Spring Semester 2009
Constantine & Julian
TR 5:00 – 6:15
Course Reference Number:
This advanced seminar in ancient history and literature examines the lives and reigns of the fourth-century Roman emperors Constantine and Julian. Constantine was a pivotal figure in world history, the founder of a new dynasty of rulers in a centuries-old empire facing many challenges, and the first Roman emperor to embrace and promote Christianity. His rule changed the complexion of the ancient world. His descendant Julian reigned only for a short time, but he is remembered above all for the concerted effort he made to return Rome to its traditional religious orientation. He failed in his attempt, in part because of his premature death, but as the last pagan emperor of Rome he remains a figure of almost mythological status. The course investigates the principal features of the
history of these two rulers, political, military, socio-economic and religious. A principal theme is the question of how historical experience can be recovered. Readings from original sources (in English translation) are studied in conjunction with documentary and iconographic evidence. The course also considers how modern historians, biographers and novelists have recreated these compelling
Research, Writing & Publishing
T 2:00 -4:30
Course Reference Number: 25468
Colloquium in US History 1: Europe & America to 1680
R 2:00 – 4:30
Course Reference Number: 27848
This course provides an introduction to the history of the Americas during the age of European expansion. The course establishes global and trans-oceanic contexts for what eventually becomes a history of English North America. Topics in continental European and Native American history during the Early Modern and pre-/early contact period provide the social, cultural, and ideological foundation for comparative views of religion, science, gender, race, and politics. Spanish, French, and English (some semesters Portuguese) perspectives intersect with those of African and North and South American peoples. Since full historiographical coverage of these regions and topics is not possible in one semester, the course takes a selective topical approach that will vary from semester to semester.
Medieval Trade and Traders
R 2:00 – 4:30
Course Reference Number: 27849
This graduate seminar examines the history and historiography of merchants and their commercial affairs in the Mediterranean World and Europe from Late Antiquity, through the so-called "Commercial Revolution," into the later medieval period. We will consider both primary sources (written and material) and secondary literature.
Topics in Early Modern European History
W 6:30 – 9:00 PM
Course Reference Number: 27851
This colloquium acquaints graduate students with significant scholarship on early modern Europe, in its political, social, cultural, and religious contexts. Students will lead class discussions, write book reviews, and produce a historiographical essay on a topic of their choice. Reading ability in languages other than English desirable but not required.
Collaboration, Resistance, Retribution in World War II Europe
W 3:00 – 5:30 PM
Course Reference Number: 27853
From 1939 to 1945 nearly all European countries experienced military occupation by Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, the Soviet Union, and/or other powers. These occupations posed to the subject people the dilemma of whether to accommodate or oppose the occupation forces. For the politically committed, the dilemma was to decide between active collaboration and active resistance. As a consequence, nations were split by internal conflicts and civil wars that profoundly affected postwar history. In the course of the semester, we will examine guerrilla warfare, the conditions of military occupation, the political and intellectual atmosphere in Europe that encouraged both collaboration and resistance, and finally, the wartime and postwar retribution meted out for collaboration and war crimes.
Readings in the World History of Christianity
Course Reference Number:
In a recent review of Martin Marty’s The Christian World: A Global History (2008), Philip Jenkins concluded with this line: “Let me then offer a modest proposal for the creation of a non-Eurocentric humanities curriculum that is at once global, diverse, polycentric, multicultural and multiracial, one that incidentally tells the story of the wretched of the earth in terms of their deepest aspirations, and in their own voices. Let us study Christianity.” Jenkins’ ironic proposal, designed to tweak not a few noses, nonetheless captures one of the most important historical realities of the past several decades: the enormous growth of Christianity in places outside the global North and West, into the South and East. This course explores some of the rich explosion of scholarship that is now pouring forth on the recent and remarkable world-wide expansion of Christianity. While much of the reading
chosen for the course is historical, perspectives from theology, the social sciences, and religious studies are also well represented. After sampling major general interpretations (by scholars like Andrew Walls, David Martin, and Lamin Sanneh), readings will concentrate on Africa and China, which are regions of startling change over the last century as well as regions for which scholarship is burgeoning. Some of the course readings come from the standpoint of missionary outreach, but more reflect new expressions of indigenous faith. Studies of Protestant, Catholic, and independent movements are included; readings come from a wide variety of Catholic, Protestant, and secular perspectives. Student responsibilities will include short written reactions to week-by-week assignments, the possibility of more extensive oral presentations, and a major paper that may stress either theological or historical questions, or some other possibility as cleared with the course instructors.
US Women’s/Gender History
F 2:00 – 4:30 PM
Course Reference Number: 27854
This colloquium is intended to serve as an introduction to the fields of U.S. women's, gender and sexuality history. It will provide a basic background to some of the major current methodologies, approaches and topical interests in these fields, as well as acquainting students with the changing ways these histories have been written over the past forty years. Although the first half of the course
will be organized chronologically, from colonial times through the twentieth century, the main focus will be historiographical. We will not attempt to "cover" all the important areas of this historiography. Students who wish to master this field, however, will emerge from the class with the requisite analytical tools to begin that task. Although most of our common readings will discuss the United States, some readings and/or papers may discuss women's/gender/sexuality history in other national, regional, or comparative histories
Global Development in Historical Perspective
M 2:30 – 5:00
Course Reference Number: 27855
This class examines selected problems within the broad study of development in comparative and historical contexts. Central themes likely include the historical transition from agrarian to industrial societies, the social dislocation that accompanies that transition, explanations for industrialization and technological change (or lack thereof), the political context for economic activity, differential access to economic opportunity, land and its use and distribution, and the enduring problems of poverty and inequality…among others. We will examine theory as well as cases ranging across the globe. The course will center around weekly readings and discussion; students will also write a substantial paper on a case and theme of their choice.