Program Website: History – Hiram College


The study of history is critical for our understanding of the human experience. Through the study of history, we develop an understanding of who we are, where we came from, how and why our society has changed over time, how we differ from people in other places and times, how societies different from ours have developed and changed, and how humans have interacted with each other and with the natural world. History majors will hone such skills as inquiry and analysis, critical and creative thinking, information literacy, and written and oral communication. Therefore, the history major at Hiram College prepares students for a wide variety of careers. Hiram College history students have gone on to become business leaders, lawyers, teachers and professors, political leaders, government workers, librarians, and leaders in non-profit organizations. History majors are superbly prepared for active citizenship and for informed, thoughtful decision-making throughout their lives. The Hiram College history program works closely with students to help them with career planning and preparation. The history program also brings speakers to campus to discuss career opportunities for history majors.

Special Opportunities

The history program involves students directly in doing historical research and writing history. We encourage and guide our students to think like historians and to get involved actively in the reconstruction and analysis of the past. History students may participate in extra mural programs which give them an opportunity to study history in the field. The program offers study trips to various North American and overseas locations. Students can also do internships in the United States. History students have worked in archives and historical societies and as interns for members of Congress. Students may also participate in the Peace Corps preparation program.

History faculty offices are located in Pendleton House which is also the center for various academic and social activities of history majors.


Merose Hwang, (2012) Associate Professor of History; Coordinator of Asian Studies Minor; Coordinator of Peace Corps Preparatory Program
B.A., University of Colorado at Boulder;
M.A., Yonsei University, South Korea;
Ph.D., University of Toronto

Janet M Pope, (1998) Interim Associate Dean of the College; Professor of History; Classical & Medieval Studies Advisory Committee; Co-Coordinator of Gender Studies Minor
B.A., Rider College;
M.A., Ph.D., University of California, Santa Barbara

Vivien Sandlund, (1995) Professor of History; Pre-Law Advisor; Co-Coordinator of Gender Studies Minor
B.A., M.A., M.Ed., University of Massachusetts;
Ph.D., Emory University

Course Descriptions

HIST 12100:  EUROPE 500-1450:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

KNIGHTS PEASANTS AND FRIARS EUROPE 500 TO 1450:CA,EW ~ This class explores the social, religious, and political history of medieval Europe. We will investigate how Roman, Christian, and Germanic elements fused to form medieval European civilization and why the Byzantine and Islamic empires differed so radically from Western Christendom. A related theme that we will examine is the interplay between religion, social institutions, and politics. Along the way, we will also analyze our current interpretations of the ancient and medieval worlds.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 12200:  MDRN EUROPE: 1450-PRESNT:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

BREAD BARRICADES AND BOMBS MODERN EUROPE 1450 TO PRESENT:CA,EW ~ Begins with the Renaissance and Reformation, continues with the Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment in the 17th and 18th centuries, moves on to the French and Industrial Revolutions, and to the most recent age. Cultural history is stressed throughout, but every effort is made to integrate the more conventional forms of history in the course.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


THE ANCIENT MEDITERRANEAN WORLD:CA,EW ~ This course will provide an introduction to Ancient History from the beginnings of civilization in the Fertile Crescent to the end of the Roman Empire in the West. Although the Greeks and Romans will receive considerable attention, the class will also deal with other cultures of the region, beginning with Sumeria and Egypt, and including the Hebrews, Assyrian and Persian empires, Phoenicians and Carthaginians, and Celts. The course will focus on major features of society and government, religion, and intellectual life, rather than detailed political narrative. Students will read extensively in primary sources from the ancient period—literature, law-codes, religious texts, etc.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 12800:  WORLD HISTORY 1000-1800:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

WORLD HISTORY 1000-1800:CA,EW ~ This course explores how various civilizations strengthened their societies at home and formed connections with the broader world through the use of innovative cultural, social, and economic structures. Major themes considered in this course include commercial culture in premodern China, the rise of empires across Eurasia, Mogul rulers' use of religious syncretism in India, and the development of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Throughout the course we will examine how different cultures adapted to the challenges of their periods in an attempt to survive and prosper.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 13800:  WORLD HIST 1750-PRESENT:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

WORLD HISTORY, 1750-PRESENT:CA,EW ~ This course analyzes how a variety of global civilizations have attempted to negotiate a path between tradition and modernity in recent centuries. Major themes entertained include wide-ranging reform movements in Meiji Japan and late Ottoman Turkey; industrialization and labor strikes as transformative influences in early modern China and early to mid-nineteenth century Great Britain; the role of European imperialism in Africa; world wars, decolonization movements, "hot wars" of the Cold War; the struggle for greater social, economic, and racial equality and various dimensions of maintaining or altering indigenous traditions.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 14000:  US HISTORY TO 1865:CA,UD:  4 Hour(s)  

U.S. HISTORY TO 1865:CA,UD ~ An introduction to the history of the United States, from the earliest European contacts through the end of the Civil War. Major topics will include the economic and religious motivations of the European colonists, their conquest of Indian societies, the War for Independence, the Constitution, the development of political parties, the commercial and industrial revolutions, westward expansion, immigration, religious revivalism and reform, and the onset of sectional conflict culminating in the Civil War. Throughout the course, we shall confront the origins of a central paradox in the history of the United States: the existence and importance of slavery in a nation founded on ideals of freedom and equality.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 14100:  US HIST 1865 TO PRESENT:CA,UD:  4 Hour(s)  

U.S. HISTORY 1865 TO PRESENT:CA,UD ~ A history of American political, economic, and social life from 1865 to the present. The course examines the impact of the Civil War on American life, the period of Reconstruction, and the processes of industrialization, urbanization, and immigration in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The course also surveys World War I, modernization in the 1920s, the Great Depression and the New Deal, World War II, the Cold War, the affluent society, the Vietnam era, and life in modern America.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home


THE AMERICAN TRADITION OF CONSERVATION ~ This course will look into America's historical relationship with the natural world. Topics of conservation, environmentalism and ethics will be covered.

HIST 14300:  THE OHIO FRONTIER:  4 Hour(s)  

THE OHIO FRONTIER ~ This course is an examination into the history of Ohio in the eighteenth century. During this period, Ohio changed from an undefined wilderness to the first state created out of the Northwest Territory. The region known as the Ohio Country was fought over by two European powers, multiple English colonies, numerous indigenous tribes and the fledgling American republic. Attention will be directed toward the social, political and cultural conflicts as well as the accommodations that drove settlement patterns and cultural development in early Ohio.

HIST 18000:  WKSP::  1 Hour(s)  

WORKSHOP ~ This workshop will provide the opportunity for students to examine a special topic in History. Through readings, discussions and written assignments there will be opportunities to evaluate the topic at issue. Workshops may be taken Pass/No Credit only. Students may take no more than nine workshops for credit toward graduation. Workshops can be used as elective credit only.


THE ERA OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION, 1750-1800:CA,UD ~ In the American popular memory of today, the Revolution is sealed in the iconography of a generation of "Founding Fathers." Through an in-depth consideration of changes in American society over the second half of the eighteenth century, we will resuscitate the conflicts, the possibilities, and the disappointments of this era. Shifting beliefs and alliances enabled Americans to mobilize for war. Americans not only fought against the British for independence, they also vigorously fought with one another over what the Revolution should mean in their daily lives. The Revolution was significant for the lives of all Americans, whether ordinary artisan or wealthy merchant, woman or man, slave or free. By studying the series of events that pushed Americans from resistance to Revolution and beyond to the establishment of a new federal government under the Constitution, we will witness repeated battles over the distribution of power, wealth, and status within American society.


GUNMEN ORANGEMEN AND FENIANS:CA,EW ~ The emergence of modern Ireland. What exactly is the IRA? Why are the English and the Irish continually at war? In order to answer these questions, we must examine the complex relationships among the people of the two territories by exploring the history of Ireland beginning in the sixteenth century. A related theme that we will address is the interplay between religion, social institutions, and politics. The course will also sharpen your use and understanding of the historical sources to reason about the past.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 20700:  MOD JAPAN 1600-PRESENT:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

MODERN JAPAN 1600 - PRESENT ~ This course explores modern Japan from military consolidation and the establishment of a strictly regulated system under the Tokugawa to the economic boom that followed in the wake of the Pacific War. Students will be asked to challenge the notion that Japan was ever completely isolated culturally and to assess how both native and foreign institutions shaped Japan's evolution in the modern period. Major themes entertained in this course include the Tokugawa administrative structure; the commercial economy and urbanization; the influence of imperialism; Meiji period reforms; changing gender and class roles; rapid industrialization; the impact of Japanese militarism on the nation and East Asia; the Allied Occupation; and Japan’s economic recovery.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 20800:  ASIA'S GLOBAL POWER:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

UNDERSTANDING ASIA'S GLOBAL POWER:CA,EW ~ This course will track the period that defines East Asia’s 'modern era.’ It will be an overview of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and borderland histories, covering roughly the 17th century to the present. Some prevalent themes that we will be dealing with are colonialism, nationalism, modernity, gender, state-building, popular media, and the construction of history.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


ANCIENT HEALTH AND MEDICINE:CA ~ Who was Hippocrates and why do doctors still take a “Hippocratic Oath”? Did ancient Romans inadvertently poison themselves with lead from their water systems? Did Greek doctors actually perform brain surgery, without the aid of antibiotics or anesthesia? Were Roman baths a revolutionary advance in cleanliness and sanitation, or a warren of bacteria and disease? What caused the plague that struck Athens in the middle of the Peloponnesian War, and did the Athenians know how to stop it? These are only some of the questions we will investigate in this class as we examine ancient Greek and Roman medicine from a variety of perspectives. From the radical innovation of a logical and rational approach to disease by the first Greek doctors, to the evidence uncovered by archaeologists in Roman sewers, and the data extracted from ancient skeletons, we will explore what life and death were really like in the ancient Mediterranean. This course is accepted as an elective towards the biomedical humanities, sociology, and public health programs. This course is also listed as CLAS 22010.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth


CONCUBINES MOTHERS & SAINTS:CA,EW ~ European women and the family C. 200-1500: This class is designed to explore the major developments in the history of women and family from c. 200 to c. 1500, with a special emphasis on social and cultural history. The core of the course will investigate late Roman, early Christian, and early Germanic women's roles and how these three cultures fused in medieval Europe related theme that we will examine is the interplay between religion, social institutions, and politics.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 22200:  KINGS AND VIKINGS:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

KINGS AND VIKINGS:THE FORMATION OF ENGLAND:CA,EW ~ The formation of England. This class is designed to explore the social, religious, and political history of early medieval Britain from the end of the Roman occupation to the Norman conquest. The course investigates the formation of the kingdom of England and the role that the Vikings played in that development. In order to assess the Scandinavian influence on Britain, we will also study the Vikings at home and in their various overseas kingdoms. A related theme that we will examine is the interplay between religion, social institutions, and politics.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 22300:  MEDIEVAL TOWNS & TRADE:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

MEDIEVAL TOWNS AND TRADE:CA,EW OR ~ This class explores the development of medieval urban life, its links to the market economy, and the roles of several important medieval entrepreneurs. We will examine late antique urban decline, gift/plunder economies of the early Middle Ages, and the revival of towns and commerce in the central and late Middle Ages, which we will see was the result of entrepreneurial activity, some individual, some collective. We will also analyze the interplay between political, social, religious, and economic institutions. Indeed, we will examine entrepreneurs in the market economy such as great merchant and banking families like the Fuggers and the Bardi, educational entrepreneurs such as Peter Abelard, and even religious entrepreneurs like Francis of Assisi. The course will also sharpen your use and understanding of the historical method--the critical use of both narrative and record sources to reason about the past. Counts toward entrepreneurship minor.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


SPINSTERS & SUFFRAGISTS:CA,EW ~ Modern European women and gender. This class is designed to explore the major developments in the history of women, gender, and the family from c. 1500 to the present with a special emphasis on social and cultural history. The core of the course will investigate how the modern ideals of liberty and equality have been both denied to and applied to women. The course will also examine European institutions and events that have shaped women's lives, in particular, political and industrial revolutions and the world wars. A related theme that we will discuss is the interplay between ideas, social institutions, and politics. Counts towards a gender studies minor.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 22700:  THE BRITISH EMPIRE:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

COLONIZATION & EXPLOITATION:CA,EW ~ The British Empire. This class explores the political, economic, and intellectual history of the British Empire. The course investigates the formation of the empire and its role in the modern world. We will study the interplay among ideas, social institutions, and politics; this examination will help us to understand how and why the British influenced the cultures of the peoples they ruled. The course will also sharpen your use and understanding of the historical method-the critical use of both narrative and record sources to reason about the past.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 22900:  REFORM& REVOLT 1450-1650:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

REFORM & REVOLT, 1450-1650:CA,EW ~ The course will concentrate on the continental Protestant and Catholic Reformations with extensive reading of primary sources and periodical literature. Economic, intellectual, political, and social trends will also be examined as well as the interrelationship between aesthetic trends and history. A major theme of the course will be the waning of the Middle Ages and the tentative beginnings of the modern era. This course is equivalent to the former HIST 33100.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 23000:  HIST OF LABOR IN THE U.S:CA,UD:  4 Hour(s)  

HISTORY OF LABOR IN THE UNITED STATES:CA,UD ~ The economic and technological transformations that carried the United States into the industrial age brought significant changes in the patterns of everyday life. This course examines the effects of such changes from the perspective of working people in the 19th and 20th century United States. Topics include the process of industrialization, workers' efforts to unionize and influence politics, immigration, and the lives of industrial workers in northeast Ohio. Also listed as ECON 23000.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 23020:  BROTHEL TO FACTORY:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

BROTHEL TO FACTORY-HISTORY OF FEMALE LABOR IN ASIA:CA,EW ~ Images of factory girls is sweat shops, under-aged prostitutes, and foreign nannies are prominent in portrayals of countries in the Pacific Rim. This course investigates the history behind the how women in Asia were racialized through a labor-class nexus, from the 19th century to the present. Some crucial questions will be: How did neo-Confucian ethics determine women's place within and outside the home? How did nation-states and local media transform Asian concepts of gendered ethics to establish a cheap labor pool for emerging industries? How did mechanized wage labor change the status of women as workers? How did laborers mobilize and negotiate for better working and living conditions without unions? What types of subcultures emerged around "factory girl" communities? How has the trafficking of women's bodies changed over time? Counts toward gender studies minor.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


THE SUPREME COURT IN U.S HISTORY:CA ~ This course will introduce students to the U.S. Supreme Court and its role and influence in U.S. history. Students will examine how the Supreme Court came to define its role and assert its power through judicial review. We will explore how the Supreme Court has resolved constitutional issues that have emerged over time. Some of those issues will include questions of national versus state power; the property rights of slaveholders versus the human rights of slaves; the rights of minorities to equal protection of the laws versus the power of the states to make their own laws; the power of governments to regulate business in the public interest versus the right of business to conduct its own affairs; and the various rights of private citizens versus the power of governments to act in the public interest. Students will examine how the Supreme Court has changed its interpretation of the Constitution over time, both reflecting and shaping changes in American society.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth

HIST 23200:  EARLY MODERN OCCULT:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

EARLY MODERN OCCULT:CA,EW ~ This course investigates Early Modern (ca. 1450-1750) European beliefs and practices related to magic and the occult, including witchcraft and its prosecution, ideas about ghosts, vampires, and other spirits, and scholarly occult traditions such as astrology, spiritual and natural magic, and alchemy. The class explores how these ideas and activities reflected and influenced fundamental structures and transformations in Early Modern society and culture—for example, the links between changes in European legal systems and the rise of witchcraft trials, or the connections between the Renaissance and intellectual speculations on the occult. It also addresses how historians and other scholars approach and explain Early Modern beliefs and actions that, from our point of view, seem irrational or deluded.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 23300:  HIST OF ENGLAND TO 1485:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

HISTORY OF ENGLAND TO 1485:CA,EW ~ Though some attention will be given to England before 1066, the period after the Conquest will be emphasized. The course will deal chiefly with cultural, economic and social history, though special attention will be given to the development of constitutional and legal institutions. Much use will be made of primary documents. Recommended for pre-law students.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


AMERICAN ENVIRONMENTAL HISTORY;CA,UD ~ This course will introduce students to the history of environmental issues and environmental activism in North America. Students will consider how Native Americans interacted with the natural environment prior to the European arrival; how the Europeans who entered North America looked upon the natural environment and how their views and practices differed from those of the Native Americans; and how the European settlement in North America affected the natural environment. Students will also explore how the growth of industrial capitalism and westward expansion affected the natural environments, and how Americans view the "wilderness" and the environment in the nineteenth century. Finally, students will explore the rise of a conservation movement and social activism to protect and preserve the environment, and they will study closely the rise and growth of a modern environmental movement in the late twentieth century. Also offered as EVST 24000.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 24300:  THE US WAR IN VIETNAM:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

NO LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL:CA,EW ~ The U.S. war in Vietnam. Richard Nixon said in 1985, "No event in American history is more misunderstood than the Vietnam War. It was misreported then, and it is misremembered now." Americans still struggle to understand what happened in Vietnam; we still argue with each other about the morality of the war, the reasons for the American failure, and the consequences of that war. Different scholars and policy makers and Vietnam veterans have reached different conclusions. In this course, students will seek to develop a clear understanding of the various factors that led to the US involvement in Vietnam in the 1950s, 1960's, and early 1970's. They will explore the pressures that produced a US policy of containing Communism. They will examine the goals of the US involvement in Vietnam and the strategy and tactics employed by the American forces. They will study the political consequences of the Vietnam policy here in the United States. Students will examine the views and the actions of those Americans who opposed the war. Students will also explore the different perspectives of the Vietnamese in the conflict, both Vietnamese who supported the US war effort and those who opposed it. Through this study, students will develop their own understandings of what happened in the Vietnam conflict, why the tragedy unfolded, and why the United States failed to achieve its objectives in Vietnam. Students will also develop their writing and speaking skills through the preparation of short papers and oral presentations to the class.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


MYTH-BUSTING NORTH KOREA:CA,EW ~ North Korea, officially called the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, is also known as the “Hermit Kingdom.” Situated in a peninsula that divides millions of families along a demilitarized zone, the DPRK remains the most isolated country in the world and the last bastion of the Cold War. The first step to myth-busting the DPRK would be to understand its historical roots. This course will examine the Korean peninsula before WWII and reflect on Cold War propaganda of enemy states. By reading DPRK literature, interviews, diaries, and media, students are pushed to think beyond notions of the evil axis, a diabolic dictator, and his faceless horde to demonstrate an informed understanding of the values and attitudes of North Koreans. While this class will study the integrity of Korean peninsular history as a part of DPRK history, we will also consider domestic and international security issues beyond the binary policies of punishment and “enemy state.” We will explore regional and global strategies to maintain national sovereignty during an ongoing civil war. We will also search for new evidence of North Koreans as individuals and social sub-groups experiencing pleasures, challenges, and the mundane of everyday life to humanize this “axis” nation. This course fulfills the EW and CA core requirements, the Non-Western history requirement for History majors and minors, the Asian Studies, International Studies, and Peace Corps Preparatory program requirements

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 24600:  AM ENTREPSHIP 1865-PRESE:ES:  4 Hour(s)  

AMERICAN ENTREPRENEURSHIP 1865-PRESENT:ES ~ Students in this course will explore the history of entrepreneurship in the United States in the post-Civil War era. Students will focus on the strategies, successes, and failures of business entrepreneurs of the last century and a half, as well as the various movements organized to challenge and change some of the strategies of these business entrepreneurs, notably the labor movement, the movement for progressive reform, and the environmental movement. Students will also explore the strategies, successes, and failures of social entrepreneurs and of producer and consumer cooperatives in modern U.S. history. Students will consider what social, economic, and individual factors have helped to promote entrepreneurship, and what social, economic, and individual factors have held back the efforts of entrepreneurs. Students will also consider the impact of various forms of entrepreneurship on the natural environment. Students will do a final course project in which they analyze a specific example of American entrepreneurship.

Core: Meaning/Ethics/Soc Responsibil


POMPEII: LIFE & DEATH IN A ROMAN CITY:CA ~ What was it like to live in ancient Rome? No place brings us closer to the answer to this question than the city of Pompeii, whose catastrophic destruction by volcanic eruption in 79 AD left us with an immeasurable trove of information. In this course we will examine the buildings, streets, paintings, graffiti, documents, and countless artifacts uncovered by archaeologists in Pompeii and its surroundings. We will investigate how these objects and texts are used to reconstruct the lives of individual people, especially the marginalized members of society, such as women, slaves, and prostitutes. We will also think about how our interpretations of these material items are influenced by the present. In particular, we will examine how Pompeii’s unique demise may have affected the material record, and in turn we will debate how reliable this evidence may be for reconstructing “daily life” in the ancient world. Also listed as CLAS 24800.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth


ANCIENT ROME: RISE AND FALL OF THE REPUBLIC:CA ~ This course examines how Rome progressed from humble beginnings as a small village in central Italy to master of a massive Mediterranean empire. It serves as an introduction to the political, social, and economic history of ancient Rome during the monarchy and the Republic (c. 753-42BC). The focus will be upon the development of the political and social institutions of the Roman Republic and how these contributed towards the remarkable expansion of Roman power. Similarly, we will examine how Rome’s military success eventually led to the demise of the Republican system of government during the first century BC, culminating in the assassination of Julius Caesar and the rise of an imperial dictatorship. Readings will be drawn from a variety of modern and ancient sources, especially the ancient authors Livy, Polybius, and Cicero. Also listed as CLAS 24900. Counts towards minor in Classical and Medieval Studies. Also accepted as an elective towards History major/minor.

HIST 24950:  ATHENS 403BC:REACT TO PAST:CA:  3 Hour(s)  

ATHENS 403 BC - REACTING TO THE PAST:CA~ Instead of passively learning about ancient history, students in this class will take an active role in a historical role-playing game. We will transport ourselves back to 403 BC, a pivotal year in ancient Greek history. Athens, having lost a decades-long war with its archenemy Sparta, has just restored democracy after the brutal rule of the Thirty Tyrants and a civil war. Yet questions remain. Is the direct democratic rule of 6,000 citizens the best form of government? Should the state be turned over to a small council of wealthy men? Should they instead follow Socrates’ advice and empower a ruling class of the intellectual elite? Should Athens expand citizenship to slaves and resident foreigners? Should the city rebuild its walls and warships and restore its empire? These and many other questions will be answered in student-led debates held within the “Athenian Assembly”. Acting within assigned historical roles, each student will strategize individually and form coalitions to achieve their personal goals and ultimately win the game. Our debates will be informed by Plato’s Republic, and other contemporary sources, such as Thucydides and Xenophon.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth

HIST 24990:  ALEXANDER:MAN,MYTH:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

ALEXANDER THE GREAT:MAN, MYTH, MONSTER?:CA,EW ~ Few figures in history so profoundly reshaped the world as Alexander the Great (356-323 BC). By the time he was 30, he had conquered most of the known world, from Greece to the Indus river in Pakistan and the mountains of Afghanistan, forging a vast multi-cultural empire. But who was Alexander? Was he a brilliant strategic genius with a vision of unifying East and West, or a destructive megalomaniac alcoholic who died young, leaving chaos in his wake? The answers to these questions are complicated by problematic ancient sources such as historical works that mythologize the man and his achievements, and a series of fantastical romantic legends. This course will explore what we can learn about Alexander by examining both written and archaeological evidence.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 25200:  TUDOR BRITAIN 1485-1603:  3 Hour(s)  

TUDOR BRITAIN 1485 TO 1603 ~ The course will emphasize the transformation of Britain from a medieval to a dynastic state, the Reformation, the beginnings of early British imperialism, and the stirrings of the dysfunctions between Crown and Parliament. Primary documents, literature, and modern cinematic recreations of the era will be used extensively. Because there is considerable overlap with HIST 25210, students can choose to take one or the other.

HIST 25210:  TUDOR-STUART ENGLAND:IM:  4 Hour(s)  

TUDOR-STUART ENGLAND:IM ~ This course explores the political, legal/constitutional, social, and religious history of Britain during the reigns of the Tudors and the Stuarts, a period when Britain changed dramatically because of the Protestant Reformation, transformations in the European political scene, and the expansion of the English state itself. The class will investigate Constitutional developments and new political ideas and their connection to Parliament’s ascent. The course emphasizes the interpretation of primary sources, which will illuminate how political and religious changes influenced the different ranks of society -- nobles, gentry, and commoners. Recommended for pre-law students. Because there is considerable overlap with HIS 25200, students can choose to take one or the other.

Core: Interpretive Methods


THE DEPRESSION, THE NEW DEAL, AND WORLD WAR II:CA,UD ~ The period between the stock market crash of 1929 and the dropping of two atomic bombs on Japan in 1945 was an especially wrenching time for people around the world. This course examines American responses to the Great Depression and to World War II and the impact of those events on American life. Students will probe the causes of the Depression, the goals and strategies of Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, the effects of the New Deal on American life, the American mobilization for World War II, the conduct of the war, and the impact of the war on U.S. society.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 25400:  GENDER & SEXUALITY IN US:CA,UD:  3 Hour(s)  

HISTORY OF GENDER AND SEXUALITY IN THE U.S.:CA,UD ~ This course will survey some of the major issues in the history of American gender and sexuality. Several themes will organize this course: cross-cultural encounters, male-female sexual politics, and the formation of homosexual and heterosexual identities. We will track these themes from the era of colonial settlement until the present day. As settlers arrived in the colonies they found Indians to possess gender roles and sexual practices at odds with their own. Looking more squarely at the colonists' own communities we will witness a surprising degree of tolerance towards behaviors still taboo in may modern circles. Sodomy and abortion seem to have been accepted as part of man's fate in a fallen world. The late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries seem to have given birth to a vigorous assault on the female body by moral reformers and physicians in Northern society. As we turn to the twentieth century we will consider the breakdown of Victorian mores, as well as the emergence of homosexual identity, both as imposed by outsiders as well as defined by the gay community.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 25450:  WORLD WAR & REVOLUTION:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

EUROPE: CRISIS AND WAR 1890-1950:CA,EW ~ The 19th century propelled Europe to a leading position in economic productivity, political power, and intellectual life. Many European governments were becoming more democratic in the later 1800s, and violent upheavals like wars and revolutions seemed to belong to the past. Yet the new century did not bring the era of continued European peace, progress, and prosperity that an observer in 1890 might have expected. Instead, Europe found itself devastated by two world wars and racked by multiple revolutions. In many states, the trend towards democracy was reversed by the rise of totalitarian governments like the Communist regime in Russia and the Fascist ones in Italy and Germany. The horrors of the world wars and the Holocaust led intellectuals to question the bedrock ideas of Europe’s civilization. This course will examine this ‘age of catastrophes’ in Europe, focusing on the linked political, social, economic, and intellectual upheavals of this troubled era.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 25600:  EUROPEAN SOCIETY & WAR:CA,EW:  4 Hour(s)  

EUROPEAN SOCIETY AND WAR:CA,EW ~ This class explores Europe's persistent encounter with war by investigating three main topics. First, how have armed forces reflected and affected the states, societies, and economies that created them? Second, how have Europeans sought to justify and explain their resort to armed violence? Finally, what was the actual experience of war for both soldiers and non-combatants (particularly women)? The course surveys these issues for different periods, revealing how Europe's experience of armed conflict has changed over time. Throughout, the class focuses on the connections between warfare and society. This would count as a European History course for history majors.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


HISTORY OF GENDER & SEXUALITY IN EAST ASIA:CA,EW ~ This course is designed to examine the history of gender and sexuality in East Asia, covering the geographical areas that today are China, Korea, and Japan. The course begins in the 17th century with the Manchu takeover of China, when neighboring countries began to question Sinocentrism and the efficacy of Confucian rule. The course ends in the early 20th century as Confucian tradition was reinvented to indigenize gender issues against cosmopolitan movements such as the rise of “new woman” and “modern girl.” We will consider the historical multiplicity of genders and sexuality by studying the evolving values and principles of neo-Confucianism. In order to understand the ways in which gender and sexuality were constructed and represented in modern East Asia, we will also focus on themes of governance, (Chinese, Japanese and Western) imperialism, militarization, globalization, and popular media. Counts toward gender studies minor.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT IN THE UNITED STATES 1954-1980:CA,UD ~ This course examines the movement by African Americans and their supporters in the mid-twentieth century to achieve full civil rights, economic opportunity, and social equality. Students will explore the economic, cultural, and political changes that laid the foundation for the civil rights movement. They will study the ideas and strategies of various movement leaders, and will evaluate the impact of the movement on American society as a whole.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 26100:  CIVIL WAR IN THE US:CA,UD:  4 Hour(s)  

THE CIVIL WAR IN THE UNITED STATES:CA,UD ~ A century and a half has passed since the American republic was torn apart by the terrible Civil War, a war fought initially to bring the union back together, and won, ultimately, for universal freedom. Students in this course will probe the divisions and conflicts that preceded the Civil War, conflicts over slavery, states’ rights and federal power, and the spread of slavery into the new territories and states. Students will examine the efforts of abolitionists and the efforts of pro-slavery activists, as well as the desperate attempts by men in Congress to compromise away the most divisive issues. Students will consider the causes of the Civil War and how and why Americans were unable to avoid war. Students will examine the war strategies on both sides, the policies of the two administrations, and the public reactions to the war. Students will analyze the significance and the effects of the Emancipation Proclamation and the recruiting of black troops by the United States. Students will consider and analyze the outcome of the war and the efforts to reconstruct the nation and define the meaning of liberty and equality for the newly freed slaves.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 26200:  SLAVERY & ABOLITION:CA,UD:  3 Hour(s)  

SLAVERY & ABOLITION IN AMERICAN HISTORY:CA, UD ~ This course will introduce students to the origins and nature of slavery in North America and to the ideas, strategies, and struggles of antislavery activists in the 18th and 19th centuries. Students will consider how and why slavery was introduced into North America; what the slave experience was like and how it changed over time; what the connections were between slavery and race; and how slaveholders sought to justify and defend their so-called peculiar institution. Students will also explore what prompted the rise of an antislavery movement, how the abolition movement changed over time, what ideas and strategies abolitionists embraced, and what impact abolitionists had in ending slavery and pushing the nation into the Civil War.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 26210:  SLAVERY & ABOLITION:CA,UD:  4 Hour(s)  

SLAVERY & ABOLITION IN AMERICAN HISTORY:CA,UD 4 hour(s): ~ Students in this course will describe the origins and nature of slavery in North America and will analyze and evaluate the ideas, strategies, and struggles of antislavery activists in the 18th and 19th centuries. Students will explain how and why slave labor was introduced into North America, describe what the slave experience was like and how it changed over time, identify and interpret the connections between slavery and race, and evaluate how slaveholders sought to justify and defend their so-called peculiar institution. Students will also develop arguments about what prompted the rise of an antislavery movement, explain how the abolition movement changed over time, assess the ideas and strategies that abolitionists embraced, and appraise the impact of abolitionists in ending slavery and pushing the nation into Civil War.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home


FIGHTING SLAVERY, THEN AND NOW: ~ Examines the antislavery movement in the US from the antebellum era to the present, including its ideological, social, political, economic, and religious ramifications. Students will engage with original historical writings as well as make comparisons between antebellum antislavery and the present movement that opposes today’s “slavery,” i.e., human trafficking/coerced labor.

HIST 26500:  AFRICAN/AM HIST1865-PRES:CA,UD:  4 Hour(s)  

AFRICAN-AMERICAN HISTORY 1865 TO THE PRESENT:CA,UD ~ This course will introduce students to the experiences and culture of African Americans from the end of the Civil War to the present. Students will examine the impact of the Civil War and emancipation on African Americans, the Reconstruction period, and life in the Jim Crow South in the late nineteenth century. The course will continue with an exploration of African-American struggles for equality in the early twentieth century; the Great Migration to the North; the Harlem Renaissance and African American life in the 1920s; the impact of the Great Depression on African Americans; and African Americans in World War II. The course will conclude with a focus on the Civil Rights Movement and current issues in African-American life.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 26600:  AFRICN AMER HIST TO 1865:CA,UD:  4 Hour(s)  

AFRICAN-AMERICAN HISTORY TO 1865:CA,UD ~ This survey will focus upon the experiences and culture of African Americans and their influence on the development of American culture. The survey covers major topics in African bondage, and emancipation, as well as larger cultural issues, such as the relationship between slavery, the family, and gender and the development of unique African-American institutions such as slave spirituals.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 26900:  1960s IN THE USA:CA,UD:  3 Hour(s)  

POWER PROTEST & PEACE:CA,UD ~ 1960s America. From civil rights to Watergate, from Vietnam to Berkeley, the 1960s are remembered as a time of high hopes and bitter divisions, of utopian dreams and tragic fighting. This course examines the political, social, and cultural changes that took place in the turbulent decade known as the sixties. Students will examine the major political developments and social movements of the period and will attempt to understand why and how those events unfolded. Students will also consider the implications of those events for contemporary American life.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home


WOMEN IN AMERICAN HISTORY:CA,UD ~ An examination of the cultural, social, economic, and political activities of women in American history. Within a chronological, narrative framework, the course focuses on four themes of women's past experience in American life: the family, work, sexuality, and socio-political activism.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Understanding Diversity Home

HIST 27400:  BISHOP, WITCH, HERETIC:CA,EW:  3 Hour(s)  

BISHOPS WITCHES & HERETICS:CA,EW ~ Medieval church history. This course explores the history of the medieval church by investigating the structure of the church, how the church dealt with the forces of unity and dissent, and why the church suffered continual deformation and reformation. In the process, we will challenge the modern theory that the medieval church was a monolithic institution. A related theme we will examine is the interplay between religion, social institutions, and politics.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World


SHAMANS AND SUPERSTITIONS:CA,EW ~ What are shamans? They have sometimes been called witches, magicians, exorcists, sorcerers, or fortune-tellers. They have been revered as bearers of indigenous traditions and chastised as superstitious inhibitors to progress. This course takes a comparative approach to the history of writings on shamanism (from 19th to 20th centuries), comparing ethnographies from around the world, with special emphasis on Russia, Korea, and Taiwan, to question the extent to which we have relied on “unmodern” subjects like shamans and superstitions to support imperialism, capitalism, westernization, and science-ism. This course fulfills the non-western, non-U.S. breadth requirement for history, the Asian studies minor, international studies major, and the Peace Corps Prep certificate program.

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 27500:  ROMAN BRITAIN:  3 Hour(s)  

ROMAN BRITAIN ~ Britannia is mentioned sparingly by the Roman historians, but much of our knowledge about the conquest, settlement, and governance of the province is derived from archaeology. Therefore, a study of Roman Britain comes alive when students can visit and study Romano-British sites and museums in England and Wales. This course will trace the conquest of the island, beginning with Claudius in 43 and essentially ending in 122 under Hadrian, who set the province's northern limit with a wall. The peaceful conditions of the third and early fourth centuries brought prosperity and stability to Britain. Urbanization in the province was rapid. The native aristocracy quickly adapted the working country villas, familiar throughout the Empire, to a British context. Unrest throughout the western Empire gradually undermined the province's stability and eventually led to the withdrawal of the Romans from Britain in the 400s. Administration of the province, growth of industry and trade, influence of Roman religion on native cults, and aspects of daily life will be covered in the course. Students will study how the Romans transformed a native Celtic population into a distinctly Romano-British culture which integrated a Mediterranean outlook and values into its society and economy. A four credit hour version of this course is HIST 27510.


CANNIBALS AND HEADHUNTERS:TRAVEL WRITING IN ASIA: 1800 - PRESENT:CA, EW ~ What does it mean to be Asian? In order to understand the historical development of this racialized category, this course will explore how travel writing has impacted the way we understand Asian peoples and regions. In a study of genre and as a critique of ideology, this course examines how travel books by Europeans and Asians from the 18-20th centuries created Asian subjects and will ask a number of questions: how has travel and exploration writing produced "the Orient"? How has it produced Euro-Americans' concept of themselves in relation to something called "the non-west"? How have colonized Asians selected and invented from materials transmitted to them by a dominant or metropolitan culture? How did Asian autoethnographies create forms of self-representation in the context of colonial subordination and help mobilize colonial resistance?

Core: Social/Cultural Analysis Meth; Experiencing the World

HIST 28000:  SEM::  4 Hour(s)  


HIST 28100:  INDEPENDENT STUDY:  1-4 Hour(s)  


HIST 29800:  FIELD EXPERIENCE:  1-4 Hour(s)  


HIST 38000:  JUNIOR SEMINAR:  1-4 Hour(s)  


HIST 38100:  SPC TPC::  1-4 Hour(s)  


HIST 48000:  SENIOR SEMINAR:  4 Hour(s)  

SENIOR SEMINAR ~ For seniors concentrating in history. Students acquaint themselves with the general literature in their field of concentration, expand their reading background, learn how to evaluate historical writing and are introduced to the methods and problems of historical research and exposition. Writing a research paper is an integral part of the course. Required of all majors. This seminar must be successfully completed in order to be graduated as a history major. Prerequisite: a 2.5 grade-point average in the major or alternatively at least a B (3.0) in HIST 38000.

HIST 48100:  INDEPENDENT RESEARCH:  1-4 Hour(s)  


HIST 49800:  INTERNSHIP:  8 Hour(s)  

INTERNSHIP ~ Internships can be arranged in many fields to accommodate student interests, including experience in historical archives.

Academic Offerings