Spring Semester 2015 Course Offerings

For more information, contact the faculty member teaching the course.

History 112: US History Since 1865
Jacqueline Wilkie
This course surveys American history since Reconstruction, exploring transformations in American politics, society, and culture. Though it is wide-ranging, it has as a unifying theme the question of how and why people have defined the American nation in different ways, and how those ideas have related to race and gender. Topics covered include the end of the westward expansion after the Civil War and Indian resistance, industrialization, immigration, World War I, African American migration and cultural innovation, the cultural turmoil of the 1920s, the Depression and New Deal, the Second World War at home and abroad, the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement, feminism, other social movements, the Vietnam war and the anti-war movement, cultural politics in the 1970s, the new conservatism and 1980s culture wars, the 1990s, 9/11, the Gulf War, and the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars. (HBSSM, Hist, Intcl)

History 126:  Human Geography
Mark Rhodes
A survey of world geography combining the regional and topical approaches, the natural factors that shape the environment, such as climate, landforms and resources, will be considered, along with their impact on people, as studied in the fields of political, economic, and cultural geography. The primary focus of the course will be on basic concepts in cultural geography that will be of greatest use for students preparing to teach middle school and high school social studies. (HBSSM, Intcl)

History 150: Europe Since 1648
Anna Peterson
An introductory survey of European history from the end of the wars of religion in the seventeenth century to the present. Topics will include: the Scientific Revolution; the Enlightenment; Absolutism and the Emergence of the Parliamentary Government; the French Revolution and Napoleon; Reaction and Revolution in the early Nineteenth Century; the Industrial Revolution; Nationalism and Unification; the "New Imperialism" and the Coming of World War I; the "Thirty Years War of the Twentieth Century"; Postwar Europe: Cold War and Integration. (HBSSM, Hist, Intcl)

History 161: East Asian History
Xiaolin Duan
An introduction to the basic themes and content of East Asian history from the earliest times to the present. Students will explore the lives of both great and ordinary people who lived in what are now China, Japan, Korea, and Vietnam. Students will consider how empire, international trade, relations of production, and ideologies affected the construction and reproduction of social and cultural groups. Offered alternate years. (HB, Hist, Intcl)

History 227: Public History
Edward Tebbenhoff

This course explores the various ways in which history is created, incorporated into and presented in U.S. popular culture. The course will combine hands-on work with local historical societies, museums, and other public history venues with academic study of public history techniques and ethical challenges. Topics may include the ways in which historical road markers, entertainment corporations (such as the History Channel and Disney), local and regional history associations present history to the public and how the public interacts with these discourses on history. A comparison of the differences in purpose and audience between public and scholarly presentations of history is a central theme of the course. Offered alternate years. (HBSSM, Hist)

History 235: Destiny or Deliverance? Civil Rights and Black Power in the United States
Lauren Anderson
In this course, we will ask whether the Civil Rights Movement and Black Power Era were America's destiny (toward which it has always been headed), a deliverance rescuing America from its racist past, or something altogether different. Did the end of Jim Crow change American life or did it actually hide fundamental, ongoing racial strife in American society? In an attempt to answer these questions, we will cover the mass protests of the 1930s and '40s, the direct action campaigns of the 1950s and '60s, and black liberation struggles that stretched into the '70s. We will do this by analyzing media such as speeches, music, film, television, oral histories, and photography. (Same as AFRS 235) (HB, Hist)

History 239: Topics in East Asian History: Chinese Environmental History
Xiaolin Duan

History 239: Black Influence on Popular Culture: African Americans in Music, TV, Sports, and Film
Lauren Anderson

This course will investigate African American artistic creations and athletic achievement throughout the twentieth century. While that century began as an era in which black Americans were present in American popular culture primarily through black face minstrelsy (white performers put on boot polish in order to mimic stereotypically black features), black people currently influence every major arena of American popular culture. How did this come to be? How have African Americans responses to widespread stereotyping of themselves and their culture changed over time? How have media depictions of black people narrowed black and white perceptions of what it means to be a certain race, class, and gender? By reading a variety of works by historians, we will see how scholars have understood the development of black influence on American popular culture. We will also analyze a wide range of memoirs, songs, movie clips, TV shows, and sporting events in order to understand continuity and change within this topic. (Hist, Intc) (Same as AFRS 239)

History 250: History of Great Britain
Victoria Christman
Pending Faculty Approval

This class covers two centuries of dramatic change in Tudor-Stuart England.  Encompassing the period from 1485 to 1689, the course considers the political, social, and religious history of Great Britain, during a period in which the monarchs in the south attempted to expand their control over the entire territory; the official religion of the land changed with surprising frequency; and the country eventually fell into civil war and revolution.  In this survey course, students will be introduced to the major trends, characters and events of this period, examining them in depth via a variety of primary sources documents, such as letters, journals, and legal documents
. (HB, Hist)

History 321: Topics in US History
Edward Tebbenhoff

In-depth study of a selected topic in U.S. history. Instruction in this course will require students to read and assess monographs written by prominent historians related to the topic. Students will write an eight-to-10-page research paper on a subject linked to the selected topic. Topics may include but are not limited to: Revolutionary America, disease in the American past, history of the American family, U.S. immigration history, the Vietnam War. Prerequisite: PAID 112 or equivalent. (HBSSM, Hist)

History 337: Pan African History
Lauren Anderson
An introduction to the ideas and movements that developed in efforts to unite African people spread throughout the world by the slave trade. The course examines key African and Diasporic African intellectual and ideological responses to enslavement and colonization, and subsequently to economic, social, and political marginalization. The course starts with an exploration of African American separatist discourse during the Americans' Revolutionary periods, moves through New World emancipation of slaves, colonization in Africa, and concludes with national movements and liberation struggles in Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, and Europe. Prerequisite: PAID 112 or equivalent. (Same as AFRS 337) (HB, HEPT, Hist, Intcl)

History 351: Topics in European History
The History of the Holocaust

Anna Peterson

This course will examine the interrelated individuals, institutions, historical events, and ideologies that contributed to the Holocaust. In order to understand this genocide, we will begin our study with an analysis of some of the important historical factors that occurred before the Nazi rise to power. We will then examine the anti-Jewish policies the Nazis cobbled together during 1933-1938 and the varied Jewish responses to these policies. This historical background will inform our investigation of the Final Solution itself. In this part of the course, we will study the perpetrators, bystanders, and victims of the Holocaust. Finally, we will consider the Holocaust’s aftermath and legacy among Jews and non-Jews in Germany, Israel, and the United States. The readings will challenge us to think about the Holocaust from new perspectives, and we will work together to understand the role individuals played in this state-sponsored genocide. Discussions will be an integral part of this course as we will use them to work through many of the difficult topics under study. Prerequisite: PAID 112 or equivalent. (HB, Hist)

History 485: Junior-Senior Seminar (Early Modern Europe Topic: Black Death)
Robert Christman

In this course we will study the plague epidemic that swept across Europe beginning in 1348, killing an estimated one third of the population in a two-year period, then recurring repeatedly until its last European outbreak in 1720.  More specifically, we will analyze the plague’s immediate and long-term impact on Europe, focusing on a variety of issues that include:  popular responses, medical responses, civic responses, changes in urban and rural demographics, impact on the economy, on intellectual and artistic endeavors, and on popular and elite religion.  In addressing these issues, the course will also serve as an introduction to various types of intellectual, social, and cultural history.

History 485 aims at contributing to your knowledge of this period of European history but also serves as the history department’s writing intensive course (which are part of the Luther’s all-college requirements).  A critically important aspect of this course aims at increasing your analytical and writing skills by producing an extensive research paper.  So we will be looking in some detail at the historiographic debates but also discussing your research topics and the how the research and writing of your papers is proceeding.