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History

Graduate Courses

Historiography (B0000)
Focus on the rise of social history in contemporary historiography. Approaches to the subject include the contributions of the British Marxists, the French Annales school,
social-scientific historians, and women's historians. Readings will cover United States,Latin America, Africa, Asia and Europe. (Required for all students.)

Research Colloquium (B2321)
This course is an intensive workshop on the art and craft of writing primary source-based research papers of History and related disciplines. To enroll in the course, you need the permission of the instructor. You should have a project underway before the start of the semester in order to increase your chances of completing a polished paper by the end of the semester.


International and Comparative History

History of Human Rights (B0910)
This seminar explores the historical origins and development of human rights thinking and politics in the United States and, to a lesser extent, Europe by analyzing the intellectual, legal, and political background of the concept of human rights. To begin, the course seeks to understand how and why humanity as a whole came to be valued in the West, and then asks: how did the slowly developing worldview of humanitarianism—the precursor to modern human rights-conceive of human beings and their proper of humane treatments? This course has several goals. One is establish what it means to think historically about a concept that today is taken for granted and whose existence seems natural. Another is to explore how moral and political ideas can help inform historical study. The goal will be to produce a research paper on a topic concerning the history of human rights.

Genocide in the Twentieth Century
Comparison of several instances of systematic mass killings, including Armenians, European Jews, Kurds, American Indians, and Hereros and Hutus in Africa. Emphasis on historical circumstances, national sentiment, the state apparatus, and the contemporary implications of genocide.

Cold War International History (B6703)
This course examines the International History of the Cold War. Prime focus will be on non-western states including East Germany, China, North Korea, Cuba, Angola, and other African states, Egypt, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. By looking at a variety of case studies of key moments in the Cold War, graduate students gain an understanding of the breadth and complexity of the cold war and learn that the Cold War was not simply relegated to the United States and Soviet Union. In doing this research, we will discuss factors contributing to the origins, intensification, prolongation, and end of the Cold War. We will also weigh the importance of factors such as personality, ideology, economics, culture, and geopolitics in the Cold War.

Atlantic World (B0013)
This course locates the origins of "modernity" in the conquest and colonization of Latin America, the ensuing Atlantic trade of slaves and commodities, and interactions among European, Latin American, and African peoples. It puts Latin America at the center of the study of origins, nature, impacts, and critiques of "modernity." Central themes include: conquest and colonization; slavery, plantation economies, and racialization; the development of a capitalist world system with its social and ideological underpinnings; and independence movements, the development of discourses of freedom by Latin American intellectuals and subaltern populations, and early nationalist racial paradigms.

Modern Imperialism (B2608)
The course examines imperialism around the globe in the 19th and 20th centuries. We will examine different approaches to the study of imperialism but gives emphasis to the new literature on the culture of colonialism, and national and postcolonial identities produced by the experience of imperialism. Empires include those of England, France, Holland, the U.S., Germany and Japan.



United States History

The Colonial and Revolutionary Period to 1783 (B0401)
European discovery and exploration of America; origins and peopling of the English colonies; colonial life; imperial innovations and American protest; the Revolution.

The New Nation, Slave and Free, 1783 to 1840 (B0402)
Republicanism and the democratization of politics, industrialization of an American working class, social reform and the making of the middle class, westward expansion and the removal of the Native Americans, sectional conflict and slave culture

Antebellum America (B2222)
The purpose of this class is to provide graduate students with a thorough introduction to the scholarly writing on the Antebellum era (1815-1861). Students enrolled in the course will examine themes such as slavery, immigration, westward expansion, manifest destiny, Jacksonian politics, labor, women, and sectional crisis that led to the outbreak of the Civil War. By the end of the semester, students will have both an excellent grounding in this crucial period in American history, and a familiarity with the important historiography debates that define the student of the era.

Immigration and Ethnicity in American Life (B0406)

Topical and chronological treatment of the American immigration experience, with emphasis on the ghetto, culture and community, patterns of work, social mobility, assimilation, the relation of class and ethnicity, and America's reception of immigrants. Comparative analysis of different ethnic groups.

Civil War & Reconstruction (B0403)
An examination of the causes, events, and consequences, of the Civil War. Special attention will be paid to slavery, abolition, and sectionalism, emancipation and the role of African-American soldiers, and the cultural meaning of the war and its aftermath.  Readings will include speeches and poems by William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Abraham Lincoln, and Walt Whitman, novels by Michael Schaar and Toni Morrison, and analyses by Robert Penn Warren, Drew Faust, James McPherson and Eric Foner.

African-American History from Emancipation to the Present (B0408)
The post-slavery experience of African-Americans: the creation and destruction of a black peasantry, the growth of a black working class, and the resulting change in black politics and culture.

US South to 1876 (B2432)
A survey of the social and economic transformations that took place in the southern United States from the end of the Civil War through the rise of the New Right. The course has two purposes: first, to understand the special historical characteristics of the South and of Southerners; and second, to explore what the experience of the South may teach about the United States as a nation. We will explore Reconstruction, the rise of Jim Crow, the emergence of new industries and cities, the growth of the agrarian discontent, the impact of federal policy, the development of the Civil Rights Movement, and the rise of the New Right.

American Legal History (B0015)
This course will introduce students to the major problems and interpretations in the field of American legal history. We will examine a number of key constitutional and legal conflicts in the 19th and 20th century United States through theoretical and historiographical interpretations of those conflicts as well as by acquainting ourselves with a variety of primary sources (including cases, trial records, treaties, and legal lives). The course seeks to understand the role of law in America life and the social and cultural meaning of the law in American life and the social and cultural meaning of the law in American history. How does the law affect people's lives? How do we locate those effects? To what degree does the law have an existence separate from the larger forces that determine relations of power and possibilities for action>? Topics will include slave law: the role lf law and economic development; the law of husband and wife; race and the Constitution; the emergence of civil rights and civil liberties, legal ethics, and the problem of regulation, among others.

US Foreign Relations (B0413)
Explores American foreign policy during the 20th century (1890s to present), using primary and secondary historical sources, as well as novels and films, to examine key events, themes and interpretations. Among the topics to be addressed are U.S. involvement in major international conflicts (the War of 1898, World Wars I & II, the Cold War, and the Korean and Vietnam Wars); the shifting equilibrium between isolationism and interventionism; the impact of foreign policy of nuclear weapons; domestic politics, and culture; and historiographical debates and controversies concerning U.S. policy and the Cold War, including the impact of new evidence that has emerged from formerly closed American, Russian, Chinese and other archives.

The Era of Détente (B0903)
This is a research seminar on the Era of Détente, the period with the Cold War marked by prolonged absence of conflict between the United States and the Soviet Union. Students will spend the bulk of the semester writing a primary-based research paper on one aspect of Détente. The course will also attempt to define Détente and evaluate its policy implications. Students will study the origins of Détente and its evolution over time and in different international contexts. The course will begin examining early efforts at Détente in the late 1960s, continue through the successes of the Nixon administration and the challenges faced by Presidents Ford and Carter and finish with the advent of the "new Cold War" in the first years of Reagan's presidency.

U.S. History Post 1945 (B2968)
This course will first look at the sources of postwar U.S. prosperity and growth of civil rights and other reforms of the 1960s. Then, it will then examine why that prosperity faltered in the 1970s and why the government regulated economy was replaced by one that celebrated markets. Finally, we will consider how these changes help explain the current economic recession.

Post-1973 U.S. History (B0003)
What historians call the "golden age of capitalism" and the "age of Compression" in the United States and abroad began after World War II and ended in 1973. This course will analyze the sources of the era's shared prosperity in the U.S., the global changes that challenged it, the struggle during the 1970s to preserve it, and the failure to do so in 1979 and 1980. It well then analyze the new capitalism of the era from 1980 to the present, leading to the current economic crisis. We will discuss both the economic ideas and practices of the eras alongside the changing politics and social composition of the Democratic and Republican parties.

History of New York City (B0415)
Several problems in the history and culture of New York City: slavery and the city's origins as a multi-ethnic mercantile community, post-revolutionary commercial port; rise of working class; the Harlem Renaissance; social welfare and planning in the twentieth century. Emphasis on reading in original sources.


European History

French Revolution (B4303)
This course will provide a thorough introduction to the French Revolution – one of the defining events of modern times, and the crucible in which key elements of modern politics were forged or redefined. Although concentrating on the crucial years 1787-1794, we will spend several weeks on the Old regime, to place revolutionary developments in perspective and range into the 20th century to assess its legacy.

France & Francophone Africa (B1615)
We will examine the political, economic, cultural and demographic dialectic between metropolitan France and its former protectorates, territories and departments in various regions of Africa. We will study both the impact of France on these societies and how these former dependencies have transformed mainland France into a multi-ethnic, multi-religious society since the end of the Second World War, often against French popular opinion and preference.

Work & Welfare in Modern Europe (B5505)
Examines the emergence of the industrial revolution and efforts to control it, to manage markets for capital and labor since the 18th century.

Europe 1815-1914 (B0303)
The political triumphs of the middle classes and their troubled hegemony; the factory system, free trade, parliamentarianism; the transformations of 1848; the Second Empire; Italian and German unifications; movements of reform; democratic currents; socialism; the new imperialism.

Modern European City (B0311)
This course treats Paris, Vienna, and Berlin as incubators of specific versions of the "modern." Between the years 1850-1950, amid a series of political crises and sharpening social antagonisms, these cities gave birth to many of the movements, ideas, and styles of the modern era: socialism and psychoanalysis; urban planning, mass consumption; and modernism in art, poetry, architecture, and literature. To navigate our way through these developments, we will read a selection of seminal texts from the primary and secondary literature on city life. Themes covered will include urban planning; class and ethnic conflict and the rise of mass politics; the emergence of women's movements, youth culture, and anti-Semitism; and the relationship between modernism and mass culture. Among the questions we will be posing are the following: what is the relation between social and political modernization on the one hand and cultural modernity on the other? How do figures like Marx, Baudelaire, Benjamin, and Simmel define modernity?

Madness & Civilization (B4403)

Examines social, cultural, intellectual and institutional aspects of the history of madness in Europe since 1789. The course will begin with the age of the so-called "Great Confinement," then move on to consider the institutional and therapeutic reforms of the revolutionary and post-revolutionary era; the rise of theories of degeneration, hysteria and neurasthenia in the second half of the 19th century; psychoanalysis and sexology; war neurosis and military psychiatry; psychiatry under the Nazis. It will conclude by looking at the anti-psychiatry movements of the 1960s and the new biological psychiatry of the 1980s and 1990s.

Twentieth Century Europe (B0304)
Political, social, economic, and intellectual developments in Europe, the coming of the First World War, the War and Peace, the Russian Revolution, Italian Fascism, the Weimar Republic and Nazism, the Democracies between the wars, the diplomacy of appeasement, the Second World War, the Cold War, and the emergence of East and West Europe as vital forces in the world today.

Great War (B4306)
A comprehensive overview of World War I. Central themes include the origins of the conflict, both long- and short-term; the nature of industrial killing; the growth of the state, of mass armies, of economic regulation; and the revolutionary movements that the prolonged war effort spawned.

The Third Reich (B4406)
This course explores the history of the Third Reich. Topics include the aftermath of World War 1 and the crisis of Weimar Germany; the origins, structure, and evolution of National Socialism; Hitler and the Hitler myth; everyday life and resistance in the Third Reich' the Nazi new order in Europe; the Second World War; and the Final Solution. Special attention will be paid to Nazi science, medicine, and race hygiene; as well as to the question of the memory and legacy of the Holocaust.

Soviet History (B5504)
A survey and analysis of the Soviet Union form its establishment in 1917 amid world war and revolution to its collapse in 1991. Starting with the essentials of Marxist ideology and a brief overview of the Russian Empire, the course examines the causes of the Russian Revolution; state-building in the socialist polity; social engineering through forces collectivization; industrialization, and cultural transformation; terror in concept and practice; nationality policies in a multi-ethnic socialist union; the emergence of the Soviet superpower and its role in the Cold War; and the decline and collapse of the Soviet empire.

Collapse of Communism (B0009)
Starting with an analysis of the long and short-term courses behind the collapse of Communism in the Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc, this course explores the economic, political, social, and cultural challenges confronting the post-Communist world since 1989.

 

Middle Eastern and African History

The Middle East Under Islam (B0801)
The rise of Islam and Arab conquests of the Middle East and North Africa through the Crusades and Mongol invasion. Covers the period 600 to 1500, focusing on politics, culture, and society.

Ottoman History (B4409)
At its height, the Ottoman dynasty (c. 1299-1922) ruled over three continents, including what constituted much of the modern day Balkans and the Middle East. This seminar will begin with an overview of the major contours of Ottoman political and social history, before moving into thematic explorations of the topics that include: Ottoman methods of state-building and imperial consolidation' gender relations and the law; center "periphery" dynamics; imperial philanthropy and political legitimization; the management and rule of heterogeneous populations; and the emergence of identity politics and nationalism in the late-19th and early 20th centuries.

Arab-Israeli Conflict (B0807)
The collision of two nationalist movements—Palestinian and Zionist—competing for the same territory. We'll start with a brief review of the political history of the conflict: declarations and promised, successive wars, attempts at peace. We'll then turn to an exploration of the cultural memories, and symbols that are used to build a sense of Israeli or Palestinian solidarity. Both communities suffer from internal and social divisions such as splits between religious and secular parties, which will be examined. Throughout the course we will use film, fiction, poetry and prose to examine how both parties have faced the conflict, explained it, and tried to overcome it.

Revolutions in the Middle East (B2322)
This course will focus on the historical precedents for the revolutions sweeping across the Arab world in 2011, revisiting the post-World War I revolts in Egypt and Syria, and the revolutions of the 1950s that brought military officers to power. It will also consider whether the Arab Spring bears any resemblance to the Iranian Revolution of 1979.

Topics in Middle Eastern History (B0800)
This seminar examines the history of social politics and welfare practices in the Middle East and North Africa. Weaving together issues of public health, maternal and child welfare, and humanitarianism and development, the course traces the changing relationship between society and state.

Nationalism and Decolonization in Africa (B0705)
This course examines theories and case studies of decolonization in Africa throughout the 20th century. This course will focus on key concepts, such as self-determination, sovereignty, and revolutionary violence that influenced national liberation movements. By exploring a variety of strategies and cases, including Egypt, Algeria, and Kenya, students will gain an understanding of the myriad forms and complexities of decolonization.

History, Culture and Politics of the Pan African World (B9902)
Movements for social and political change among peoples of African descent are the main focus of this course. In examining the multiple connections among Africans in the Americas, Europe and Africa in the context of the challenges to imperial and racial subordination, the works of Pan African intellectuals and heretics such as W.E.B. Dubois, Ida B. Wells, C.L.R. James, Malcolm X, Walter Rodney and Bob Marley would be analyzed, along with social movements spawned by the Haitian Revolution, Marcus Garvey, socialist revolution, civil rights struggles and decolonization.

South Africa Shaka-Mandela (B2707)
This social history of the 29th and 20th century South Africa begins with the process of African states formation and ends with the dismantling of Apartheid. In between we address themes such as the making of the Zulu nation, white-settler colonialism, Xhosa resistance, the rise and fall of an African peasantry, migrants and mines, Black urban culture, the politics of race and nationalism, Biko and Black Consciousness, and the Anti-Apartheid Movement.

Africa: World Affairs (B2710)
This course explores the place of Africa and its peoples in the international system. The focus is on the formation of the post colonial states and its multiple engagements with citizens, subjects and an external world dominated by former colonial powers and multilateral institutions such as the IMF and World Bank. Issues to be discussed include national liberation wars, militarism, structural adjustment, genocide, peacekeeping, and African perspectives on the "war on terror." The role of the African Union (AU), regional organizations and the UN in African affairs will also be considered.


Asian History

Asia in Global History (B4302) This course will introduce the new global history by examining important debates and works that focus on Asia. We will begin by examining key essays that have helped define the expanding transnational research we see today in the field of history, and then move on to significant topics, with particular focus on the period after 1500: global trade and imperialism; Asia and the Industrial Revolution; the new turn to history of the Pacific; Asia in the history of the nation-state; wars in Asia from the 19th century on; global economic history and the rise of Asian economies; Asia and the Asian traumas in the global memory discourses of the 20th centuries.

20th Century China (B2908)
This survey course covers one of the most dramatic centuries of Chinese history, from the Boxer Uprising in 1900 to China's reclamation of Macao--the last piece of territory lost to a Western power--in 1999. It will introduce to students major historical developments and figures in 20th Century China. The objective is to help students to understand better how China becomes what she is now.

Topics in the History of the PRC, 1949—Present (B0008)
This graduate course will explore significant issues in the history of the People's Republic of China since its birth. Through extensive reading and discussion, students will gain deeper understanding on major events such as the Korean War, the Great Leap Forward campaign, Sino-Soviet rift, the Cultural Revolution, Sino-US rapprochement, and particularly the most-Mao economic reforms which have not only transformed China but also changed the world.

China's "Cultural Revolution" (B0617)
The decade of the Cultural Revolution was unique period in contemporary Chinese history. Largely as a result of Mao Zedong's personal decision, the Revolution not only dramatically changed China, but also greatly affected the international power balance at the height of the Cold War. The course will not only examine the origin, development, and consequences of the movement, but also study major political leaders such as Mao, Zhou Enlai, Liu Shaoqi, Lin Biao, and the "Gang of Four." The goal is to understand the major problems in the People's Republic of China, to explore the source, difficulties, and perspectives on the on-going reforms in China.

Japanese Empire (B2609)
Japan was a late imperialist power, but in 1945 came to occupy extensive territories of her Asian neighbors. This course will examine the history of that empire with emphasis on new cultural approaches, interpretations of the nature of Japanese colonialism, the experiences of subject peoples, the wartime story of conquest (1937-45), and issues regarding the end of empire that plague Japan's relationships with nations across Asia today.

History, Historians & Historiography of the Raj (B4308)
Explores the history of British rule in India through selected readings, ideological position of historians—Marxist, subalternists revisionists, and neoconservatives—and assesses the accumulated impact on the historiography of the period.

Historiography of the Great Partition (B0010)
India attained independence from the British in 1947. But independence turned out to be a bittersweet fruit, as British India emerged not as a single nation but two nations: India and Pakistan. By 1971, Bangladesh was carved out of Pakistan. More than 10 million people became refuges as a result of the partition, and over a million perished, including women and children. Over 60 years later, the bitter memory of the partition is still alive in South Asian states, which has generated a plethora of literature as well as fiction on the subject. In recent years, there has been renewed interest in putting together the fragmented narratives of the partition, and the capture the lost voices of those who were affected by this event. As such, the course will explore the historiography of the Partition, while analyzing multiple scholarly positions that have sought to understand it, and even consider popular media representations of the event. The course has a heavy emphasis on reading/discussion/writing.

Pakistan Islam & Army (B0808)
On August 11, 1947 M.A. Jinnah, who had demanded the creation of Pakistan on the basis of Islam, declared before the Constituent Assembly: "You may belong to any religion or caste or creed that has nothing to do with the business of the state." The contradiction in Jinnah's two positions will remain unresolved in Pakistan's history, pushing that country from one inapt civilian government to another military dictatorship, while continuing to strengthen the religion-military alliance that received American approval. The course explores the past 61 years of Pakistan history in the broader context of the Cold War and American strategic interests in central Asia. Selected literature, discussion, research papers.

Latin American History

Colonial Latin America (B0501)
A study of the impact and meaning of colonial rule in Latin America and the Caribbean, focusing on the interaction between European goals and institutions,
and indigenous American and African strategies of socio-cultural survival.

Modern and Contemporary Latin America (B0502)
Contemporary economic, social and political problems of Latin America and the Caribbean studied in historical perspective. Themes include: foreign economic and
political intervention; labor systems and patterns of land ownership; class, ethnic and racial relations; the politics of reform

Nationalism in Latin America (B2511)
An examination of the process of nation-building in the 19th-20th century Latin America and the Caribbean, focusing on particular attention to the ways in which race/ethnicity and gender are implicated in the construction of national communities and identities in a post-colonial context. Reading assignments will include theoretically oriented texts, historical studies informed by theory, and some key documents by Latin American political leaders and intellectuals.

Race, Ethnicity & Nation in Latin America (B0004)
This course examines the complex and fluid connections between race, ethnicity and the making of national and regional identities in post-colonial Latin America. Emphasis will be put in the analysis of how concepts of race and nationhood change over time and space under the pressures of immigration, political struggle and state formation. Course will also examine the gendering of racial, regional and national identities.