History

Departmental Office: 413 Fayerweather; 212-854-4646
http://www.history.columbia.edu

Director of Undergraduate Studies: Prof. Caterina Pizzigoni, 321 Fayerweather; cp2313@columbia.edu

Undergraduate Administrator: Sia Mensah; sjm2206@columbia.edu

The history curriculum covers most areas of the world and most periods of history. It encourages students to develop historical understanding in the widest sense of the word: a thorough empirical grasp along with the kind of analytical skills that come with a genuinely historical sensibility. This is done through two types of courses: lectures and seminars. Lectures range from broad surveys of the history of a place or period to more thematically oriented courses. Seminars offer students the opportunity to work more closely with historical sources in smaller groups and to do more sophisticated written work. Because history courses usually have no prerequisites, there are no preordained sequences to follow. It is advisable, however, that students take a relevant lecture course in preparation for a seminar. Majors wishing to follow a more intensive program are advised to enroll in a historiography course and to undertake a senior thesis project. Historically, majors have pursued careers in a very wide range of areas including medicine, law, mass media, Wall Street, and academia.

Advanced Placement

Students may receive 3 credits toward the overall degree requirements for a score of 5 on the AP European History exam or the AP United States History exam. No points count toward or fulfill any requirements of the history major or concentration.

Advising

During their junior and senior years, majors and concentrators are advised by the faculty members of the Undergraduate Education Committee (UNDED). UNDED advisers also review and sign Plan of Study (POS) forms for majors and concentrators at least once per year. POS forms track students’ progress toward completing all major and concentration requirements. New history majors and concentrators may see any member of UNDED. For the most up-to-date information on UNDED members, please see the undergraduate advising page of the departmental website.

Majors and concentrators can also receive pure academic interest advising (non-requirement advising) from any faculty member and affiliated faculty member of the department.

First-years and sophomores considering a history major or concentration can seek advising from UNDED or any other faculty member.

For questions about requirements, courses, or the general program, majors and concentrators can also contact the undergraduate administrator.

Departmental Honors

To be eligible for departmental honors, the student must have a GPA of at least 3.6 in courses for the major, an ambitious curriculum, and an outstanding senior thesis. Honors are awarded on the basis of a truly outstanding senior thesis. Normally no more than 10% of graduating majors receive departmental honors in a given academic year.

Course Numbering

Courses are numbered by type:
UN 1xxx - Introductory Survey Lectures 
UN 2xxx - Undergraduate Lectures 
UN 3xxx - Undergraduate Seminars 
GU 4xxx - Joint Undergraduate/Graduate Seminars 

and field (with some exceptions):
x000-x059: Ancient
x060-x099: Medieval
x100-x199: Early modern Europe
x200-x299: East Central Europe
x300-x399: Modern Western Europe
x400-x599: United States
x600-x659: Jewish
x660-x699: Latin America
x700-x759: Middle East
x760-x799: Africa
x800-x859: South Asia
x860-x899: East Asia
x900-x999: Research, historiography, and transnational

Seminars

Seminars are integral to the undergraduate major in history. In these courses, students develop research and writing skills under the close supervision of a faculty member. Enrollment is normally limited to approximately 15 students. In order to maintain the small size of the courses, admission to most seminars is by instructor's permission or application.

In conjunction with the Barnard History Department and other departments in the University (particularly East Asian Languages and Cultures), the History Department offers about 25 seminars each semester that majors may use to meet their seminar requirements. While there are sufficient seminars offered to meet the needs of majors seeking to fulfill the two-seminar requirement, given the enrollment limits, students may not always be able to enroll in a particular seminar. Students should discuss with UNDED their various options for completing the seminar requirement.

The History Department has developed an on-line application system for some seminars. The department regularly provides declared majors and concentrators with information on upcoming application periods, which typically occur midway through the preceding semester. Students majoring in other fields, or students who have not yet declared a major, must inform themselves of the application procedures and deadlines by checking the undergraduate seminar page of the departmental website.

Professors

  • Charles Armstrong
  • Volker Berghahn (emeritus)
  • Richard Billows
  • Elizabeth Blackmar
  • Casey Blake
  • Alan Brinkley
  • Christopher Brown
  • Richard Bulliet (emeritus)
  • Elisheva Carlebach
  • Mark Carnes (Barnard)
  • Zeynep Çelik
  • George Chauncey
  • John Coatsworth (Provost)
  • Matthew Connelly
  • Victoria de Grazia
  • Mamadou Diouf (Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies)
  • Catherine Evtuhov 
  • Barbara Fields
  • Eric Foner
  • Carol Gluck
  • Martha Howell
  • Robert Hymes (East Asian Language and Cultures)
  • Kenneth Jackson
  • Karl Jacoby
  • Matthew Jones
  • Ira Katznelson (Political Science)
  • Joel Kaye (Barnard)
  • Alice Kessler-Harris (emerita)
  • Rashid Khalidi
  • Dorothy Ko (Barnard)
  • Adam Kosto
  • William Leach (emeritus)
  • Gregory Mann
  • Mark Mazower
  • Robert McCaughey (Barnard)
  • Stephanie McCurry
  • Jose Moya (Barnard)
  • Mae Ngai
  • Susan Pedersen
  • Pablo Piccato
  • Rosalind Rosenberg (Barnard)
  • David Rosner (Mailman School of Public Health)
  • David Rothman (Physicians and Surgeons)
  • Simon Schama (University Professor)
  • Seth Schwartz
  • Herbert Sloan (Barnard, emeritus)
  • Pamela Smith 
  • Robert Somerville (Religion)
  • Michael Stanislawski
  • Anders Stephanson
  • Lisa Tiersten (Barnard)
  • Adam Tooze
  • Deborah Valenze (Barnard)
  • Marc Van de Mieroop
  • Richard Wortman (emeritus)
  • Madeleine Zelin (East Asian Languages and Cultures)
  •  

Associate Professors

  • Tarik Amar
  • Lisbeth Kim Brandt (East Asian Languages and Cultures)
  • Paul Chamberlin 
  • Malgorzata Mazurek
  • Gregory Pflugfelder (East Asian Languages and Cultures)
  • Caterina Pizzigoni
  • Anupama Rao (Barnard)
  • Samuel Roberts
  • Neslihan Senocak
  • Rhiannon Stephens
  • Carl Wennerlind (Barnard)
  •  

Assistant Professors

  • Manan Ahmed
  • Gergely Baics
  • Charly Coleman
  • Elizabeth Esch (Barnard)
  • Hannah Farber
  • Andrew Lipman (Barnard)
  • Gulnar Kendirbai (Visiting)
  • A. Tunç Şen
  • Gray Tuttle (East Asian Languages and Cultures)
  • Emma Winter
  •  

Lecturers in Discipline

  • Emily Jones (2017-2018)
  • Victoria Phillips (2017-2018)
  • Sophie Pitman (2017-2018)
  • Tillman Taape (2017-2018)
  • Tianna Uchacz (2017-2018)
  •  
  •  

On Leave

  • Profs. Coleman, Howell, Mazurek, Ngai, Piccato, Roberts (2017-2018)
  • Profs. de Grazia, Jones, Stephanson (Fall 2017)
  • Profs. Chauncey, Gluck, Guridy, Jackson, Khalidi, Smith (Spring 2018)

Guidelines for all History Majors and Concentrators

For detailed information about the history major or concentration, as well as the policies and procedures of the department, please refer to the History at Columbia Undergraduate Handbook, available for download on the departmental website.


Major in History

Students must complete a minimum of nine courses in the department, of which four or more must be in an area of specialization chosen by the student and approved by a member of UNDED. Students must also fulfill a breadth requirement by taking three courses outside of their specialization. Two of the courses taken in the major must be seminars (including one seminar in the chosen specialization).

The requirements of the undergraduate program encourage students to do two things:

  1. Develop a deeper knowledge of the history of a particular time and/or place. Students are required to complete a specialization by taking a number of courses in a single field of history of their own choosing. The field should be defined, in consultation with a member of UNDED, according to geographical, chronological, and/or thematic criteria. For example, a student might choose to specialize in 20th C. U.S. History, Medieval European History, Ancient Greek and Roman History, or Modern East Asian History. The specialization does not appear on the student's transcript, but provides an organizing principle for the program the student assembles in consultation with UNDED.
  2. Gain a sense of the full scope of history as a discipline by taking a broad range of courses. Students must fulfill a breadth requirement by taking courses outside their own specialization -- at least one course removed in time and two removed in space.
    1. Time: majors and concentrators must take at least one course removed in time from their specialization:
      • Students specializing in the modern period must take at least one course in the pre-modern period; students specializing in the pre-modern period must take at least one course in the modern period.

      • If the course proposed is in the same regional field as a student's specialization, special care must be taken to ensure that it is as far removed as possible; please consult with UNDED to make sure a given course counts for the chronological breadth requirement. 

    2. Space: majors must take at least two additional courses in regional fields not their own:

      • These two "removed in space" courses must also cover two different regions.
      • For example, students specializing in some part of Europe must take two courses in Africa, East or South Asia, Latin America/Caribbean, Middle East, and/or the U.S.
      • Some courses cover multiple geographic regions. If a course includes one of the regions within a student's specialization, that course cannot count towards the breadth requirement unless it is specifically approved by the Director of Undergraduate Studies. For example, if a student is specializing in 20th C. U.S. history and takes the class World War II in Global Perspective, the class is too close to the specialization and may not count as a regional breadth course.

All courses in the Barnard History Department as well as select courses in East Asian Languages and Cultures; Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies; and other departments count toward the major. Eligible inter-departmental courses may include: 

  • African Civilizations (AFCV UN1020) (when taught by Professor Gregory Mann, Professor Rhiannon Stephens, or PhD students in the Columbia University Department of History; the course does NOT count for History when taught by anyone else)
  • Primary Texts of Latin American Civilization (LACV UN1020) (when taught by Professor Pablo Piccato, Professor Caterina Pizzigoni, or PhD students in the Columbia University Department of History; the course does NOT count for History when taught by anyone else)
  • Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: China (ASCE UN1359), Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: Japan (ASCE UN1361)Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: Korea (ASCE UN1363) or other ASCE UN1xxx courses (when taught by Professors Charles Armstrong, Carol Gluck, Robert Hymes, Dorothy Ko, Eugenia Lean, Feng Li, David Lurie, Jungwon Kim, Paul Kreitman, Gregory Pflugfelder, Gray Tuttle, or Madeleine Zelin, and NOT when they are taught by anyone else)
  • Please see the Courses section on the departmental website to see which of these might count in a given semester. Any courses not listed or linked on the departmental website, however historical in approach or content, do not count toward the history major or concentration, except with explicit written approval of the UNDED chair.
  • If you suspect a History course has escaped being listed at the above link and want to confirm whether or not it counts for History students, please contact the Undergraduate Administrator.

Thematic Specializations

Suitably focused thematic and cross-regional specializations are permitted and the breadth requirements for students interested in these topics are set in consultation with a member of UNDED. Classes are offered in fields including, but not limited to:

  • Ancient history
  • Medieval history
  • Early modern European history
  • Modern European history
  • United States history
  • Latin American and Caribbean history
  • Middle Eastern history
  • East Asian history
  • South Asian history

Additionally, classes are offered in thematic and cross-regional fields which include, but are not limited to:

  • Intellectual history
  • Jewish history
  • Women's history
  • International history
  • History of science

These fields are only examples. Students should work with a member of UNDED to craft a suitably focused specialization on the theme or field that interests them.

Thesis Requirements

Majors may elect to write a senior thesis, though this is not a graduation requirement. Only senior thesis writers are eligible to be considered for departmental honors. The senior thesis option is not available to concentrators.

The yearlong HIST UN3838-HIST UN3839 Senior Thesis Seminar carries 8 points, 4 of which typically count as a seminar in the specialization. For the most up-to-date information on the field designations for history courses, please see the Courses section of the departmental website.


Concentration in History

Effective February 2018, students must complete a minimum of six courses in history. At least three of the six courses must be in an area of specialization, one far removed in time, and one on a geographic region far removed in space. There is no seminar requirement for the concentration.

Fall 2017 History Courses

HIST UN1010 The Ancient Greeks 800-146 B.C.E.. 4 points.

A review of the history of the Greek world from the beginnings of Greek archaic culture around 800 B.C., through the classical and hellenistic periods to the definitive Roman conquest in 146 B.C., with concentration on political history, but attention also to social and cultural developments.Field(s): ANC

Fall 2018: HIST UN1010
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 1010 001/70703 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
Room TBA
Richard Billows 4 0/75

AFCV UN1020 African Civilizations. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This course provides a general introduction to some of the key intellectual debates in Africa by Africans through primary sources, including scholarly works, political tracts, fiction, art, and film. Beginning with an exploration of African notions of spiritual and philosophical uniqueness and ending with contemporary debates on the meaning and historical viability of an African Renaissance, this course explores the meanings of ‘Africa' and ‘being African.' Field(s): AFR*.  NO FIRST YEAR STUDENTS PERMITTED.

Spring 2018: AFCV UN1020
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AFCV 1020 001/74646 M W 2:10pm - 4:00pm
307 Pupin Laboratories
Wendell Marsh 4 18/22
AFCV 1020 002/10621 T Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
412 Pupin Laboratories
Gregory Mann 4 14/22

LACV UN1020 Primary Texts of Latin American Civilization. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

It focuses on key texts from Latin America in their historical and intellectual context and seeks to understand their structure and the practical purposes they served using close reading and, when possible, translations.  The course seeks to establish a counterpoint to the list of canonical texts of Contemporary Civilization. The selections are not intended to be compared directly to those in CC but to raise questions about the different contexts in which ideas are used, the critical exchanges and influences (within and beyond Latin America) that shaped ideas in the region, and the long-term intellectual, political, and cultural pursuits that have defined Latin American history. The active engagement of students toward these texts is the most important aspect of class work and assignments.  NO FIRST YEAR STUDENTS PERMITTED.

Spring 2018: LACV UN1020
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
LACV 1020 001/66156 T Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Sarah Beckhart 4 16/22
LACV 1020 002/29785 M W 10:10am - 12:00pm
227 Seeley W. Mudd Building
Mariana-Cecilia Velazquez Perez 4 14/22

HIST UN2026 Roman Social History. 3 points.

Social structure, class, slavery and manumission, social mobility, life expectation, status and behavior of women, Romanization, town and country, social organizations, education and literacy, philanthropy, amusements in the Roman Empire, 70 B.C. - 250 A.D. 

HIST UN2133 Britain and the World Since World War II. 4 points.

This course is a history of Britain and its relationship with the wider world since World War II. We will be discussing the chaotic and violent end of Britain’s empire, the transformation of international politics through institutions such as the UN and Britain’s fraught relationship with Europe. Along the way we will cover the rise and fall of Britain’s welfare state, the transformation of its cities, the new communities and political allegiances formed by mass migration and the new ideas about gender, race, sexuality and youth culture that were formed during these decades. We will also study some of the music, film, literature and architecture produced during this turbulent period. 

HIST UN2215 MODERN RUSSIAN HISTORY (SINCE 1800). 4 points.

An introductory survey of the history of Russia, the Russian Empire, and the Soviet Union over the last two centuries. Russia’s role on the European continent, intellectual movements, unfree labor and emancipation, economic growth and social change, and finally the great revolutions of 1905 and 1917 define the “long nineteenth century.” The second half of the course turns to the tumultuous twentieth century: cultural experiments of the 1920s, Stalinism, World War II, and the new society of the Khrushchev and Brezhnev years. Finally, a look at very recent history since the East European revolutions of 1989-91. This is primarily a course on the domestic history of Russia and the USSR, but with some attention to foreign policy and Russia’s role in the world.

HIST UN2447 America, 1918-1945: Prosperity, Depression, and War. 4 points.

This course examines one of the most turbulent periods in modern American history: an era that began with the Great War, saw the nation in both its greatest economic boom and its worst economic collapse, led to another, even more catastrophic world war, and ended with the United States as the most powerful nation in the world. This course will provide students an understanding of how Americans navigated these major events and shaped the following developments that created the American experience as we might know it: the rise of the modern federal state in the New Deal; the transformation of work and business from the Roaring Twenties to the Great Depression and beyond; the crisis of democracy at home and abroad; the rise of the civil rights movement; and the foreign policy struggle between isolationism and internationalism. 

HIST UN2488 Warfare in the Modern World. 4 points.

This course is a survey of the transformation of warfare between the American Civil War and 1945. Emphasis will be placed on military strategy, weaponry, and leadership.

HIST UN2490 US FOREIGN RELATIONS 1775-1920. 4 points.

Between 1775 and 1920 the US grew from a disparate set of colonies nestled along the eastern seaboard of North America to a sprawling empire that stretched across the continent and projected its influence into the wider world. In this course we will examine this transformation and evaluate the major trends in US foreign relations that drove it. We will comparatively analyze the competing visions for expansion advocated by various groups inside the US and the impact of expansion on peoples outside the growing nation. We will explore the domestic, economic, intellectual, and political origins of expansionism, survey the methods used to extend the nation's borders and influence, and evaluate the impact of these changes on the nation's values, institutions and history. Lectures and readings will introduce a variety of historical controversies and conflicting interpretations, which students will be expected to analyze critically in writing and discussions.

HIST UN2533 US Lesbian and Gay History. 4 points.

This course explores the social, cultural, and political history of lesbians, gay men, and other socially constituted sexual and gender minorities, primarily in the twentieth century.  Since the production and regulation of queer life has always been intimately linked to the production and policing of “normal” sexuality and gender, we will also pay attention to the shifting boundaries of normative sexuality, especially heterosexuality, as well as other developments in American history that shaped gay life, such as the Second World War, Cold War, urbanization, and the minority rights revolution.  Themes include the emergence of homosexuality and heterosexuality as categories of experience and identity; the changing relationship between homosexuality and transgenderism; the development of diverse lesbian and gay subcultures and their representation in popular culture; the sources of antigay hostility; religion and sexual science; generational change and everyday life; AIDS; and gay, antigay, feminist, and queer movements.      

HIST UN2580 THE HISTORY OF UNITED STATES RELATIONS WITH EAST ASIA. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This lecture course examines the history of the relationship between the United States and the countries of East Asia in the 19th and 20th centuries. The first half of the course will examine the factors drove the United States to acquire territorial possessions in Asia, to vie for a seat at the imperial table at China’s expense, and to eventual confrontation with Japan over mastery in the Pacific from the turn of the century leading to the Second World War. The second half of the course will explore the impact of U.S. policy toward East Asia during the Cold War when Washington’s policy of containment, which included nation-building, development schemes, and waging war, came up against East Asia’s struggles for decolonization, revolution, and modernization.  Not only will this course focus on state-to-state relations, it will also address a multitude of Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese perspectives on the United States and American culture through translated text, oral history, fiction, and memoir.


Participation in weekly discussion sections, which will begin no later than the third week of classes, is mandatory. 

Fall 2018: HIST UN2580
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2580 001/13029 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Lien-Hang Nguyen 4 0/60

HIST UN2618 The Modern Caribbean. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This lecture course examines the social, cultural, and political history of the islands of the Caribbean Sea and the coastal regions of Central and South America that collectively form the Caribbean region, from Amerindian settlement, through the era of European imperialism and African enslavement, to the period of socialist revolution and independence. The course will examine historical trajectories of colonialism, slavery, and labor regimes; post-emancipation experiences and migration; radical insurgencies and anti-colonial movements; and intersections of race, culture, and neocolonialism. It will also investigate the production of national, creole, and transborder indentities. Formerly listed as "The Caribbean in the 19th and 20th centuries". Field(s): LAC 

Fall 2018: HIST UN2618
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2618 001/69081 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
Room TBA
Natasha Lightfoot 4 0/75

HIST UN2660 Latin American Civilization I. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Latin American economy, society, and culture from pre-Columbian times to 1810. Global Core Approved.

Fall 2018: HIST UN2660
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2660 001/14386 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
Room TBA
Caterina Pizzigoni 4 0/120

HIST UN2719 History of the Modern Middle East. 4 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Historical Studies (HIS)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Cultures in Comparison (CUL)., CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Graduate students must register for HIST G6998 version of this course.

This course will cover the history of the Middle East from the 18th century until the present, examining the region ranging from Morocco to Iran and including the Ottoman Empire. It will focus on transformations in the states of the region, external intervention, and the emergence of modern nation-states, as well as aspects of social, economic, cultural and intellectual history of the region. Field(s): ME

Fall 2018: HIST UN2719
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2719 001/60061 T Th 8:40am - 9:55am
Room TBA
Rashid Khalidi 4 0/200

HSME UN2810 History of South Asia I: al-Hind to Hindustan. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Graduate students must register for HIST G6998 version of this course.

This survey lecture course will provide students with a broad overview of the history of South Asia as a region - focusing on key political, cultural and social developments over more than two millennia. The readings include both primary sources (in translation) and secondary works. Our key concerns will be the political, cultural and theological encounters of varied communities, the growth of cities and urban spaces, networks of trade and migrations and the development of both local and cosmopolitan cultures across Southern Asia. The survey will begin with early dynasties of the classical period and then turn to the subsequent formation of various Perso-Turkic polities, including the development and growth of hybrid political cultures such as those of Vijayanagar and the Mughals. The course also touches on Indic spiritual and literary traditions such as Sufi and Bhakti movements. Near the end of our course, we will look forward towards the establishment of European trading companies and accompanying colonial powers.

Fall 2018: HSME UN2810
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSME 2810 001/10462 M W 8:40am - 9:55am
Room TBA
Manan Ahmed 4 0/75

HIST UN2948 Capitalism in Crisis: A Global History of the Great Recession. 4 points.

The Financial Crisis that struck the United States and Europe in 2007 is the most severe in history. We are still living with its fall out. This course will explore the history of the crisis and the political reaction to it. We will explore how the crisis radiated out from the Atlantic economy where it originated to the rest of the world economy.

HIST UN3061 ISLAM AND EUROPE IN THE MIDDLE AGES. 4 points.

This course explores the encounter between Europe, broadly conceived, and the Islamic world in the period from the seventh to the thirteenth centuries.  While the Latin Christian military expeditions that began in the late eleventh century known as the Crusades are part of this story, they are not the focus.  The course stresses instead the range of diplomatic, commercial, intellectual, artistic, religious, and military interactions established well before the Crusades across a wide geographical expanse, with focal points in Iberia and Southern Italy.  Substantial readings in primary sources in translation are supplemented with recent scholarship.  [Students will be assigned on average 150-200 pages of reading per week, depending on the difficulty of the primary sources; we will read primary sources every week.]

HIST UN3111 The Environmental History of the Ancient Mediterranean, 800 BC to 700 AD. 4 points.

The study of the ancient Mediterranean environment – the material world in which the Greeks and Romans and their neighbors lived – has been making rapid strides in recent years.  The aim of this course is to offer an overview of the impact of a flourishing pre-modern society on its natural environment, and of the ways in which people reacted to environmental challenges. We shall talk about natural resources – water, wood, land, minerals -- and about the sea and the mountains, also about diet, health and pollution, and of course about the climate. We will consider the profound problems of combining historical and scientific methods in the study of a past environment. 

HIST UN3233 From Liberalism to Illiberalism? Economic Ideas and Institutions in Central and Eastern Eu. 4 points.

In Central and Eastern Europe liberalism was just one of the major streams of thought in the 19th century, and illiberalism is only one of the doctrines yearning for dominance today. What happened between the two cannot be squeezed into a –  Spenglerian – story of the “decline of the East” because liberal ideas had a triumphant comeback in the Western half of the region in the middle of the 20th century and in its Eastern half before and after 1989. Following the rise of liberal economic thought and practice in the region throughout the 19th century, Central and Eastern Europe chose blatantly anti-liberal (totalitarian) roads of development, national socialism and/or communism for many decades. After World War II, countries that found themselves on the Western side of the Iron Curtain managed to leave these roads, and develop a variety of models relying on the doctrine of Soziale Marktwirtschaft. When in 1989, countries on its Eastern side followed suit, they started flirting with more radical sorts of liberalism than most of their Western neighbors, to return to the concept of social market economy, or to slide back to soft varieties of illiberalism recently.


The course will present some of the leading economic ideas and institutions in the context of cultural encounters between the East and the West. A special emphasis will be laid on frictions between the dominant discourses of the two parties. In Central and Eastern Europe both liberalism and socialism had their powerful national(ist) versions, socialism was offset by communism, conservativism fraternized with state collectivism, and the takeover of Western concepts was often simulated rather than real.

HIST UN3326 History of Ireland, 1700-2000. 4 points.

This seminar provides an introduction to key debates and historical writing in Irish history from 1700.  Topics include:  the character of Ascendancy Ireland; the 1798 rising and the Act of Union; the causes and consequences of the famine; emigration and Fenianism; the Home Rule movement; the Gaelic revival; the Easter Rising and the civil war; politics and culture in the Free State; the Northern Ireland problem; Ireland, the European Union, and the birth of the “celtic tiger”.

HIST UN3335 20th Century New York City History. 4 points.

This course explores critical areas of New York's economic development in the 20th century, with a view to understanding the rise, fall and resurgence of this world capital. Discussions also focus on the social and political significance of these shifts. Assignments include primary sources, secondary readings, film viewings, trips, and archival research. Students use original sources as part of their investigation of New York City industries for a 20-page research paper. An annotated bibliography is also required. Students are asked to give a weekly update on research progress, and share information regarding useful archives and websites.

Fall 2018: HIST UN3335
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3335 001/18613 M 6:10pm - 8:00pm
Room TBA
Kenneth Jackson 4 0/20

HIST UN3357 History of the Self. 4 points.

This course is one of a series on the history of the modern self. The works of Montaigne, Pascal, Rousseau, Tocqueville, or another Enlightenment thinker are critically examined in a seminar setting.


Fall 2017 the topic is Tocqueville.

HIST UN3401 Does American Poverty Have a History?. 4 points.

In most societies, some are rich and many more are poor.  So it has been through most recorded history – and so it remains in the United States, where an estimated 43 million Americans are living in poverty as you read this.  The project of our seminar will be to construct a history of America’s poor as vivid and precise as the histories that have long been written of the wealthy and the powerful.  We will look at the experiences of being poor and at changes in the processes of falling into and climbing out of poverty.  We will look at changes in the population of the poor, changes in the economic organization of cities and the countryside, and changes in the general distribution of wealth.  We will look at ideas of poverty and their impact on history.  And we will look, finally, at changes in the treatment of the poor: from charity to modern welfare policies.  At semester’s end, students will be able to interrogate the enduring presence of American poverty in light of its history and transformations.

HIST UN3410 Food and Inequality in the Twentieth-Century U.S.. 4 points.

This seminar examines the social, cultural, and political history of inequality in the food system of the twentieth- century United States, from field to table. We trace the rise and expansion of industrial farming and food processing, and the commercialization of food preparation, looking at the ways racism, gender, class, immigration, empire, and globalization have shaped the political economy of American food. This course also investigates the intersection of agriculture, migration, and U.S. capitalism in the food system, and asks why modern food work has been marked by precarious working and living conditions. It provides a detailed knowledge of U.S. labor, immigration, agricultural, and political history in the twentieth century, with a focus on gender and racial disparity. Upon completion of the course, students will have a complex understanding of the history of the U.S. food system, which will allow them to engage broadly with different areas of American history, including the emergent history of capitalism, labor and immigration history, and environmental history. The course will also enable critical engagement with contemporary food movement issues, food planning, farm policy, and activist initiatives against the inequalities that continue to haunt our fields, packinghouses, and kitchens. The semester will culminate in a final paper that concentrates on one of the course themes and develops historical writing skills across the course of the semester. A strong base of knowledge about the history of the U.S. in the twentieth century is useful, but not prerequisite for the course.

HIST UN3490 The Global Cold War. 4 points.

The superpower competition between the US and the USSR dominated international affairs during the second half of the twentieth century. Though this Cold War was born from ideological differences and initially focused on Europe, it soon became entangled with the concurrent global process of decolonization. In this way, the US-Soviet rivalry shaped events on every continent. This course will examine the intersection of the superpower competition and the emergence of the postcolonial world. Through course readings and class discussion, students will examine the global dimensions of the Cold war. Each student will prepare a research paper on a topic to be chosen in consultation with the instructor.

HIST UN3500 John Jay & the American Revolution. 4 points.

This seminar explores themes from the American Revolution that pertain to the career of John Jay (King’s College class of 1764 and first Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court). Themes will include: law and diplomacy, the American Enlightenment, slavery and abolition, women in the Revolution, Spain and the American West, the Constitution and the Supreme Court, early-national politics, and the “Jay Treaty” of 1795. Each student will write a research paper on a related topic over the course of the semester.

HIST UN3577 Culture and Politics in the Progressive Era, 1890-1945. 4 points.

This class begins during the fabled "Gilded Age," when the nation's capitalist expansion created the world's largest economy but splintered Americans' ideals. From the fin-de-siècle through the cataclysms of World War II, we will explore how Americans defined, contested, and performed different meanings of American civilization through social reform movements, artistic expressions, and the everyday habits and customs of individuals and groups. The class will pay particular attention to how gender, race, and location--regional, international, and along the class ladder--shaped perspectives about what constituted American civilization and the national discourse about what it should become. Field(s): US

HIST UN3645 Spinoza to Sabbatai: Jews in Early Modern Europe. 4 points.

A seminar on the historical, political, and cultural developments in the Jewish communities of early-modern Western Europe (1492-1789) with particular emphasis on the transition from medieval to modern patterns. We will study the resettlement of Jews in Western Europe, Jews in the Reformation-era German lands, Italian Jews during the late Renaissance, the rise of Kabbalah, and the beginnings of the quest for civil Emancipation. Field(s): JWS/EME

HIST UN3766 African Futures. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

The premise of the course is that Africa's collective past - that which has emerged since the ending of the Atlantic slave trade - might usefully be thought of as a sequence of futures that were imperfectly realized.  Those "futures past" represent once-fixed points on the temporal horizon, points toward which African political leaders and intellectuals sought to move, or towards which they were compelled by the external actors who have historically played an outsized role in the continent's affairs.

HIST UN3807 Walking In and Out of the Archive. 4 points.

The seminar seeks to engage with a set of methodological concerns about the practices and probabilities of archives and history writing. It does so via close readings of key historical texts which engage and rearrange the documentary furniture of the archives, from both within and without. The concerns can be broadly articulated as: How statist is the mainstream archives, and how have historians attempted to mine and undermine it? With what apertures and techniques and disciplinary practices to capture the lives and deaths of those who produce goods and services, not documents? What is meant by ‘Historical Fieldwork’, and what are some of the ways in which historians have practiced it, whether writing about well-archived events, or the longue duree of a single village. What transpires when oral tales are written up from within the same cultural milieu as literary stories? What are the peculiarities of Oral History? And what have some of the best Oral Historians been able to accomplish? These questions will guide us through a set of important historiographic works, writings on archives, community histories. The students will develop a close appreciation of the challenges of doing and thinking historically from the margins and listening to the small voices in history.

HIST UN3838 Senior Thesis Seminar. 4 points.

A year-long course for outstanding senior majors who want to conduct research in primary sources on a topic of their choice in any aspect of history, and to write a senior thesis possibly leading toward departmental honors. 

Fall 2018: HIST UN3838
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3838 001/72180 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
Room TBA
Natasha Lightfoot 4 0/12
HIST 3838 002/72644 T 10:10am - 12:00pm
Room TBA
Charly Coleman 4 0/12
HIST 3838 003/14252 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
Room TBA
Elizabeth Blackmar 4 0/12
HIST 3838 004/73747 Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
Room TBA
Paul Chamberlin 4 0/12

HIST UN3911 Medicine and Western Civilization. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors, but other majors are welcome.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

This seminar seeks to analyze the ways by which medicine and culture combine to shape our values and traditions. To this end, it will examine notable literary, medical, and social texts from classical antiquity to the present.

Fall 2018: HIST UN3911
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3911 001/73694 M 4:10pm - 6:00pm
Room TBA
David Rothman 4 0/20

HIST UN3930 The Eastern Mediterranean in the Late Bronze Age. 4 points.

This course presents a comparative study of the histories of Egypt, the Near East, Anatolia and the Aegean world in the period from c. 1500-1100 BC, when several of the states provide a rich set of textual and archaeological data. It will focus on the region as a system with numerous participants whose histories will be studied in an international context. The course is a seminar: students are asked to investigate a topic (e.g., diplomacy, kingship, aspects of the economy, etc.) in several of the states involved and present their research in class and as a paper.

HIST UN3938 Americans and the Natural World, 1800 to the Present. 4 points.

Prerequisites: seminar application required. SEE UNDERGRADUATE SEMINAR SECTION OF THE HISTORY DEPARTMENT'S WEBSITE.

This seminar deals with how Americans have treated and understood the natural world, connected or failed to connect to it, since 1800. It focuses on changing context over time, from the agrarian period to industrialization, followed by the rise of the suburban and hyper-technological landscape. We will trace the shift from natural history to evolutionary biology, give special attention to the American interest in entomology, ornithology, and botany, examine the quest to save pristine spaces, and read from the works of Buffon, Humboldt, Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, Darwin, Aldo Leopold, Nabokov, among others. Perspectives on naming, classifying, ordering, and most especially, collecting, will come under scrutiny.  Throughout the semester we will assess the strengths and weaknesses of the environmentalist movement, confront those who thought they could defy nature, transcend it, and even live without it. Field(s): US

HIST GU4217 Women as Cold War Weapons . 4 points.

Cold War ideological campaigns for the “hearts and minds” abutted “hot war” confrontations between 1945 and 1991, and women engaged with both. This course has three purposes: (i) to examine the role of women in the United States as a reflection and enactment of Cold War politics; (ii) to provide an understanding of cultural forces in building ideas in foreign markets; (iii) to reframe the understanding of power as a strategy of United States Cold War battles. To this end, the class will open with a history and examination of women and the traditional narratives of the nation at “wars,” and then continue to explore the political power of women, cultural diplomacy, military operations, and conclude with two case studies. This seminar examines the history of government and private sector mechanisms used to export national ideals by and about women in order to enact American foreign policy agendas in the Cold War. To build their knowledge, students will be asked to parse primary materials in the context of secondary readings. They will do class presentations and present at a conference, and will have the opportunity to discuss their interests with leading scholars of the Cold War. The requirements include significant weekly readings, postings, attendance at discussions, a class presentation, and participation in the class conference at the conclusion of the semester.

HIST GU4331 Modern Germany, 1900-2000. 4 points.

The development of Germany in the last century has influenced the history of Europe and, indeed, of the world in major and dramatic ways. Most historians agree that the country and its leaders played a crucial role in the outbreak of two world wars which cost some 80 million lives. Germany experienced a revolution in 1918, hyperinflation in 1923, the Great Depression after 1929, and the Nazi dictatorship in 1933. Between 1933 and 1945 there followed the brutal military conquest of most of Continental Europe and, finally, the Holocaust. After 1945, Germany was divided into two halves in which there emerged a communist dictatorship and a Western-style parliamentary-democratic system, respectively. The division of the country ended in 1989 with the collapse of the Honecker regime and the reunification of East and West Germany. No doubt, Germany’s history is confused and confusing and has therefore generated plenty of debate among historians. This course offers a comprehensive analysis of the country’s development in the 20th century. It is not just concerned with political events and military campaigns, but will also examine in considerable detail German society and its changing structures, relations between women and men, trends in both high and popular culture, and the ups and downs of an industrial economy in its global setting. The weekly seminars are designed to introduce you to the country’s conflicted history and the controversies it unleashed in international scholarship. Both M.A. students and advanced undergraduates are welcome.

HIST GU4904 WRITING LIVES: A SURVEY OF HISTORICAL APPROACHES AND TECHNIQUES. 4 points.

Ranging from ancient chronicles and saints’ lives to the emergence of modern subjectivity, the rise of the diary, the novel and the bureaucratic questionnaire, this course explores how historians across the ages have written about people’s lives. It asks what has happened to the notion of a life as a moral example, the changing value of ‘experience’ and the ‘ordinary person’, and charts how democracy altered the sense of what was worth recording and commemorating. It draws for its sources on a very wide range of cultures and epochs and concludes by asking the student to conduct their own life history research.

Spring 2018 History Courses

HIST UN1002 Ancient History of Mesopotamia and Asia Minor. 4 points.

A survey of the political and cultural history of Mesopotamia, Anatolia, and Iran from prehistory to the disappearance of the cuneiform documentation, with special emphasis on Mesopotamia. Groups(s): A

Spring 2018: HIST UN1002
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 1002 001/23188 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
310 Fayerweather
Marc Van De Mieroop 4 24/60

HIST UN1020 The Romans, 754 BC to 565 AD. 4 points.

Rome and its empire, from the beginning to late antiquity. Field(s): ANC

Spring 2018: HIST UN1020
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 1020 001/77198 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
329 Pupin Laboratories
David Ratzan 4 52/95

HIST UN2305 War in Germany 1618-2018. 4 points.

For much of modern history Germany was Europe’s battlefield. Its soldiers wrote themselves into the annals of military history. But it was also a place where war was discussed, conceptualized and criticized with unparalleled vigor. Nowhere did the extreme violence of the seventeenth century and the early twentieth century leave a deeper mark than on Germany. Today, as we enter the twenty-first century, Germany is the nation that has perhaps come closest to drawing a final, concluding line under its military history. This course will chart the rise and fall of modern militarism in Germany. For those interested in military history per se, this course will not hold back from discussing battles, soldiers and weapons. But it will also offer an introduction to German history more generally. And through the German example we will address questions in political philosophy that haunted modern European history and continue to haunt America today. How is state violence justified? How can it be regulated and controlled? What is its future?

Spring 2018: HIST UN2305
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2305 001/93148 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
209 Havemeyer Hall
Adam Tooze 4 78/90

HIST UN2330 Europe: from the Nazi New Order to the European Union. 4 points.

The history of Europe in the wider world from the Allies' victorious war against the Nazi New Order to the triumph of the European Union after the collapse of Soviet Empire. Lectures bring Eastern and Western Europe into one focus, to study the impact of the Cold War, the exit from colonial empire, Europe's "Economic Miracle, the sexual revolution, Europe's slowdown after the 1970s Oil Shock, Euro-Reaganism, and the impact of globalization from the 1990s to the 2008 crisis.  

Spring 2018: HIST UN2330
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2330 001/18103 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
313 Fayerweather
Victoria De Grazia 4 23/60

HIST UN2411 The Rise of American Capitalism. 4 points.

Examines the social conflicts that accompanied the transformation of the United States from an agrarian republic and slave society to one of the most powerful industrial nations in the world. Particular attention will be paid to the building of new social and economic institutions and to cultural and visual representations of the nation and its people. Readings include major secondary works and primary documents. Formerly: American Society in the age of Capital, 1819-1897.

Spring 2018: HIST UN2411
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2411 001/29327 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
313 Fayerweather
Elizabeth Blackmar 4 44/75

HIST UN2415 Immigrant New York. 4 points.

This seminar explores the intersection of immigration, race, and politics in New York City, both from the perspective of history and in relation to contemporary realities. In this course we will discuss the ways in which immigration has reshaped the cultural, economic, and political life of New York City both in the past as well as the present. Readings will focus on the divergent groups who have settled in New York City, paying close attention to issues of gender, class, race, the role of labor markets, the law, and urban development.

Spring 2018: HIST UN2415
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2415 001/22892 M W 2:40pm - 3:55pm
703 Hamilton Hall
Rebecca Kobrin 4 36/50

HIST UN2432 The United States In the Era of Civil War and Reconstruction. 4 points.

The coming of the Civil War and its impact on the organization of American society afterwards. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN2432
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2432 001/76198 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
313 Fayerweather
Stephanie McCurry 4 52/60
Fall 2018: HIST UN2432
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2432 001/14200 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
Room TBA
Stephanie McCurry 4 0/105

HIST UN2491 U.S. Foreign Relations, 1890-1990. 4 points.

The general object of this course is to illuminate how histories of what we think of as ‘international’ are structured by means of key concepts, foundational concepts which form (i) semantic fields constitutive of politics and policy as well as (ii) grounds for periodization. The seminar this year will be devoted, specifically, to a series of 'basic documents' of the early cold war, primary sources, chiefly U.S., which will be examined by means of close readings, ultimately with a view to problematize the conventional period known indeed as ’the cold war.' The design is thus unusual in that there will be only a single book, Melvyn Leffler’s Preponderance of Power, which provides a survey of the Truman Administration and so will be a reference text for the US side, at least. The remaining materials will be available in Courseworks. (This course may not be taken concurrently with UN 2492 US Foreign Relations 1890-1990.)

Spring 2018: HIST UN2491
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2491 001/18383 M W 6:10pm - 7:25pm
517 Hamilton Hall
Anders Stephanson 4 30/70

HIST UN2501 The Early American Republic: How the Rebels Became the Empire . 4 points.

The American Revolution is often imagined as a rebellion against a mighty empire that gave rise to a self-governing republic. But during the first decades of American independence, some of the new republic’s political leaders set about building an empire of their own. This introductory-level course lays out a narrative of the early American republic in which one Anglo-American empire was broken and another arose to take its place. The course also asks: at what cost came this new American empire, and what alternatives—practical, radical, or utopian—were passed over in the course of its creation? 

Spring 2018: HIST UN2501
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2501 001/60280 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
603 Hamilton Hall
Hannah Farber 4 19/54

HIST UN2540 History of the South. 4 points.

A survey of the history of the American South from the colonial era to the present day, with two purposes: first, to afford students an understanding of the special historical characteristics of the South and of southerners; and second, to explore what the experience of the South may teach about America as a nation. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN2540
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2540 001/60626 T Th 11:40am - 12:55pm
313 Fayerweather
Barbara Fields 4 30/75

HIST UN2566 History of American Popular Culture Through Music. 4 points.

This course examines the history of American popular culture through music and radio, beginning in the 1830s with minstrelsy, the first distinctively "American" popular culture, and ending in the 1960s with Motown.  The course acquaints students with key concepts that aim to "read" cultural production and to explore what's unique about culture primarily experienced through the ears.  It examines debates over culture's qualifiers, from popular to mass, high to low. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN2566
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2566 001/63885 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
303 Hamilton Hall
Hilary-Anne Hallett 4 17/35

HIST UN2577 U.S.-MIDDLE EAST RELATIONS. 4 points.

The United States has had a long and varied history of encounters with the Middle East. From early visions of the Holy Land, to Cold War geopolitics, to the so-called War on Terror, Americans have sought to shape and been shaped by the region. This course will survey the history of U.S.-Middle East from the nineteenth century to the present.

Spring 2018: HIST UN2577
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2577 001/60779 T Th 1:10pm - 2:25pm
203 Mathematics Building
Paul Chamberlin 4 82/105

HIST UN2689 COLONIAL CITIES OF THE AMERICAS, c. 1500-1800. 4 points.

This course examines the history of cities in the Americas in the colonial era, c. 1500-1800, organized around three large themes. First, we study the precolonial origins of American urban systems, focusing especially on Mesoamerica and the Andes, and exploring questions of urban continuity, disruption and change, and the forms of indigenous cities. Second, we study various patterns of city foundations and city types across the Americas, examining Spanish, Portuguese, British, Dutch and French colonial urban systems. Third, we focus on the cities more closely by looking at key issues such as urban form, built environment, social structure. Specific themes include a critical analysis of the Spanish colonial grid, the baroque city, and 18th-century urban reforms, as well as race and class, urban slavery, and urban disease environments. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN2689
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 2689 001/80896 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
203 Diana Center
Caterina Pizzigoni, Gergely Baics 4 32/35

HIST UN3007 Development of the Greek City-State. 4 points.

This course will trace the development of the polis or city-state as the dominant socio-political unit in ancient Greece, looking at how and why this development took place and what effect it had on Greek society and culture.

Spring 2018: HIST UN3007
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3007 001/10006 Th 10:10am - 12:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Richard Billows 4 14/19

HIST UN3109 Behaving and Misbehaving: The Body in Early Modern Europe. 4 points.

This course uses the human body to explore life and death, society and politics, belief and practice in early modern Europe (c.1500-1700). Each week we will engage with a new dimension of early modern culture, and study diverse ways of looking at the body to reveal people’s everyday experiences. We will talk about different ways in which people understood their bodies. We will read about what early moderns put into, and what came out of, their bodies. We will explore how bodies were supposed to behave, and study examples of bodies behaving badly. We will look at visual sources to consider the meanings and functions of images of the body. We will use primary sources to listen to the voices of the bodies we are studying. As we go through the readings, we will also pay special attention to the challenges posed by surviving sources, and discuss how different historians address them. The course will culminate in a final paper built on original student research with primary sources.

Spring 2018: HIST UN3109
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3109 001/86147 W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Heidi Hausse 4 9/15

HIST UN3180 Conversion in Historical Perspective. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

Boundary crossers have always challenged the way societies imagined themselves. This course explores the political, religious, economic, and social dynamics of religious conversion. The course will focus on Western (Christian and Jewish) models in the medieval and early modern periods. It will include comparative material from other societies and periods. Autobiographies, along with legal, religious and historical documents will complement the readings. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN3180
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3180 001/61467 T 12:10pm - 2:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Elisheva Carlebach 4 11/15

HIST UN3357 History of the Self. 4 points.

This course is one of a series on the history of the modern self. The works of Montaigne, Pascal, Rousseau, Tocqueville, or another Enlightenment thinker are critically examined in a seminar setting.


Fall 2017 the topic is Tocqueville.

HIST UN3366 Intellectual Life in Nineteenth-Century Britain . 4 points.

This course aims to give students a wide overview of the transformation of intellectual life of Britain in the long nineteenth century as well as a sense of some of the dynamics of intellectual change in this period. The nineteenth century has been long-established as a period of enormous social, economic, and political upheaval. The course has been designed as a critical examination of key ideas and themes in the intellectual and cultural history of this period. The topics covered range from ideas about identity, empire, and history, through conceptions of progress in natural and social science as well as anti-industrialization and economic commentary, to questions of sex, gender, race, and the avant garde raised at the fin de siècle. This course will equip students with skills in reading, analyzing, and contextualizing texts in the history of ideas.

Spring 2018: HIST UN3366
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3366 001/26947 Th 10:10am - 12:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Emily Jones 4 9/15

HIST UN3418 American Futures in the Progressive Era . 4 points.

Seminar covers ideas about “progress” in the United States, 1880-1917, and explores different visions for the American future, concerning race, immigration, wealth distribution, gender, and state power. We will read a different thinker each week and, throughout the semester, consider if and how these visions of the American future came to be. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN3418
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3418 001/81755 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
301m Fayerweather
Jarod Roll 4 13/19

HIST UN3429 Telling About the South. 4 points.

A remarkable array of Southern historians, novelists, and essayists have done what Shreve McCannon urges Quentin Compson to do in William Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom!--tell about the South--producing recognized masterpieces of American literature.  Taking as examples certain writers of the 19th and 20th centuries, this course explores the issues they confronted, the relationship between time during which and about they wrote, and the art of the written word as exemplified in their work. Group(s): D Field(s): US  Limited enrollment. Priority given to senior history majors. After obtaining permission from the professor, please add yourself to the course wait list so the department can register you in the course.

Spring 2018: HIST UN3429
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3429 001/60195 Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Barbara Fields 4 12/15

HIST UN3437 Poisoned Worlds: Corporate Behavior and Public Health. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors.

In the decades since the publication of Silent Spring and the rise of the environmental movement, public awareness of the impact of industrial products on human health has grown enormously. There is growing concern over BPA, lead, PCBs, asbestos, and synthetic materials that make up the world around us. This course will focus on environmental history, industrial and labor history as well as on how twentieth century consumer culture shapes popular and professional understanding of disease. Throughout the term the class will trace the historical transformation of the origins of disease through primary sources such as documents gathered in lawsuits, and medical and public health literature. Students will be asked to evaluate historical debates about the causes of modern epidemics of cancer, heart disease, lead poisoning, asbestos-related illnesses and other chronic conditions. They will also consider where responsibility for these new concerns lies, particularly as they have emerged in law suits. Together, we will explore the rise of modern environmental movement in the last 75 years. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN3437
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3437 001/12919 W 8:10am - 10:00am
311 Fayerweather
David Rosner 4 16/22

HIST UN3518 Columbia and Slavery. 4 points.

In this course, students will write original, independent papers of around 25 pages, based on research in both primary and secondary sources, on an aspect of the relationship between Columbia College and its colonial predecessor King's College, with the institution of slavery.

Spring 2018: HIST UN3518
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3518 001/25321 Th 12:10pm - 2:00pm
301m Fayerweather
Karl Jacoby 4 11/15

HIST UN3604 Jews and the City. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

Over the course of the nineteenth century, millions of Jews uprooted themselves from their places of birth and moved to cities scattered throughout the world.  This mass urbanization not only created new demographic centers of world Jewry, but also fundamentally transformed Jewish political and cultural life.  In this course, we shall analyze primary source material, literary accounts as well as secondary sources as we examine the Jewish encounter with the city, and see how Jewish culture was shaped by and helped to shape urban culture.  We shall compare Jewish life in six cities spanning from Eastern Europe to the United States and consider how Jews’ concerns molded the urban economy, urban politics, and cosmopolitan culture.  We shall also consider the ways in which urbanization changed everyday Jewish life.  What impact did it have on Jewish economic and religious life?  What role did gender and class play in molding the experiences of Jews in different cities scattered throughout the world?

Spring 2018: HIST UN3604
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3604 001/12231 Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Rebecca Kobrin 4 7/17

HIST UN3679 MEXICO AND THE UNITED STATES: MIGRATION, POLITICS, AND CULTURE. 4 points.

In Trump’s presidential campaign, perhaps no country loomed as large as Mexico. Trump singled out the United States’ southern neighbor and its people in his speeches, promising to build a wall along the border, to deport millions of Mexicans, and to end the North American Free Trade Agreement. He described Mexicans in racist terms, and he proclaimed his love of the taco bowl to counter charges of discrimination. Today, there is more uncertainty about the future of Mexico-U.S. relations than at any other time in living memory.


It is critical to understand this bilateral relationship not only because it is in flux, but also because these two countries are so deeply connected. Mexican migration to the United States is the most massive flow of immigrants in modern history. No country has more consulates in another country than Mexico has in the United States. Trade between these countries is crucial for both economies. The people of these two nations constantly share and adapt each other’s cuisine, music, language, and holidays. But despite proximity and interconnection, tension and violence are also near-constant features of interactions between the two countries. How has this peculiarly close, unequal, and ambivalent relationship between Mexico and the United States in the past two hundred years? By the end of this course, you will be able to offer some answers to this thorny question.


The course is divided into 4 units, spanning from nineteenth century to the present day, although the bulk of the course focuses on the twentieth century. We will cover periods of great tension between the countries, such as the Mexican-American War (1846-1848) and the Mexican Revolution (1910-1920), but we will also examine moments when friendlier relations prevailed. We will look at Mexican migration over the past 150 years. We will also note the intensity of cultural exchanges between the countries, particularly during the twentieth century, that have spanned from fine arts to fast food. Finally, we will talk about the economic ties that have long linked Mexico and the United States, including the 1994 signing of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Spring 2018: HIST UN3679
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3679 001/63780 W 2:10pm - 4:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Rachel Newman 4 17/18

HIST UN3789 Histories of Poverty in Africa. 4 points.

In this course we will explore in a critical manner the concept of poverty in Africa. The emphasis is on historicizing categories such as poverty and wealth, debt and charity and on the ways in which people in Africa have understood such categories. As such the course takes a longue durée approach spanning over a millennium of history, ending with contemporary understandings of poverty. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN3789
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3789 001/13746 Th 10:10am - 12:00pm
301m Fayerweather
Rhiannon Stephens 4 5/15

HIST UN3839 Senior Thesis Seminar. 4 points.

A year-long course for outstanding senior majors who want to conduct research in primary sources on a topic of their choice in any aspect of history, and to write a senior thesis possibly leading toward departmental honors. Field(s): ALL

Spring 2018: HIST UN3839
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3839 001/64628 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
301m Fayerweather
Elizabeth Blackmar 4 12/15
HIST 3839 002/74037 M 10:10am - 12:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Matthew Connelly 4 8/15
HIST 3839 003/77349 F 10:10am - 12:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Marwa Elshakry 4 12/15

HIST UN3866 Wars for Indochina. 4 points.

This seminar will focus on the wars that ravaged Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos – the region often referred to as “Indochina” – in the latter half of the 20th Century.  This period in Indochinese history witnessed batttles for decolonization, revolutionary struggles, state and nation-building under the Cold War divide, superpower interventions, and fighting at the local, regional and global levels. Introducing students to the current debates in the field, students will become familiar with the rich historiography on this subject. In addition to weekly readings and discussions, students will write a research paper, based on a deep understanding of the secondary literature as well as a thorough analysis of primary sources. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN3866
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3866 001/20999 M 12:10pm - 2:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Lien-Hang Nguyen 4 13/16

HIST UN3928 Comparative Slavery and Abolition in the Atlantic World. 4 points.

Prerequisites: seminar application required. SEE UNDERGRADUATE SEMINAR SECTION OF THE HISTORY DEPARTMENT'S WEBSITE.

This seminar investigates the experiences of slavery and freedom among African-descended people living and laboring in the various parts of the Atlantic World. The course will trace critical aspects of these two major, interconnected historical phenomena with an eye to how specific cases either manifested or troubled broader trends across various slaveholding societies. The first half of the course addresses the history of slavery and the second half pertains to experiences in emancipation. However, since the abolition of slavery occurs at different moments in various areas of the Atlantic World, the course will adhere to a thematic rather than a chronological structure, in its examination of the multiple avenues to freedom available in various regions. Weekly units will approach major themes relevant to both slavery and emancipation, such as racial epistemologies among slaveowners/employers, labor regimes in slave and free societies, cultural innovations among slave and freed communities, gendered discourses and sexual relations within slave and free communities, and slaves’ and freepeople’s resistance to domination. The goal of this course is to broaden students’ comprehension of the history of slavery and freedom, and to promote an understanding of the transition from slavery to freedom in the Americas as creating both continuities and ruptures in the structure and practices of the various societies concerned. 

Spring 2018: HIST UN3928
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 3928 001/77031 M 2:10pm - 4:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Natasha Lightfoot 4 9/15

HIST GU4083 Crime and Punishment in the Middle Ages. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

How a society defines crime, and how it deals with the criminals tells us a lot about the moral values, and the political and economic structure of that society, as well as its internal conflicts, superstitions, and fears. Often supposed to be a barbaric community of ignorant unruly men governed by greedy kings and popes, the medieval society in the popular culture is often an inspiration to the grotesque representations of violence and torture. Even an intellectual like Michel Foucault did not hesitate to advance a theory of medieval punishment, albeit a terribly wrong one, as one that focuses on the body and spectacle.  This course is designed to trace the origins of the modern criminal legislation and practices to the Middle Ages, some of which were jury trial, public persecution, and prisons. How did these practices come about, and under which social conditions? The focus of the course will be on violent crimes, such as murder, robbery, assault and suicide, and some particularly medieval crimes like sorcery, blasphemy and sodomy. The geographical scope will be limited to England, Italy and France. The class discussions are expected to take the form of collective brainstorming on how the political powers, social classes, cultural values, and religious beliefs affect the development of criminal legislation and institutions. Whenever possible the weekly readings will feature a fair share of medieval texts, including trial records, criminal laws, a manual for trying witches, and prison poetry. Field(s): *MED

Spring 2018: HIST GU4083
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4083 001/10399 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
311 Fayerweather
Neslihan Senocak 4 15/18

HIST GU4110 French America, 1534-1804. 4 points.

A study of the French Atlantic World from the exploration of Canada to the Louisiana Purchase and Haitian Independence, with a focus on the relationship between war and trade, forms of intercultural negotiation, the economics of slavery, and the changing meaning of race. The demise of the First French Colonial Empire occurred in two stages: the British victory at the end of the Seven Years War in 1763, and the proclamation of Haitian Independence by insurgent slaves in 1804. The first French presence in the New World was the exploration of the Gulf of St. Lawrence by Jacques Cartier in 1534. At its peak the French Atlantic Empire included one-third of the North American continent, as well as the richest and most productive sugar and coffee plantations in the world. By following the history of French colonization in North America and the Caribbean, this class aims to provide students with a different perspective on the history of the Western hemisphere, and on US history itself. At the heart of the subject is the encounter between Europeans and Native Americans and between Europeans and Africans. We will focus the discussion on a few issues: the strengths and weaknesses of French imperial control as compared with the Spanish and the British; the social, political, military, and religious dimensions of relations with Native Americans; the extraordinary prosperity and fragility of the plantation system; evolving notions of race and citizenship; and how the French Atlantic Empire shaped the history of the emerging United States. The course is designed for advanced undergraduates. It will be open to graduate students by permission of the History DGS and the instructor.

Spring 2018: HIST GU4110
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4110 001/61232 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
301m Fayerweather
Pierre Force 4 9/15

HIST GU4219 Foreign Relations of Russia and the Soviet Union, 1904-2014. 4 points.

This class focuses on the foreign relations of Russia and the Soviet Union between the outbreak of the Russo-Japanese War at the beginning of the twentieth century and the Russian annexation of Crimea in the early twenty-first. We will approach this topic from a perspective that is both historical and comprehensive, although the class cannot be exhaustive. While the interactions between states and governments will play a central role, as they have done in reality, we will not reduce them to the workings of idealized rational actors, be they institutions or people. Instead we will embed them in contexts shaped by social, cultural, and ideological factors. In particular, we will give due consideration to issues of perception and interpretation. This class relies on highlighting select key issues and works through readings that include authoritative works of research and analysis, but also polemical, instrumental, or partisan texts by contemporaries. The readings also offer a sample of writings from different chronological stages, unfolding against different political and cultural backgrounds of thinking about Russia and the Soviet Union (such as the interwar period, the Great Alliance, the Cold War, or détente, to name only a few). Participants are encouraged to read thoroughly as well as critically and never forget the issue of context.     

Spring 2018: HIST GU4219
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4219 001/75034 T 10:10am - 12:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Tarik Amar 4 14/15

HIST GU4223 Personality and Society in 19th-Century Russia. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

A seminar reviewing some of the major works of Russian thought, literature, and memoir literature that trace the emergence of intelligentsia ideologies in 19th- and 20th-century Russia. Focuses on discussion of specific texts and traces the adoption and influence of certain western doctrines in Russia, such as idealism, positivism, utopian socialism, Marxism, and various 20th-century currents of thought. Field(s): MEU

Spring 2018: HIST GU4223
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4223 001/65952 M 4:10pm - 6:00pm
1219 International Affairs Bldg
Richard Wortman 4 7/15

HIST GU4226 Life and Fate: The Soviet Experience of World War Two . 4 points.

This class uses Vasily Grossman’s masterpiece “Life and Fate” – often considered the “War and Peace” of World War Two – as a guide to explore central aspects of the history of the Soviet Union under Stalinism and after. Our approach will be historical; the class will not focus on questions better addressed in literary studies or criticism. Instead, in this class Grossman’s novel will serve as a gateway to learn about and discuss a set of issues which have in common that they were of great importance in the history of the former Soviet Union as well as Europe and the world. These include the Second World War; the nature of power in modern authoritarian systems, in particular the question of totalitarianism; the Holocaust and antisemitism, and the memory of World War Two in the Soviet Union and beyond.

Spring 2018: HIST GU4226
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4226 001/67296 Th 10:10am - 12:00pm
610 Lewisohn Hall
Tarik Amar 4 13/15

HIST GU4311 European Romanticism. 4 points.

Priority given to majors and concentrators, seniors, and juniors.

“…Romanticism is the largest recent movement to transform the lives and the thought of the Western world. It seems to me to be the greatest single shift in the consciousness of the West that has occurred, and all the other shifts which have occurred in the course of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries appear to me in comparison less important, and at any rate deeply influenced by it.” (Isaiah Berlin, The Roots of Romanticism)

,

This seminar will introduce students to the manifold expressions of Romanticism in Europe from the late eighteenth century to the late nineteenth century. It is geared both at History majors, particularly but not exclusively those specializing in European Intellectual History, and at students interested in the literature and culture of Germany, France, and Great Britain. We will also  take a  brief look at Romantic writers in Eastern Europe. We will read primarily works written by philosophers and social thinkers, but also a good deal of literature, both prose and poetry. We will have two sessions devoted to the plastic arts – including a class trip to the Metropolitan Museum to view paintings and sculptures, and we will have one session devoted to Romantic music (a study of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.)  We will include readings relating to the Romantic fascination with “the East,” and devote one session to the crucial subject of Romanticism and gender.  Most of the readings will be primary sources either originally in or translated into English, as well as a selection of pertinent secondary sources.

Spring 2018: HIST GU4311
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4311 001/71992 Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Michael Stanislawski 4 16/20

AMHS GU4403 The Sixties in the Archive. 4 points.

This course explores the multifaceted history of the 1960s, connecting political, cultural, and social movements, and examining the legacies of this crucial decade from the vantage point of half a century. Working with Columbia University’s Rare Book & Manuscript Library the class will emphasize archival collections and independent research. Students will develop advanced research skills and work independently to complete a digital exhibition highlighting their archival discoveries.

Spring 2018: AMHS GU4403
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AMHS 4403 001/21647 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
6044 Butler Library
Thai Jones 4 16/20

HIST GU4509 Problems in International History. 4 points.

The general object of this course is to illuminate how histories of the realm we think of as "international" are structured by means of key concepts, foundational concepts that form semantic fields of politics and policy. The seminar this year will be devoted, specifically, to a series of 'basic documents' of the early cold war, primary sources, chiefly U.S., which will be examined by means of close readings. The design is thus unusual in that there will be only a single book, Melvyn Leffler’s Preponderance of Power, which provides a survey of the Truman Administration and so will be a reference text for the US side, at least. The remaining materials will be available in Courseworks. 

Spring 2018: HIST GU4509
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4509 001/29050 T 4:10pm - 6:00pm
624 Fayerweather
Anders Stephanson 4 6/15

HSCL GU4607 Rabbis for Historians. 3 points.

This course introduces the central historical issues raised by ancient Palestinian and Babylonian rabbinic literature through exploration of some of the crucial primary texts and analysis of the main scholarly approaches to these texts.

Spring 2018: HSCL GU4607
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSCL 4607 001/61530 W 10:10am - 12:00pm
606 Lewisohn Hall
Seth Schwartz 3 5/15

HIST GU4706 THE OTTOMANS AND THE WORLD AROUND THEM. 4 points.

The Ottomans ruled in South East Europe, Anatolia, the Middle East, and North Africa for six hundred years. The objective of this seminar is to understand the society and culture of this bygone empire whose legacy still continues, in one way or another, in some twenty-five contemporary successor states from the Balkans to the Arabian Peninsula. The seminar is designed to place the Ottomans within the broader structures of global and regional histories with a particular focus on the cultural and trans-cultural history of the Ottoman Empire in the early modern era. Students will be familiarized with a number of key issues that explore identities and mentalities, status of minorities and confessional politics, governance of the empire and legitimation tactics of the political authority against its rivals, literacy and the use of the public sphere, or legal culture and pluralism.

HIST GU4811 Encounters with Nature: The History of Environment and Health in South Asia and Beyond. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This course offers an understanding of the interdisciplinary field of environmental, health and population history and will discuss historical and policy debates with a cross cutting, comparative relevance: such as the making and subjugation of colonized peoples and natural and disease landscapes under British colonial rule; modernizing states and their interest in development and knowledge and technology building, the movement and migration of populations, and changing place of public health and healing in south Asia. The key aim of the course will be to introduce students to reading and analyzing a range of historical scholarship, and interdisciplinary research on environment, health, medicine and populations in South Asia and to introduce them to an exploration of primary sources for research; and also to probe the challenges posed by archives and sources in these fields. Some of the overarching questions that shape this course are as follows: How have environmental pasts and medical histories been interpreted, debated and what is their contemporary resonance? What have been the encounters (political, intellectual, legal, social and cultural) between the environment, its changing landscapes and state? How have citizens, indigenous communities, and vernacular healers mediated and shaped these encounters and inserted their claims for sustainability, subsistence or survival? How have these changing landscapes shaped norms about bodies, care and beliefs? The course focuses on South Asia but also urges students to think and make linkages beyond regional geographies in examining interconnected ideas and practices in histories of the environment, medicine and health. Topics will therefore include (and students are invited to add to these perspectives and suggest additional discussion themes): colonial and globalized circuits of medical knowledge, with comparative case studies from Africa and East Asia; and the travel and translation of environmental ideas and of medical practices through growing global networks.

Spring 2018: HIST GU4811
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HIST 4811 001/76375 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
302 Fayerweather
Kavita Sivaramakrishnan 4 20/18

2017-2018 Cross-listed Courses

PLEASE READ: The passage below lists *all* sections being offered by a Columbia instructor for a given course, including sections which *do not* count for History students. NOT ALL sections of the courses listed below count for History majors and concentrators. Particular sections only count towards the History degree if the section instructor is a History faculty member or an affiliate with the History Department. For additional information, please review the "Requirements" tab or consult Sia Mensah at sjm2206@columbia.edu. All courses from the Barnard History Department also count towards the History degree.


AFCV UN1020 African Civilizations. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

This course provides a general introduction to some of the key intellectual debates in Africa by Africans through primary sources, including scholarly works, political tracts, fiction, art, and film. Beginning with an exploration of African notions of spiritual and philosophical uniqueness and ending with contemporary debates on the meaning and historical viability of an African Renaissance, this course explores the meanings of ‘Africa' and ‘being African.' Field(s): AFR*.  NO FIRST YEAR STUDENTS PERMITTED.

Spring 2018: AFCV UN1020
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AFCV 1020 001/74646 M W 2:10pm - 4:00pm
307 Pupin Laboratories
Wendell Marsh 4 18/22
AFCV 1020 002/10621 T Th 2:10pm - 4:00pm
412 Pupin Laboratories
Gregory Mann 4 14/22

LACV UN1020 Primary Texts of Latin American Civilization. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

It focuses on key texts from Latin America in their historical and intellectual context and seeks to understand their structure and the practical purposes they served using close reading and, when possible, translations.  The course seeks to establish a counterpoint to the list of canonical texts of Contemporary Civilization. The selections are not intended to be compared directly to those in CC but to raise questions about the different contexts in which ideas are used, the critical exchanges and influences (within and beyond Latin America) that shaped ideas in the region, and the long-term intellectual, political, and cultural pursuits that have defined Latin American history. The active engagement of students toward these texts is the most important aspect of class work and assignments.  NO FIRST YEAR STUDENTS PERMITTED.

Spring 2018: LACV UN1020
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
LACV 1020 001/66156 T Th 4:10pm - 6:00pm
652 Schermerhorn Hall
Sarah Beckhart 4 16/22
LACV 1020 002/29785 M W 10:10am - 12:00pm
227 Seeley W. Mudd Building
Mariana-Cecilia Velazquez Perez 4 14/22

ASCE UN1359 Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: China. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Prerequisites: NOTE:Students must register for a discussion section, ASCE V2360
Corequisites: NOTE:Students must register for a discussion section, ASCE V2360

The evolution of Chinese civilization from ancient times to the 20th century, with emphasis on characteristic institutions and traditions.

Spring 2018: ASCE UN1359
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ASCE 1359 001/24276 M W 10:10am - 11:25am
501 Northwest Corner
Harrison Huang 4 73/90
Fall 2018: ASCE UN1359
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ASCE 1359 001/15028 T Th 4:10pm - 5:25pm
Room TBA
4 0/80

ASCE UN1361 Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: Japan. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement

Prerequisites: NOTE: Students must register for a discussion section ASCE V2371
Corequisites: NOTE: Students must register for a discussion section ASCE V2371

A survey of important events and individuals, prominent literary and artistic works, and recurring themes in the history of Japan, from prehistory to the 20th century.

Spring 2018: ASCE UN1361
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ASCE 1361 001/17200 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
310 Fayerweather
Paul Kreitman 4 86/90
Fall 2018: ASCE UN1361
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ASCE 1361 001/26580 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
Room TBA
Paul Kreitman 4 0/90

RELI UN2304 Christianity. 3 points.

Survey of Christianity from its beginnings through the Reformation. Based on lectures and discussions of readings in primary source translations, this course will cover prominent developments in the history of Christianity. The structure will allow students to rethink commonly held notions about the evolution of modern Christianity with the texture of historical influence.

Spring 2018: RELI UN2304
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
RELI 2304 001/22360 M W 4:10pm - 5:25pm
214 Pupin Laboratories
Robert Somerville 3 31/56

ECHS BC2590 Measuring History: Empirical Approaches to Economic and Social History. 4 points.

BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Social Analysis (SOC I)., BC: Fulfillment of General Education Requirement: Social Analysis (SOC II).

This course examines big themes in economic and social history-population history and human well-being, inequality and poverty, and gender differences. Using these themes, it adopts a hands-on data-driven approach to introduce tools and concepts of empirical reasoning. Datasets related to each theme create opportunities for learning by doing.

Spring 2018: ECHS BC2590
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
ECHS 2590 001/08899 M W 6:10pm - 7:25pm
113 Barnard Hall
Alan Dye 4 24/27

AFRS BC3110 Africana Colloquium. 4 points.

Prerequisites: Students must attend first day of class and admission will be decided then. Enrollment limited to 18 students. Priority will be given to Africana majors and CCIS students (Africana Studies, American Studies and Women's Studies majors; minors in Race and Ethnic Studies).

Spring 2018: AFRS BC3110
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
AFRS 3110 001/05430 W 2:10pm - 4:00pm
118 Barnard Hall
Celia Naylor 4 6/16

HSEA UN3863 The History of Modern Korea. 3 points.

Prerequisites: Recommended: HSEA UN3862.

Korean history from the mid 19th century to the present, with particular focus on politics, society, and culture in the 20th century. Major Cultures Requirement: East Asian Civilization List B. Group(s): C

Spring 2018: HSEA UN3863
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSEA 3863 001/74063 T Th 2:40pm - 3:55pm
233 Seeley W. Mudd Building
Charles Armstrong 3 18/35

MDES UN3915 A History of African Cities. 3 points.

This seminar offers an interdisciplinary approach to the study of the history of African cities. It cuts across disciplinary boundaries of history, geography, anthropology, political and cultural sociology, literature and cultural studies, to explore the vaious trajectories of urbanization on the continent.

Spring 2018: MDES UN3915
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
MDES 3915 001/76012 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
963 Ext Schermerhorn Hall
Mamadou Diouf 3 20/40

CSER UN3928 Colonization/Decolonization. 4 points.

CC/GS/SEAS: Partial Fulfillment of Global Core Requirement
Enrollment limited to 22.

Prerequisites: Open to CSER majors/concentrators only. Others may be allowed to register with the instructor's permission.

This course explores the centrality of colonialism in the making of the modern world, emphasizing cross-cultural and social contact, exchange, and relations of power; dynamics of conquest and resistance; and discourses of civilization, empire, freedom, nationalism, and human rights, from 1500 to 2000. Topics include pre-modern empires; European exploration, contact, and conquest in the new world; Atlantic-world slavery and emancipation; and European and Japanese colonialism in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. The course ends with a section on decolonization and post-colonialism in the period after World War II. Intensive reading and discussion of primary documents.

Spring 2018: CSER UN3928
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CSER 3928 001/29279 T 2:10pm - 4:00pm
420 Hamilton Hall
Emmanuelle Saada 4 21/24
Fall 2018: CSER UN3928
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
CSER 3928 001/71657  
Mae Ngai 4 0/22

HSEA GU4110 Histories of Science & Technology in East Asia. 4 points.

This course explores the life of scientific and technological artifacts in East Asia. We will examine everyday objects alongside core literature from Science and Technology and Society (STS) studies to raise new historical questions and methodological approaches. From clocks to paper, from pregnancy to immortality, we will take on a close reading of objects and ideas by directly engaging with the circumstances under which they were made.

Spring 2018: HSEA GU4110
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSEA 4110 001/22397 F 12:10pm - 2:00pm
423 Kent Hall
Lan Li 4 9/14

HSEA GU4232 EMPIRES IN THE FORMATION OF MODERN EAST ASIA, 1700-1950. 4 points.

This course, a seminar for advanced undergraduates and M.A. students, explores themes in the history of empires in East Asia, from the early 18th century to the end of World War II. The main geographical focus will the region now corresponding to mainland China (including a part of Inner Asia), Japan, Korea and Taiwan. Colonial empires and their possessions in Southeast Asia will also be discussed. The master narrative of modern political history has long been one of transition from Empire to Nation: decaying empires – Mughal, Ottoman, Qing – proved unable to adapt to the challenges of modern international competition, and were replaced more or less violently with more homogeneous nation-states. We have come to see, however, that empires are more flexible and durable political forms than previously thought, and also that East Asian polities were far from stagnant when Western imperialism burst onto the scene. Imperialism itself was not foreign to the region; the Qing Empire, for example, vastly expanded its territory in the 18th century. Both in Japan and in China, although in different ways, modern nation-building was inseparable from the imperial control of remote and heterogeneous lands. Lastly, in the East Asian context of the 19th and early 20th centuries, framing Western powers as aggressive “nations” is partial at best: what East Asians dealt with were colonial empires, whose policies were often determined at the margins rather than in the metropole. It is therefore appropriate to consider the international history of East Asia from the 18th century to World War II through the lens of interactions and conflict among Empires and Empires in the making. 

Spring 2018: HSEA GU4232
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSEA 4232 001/20484 M 4:10pm - 6:00pm
522c Kent Hall
Victor Louzon 4 11/20

RELI GU4370 History of Christianity: Topics in Pre-Modern Papal History. 4 points.

Prerequisites: the instructor's permission.

An examination of a series of episodes that are of special consequence for papal history in Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages. Readings in both primary and secondary sources in English translation.

Spring 2018: RELI GU4370
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
RELI 4370 001/73553 F 11:10am - 1:00pm
201 80 Claremont
Robert Somerville 4 5/25

HSEA UN4882 History of Modern China I. 3 points.

China's transformation under its last imperial rulers, with special emphasis on economic, legal, political, and cultural change.

Spring 2018: HSEA UN4882
Course Number Section/Call Number Times/Location Instructor Points Enrollment
HSEA 4882 001/67237 T Th 10:10am - 11:25am
6ab Kraft Center
Peter Hamilton 3 21/35