HIST 1000. History at Northeastern. 1 Hour.
Intended for first-year students in the College of Social Sciences and Humanities. Seeks to introduce first-year students to the liberal arts in general, to familiarize them with their history major, to provide grounding in the culture and values of the university community, and to help them develop interpersonal skills.
HIST 1120. Public History, Public Memory. 4 Hours.
Explores the politics surrounding the creation and consumption of history outside the classroom. Draws on contemporary debates over memorials, museum displays, television and film, and other popular sources of historical information to answer the questions: How does memory become history? How, where, and why do people encounter and interpret history outside of the classroom? Why are certain versions of the past so controversial? Through readings, discussion, field trips, and assignments, offers students an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of public history’s challenges and opportunities and to develop more informed opinions about its philosophical, ethical, and practical aspects.
HIST 1130. Introduction to the History of the United States. 4 Hours.
Engages with the major issues in U.S. history. Topics include the interaction of native populations with European settlers, the American Revolution and the Constitution, slavery, the Civil War, industrialization and migration, the growth of government and rise of the welfare state, media and mass culture, struggles for civil rights and liberation, and America’s role in the world from independence to the Iraq wars.
HIST 1140. Introduction to African-American History. 4 Hours.
Surveys the development of African Americans in the United States from their African background to the present. Covers medieval and early modern societies in West and Central Africa; the transatlantic slave trade; the evolution of slavery from the colonial period through the Civil War; free blacks; Reconstruction; migration; civil rights; and black nationalism. Considers gender relations throughout the entire period and emphasizes how an historical perspective helps to inform discussions of contemporary issues.
HIST 1150. East Asian Studies. 4 Hours.
Seeks to provide an understanding of the constituent characteristics that originally linked East Asia as a region and the nature of the transformations that have occurred in the region over the last two thousand years. Concentrates on China and Japan, and addresses Korea and Vietnam where possible. Also seeks to provide students with effective interdisciplinary analytical skills as well as historical, ethical, cultural diversity, and aesthetic perspectives. ASNS 1150 and HIST 1150 are cross-listed.
HIST 1170. Europe: Empires, Revolutions, Wars, and Their Aftermath. 4 Hours.
Examines how empires, wars, and revolutions have influenced the development of the modern world, focusing on Europe and Europe’s connections with the non–European world. Explores how wars and revolutions led to the emergence of modern concepts of sovereignty, the state, and citizenship and how global competition between states led to the emergence of empires. Traces the promise of allegedly liberating ideologies and the political and economic revolutions they fostered, repeated wars and their aftermaths, and the challenges of recent world developments viewed from the perspective of history. Explores how human diversity and difference have shaped modern societies through history and how human difference and multiculturalism have both fostered and posed challenges to civic sustainability. Interrogates the meanings of “modernity,” democracy and totalitarianism, capitalism and socialism, and globalization.
HIST 1180. African History. 4 Hours.
Explores the history of the African continent from 1000 C.E. to the present era. Topics include medieval kingdoms (Ghana, Mali, Songhai, Zimbabwe, the city-states of East Africa, and the Kongo kingdom); slave trades (Indian Ocean, trans-Saharan, and transatlantic); the partition of Africa and European colonization; and the decolonization process. Emphasizes the interactions of African peoples with the rest of the world, particularly the relations between Africa and Europe after 1500 C.E.
HIST 1185. Introduction to Middle Eastern History. 4 Hours.
Relies on historical and literary sources, as well as such other cultural artifacts as architecture and photography, and focuses on interaction and changing relations and perceptions between Europe and the Middle East. Surveys the major political and economic events that have linked the trajectory of both civilizations, as well as broad patterns of human activity, such as migrations, conversions, and, cultural exchange. Emphasizes the commonality of encounters, and analyzes the construction of an “other” and its enduring legacy in modern times.
HIST 1187. Introduction to Latin American History. 4 Hours.
Surveys major themes in Latin American history from the arrival of the first human inhabitants until the present through a diversity of primary and secondary sources. Examines the social, cultural, political, and economic transformations that shaped Latin America during this period. Emphasizes how concepts of race, class, gender, and sexuality informed these changes and the people’s experiences of them. Topics include migration, colonialism and postcolonialism, war and revolution, slavery and abolition, nationalism and nation building, democracy and despotism, urbanization, modernization, religion, imperialism and underdevelopment, human rights, drug policy and international relations, labor, the arts, popular culture, and the environment.
HIST 1190. Picturing Modernity: The Photographic Image in Culture and Society. 4 Hours.
Explores the role of the photographic image in culture and society from the early nineteenth century to the present day. Examines how the photographic image has altered cultural and perceptual patterns across the globe and investigates how cultural and social power have been influenced by photographs. Offers students an opportunity to read a cross-section of criticism, theory, and history and to study images and exhibitions to analyze how culture and history have been affected by and reflected in photographic images.
HIST 1200. Historical Research and Writing. 1 Hour.
Offered in conjunction with HIST 1201. Introduces incoming history freshmen to the history major in the context of other disciplines within the college and University. Offers students an opportunity to learn and to practice methods and conventions of research and historical writing.
HIST 1201. First-Year Seminar. 4 Hours.
Provides an introduction to historical methods, research, writing, and argument in which all students produce a substantial research project that passes through at least two revisions, and that is presented publicly to other members of the colloquium.
HIST 1206. Drug Trade and Drug War: History, Security, Culture. 4 Hours.
Analyzes the role of drugs in world history. From the early use of stimulants such as coca and sugar to the “war on drugs” and narco-terrorism, the course examines drugs as commodities in the world economy. Focuses primarily on opiates, stimulants, and hallucinogens from the nineteenth century to the present, considering how changing social and cultural mores led different drugs to be coded as licit and illicit. Topics include traditional uses, early medical use, trade networks, prohibition, black market, and drug cultures, as well as the role of drugs in the histories of industrialization, imperialism, and cold war geopolitics. Sources include historical scholarship, declassified intelligence reports, documentaries, novels, movies, songs, and art.
HIST 1215. Origins of Today: Historical Roots of Contemporary Issues. 4 Hours.
Focuses on the historical roots of four pressing contemporary issues with global implications. Our world has grown increasingly complex and interconnected, and the planet’s diverse peoples are facing common problems that have tremendous impact on the immediate future. They are (1) globalization, from its origins in the sixteenth century to the present; (2) the potential for global pandemics to alter the course of history, from bubonic plague in the fifth century to H1N1; (3) racial inequality, from religious interpretations in the early modern period to science in the modern era; and (4) gender inequality, from the agricultural revolution forward. For each issue, studies cases and locations spread across the world, examines the links between past and present, and attempts to identify ways forward.
HIST 1218. Pirates, Planters, and Patriots: Making the Americas, 1492–1804. 4 Hours.
Seeks to challenge students to understand more than the outlines of American history—Pilgrims, patriots, plantations— in the broader contexts of events that unfolded in and around the Atlantic Ocean in the Americas, Europe, and Africa. Covers Columbus’s first landing in the Caribbean to the Haitian declaration of independence in 1804 and includes the Atlantic trade, piracy, slavery and other forms of labor, cultural and ecological exchange, and independence and emancipation.
HIST 1225. Gender, Race, and Medicine. 4 Hours.
Examines the basic tenets of “scientific objectivity” and foundational scientific ideas about race, sex, and gender and what these have meant for marginalized groups in society, particularly when they seek medical care. Introduces feminist science theories ranging from linguistic metaphors of the immune system, to the medicalization of race, to critiques of the sexual binary. Emphasizes contemporary as well as historical moments to trace the evolution of “scientific truth” and its impact on the U.S. cultural landscape. Offers students an opportunity to develop the skills to critically question what they “know” about science and the scientific process and revisit their disciplinary training as a site for critical analysis. AFAM 1225, HIST 1225, and WMNS 1225 are cross-listed.
HIST 1228. Americans in the World: Trade, Travel, and Diplomacy. 4 Hours.
Offers a broad introduction to the history of the United States and the global world. Explores the United States within a larger framework of world historical events and activities, examining connections between local and global histories. Drawing on historical and literary sources as well as print, film, and other media sources, this course surveys the global United States and the political, social, cultural, and economic relationships that shaped its development. Topics include colonialism and imperialism; industrialization and globalization; war, independence, and national movements; and racial and gendered identities and politics.
HIST 1246. World War II in the Pacific. 4 Hours.
Studies World War II, the most devastating war in history, which began in Asia and had a great long-term impact there. Using historical and literary texts, examines the causes, decisive battles, and lingering significance of the conflict on both sides of the Pacific.
HIST 1252. Japanese Literature and Culture. 4 Hours.
Explores major works of Japanese fiction and poetry in historical and cultural context. All readings are in English translation.
HIST 1253. History of Vietnam Wars. 4 Hours.
Presents a history of military conflicts on the Indochinese peninsula from its precolonial settlement, internal developments and divisions, its stormy relationship with China, French colonization and the resistance to it, the rise of the Viet Minh during World War II, the postwar struggle against the French, the impact of the Cold War, and the involvement of the United States after 1950 in the creation of two Vietnams and in the conflict that engulfed it and its neighbors, Laos and Cambodia, in the decades that followed. Emphasizes the roles of nationalism and communism in the twentieth-century conflicts and the motives for American intervention. Films revealing the reactions of Americans to the escalating conflict are shown and evaluated.
HIST 1270. Ancient Greece. 4 Hours.
Studies the Greek achievement from proto-Indo-European migrations through the Minoan and Mycenaean bronze age, to the evolution of Homeric and Hellenic societies in the iron age, to the rise of the city-states and the age of Alexander. Topics include the coexistence of the rational and the irrational; the paradox of ethical philosophies and exclusionary political systems; the tensions between particularism and cultural unity; and gender ideology and what has been termed “the reign of the phallus.”.
HIST 1271. Ancient Rome. 4 Hours.
Studies the establishment and origins of civilization in the Italian peninsula from Etruscan, Latin, and Greek foundations through the rise and institutionalization of the republic, to the achievement of empire, to Rome’s interactions with diverse peoples and its decline and collapse. Themes include diversity, toleration, uses and dangers of power, Rome’s legalistic legacy, and the Latinization of Christianity.
HIST 1272. Europe in the Middle Ages, 500–1500. 4 Hours.
Examines the history of medieval Europe in a period of tremendous fluidity, migration, and flux. Studies the experiences of men and women in European societies before clearly defined nation-states had emerged. Topics include forms of political and cultural integration; the contacts between Europeans and non-Europeans in the Mediterranean and beyond; and the place of religion, art, and ideology, with attention to how Europeans’ experiences varied according to their gender, class, and race.
HIST 1279. History of the American Film Industry. 4 Hours.
Examines and analyzes the artistic, commercial, cultural, and political history of the American film industry from its beginnings around 1900 to the present day. Emphasizes the development of the financial and artistic model of the classic “studio system” at the major Hollywood studios. Readings and lectures focus on economic factors that changed this system over time, such as labor-management relations and the rise and fall of the “star system.” Studies major genres and styles of film and their evolution, as well as their relationship to American historical and political trends: the Depression, World War II, the cold war, and the impact of the cultural revolution of the 1960s. Considers the changing role of the actor and of the director in Hollywood filmmaking.
HIST 1285. Introduction to Russian Civilization. 4 Hours.
Examines the origins of Russian culture in Eastern Orthodoxy and relations with the Byzantine Empire, and the subsequent evolution of Kiev, Moscow, and St. Petersburg as cultural/political centers, up to the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution. Includes readings in medieval Russian literature and nineteenth-century fiction, with consideration of the development of music and the visual arts. Conducted in English.
HIST 1286. History of the Soviet Union. 4 Hours.
Surveys social, political, economic, demographic, and cultural developments in the former Soviet Union since 1917: the legacies of war and revolution, the civil war between the communists and the anti-communists, famine, the New Economic Policy, competing perspectives on the new regime, the rise of Stalin, the Cultural Revolution, collectivization and industrialization, the Purges, World War II and its impact, the “two camps” and the origins of the Cold War, the Soviet Union and the new East European system, Khrushchev, destalinization, intellectuals and the “thaw,” the Cuban missile crisis, the demise of Khrushchev, Brezhnev and the period of stagnation, the Gorbachev Revolution, Yeltsin, nationalism, and the dissolution.
HIST 1290. Modern Middle East. 4 Hours.
Examines the political, social, and cultural history of the Arab countries of the modern Middle East, as well as Iran, Israel, and Turkey. Covers the period from the early 19th century through the late 20th century. Offers students an opportunity to obtain a basis for understanding the politics, social movements, and cultural expressions of the region in the late 20th century. Major themes include imperialism and colonialism; the creation and transformation of the modern states and their political systems since World War I; the transformation of Middle Eastern societies during this same period under the impact of colonialism, independence, regional wars, and oil; women's and labor movements; and revolutions. Uses a variety of sources including memoirs, photography, literature, and political speeches.
HIST 1294. Strangers in a Strange Land? European Jewish History 1750–1945. 4 Hours.
Examines cultural, religious, political, and economic developments in European Jewish life between 1750 and 1945. Emphasizes the diversity of Jewish experiences in Europe and the significant changes in Jewish identity that occurred as many Jews became increasingly integrated into their surrounding populations. Includes topics such as “Haskalah,” or “Jewish Enlightenment”; the development of Reform Judaism; political and economic emancipation; changes in gender norms; Zionism; and anti-Semitism and the Holocaust. Includes films, memoirs, and cartoons and graphic novels, as well as important texts in Jewish history. HIST 1294 and JWSS 1294 are cross-listed.
HIST 1297. Reformers, Tribes, Saints: North Africa in World History, 1500–Present. 4 Hours.
Covers North Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia) and its emergence as a key arena in the spread of the global economy, the struggle for human rights and gender equality, the emergence of civil society, and the struggle between moderate and militant forms of political Islam. Analyzes these recent challenges in the context of centuries of authoritarian tribal-based rule, religious reform movements, and popular efforts to withstand considerable foreign political and economic pressure from Europe and beyond. While sultans “ruled” the region for centuries, they did so in varying degrees with the assistance of or under pressure from reformers, tribes, and saints, both moderate and militant. Uses a variety of sources and media to investigate how these factors shape ongoing postcolonial political, social, and economic development.
HIST 1350. Feminist Resistance. 4 Hours.
Engages students in the study of a variety of forms of feminist resistance in recent history, emphasizing the US in the context of cross-cultural examples. Students examine key feminist texts and manifestoes and study feminist activism in coalition with other social movements. Students identify and analyze unique features of gender-based activism in itself and in its intersections with other social movements, including movements and activism focused on race, class, sexuality, and physical ability. WMNS 1350, SOCL 1350, and HIST 1350 are cross-listed.
HIST 1389. History of Espionage 1: Antiquity to World War II. 4 Hours.
Explores the history of espionage through a series of case studies from ancient Rome, Greece, and China; the Reformation; the Age of Discovery; the French Revolution; the American Civil War; World War I and the Russian Revolution; and World War II. Commonly referred to as the world’s “second oldest profession,” espionage is an intrinsic part of the relationships between communities, institutions, and states. Draws from a wide variety of published and unpublished primary and secondary sources, supplemented by modern theoretical and social science perspectives, literature, and films.
HIST 1390. History of Espionage 2: Cold War Spies. 4 Hours.
Explores the history of espionage during the Cold War era (1943–1991) through a series of case studies. Draws from a wide variety of published and unpublished primary and secondary sources, supplemented by modern theoretical and social science perspectives, literature, and films. Students work individually and in teams to explore the history of covert operations, including the following subthemes: the origins of the Cold War in World War II, the postwar battle for German scientists, containment and rollback, Venona and code breaking, nuclear spies, defectors, proxy wars, insurgencies and counterinsurgencies, terrorism, and technology.
HIST 1500. Modern Chinese History and Culture. 4 Hours.
Introduces modern Chinese history and culture through literary works, films, and historical texts. Examines political, social, and cultural changes in China since 1800: the decline of empire; the New Culture Movement of the 1920s; the rise of nationalism and rural revolution; the changing roles of women; the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s; and China’s cinematic, literary, and economic engagement with the world since 1978. Taught in English and open to all undergraduates. CLTR 1500 and HIST 1500 are cross-listed.
HIST 1990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.
Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 2000. Native American Resistance: Past and Present. 4 Hours.
Introduces the Indigenous peoples of North America and the academic field of Native American and Indigenous studies. Combines public history and public art, field trips, and original research to focus on the ongoing resistance to colonization and erasure and the resilience of Indian nations in New England and beyond. Covers particular themes, including the present-day impact of historical treaties and policies including land allotment, relocation, termination, boarding schools, and natural resource extraction.
HIST 2011. Capitalism: A Global History. 4 Hours.
Analyzes the emergence of capitalism as a global system. From the emergence of early modern market societies to today’s globalization and its discontents, the course examines capitalism as a historical phenomenon. Focuses primarily on changes in production, exchange, consumption from the 19th century to the present. Considers how technological and geo-political developments changed the economic lives of people around the world and how those people responded. Topics include empire and slavery, industrialization and deindustrialization, and finance and speculation, as well as the histories of money, commodities, and consumer cultures. Sources include historical scholarship, archive documents, economic philosophy, novels, songs, and art.
HIST 2025. Latin American History through Film. 4 Hours.
Uses films to analyze major questions in Latin American history. Topics include conquest, slavery, and revolution. The films are works of fiction, but most of them relate to real events. Course readings include "traditional" primary sources about the events (such as letters and espionage reports). Studies the history represented in the films and the assumptions and ideological perspectives and how these are conveyed through narrative and visual techniques. More broadly, considers how history is presented and represented by different sources. Offers students an opportunity to obtain a deeper appreciation for the complexity of Latin America.
HIST 2211. The World Since 1945. 4 Hours.
Examines the political, economic, social, and cultural relationship between the developed and developing world since the end of World War II. Topics include the Cold War, independence and national movements in developing countries, the globalization of the world economy, scientific and technological innovations, wealth and poverty, the eradication of some diseases and the spread of others, the fall of the Soviet Union, Middle East turmoil, and the enduring conflict between Israel and Palestine.
HIST 2214. War in the Modern World. 4 Hours.
Provides an analysis of the political and economic revolutions that produced modern industrial warfare, and explores the causes, prosecutions, and effects of the major wars fought since the mid-nineteenth century. Large portions of the course focus on World Wars I and II, but attention is also paid to the smaller wars of this period, to unconventional and nonmilitary forms of warfare, to the international trade in arms and training, and to terrorism, both state-sponsored and transnational. Using films, simulations, and team projects, students explore the diplomatic, political, economic, social, cultural, and psychological impacts of these wars as well as their military and technological aspects.
HIST 2222. History of Science and Technology. 4 Hours.
Offers a global interdisciplinary survey of the separate developments of science and technology, and the complex relationships between them, integrating theories of the philosophy and sociology of science within an historical framework. Emphasizes the environmental and ideological conditions that contribute to the birth and growth of the various sciences and to the relation between these conditions and technological innovation.
HIST 2280. Hitler, Germany, and the Holocaust. 4 Hours.
Studies historical developments from Germany’s defeat in World War I to the end of World War II. Topics include the failure of Weimar democracy; Weimar culture; the rise to power of Hitler and National Socialism; Nazi culture and racial wars against alleged “degenerates”; the roles of party leaders, business and cultural elites, and ordinary Germans in supporting and legitimizing the Nazi dictatorship.
HIST 2282. The Holocaust and Comparative Genocide. 4 Hours.
Examines the origins of the Holocaust, perpetrators and victims, and changing efforts to come to terms with this genocide. The Holocaust, the murder of six million Jews by Germans in Nazi-occupied Europe during World War II, is one of the crucial events of modern history. Investigates the uniqueness of the Holocaust relative to other acts of ethnic cleansing or genocide, including mass death in the New World and mass murder in Armenia, Bosnia, and Rwanda. HIST 2282 and POLS 2282 are cross-listed.
HIST 2285. America and the Holocaust. 4 Hours.
Examines the American response to the Holocaust, in terms of both contemporaneous knowledge and actions and the lasting impact on policy and culture. Starts with early twentieth-century events, such as the Armenian genocide, that shaped later attitudes. Explores the prewar period, particularly U.S. immigration and isolationist policies. Assesses Americans’ knowledge of European events as the extermination campaign unfolded and fights ensued over rescue possibilities. Examines changing depictions of the Holocaust that emerged in the postwar period as a result of critical events such as the Eichmann trial and popular television and film portrayals. Finally, considers how perceptions of the Holocaust have shaped subsequent U.S. responses to genocide. HIST 2285, JRNL 2285, and JWSS 2285 are cross-listed.
HIST 2299. Uses and Abuses of History: Historical Reasoning in U.S. Global and Domestic Policy. 4 Hours.
Studies how historical information influenced decision making in the United States during four policymaking episodes of the post–World War II era: the confrontation with the Soviet Union during the Cold War; the expansion of the welfare state during the 1960s; the war in Vietnam; and the Reagan “revolution.” Focuses on decisions made by policymakers as these four episodes evolved. Analyzes why decision makers did what they did; what extent they were guided by their understanding of history; how accurate their historical information was; and how usefully they applied their historical understanding to the situation at hand.
HIST 2301. The History Seminar. 4 Hours.
Introduces history majors to advanced techniques of historical practice in research and writing. Offers students an opportunity to conduct original research and write an original research paper. Seminar themes vary; students should check with the Department of History for a list of each year’s seminar offerings. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 2302. Historical Writing. 1 Hour.
Covers learning and practicing methods and conventions of historical writing for publication. Adjuncted to a Seminar in History, which fulfills the Advanced Writing in the Disciplines requirement.
HIST 2303. Gender and Reproductive Justice. 4 Hours.
Introduces the social, legal, and economic barriers to accessing reproductive healthcare domestically and internationally. Draws on various theoretical and analytic tools including critical race theory, critical legal theory, sociology of science, human rights, feminist theory, and a range of public health methods. Access to reproductive health services, including abortion, is one of the most contested political, social, cultural, and religious issues today. Covers domestic, regional, and international legal and regulatory frameworks on sexual reproductive health. HIST 2303, SOCL 2303, and WMNS 2303 are cross-listed.
HIST 2304. Topics in History. 4 Hours.
Covers special topics in history, selected by the instructor. May be repeated up to three times.
HIST 2306. The World in a Decade: The 1990s. 4 Hours.
Examines the political, economic, and social dynamics of the first post–Cold War decade. Topics include the geopolitical aftermath of the Cold War, democracy and development in developing countries, the globalization of the world economy and its impacts, the rise of nationalism, genocide, the rise of China as an economic power, and the varieties of Islamic movements.
HIST 2308. Law, Justice, and Society in Modern China. 4 Hours.
Offers an overview of the historical development and function of law in Chinese society from the late imperial era to today and in comparison with other bodies of jurisprudence. Reading a wide range of scholarly articles and monographs, the course looks at “law” beyond jurisprudence and legal codes to examine its changing relationship with social customs, political institutions, religious traditions, popular culture, family and gender relations, and economic exchanges.
HIST 2311. Colonialism/Imperialism. 4 Hours.
Examines the military, economic, political, and cultural expansion of world powers since the fifteenth century, and the ways in which colonized peoples were ruled. Why did colonialist countries feel the need to conquer and dominate, how did they do it, and why did they retreat on some fronts? How did people resist and cooperate with colonialism? How did colonialism affect national and cultural identities? Colonialism is examined as a global phenomenon and from a comparative perspective that looks at particular case studies. Also examines decolonization in the twentieth century.
HIST 2330. Colonial and Revolutionary America. 4 Hours.
Covers the discovery and exploration of the New World, the settlement of the English, French, Dutch, Swedish, Spanish, and Russian colonies on the North American mainland, their development to 1763, the origins of their clashes with England, and the American Revolution.
HIST 2331. The Civil War and Reconstruction. 4 Hours.
Examines the causes and conduct of the U.S. Civil War, and the nature and effects of Reconstruction in the South. Topics include abolitionism and other reform efforts in the four decades before the war, constitutional and other political issues in the sectional crisis, territorial expansion as a sectional issue, the nature and economics of slavery and early capitalist formation in the North and South, the centrality of Abraham Lincoln in national politics, the military conduct of the war, technological innovation and its impact on the war, Reconstruction and the rights and plight of freed men and women, the rise of the Ku Klux Klan and other terrorist organizations, and the power of the Civil War, Reconstruction, and the ideals of equal rights in national memory.
HIST 2332. The United States, 1900–1945: Politics, Culture, and Globalism. 4 Hours.
Explores the history of the United States during the first half of the 20th century, during which the country was transformed from an agrarian to an industrial economy and from a secondary power to global dominance. Central themes include the national government’s multiple attempts to create policies, laws, and regulations consistent with maintaining social order, economic stability, and widely shared prosperity under the new economic conditions; the efforts of the United States to establish a world economic and political order in which a capitalist democracy could flourish; and the social, cultural, and political dimensions of the changing experiences of the American people. Topics include the Progressive Era (1900–1919); the 1920s; the Great Depression and the New Deal; and World War II.
HIST 2341. History of the Western United States. 4 Hours.
Examines the history of the western areas of North America that eventually became the United States.Topics include the history and culture of the area’s indigenous peoples; the expansion of European settlers; cultural and military encounters; trade and travel across the Pacific, the importance of water, mining and resource extraction; the rise of conservation and the environmental movement; the experience of Asian-American, Mexican-American, and African-American communities, the “Cowboys and Indians” mythology in American popular culture (film, television, literature, and advertising); the growth of western cities like Phoenix, Denver, Los Angeles, and Seattle; the influence of Hollywood and Silicon Valley.
HIST 2348. America and the Sea. 4 Hours.
Studies the importance of the oceanic environment in its cultural, economic, political, and naval aspects to U.S. history. Investigates the impact of the oceans on native peoples in the period before the European encounter, followed by an examination of the motives driving Europeans seaward and their methods and technology for oceanic exploration and navigation. Follows the development of the Atlantic maritime world in the postcolonial period, including the rise of the United States as a maritime power and the extension of U.S. maritime influence across the Pacific. Focuses on the evolution of maritime communities in which fishing, trading, and shipbuilding played a role in crafting a cultural environment, including the influence of the sea on literature and art. Examines the role in diplomacy and war of the United States Navy.
HIST 2351. Modern Japan. 4 Hours.
Examines state formation, economic growth, imperialism and colonialism, war and defeat, and contemporary culture.
HIST 2360. History of Capitalism in East Asia. 4 Hours.
Traces capitalism’s transformation of economic life in East Asia from the early modern era to the contemporary world. Explores changes in the human participation of production, exchange, and consumption. Reading a wide range of scholarly articles and monographs, the course examines key topics, including the great divergence debate, commodification of labor, consumer cultures, birth of industrialization, resilience of family enterprises, gender and the economy, and the role of the developmental state.
HIST 2370. Renaissance to Enlightenment. 4 Hours.
Covers the social, economic, political, and cultural transformations of Europe from the Renaissance to the French Revolution. Traces the rebirth of Catholic Europe from 1300; the Reformation; the religious wars; struggles over religious and scientific beliefs; advances in technology, science, and warfare; overseas expansion; the scientific revolution; and the Enlightenment.
HIST 2373. Gender and Sexuality in World History. 4 Hours.
Introduces key concepts in the fields of gender and identity studies as they apply to world history since about 1800. Offers students an opportunity to understand the critical significance of gender, sex, sexuality, and identity to world events and how these contentious subjects influence the contemporary world. Surveys a series of major movements in geopolitics, labor, economics, culture, and society in order to analyze how individual and group identities, as well as mass assumptions about behavior and performance, have shaped these events. Gender, sex, and sexuality are integral to class discussions of work, welfare, art, culture, violence, war, and activism. HIST 2373 and WMNS 2373 are cross-listed.
HIST 2375. The Tudors, the Stuarts, and the Birth of Modern Britain. 4 Hours.
Examines the history of early modern England as well as Ireland, Wales, and Scotland. Follows the development of England from a small backwater to one of the most powerful European nations by the end of the seventeenth century. Analyzes the constantly shifting relationships between the various cultural identities within Britain. Concentrates on British history not only from the perspective of the elites but also the ordinary people whose names have often been lost to history. Key themes include the growth of the British Empire, issues of gender, the interactions between England and the Celtic fringes, and participation in the political franchise.
HIST 2376. Britain and the British Empire. 4 Hours.
Studies the history of the empire on which the sun never set from the 18th century through the 20th century. Traces the rise of Britain as a major world power. Topics include nationalism; the growth of capitalism and the international economy; and the role of women and gender, scientific racism, and anticolonial resistance movements.
HIST 2390. Africa and the World in Early Times. 4 Hours.
Examines the place of Africa in the world from 1000 C.E. to the mid-19th century. Investigates the histories of ancient Egypt, the savannah and forest regions of West Africa, coastal and interior East Africa, and southern Africa. Explores the rise of medieval city-states and empires, the activities of the Atlantic slave trade and the trans-Saharan and Indian Ocean slave trades, debates over mass migration and the spread of language groups, the rise of agriculture, the development of nonstate political structures, the growth of trading societies, and the development of new cultural forms. Links Africa’s early histories to current debates about the role of history in contemporary politics and to present understandings of Africa’s historical place in world affairs.
HIST 2397. Modern Africa. 4 Hours.
Covers the history of modern Africa. From the late-19th century to the present day, Africans have shaped, and have been shaped by, transformative events. By the early 20th century, European powers had colonized most of the African continent. By the mid-1960s, most Africans were free from colonial rule; colonialism on the continent did not conclude until the 1990s with the fall of the apartheid state in South Africa. Africans have aimed to achieve political and economic stability, to negotiate cold war politics, harness international development support, and thrive in a globalized world. They have experienced brutal wars, devastating epidemics, and grave natural disasters but have also inspired the world with their rich cultures, profound histories, creative emerging economies, and vibrant democratic movements.
HIST 2431. Immigration and Identity in the American Jewish Experience. 4 Hours.
Examines Jewish political, social, and cultural history from the arrival of the first group of Jews at New Amsterdam in 1654 to the present. Themes include immigration, adaptation, family life, religion, anti-Semitism, Zionism, the Holocaust, and American-Israeli relations. HIST 2431 and JWSS 2431 are cross-listed.
HIST 2990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.
Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 3304. Topics in History. 4 Hours.
Covers special topics in history, selected by the instructor. May be repeated up to three times.
HIST 3322. The History of Medicine in North America. 4 Hours.
Surveys the history of medicine in what is now the United States between the arrival of European explorers in the 16th century and the end of the Second World War. Introduces exemplary moments in the history of medicine as it is practiced today and examines how these histories connect to the experience of the dispossessed, the enslaved, and the economically and culturally marginalized in American history. Encourages students to consider how the history of medicine has been written both by historians and practitioners. Explores the history of medicine both as a series of events, places, and people and as a method for opening up American history more broadly.
HIST 3325. The City in Middle Eastern History. 4 Hours.
Combines urban history, spatial history, and cultural history from the 18th century to the 21st century. Analyzes various writings on Middle Eastern cities and their inhabitants. Covers topics such as the modernization of cities in the late 19th century; their place in the globalization wave of that period; cities during World War I and the influx of refugees; the making of national capitals; contested cities; cities in the Gulf after the advent of oil; and cities in turmoil. Addresses urban design and ideology; resistance, rebellions, and social movements in the city; gender and the city; violence and the city; and the production of space. Also examines the city’s relationship to its hinterland, as well as to empires and later to nation-states.
HIST 3330. The Global Cold War. 4 Hours.
Examines the Cold War, emphasizing how the Soviet-American struggle for global preeminence intersected with decolonization and the rise of the “Third World.” Uses primary sources, monographs, and scholarly articles to trace the major events and developments of the Cold War—ideological differences between the capitalist and socialist systems, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the construction of the Berlin Wall, the Vietnam War—while also exploring how and why the Cold War came to pervade economic, cultural, and social relations globally. Examines how unexpected actors—Cuban doctors and Peace Corps volunteers—responded to and shaped superpower rivalry. Considers how the Cold War continues to shape the world today.
HIST 3334. Assassinations in World History. 4 Hours.
Explores the historical antecedents to the unprecedented use of assassination and targeted killing as state policy in the current war on terror: the theory, strategic use, ethics, and legality of assassination. Using film, literature, and primary and secondary readings, explores case studies in the world history of assassination, from ancient times to the current day, including case studies from the Roman Empire, early modern Europe, revolutionary Europe, and the 20th century.
HIST 3335. History of Modern Terrorism. 4 Hours.
Surveys the history of modern terrorism via film, literature, art, social science theory, and historical documents and engages the history of terrorism from 19th-century Europe to the present day. Explores the roots of this global phenomenon via weekly readings and requires students to conduct independent research and create individual or group presentations on selected themes.
HIST 3487. Central European Capitals on the Eve of World War I. 4 Hours.
Examines the intellectual and cultural history of three closely linked capitals of central Europe—Vienna, Prague, and Budapest—and their relationship to empires, multinationalism, and the development of modernism before and after World War I.
HIST 3800. American Conservatism from the New Deal to the Present. 4 Hours.
Explores the history of the modern American Right, from the New Deal to the present. Despite its widespread use as a political label, the term “conservative” is far from self-evident as a subject of historical inquiry. Emphasizes the fact that conservatism is not a fixed set of ideas but a complex social, political, intellectual, and cultural phenomenon. Examines groups and individuals who have claimed the label conservative as well as those who have had the label thrust upon them. Combines readings from the past and present in order to help students more accurately assess and reflect on U.S. political discourse from FDR to the present.
HIST 3990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.
Offers elective credit for courses taken at other academic institutions. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 4691. Topics in Middle Eastern History. 4 Hours.
Covers special topics in Middle Eastern history. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 4701. Capstone Seminar. 4 Hours.
Offers students an opportunity to make use of advanced techniques of historical methodology to conduct original research and write a major, original research paper as the culmination of their work toward the history degree. This is a capstone research and writing seminar for history majors. Not open to students who are receiving credit for HIST 4911, HIST 4912, HIST 4970, or HIST 4971.
HIST 4903. Fieldwork in History 1. 4 Hours.
Offers directed work in historical societies, archives, museums, and other historical agencies. Please consult the department for details.
HIST 4946. Independent Field Research Abroad: Central Europe. 4 Hours.
Provides an introduction to the political, cultural, and intellectual history of major central European cities. Issues discussed include the influence of geography on historical and political destiny, development of each city as a major center within a multinational empire, the flowering of culture in each city at the fin de siècle, and the relationship of political to intellectual and cultural history. Includes visits to major historical and cultural sites in the cities of study. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 4970. Junior/Senior Honors Project 1. 4 Hours.
Focuses on in-depth project in which a student conducts research or produces a product related to the student’s major field. Combined with Junior/Senior Project 2 or college-defined equivalent for 8-credit honors project. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 4971. Junior/Senior Honors Project 2. 4 Hours.
Focuses on second semester of in-depth project in which a student conducts research or produces a product related to the student’s major field. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 4990. Elective. 1-4 Hours.
HIST 4991. Research. 4 Hours.
Offers an opportunity to conduct research under faculty supervision.
HIST 4992. Directed Study. 1-4 Hours.
Offers independent work under the direction of members of the department on a chosen topic. Course content depends on instructor. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 5101. Theory and Methodology 1. 4 Hours.
Examines the following questions in the context of major issues in current historical research and debate. Where do historical questions come from, and how do we answer them? How do we produce knowledge about historical events and processes? What theoretical models guide historians work? Emphasizes interdisciplinary approaches as well as concrete techniques in historical research. Required of all first-year graduate students.
HIST 5102. Theory and Methodology 2. 4 Hours.
Continues HIST 5101. Offers an advanced exploration of the theories and methods used by historians to develop students’ ability to understand and critique the work of other historians. Emphasis is on theories and methods in world history, such as comparative models, systemic approaches, and focus on interconnections. Explores what it means to have a local, national, or global perspective, and how world history fits in with other fields of historical scholarship. Required of all PhD students.
HIST 5237. Issues and Methods in Public History. 4 Hours.
Examines and analyzes major issues and methods in public history in the United States and the world. Topics include the nature and meaning of national memory and myth, the theory and practice of historic preservation, rural and land preservation and the organizational structures and activities associated with those efforts, the interrelationship of historical museums and popular culture, the history and organization of historic house museums, historical documentary filmmaking, historical archaeology in world perspective, interpreting “ordinary” landscapes, and the impact of politics on public history.
HIST 5238. Managing Nonprofit Organizations. 4 Hours.
Examines the management of nonprofit organizations, which include historical agencies, museums, archives, historic houses, and various special historical collections. The literature on historical administration is lacking in sufficient conceptual rigor to generalize about the inner and outer workings of a complex management organization. Since historical agencies and museums are complex organizations with missions and goals, and with policies and procedures for involving various “publics” in their activities, explores them as part of the changing and evolving organizational structure of a modern society. Covers public management with all of its institutional components and human complexities. Studies planning in the public sector, budgeting, fundraising, conflict resolution, and the human relations literature as it relates to becoming a functional and successful manager.
HIST 5241. Exhibits and Museums. 4 Hours.
Considers the history of museums and exhibitions from a transnational perspective in order to examine the various roles museums have played in historical and contemporary global culture. Explores museums as cultural institutions and institutional cultures through historical and theoretical readings, museum visits, and the development of students’ own exhibitions. Currently among the world’s most popular sites of education and leisure, museums have held a wide range of social, political, and cultural roles over the past 500 years. Offers students an opportunity to develop more acute insight into the ways museums and their exhibitions have made and reflected ideas about history, science, art, identity, and culture.
HIST 5244. Historic Preservation. 4 Hours.
Introduces historic preservation, with attention to the history, the philosophy, and the practical problems of preservation.
HIST 6962. Elective. 1-4 Hours.
HIST 6964. Co-op Work Experience. 0 Hours.
Provides eligible students with an opportunity for work experience. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 7219. Topics in Cultural History. 4 Hours.
Offers special topics in cultural history. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 7221. Topics in World History. 4 Hours.
Offers readings on selected themes and issues in world history. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 7228. Atlantic Connections. 4 Hours.
Explores the interactions of Europe, the Americas, and Africa from the fifteenth through the seventeenth centuries. With background on societies in each region, the course proceeds through study of the developing concepts and practices of power, race, and gender as these emerged out of the initial encounters and early colonization, and as they led to reshaping of life in each region.
HIST 7238. Colonialism in Contemporary Africa. 4 Hours.
Introduces the various sources, methodologies, and theories employed by Africanist scholars. Traces the development of African studies and of key frameworks within the discipline. Focuses on what kinds of sources Africanists mobilize and how this source base has changed over time; the change in issues that Africanists focus on; how Africanist scholarship fits within history overall; recommendations Africanist scholars make about “doing” history; how Africanist scholarship engages with theory and other “areas” or disciplines; and what sorts of problems theory helps Africanists address.
HIST 7240. Visual and Material Culture. 4 Hours.
Explores approaches to and issues in the history of material and visual culture from 1700 to the present. Through formal analysis of objects and images; readings in criticism, theory, and history; and site visits, considers questions of cultural and social reproduction, capitalism and consumption, materiality, intermediation, technology, spectatorship, and media specificity. Offers students an opportunity to obtain a more sophisticated understanding of the ways that visual and material culture have altered cultural, social, and perceptual customs; have more confidence interpreting such sources as historical evidence; and be able to employ such sources in the practice of public history.
HIST 7250. Topics in Public History. 4 Hours.
Offers readings, class work, and projects on selected themes and issues in public history.
HIST 7251. Topics in American History. 4 Hours.
Focuses on one or more topics in the history of the United States. May be repeated up to two times.
HIST 7253. Topics in Digital History. 4 Hours.
Offers readings, class work, and projects on selected themes and issues in digital history. May be repeated once for a total of 6 credits.
HIST 7304. Research Seminar in Gender and Society in the Modern World. 4 Hours.
Studies feminists’ claims-making; the meanings of masculinity at work and in arguments for citizenship; sexuality and rights; masculinity and femininity; and examines how gender, as a system of cultural practices and power relations, intersected with class and race to influence the meanings of citizenship, work, state policy, and sexuality. Discusses the social practices and political consequences of those meanings. Considers topics such as gender and the “democratic” European revolutions of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; the ways in which gender shaped the meanings of work, skill, and the body; the importance of race in European war; and the emergence of modern welfare states. Although this course takes Europe as its point of departure, it also explores how Europeans operated as part of a transnational, if not global, economic and political system from the late eighteenth century to the 1950s.
HIST 7311. Research Seminar in Urban History. 4 Hours.
Examines the history of the modern city, with a focus on America and on Boston, and discusses local history sources and their analysis.
HIST 7312. Research Seminar in American History. 4 Hours.
Offers research and writing on selected aspects of American history.
HIST 7314. Research Seminar in World History. 4 Hours.
Gives students the opportunity to do research and write a paper that addresses historical issues and processes significant at a global scale. Discussions focus on what it means to be significant on a global scale, how to find and utilize relevant source material, and on previous scholarship relevant in helping shape questions and issues in our own work. Students also read and critique one another’s work. May be repeated up to four times.
HIST 7320. Research Seminar in Cultural History of the United States. 4 Hours.
Requires students to conduct research and write an original paper that addresses historical issues in the cultural history—in particular the material culture—of North America.
HIST 7322. Seminar: 1968 in Global Perspective. 4 Hours.
Examines the significance of 1968, when a worldwide wave of largely student-driven unrest signaled that “something happened” during that year. From London to Tokyo, from Chicago to Prague, from Mexico City to Paris, the young generation of the late sixties challenged the old order. But why? Engages students with the growing interdisciplinary theoretical literature on international protest movements, before going on to examine a number of national “1968s.” Uses primary and secondary sources to seek to understand what these events meant locally, how they were connected globally, and to what extent they can fit into a larger pattern of a world event known as “1968.” Requires a significant research paper dealing with one of these or another question determined in consultation with the instructor.
HIST 7323. Seminar: Modern Colonialism. 4 Hours.
Focuses on modern colonialism from the seventeenth to the mid-twentieth century, concentrating primarily on European colonialism. Students have an opportunity in this research seminar to investigate many aspects of the colonial project, such as the techniques and practices of empire, the production of knowledge, orientalism and othering, the construction of race and gender, environmental impacts, the growth of nationalism and other forms of resistance, and decolonization. Students are expected to use the methodological and theoretical approaches explored in the course to produce an independent research paper based on primary sources.
HIST 7370. Texts, Maps, and Networks: Readings and Methods for Digital History. 4 Hours.
Introduces the methods and practice of history in a digital age. Offers students an opportunity to see the wide variety of work being done computationally by historians and other humanists today and to obtain the background to be creative producers of new work and critical consumers of existing projects. The rise of computing technology and the Internet has the potential to reshape all parts of historical practice, from curation to research to dissemination. Examines the historian’s craft in three primary domains: the creation of digital sources, the algorithmic transformations that computers can enact on cultural materials like texts, and the new ecologies of publishing and scholarly communication made possible by new media.
HIST 7550. Professionalization and Pedagogy for Historians. 1 Hour.
Offers students an opportunity to attend lectures and workshops organized by faculty members on the topics of professionalization and pedagogy. Topics covered include publishing, conference presentation, CV preparation, grant application, archival research, undergraduate course design, lecture preparation, grading, and discussion leading. May be repeated up to two times.
HIST 7701. Advanced Research Seminar in World History. 4 Hours.
Entails research and preparation of a world history paper intended to be part of a larger dissertation. Includes intensive historiographical reading related to the research topic.
HIST 7962. Elective. 1-4 Hours.
HIST 7976. Directed Study. 1-4 Hours.
Offers independent work under the direction of members of the department on chosen topics. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 8409. Practicum in Teaching. 1 Hour.
Offers students the opportunity to teach individual college-level courses within the Department of History under the general supervision of a senior faculty member. Open to doctoral students.
HIST 8410. Fieldwork in History 1. 2 Hours.
Offers students the opportunity to get practical experience in historical agencies including historical societies, archives, museums, exhibits, restorations, preservation projects, and the like. Requires students to work in the agency ten hours a week for one semester under the direction of an agency supervisor and departmental adviser.
HIST 8411. Fieldwork in History 2. 4 Hours.
Gives students a second opportunity to acquire practical experience in an historical agency. Requires ten hours a week for one semester under the direction of an agency supervisor and a departmental adviser.
HIST 8960. Exam Preparation—Doctoral. 0 Hours.
Intended to show full-time status during the semester of the PhD qualifying exam. Students are expected to carry a full load of research and/or teaching responsibilities in addition to this course.
HIST 8982. Readings. 1-4 Hours.
Offers selected readings under the supervision of a faculty member. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 8984. Research. 1-4 Hours.
Offers an opportunity to conduct research under faculty supervision. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 8986. Research. 0 Hours.
Offers an opportunity to conduct full-time research under faculty supervision. May be repeated without limit.
HIST 9990. Dissertation. 0 Hours.
Offers dissertation supervision by members of the department. May be repeated once.
HIST 9996. Dissertation Continuation. 0 Hours.
Offers dissertation supervision by members of the department. May be repeated without limit.