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HIST 280 Topics

FALL 2022

HIST 280-900: Popular Performance in Early 20th Century America                                            Dr. Jessica Herzogenrath
TR 12:45-2:00

Over the course of the semester, we will explore the ways in which popular performance informed social and cultural experiences from 1890 through 1940. Historical study of popular performance allows us the opportunity to see the complex ways in which people have negotiated their identities – such as class, race, religion, political allegiance, ethnicity, and gender expression. Popular performance manifests in many ways, including athletics, dance, music, theater, and parades. Through analysis of primary and secondary source materials, we will examine how the patterns of performance show us both the stability of embodied traditions and the potential for change in the actions of “ordinary” people. Students will develop original research papers supported by primary and secondary materials.

HIST280-901: The War of 1812                                                                                                                  Dr. Troy Bickham
MW 5:45-7:00 pm

This seminar will explore the pivotal, but often overlooked, War of 1812.  Fought as a second revolution by Americans, a postcolonial war by the British, a war of independence against the U.S. by Canadians, and wars of resistance by Native Americans, the War of 1812’s outcomes were by no means certain.  The conflict highlights the fragility of the early U.S. republic, the limitations of central governments, and the power of public opinion.  Ultimately, the War of 1812 served as an umbrella for a host of conflicts (armed, political, and cultural) that together laid the foundation of U.S. dominance of North America and reshaped the future of its inhabitants. This is an intensive writing (W) course and students will develop original research papers.

HIST280-902: United States-Mexican Borderlands                                                                             Dr. Sonia Hernandez
TR 9:35-10:50

The topic of this course is the United States-Mexican Borderlands. Students will learn about the process of border-making, the emergence of the nation-state, identities, state-sanctioned and non-state sanctioned violence, the way in which gender, labor, race, ethnicity and space has been defined/used/negotiated and contested in the  borderlands, and other themes associated with the U.S.-Mexican borderlands. In many ways, the U.S.- Mexican borderlands exemplify how the nation-state can both be transgressed and upheld with complex  daily negotiations in-between. Emphasis will be given to the historiography and research methodologies of this topic; we will consider the role of history and historians and what historians do. Through an overview of this particular borderland students will learn about the major historical writings  of this topic. This course is designed to provide history majors and those interested in pursuing related  careers, a hands-on learning experience by focusing on developing and strengthening critical reading,  writing, and analytical skills essential to the discipline of history and other professions. This is an intensive writing (W) course and certain days will be reserved as ‘writing workshops’ in & outside of  class.

HIST 280-903: Visualizing the Black Diaspora                                                                                      Dr. Takkara Brunson
MWF 9:10-10:00

This course explores how persons of African descent used photography to create identities for themselves as slavery came to an end. Invented in France in 1826, photography emerged as a popular technology among elites living throughout the Americas during the 1840s. Photography became an affordable commodity that individuals from all social classes began to use by the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Our exploration will identify how artists and scientists have used photographs to reproduce racial stereotypes. We will then examine how Black people challenged these stereotypes by posing for photographs from the period of slave emancipation through the early-twentieth century. This course takes a comparative approach that looks at African-descended populations in the Brazil, Cuba, the United States, and Jamaica, among other nations. Students will also develop and revise an original research paper based on primary source materials.

HIST280-904: Medieval and Early Modern Everyday Lives                                                               Dr. Cynthia Bouton
MW 4:10-5:25

This course will explore the everyday lives of people during the  medieval and early-modern period in the Atlantic. We will consider community relations, households, work, gender, race, religion, status and other dimensions of people’s experiences. This is an intensive writing (W) course designed to provide history majors a hands-on learning experience by focusing on developing and strengthening critical reading, writing, and analytical skills essential to the discipline of history and other professions. Students will craft an original research paper based on primary source materials.

HIST280-905: The Vietnam War/The American War                                                                          Dr. Olga Dror
MWF 12:40-1:30

This is a writing-intensive course that introduces students majoring in history to the craft of the profession through a variety of strategies and techniques, such as lectures, discussions, work with primary and secondary sources, writing laboratories. All these will help students in their successful completion of a research project related to the subject of the course – the wars in Vietnam in the twentieth century. The course will cover history of the foreign involvements in Vietnam in the twentieth century as well as Vietnamese internal conflicts that contributed to these wars. It will consider origins and development of hostilities, wartime societies, culture, collaboration, resistance, colonialism, nationalism, and the outcomes of the wars.  The course will also address effects of the war on the United States as one of the major players in the armed conflicts in Vietnam. The final product of the course will be a research paper that will bring together students’ skills developed in both parts of the course.