Course Details

HIST 100: Black History is Labor History

This course explores labor history in relation to black people, spanning the colonial period to the early twenty-first century. Though the course is not a comprehensive survey, it racializes the history of work by tracing the long story of black labor in the U.S. from the plantation to the plant. Whereas the bulk of the course will analyze black labor and labor movements in the twentieth century, specifically focusing on the push for economic inclusion and mobility amid employment, societal and union-related racial discrimination, we will examine what involuntary black labor meant in the context of slavery and the construction of a capitalist economy. We will devote attention to black workers with regard to such topics as antiunionism, deindustrialization, economic inequality, Fordism, labor radicalism and violence, New Deal and unemployment insurance, the rise of civil rights unionism, and slavery and capitalism, among other themes.
6 credits; AI, WR1, IDS, QRE; Offered Fall 2019; T. Steward

HIST 100: Confucius and His Critics

An introduction to the study of historical biography. Instead of what we heard or think about Confucius, we will examine what his contemporaries, both his supporters and critics, thought he was. Students will scrutinize various sources gleaned from archaeology, heroic narratives, and court debates, as well as the Analects to write their own biography of Confucius based on a particular historical context that created a persistent constitutional agenda in early China. Students will justify why they would call such a finding, in hindsight, "Confucian" in its formative days. Themes can be drawn from aspects of ritual, bureaucracy, speech and writing
6 credits; AI, WR1, IS; Offered Fall 2019; S. Yoon

HIST 100: History and Memory in Africa, Nineteenth through Twenty-first Centuries

This course explores how Africans have remembered and retold their own history in the colonial and post-colonial contexts (nineteenth-twenty-first centuries). Students will examine memories of origin, the slave trade, conversion, and colonialism as well as of personal and communal triumphs and tragedies. Both long-standing historical texts like praise-names and rituals and modern texts like journals, court records, and letters will be explored. What is the relationship between the historical medium and the memory? Drawing from select cases in West, East and South Africa, students will come to understand the rich and varied history of Africa's creative expression. 
6 credits; AI, IS, WR1; Offered Fall 2019; T. Willis

HIST 100: Indians, Spaniards, and Empire

Starting in 1492, a few Spanish explorers conquered continents and subdued several Native American empires. At least that is what they wanted everyone to believe. Is it possible to tell the history of Spanish and Indigenous encounters in Latin America from the perspective of native peoples? How can historians recuperate the voices of those written out of history itself? How do contrasting visions of history, politics, and culture itself inform how historians practice their craft? In this course, we will explore new histories of Latin America that center the indigenous experience of empire, colonization, and contact.
6 credits; AI, WR1, IS; Offered Fall 2019; E. McGrath

HIST 100: Slavery and the Old South

This seminar studies the differences in approach and emphasis of historians and the history of the history of antebellum slavery in the United States South. The main theme is revisionism since Ulrich Bonnell Phillips’s foundational study American Negro Slavery (1919). Our understanding during the 1970s accentuated slave culture, community, and enslaved females. Current scholarship zeroes in on topics such as commodification, violence within the slave community, and white women as slave owners. Special attention paid to analytical thinking skills.
6 credits; AI, WR1, IDS; Offered Fall 2019; H. Williams

HIST 100: The Black Death: Disease and Its Consequences in the Middle Ages

In the 1340s, the Black Death swept through the Middle East and Europe, killing up to a third of the population in some areas. How can we understand what this catastrophe meant for the people who lived and died at the time? In this seminar, we will examine the Black Death (primarily in Europe) from a range of perspectives and disciplines and through a range of sources. We will seek to understand the biological and environmental causes of the disease, therapies, and the experience of illness, but also the effects of the mortality on economic, social, religious, and cultural life.
6 credits; AI, WR1, QRE, IS; Offered Fall 2019; V. Morse

HIST 100: Trials in Early America

Women and men of all races, ethnicities, and classes passed through the courts of early America. This course will be based primarily on trial transcripts and other court papers from seventeenth- and eighteenth-century America. We will use these documents as windows onto the contemporary legal, cultural, and social issues that these trials challenged. Using secondary sources, the seminar will then put these issues into the larger contexts of slavery, colonization and empire in Dutch, Spanish, French, and British America.
6 credits; AI, WR1; Offered Fall 2019; S. Zabin