons. We will accomplish this task, of course, by reading and evaluating sample works of historians who work in that given style, method, or approach. Peter Burke�s edited volume, New Perspectives on Historical Writing, will provide a quasi-textbook or roadmap for our endeavor, as it comprises specially-commissioned chapters on many of the approaches and sub-disciplines that we will examine. Please note that I have tried to balance the temporal focus of the works we will read: my design is that about half of our readings will come from the medieval period and half from the early modern period.
HIS 707 - Seminar in European History
Research and writing on selected topics in European history.
HIS 709 - Introductory Research Seminar
709-01 (U.S.) Tom Jackson R 6:30-9:20
In this course you will be expected to research and write a substantive article-length paper on a problem of your choosing. The first half of the course will be devoted to examining important questions in the history of 20th century US "public culture" and to considering several methodologically innovative scholarly articles that might serve as models for your research. The professor has strengths in political history, social movement history, and the history of the African American freedom movement. By mid semester, all students will be expected to be in possession of an important question and a body of sources likely to yield answers. Some students may already have projects in mind; others should be willing to be guided to a number of researchable problems that will draw upon rich primary source materials available through the Jackson library, local collections, or the Internet. Some potential issues: problems in the interpretation of photographic evidence during the Great Depression; mass media and protest movements; presidential decision-making and the civil rights crisis of 1963; the "illegal immigrant" in the public discourse of the 1980s.
709-02 (Europe) Jeff Jones T 6:30-9:20
This class, an introductory seminar intended primarily for first-year M. A. students in European history, will examine aspects of Modern European history based on student research projects. This seminar will train students to select a topic, conduct research on that topic, present results both orally and in writing, and constructively criticize the work of their peers. Students will write a research paper based on primary sources in a step-by-step process: choosing a topic; learning the historiography; identifying primary sources; compiling a bibliography; drawing up an early draft of the paper; evaluating each other�s work through a peer-review system; and revising the final draft. Paper topics will vary widely, but students in the class will all be dealing with the same challenges of researching and writing a major piece of original scholarship, so the effort will be as collaborative as possible.
HIS 710 - Colloquium in the Atlantic World
This course introduces graduate students to the variety of approaches and themes that comprise one of the newest and fastest-growing fields in our discipline. The Atlantic World provides a useful conceptual and methodological framework in which to analyze the development of European empires, the creation of American colonial societies, and the emergence of trans-imperial exchange networks in the early modern period (roughly 1400-1800) and beyond. We will read a selection of major works which have defined the field, identify different perspectives and approaches, and trace the development of the historiography. We will also consider the challenges involved in comparative, cross-cultural historical research, and the limits of an Atlantic approach. Students will critically analyze the strengths and weaknesses of an Atlantic perspective as it applies to their specific research and teaching interests.
HIS 723 - Selected Topics in 19th Century U.S. History: "The Market Revolution, 1815-1850"
This graduate course will examine a period of amazing change, upheaval, and development in American history from 1815-1850. Under the general rubric of the so-called market revolution, we will explore topics such as the transportation and communication revolution, the rise of democracy, Jacksonian policies, Indian Removal, the Whig Party, religious ferment and reform movements, slavery, war with Mexico and territorial expansion, the changing workplace, immigration, and biographies of select historical actors. Students will complete weekly readings as well as a final historiographical or research paper. Grading will be based on discussion participation, book reviews, and the final paper.
HIS 724 - Selected Topics in 20th Century U.S. History: �Reverberations of the Rights Revolution, 1941-1991�
Between the battles for equal rights fought during World War II and the rise of conservatism in the 1980s, a broad "rights revolution" brought popular movements, political parties, policy elites, and contentious rights ideologies into dynamic interaction. These conflicts left every corner of American society changed and influenced conservative movements that fed into �America's right turn" in the 1980s. They were ideological, yet in many cases all invoked (or challenged) the rights discourses that defined the nation from its founding to the Popular Front of the 1930s. Always sensitive to international developments, these traditions helped define still unfulfilled and controversial political agendas and popular freedom dreams. Rights struggles and rights talk have a long history before this era. African American and Latino movements for freedom, women's movements for suffrage and economic justice, workers movements for collective bargaining rights and social welfare, and long-standing "battles at the boundaries" over civil liberties (speech, religion, assembly, protest), all have been ongoing since the early years of the Republic. But somewhat arbitrarily we will start during WWII, and give a good deal of attention to the �Long Civil Rights Movement,� its interactions and influences on concurrent and subsequent movements for rights. We will examine everyone from middle class women to Latino farm workers to gays and lesbians, prisoners, disabled people, opponents of "forced busing" in the 1970s, and people mobilizing against environmental hazards in their neighborhoods. We will end by evaluating the ways in which conservative movements of homeowners, taxpayers, working class whites and others reacted to, yet echoed the rights discourse of black freedom and feminist movements. A survey of student interests will precede finalization of the reading list.
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