T500: Path to Emancipation: Nationalism in the Balkans, 1804–1923 (Bucur- Deckard)
Interested in better understanding how the dialogue and struggles between Islam, Christianity, and Judaism shaped modern Europe and its relationship with the Middle East? The Balkans became the stage for many of these developments, and this course will guide you through the political, economic, and cultural processes during the nineteenth century that led to: the collapse of the Ottoman Empire from great power to nation-state; the rise of several nation states in the region, from Greece to Serbia; the international realignment of European great powers around conflicts in the Balkans; and the beginning of World War I after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo in 1914. We will also delve into the rich and unique cultural traditions and social networks that underpin these wider processes, from the zadruga to transhumance.
This is primarily an upper division undergraduate course. For the graduate students enrolled in this class, there will be 2 additional seminar-style meetings over the semester (October and November), and we will read together 2 additional books of recent scholarship on topics related to the class. The grading will also be different, with students being expected to take the midterm and, in lieu of the final, write a historiographic paper on a topic to be determined with the instructor.
H601: Introduction to the Professional Study of History (Bucur-Deckard)
This colloquium is an introduction to the professional study of history from multiple standpoints. It works outward from the writings of historians to consider the nature of historical scholarship, trends in historiography, and the vocation of history. We will start by reading examples of historical research representing several different approaches and fields alongside key conceptual essays. In addition to honing your analytical skills, these readings will encourage you to think further about the kinds of history you enjoy and want to practice. Then, we will focus on the development of the historical profession, trends in employment (types of, fields, etc.), and the ways historians have thought about their work. Finally, we will learn and practice some of the fundamentals of professionalization.
H601: Introduction to the Professional Study of History (McGraw)
Introduces graduate students to the demands of the historical profession, and to the theory and methods of history, through the reading and discussion of foundational works across a wide range of periods and geographical areas.
H605/H705: Greek Democracies – Athens and Beyond (Robinson, E)
The organization of this graduate course will combine the approaches of a History Department “seminar” and “colloquium,” and thus students will be able to register for it under either rubric.
Students will study the origins and development of Greek democracy, from the first seeds of egalitarianism in Greece to demokratia’s full fruition in many city-states during the Archaic and Classical periods (c. 750 – 323 BC). We will focus not just on Athens — antiquity’s most famous democracy — but on the democratic experiences of other Greek city-states as well. Ancient democracy’s definition, beginnings, expansion, and functioning in different settings will be explored.
Whether their ultimate interests in this topic lie with the classical world itself or with comparisons to political regimes of later eras, students in this course will acquire a useful grounding in the ancient sources for the history of Greek democracy and in important scholarly trends in its study.
For most of the semester classes will be run in a discussion-oriented format with frequent, relatively brief, student reports as we grapple with the topics as listed above and seek a general understanding of the major issues in ancient Greek democracy. But this class also requires students to research and write a substantial paper on a topic of their choosing relating to this subject. Time in the last third of the course will be given over to discussion of techniques of ancient historical research, specific problems students encounter as they conduct their research, and individual attention to student projects.
H620: The French Revolution (Spang)
For over two centuries, the French Revolution has been a crucial topic of both historical and historiographical debate. Its origins have been traced to low literature and high politics; its effects have been detected in everything from economic theory and hair styles to family dynamics and the map of Europe. From the Revolution, we get our contemporary notions of political Left and Right, as well as the word “terrorist”; from the Revolution, France got départements, the “rights of man,” and the metric system.
After an introductory section on eighteenth-century culture, politics, and society, this course will concentrate on the revolutionary 1790s. Metropolitan France will provide our primary focus, but we will also consider the meaning of revolution in France’s Caribbean colonies and across much of Western Europe. In April 1792, revolutionary France declared war against the kings of central Europe; war continued, almost uninterrupted, until 1815. To study the Revolution is to study ideas of liberty and equality; it is also to study practices of war and empire.
There are no prerequisites for this course and all required readings will be in English. Assessment will be based on in-class participation (including a brief teaching exercise) and on a final, mini-research paper (15 pages).
H640/H740: Russian Empire (Eklof)
H650: Visual Culture (Caddoo)
This graduate course examines the legal, social, cultural, and economic histories of visual culture in the United States, with a particular emphasis on the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries--a time often identified as pivotal in the ascendance of “the visual.” Our examination of visual culture will include both material archives and an investigation of how “ways of seeing” have changed through time. Our course readings and discussions will be organized chronologically, but we will also attend to questions of historiography and methodology as we consider the possibilities, limitations, and implications of viewing history through the interdisciplinary field of visual culture.
Students are expected to complete an original research paper by the end of the semester.
H650: History in Place (Gamber)
This colloquium offers an overview of American/United States history through several related sub-disciplines: urban, spatial, environmental, borderlands, and architectural history. While it doesn’t cover every possible topic (an impossible task in a single semester), its goal is to familiarize students with both the subject matter of American/US history and some of the ways in which it has been studied and explained. This course requires students to read both intensively and broadly by focusing on a wide range of subjects, including economic development and social change, labor (both “free” and unfree), war, and empire. Our discussions will focus on evaluating these readings critically and situating them within larger historiographical contexts and scholarly debates. We will also consider issues such as method, organization, style, and audience. At heart, this course asks what we can—and can’t—learn by examining history from the vantage point of various sorts of places, including cities, plantations, battlefields, coal mines, coastlines, waterways, and suburban homes.
The course is intended to help students prepare for qualifying examinations, teaching, and the intellectual tasks common in academic careers such as writing book reviews.
Books to be assigned will likely include:
- Elizabeth A. Fenn, Encounters at the Heart of the World: A History of the Mandan People (Hill and Wang, 2014)
- Cornelia H. Dayton and Sharon V. Salinger, Robert Love’s Warnings: Searching for Strangers in Colonial Boston (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014)
- Richard Dunn, A Tale of Two Plantations: Slave Life and Labor in Jamaica and Virginia (Harvard University Press, 2014)
- Catherine McNuer, Taming Manhattan: Environmental Battles in the Antebellum City (Harvard University Press, 2014)
- Susan Schulton, Mapping the Nation: History and Cartography in Nineteenth-Century America (University of Chicago Press, 2012)
- Lisa M. Brady, War upon the Land: Military Strategy and the Transformation of Southern Landscapes during the American Civil War (University of Georgia Press. 2012)
- Thomas G. Andrews, Killing for Coal: America’s Deadliest Labor War (Harvard University Press, 2010)
- Lissa Wadewitz, The Nature of Borders: Salmon, Boundaries, and Bandits on the Salish Sea (University of Washington Press, 2012)
- Connie Y. Chiang, Shaping the Shoreline: Fisheries and Tourism on the Monterey Coast (University of Washington Press, 2009)
- Geraldo L. Cadava, Standing on Common Ground: The Making of a Sunbelt Borderland (Harvard University Press, 2013)
- Dianne Harris, Little White Houses: How the Postwar Home Constructed Race in America (University of Minnesota Press, 2013)
- Kate Brown, Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters (Oxford Univ. Press, 2013)
H685: History of Conflict as History of Emotions – the Israeli Arab Case (Zadoff, N)
The Arab Israeli conflict occupies a considerable place in the media and in world politics. This Graduate course seeks to analyze this conflict through the lens of the growing field of History of Emotions. Dealing with emotions always poses a methodological and theoretical challenge for the historian. We will read together works that emphasize the role of emotions in the encounter between Zionism and Israel on the one side and the Arab world on the other side.
Through analyzing different documents – such as declarations of independence, or visual representation of the Arab-Israeli encounter, we will seek to understand better the ways in which emotions define and nurture national conflicts, but also have the power to create bridges.
H699: Globalizing the Past (Machado)
The past two decades have witnessed growing interest in a developing new field of historical research and teaching: global history. Spurred in part by the political reorientations, geographical and spatial re-imaginings following the collapse of the Soviet bloc and the urgent realities of an emergent ‘hyper’ globalizing world, as well as by the transnational turn to anti- and postcolonial scholarship, global history scholarship has opened possibilities for scholars to reframe spatial, temporal and discursive constructs in a changing intellectual landscape. Echoing broader arguments against universalism and Eurocentrism – but employing frameworks that set them apart from world historians’ preoccupations with comparative history – global historians seek to uncover the multipolar and pluralistic connections that have brought different parts of the world into relation with one another over the span of centuries. The ‘entanglements’ of the past, whether they are conceptualized in material, cultural, political, social or economic terms, have thus become of central concern to the global history project. This course will explore the theoretical underpinnings and methodological approaches of global history as a way of understanding the conceptual and intellectual possibilities of, and challenges for, this rapidly expanding field. It will address specific problems such as how to rethink area divisions rooted in the Cold War and colonial eras, and how to think about periodization on a global scale that is attentive nonetheless to local and regional scales. The goals are to encourage students to consider research that can illuminate large-scale historical processes, engage in global and ‘transnational’ histories, or explore geographically dispersed phenomena such as mobility, commodity flows and the history of aquatic regions. As will be clear by semester’s end, some of the most exciting, suggestive and stimulating work in the historical profession is being conducted in the field of global history.