Courses - Spring 2020

HIST 1200 FWS: Writing History

How can we learn about the past? How do we tell stories about the past? How do we judge the truth of falsity of evidence? Writing History seminars introduce students to many different ways of interpreting and writing about the past, and to the wide range of sources that historians use: from diaries to tax rolls, from scraps of textile to films and advertisements. Topics and readings vary by section.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Spencer Beswick (scb274)
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HIST 1540 American Capitalism

This course studies the history of American capitalism. It helps you to answer these questions: What is capitalism? Is the U.S. more capitalist than other countries? How has capitalism shaped the history of the United States? Has it been a force for freedom, or is it a system of exploitation? What is its future? Through lectures, readings, and discussions, we'll give you the tools to win all your future arguments about capitalism, pro and con. And we won't even charge you the full market price.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Edward Baptist (eeb36)
Lawrence Glickman (lbg49)
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HIST 1561 Introduction to the Ottoman Empire

This course will introduce students to the study of the Ottoman Empire from its inception in the late 13th century until the early part of 19th century. The classes will follow the main timeline of the geographical expansion of the empire with a special emphasis on the historical significance of the conquest of Istanbul, the consolidation of the borders of the empire, the establishment of the state apparatus in the classical period, a period of turbulence leading to a substantial transformation of the state in the early 19th century. Special focus will be placed on the Ottoman Empire's diverse religious communities—using the history of the Jewish community as the main case study—the evolution of the imperial and provincial governments' relationships with the various socio-cultural groups, legal and economic practices in the urban centers, the culture of the court in the early modern period, and the evolution of the inter-communal relations in the empire's urban centers.  This course is intended to provide the student with a solid foundation from which they can pursue further specialized study in the history of the Ottoman Empire, the Modern Middle East, and the Eastern Mediterranean.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Mostafa Minawi (mm2492)
Full details for HIST 1561 : Introduction to the Ottoman Empire
HIST 1622 The World of Modern Japan

In 1868, samurai revolutionaries and their allies seized the reins of power and established a new capital they called Tokyo.  Against all odds, this fragile regime survived and made Tokyo a center of power that would transform both Japan and the world.  This survey of Japanese history explores the rise and fall of Japan as a modern imperial power; its foreign relations; its economic and scientific development from "feudalism" to futuristic technologies; and Japan's many modern revolutions, from the rule of the samurai to Westernization and democracy, from democratic collapse to fascism and World War II, and from Japan's postwar rebirth to the present.  We will examine not only big events but also everyday life, including gender and sexuality, family and schools, and art and popular culture.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Kristin Roebuck (kar79)
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HIST 1850 Thinking about History with the Manson Murders

On August 9-10, 1969, ex-convict, aspiring rock star, and charismatic leader Charles Manson ordered his so-called Family to brutally murder a few of LA's rich, white, "beautiful people" and leave clues implicating black radicals. The idea was to trigger an apocalyptic race war he called "Helter Skelter" (after a song by The Beatles). Today, these murders stand as the most infamous in twentieth-century U.S. criminal history and as synecdoche for the "end of the Sixties." They have also spawned a veritable Manson Industry in the popular realm: there are now Manson books, movies, TV shows, documentaries, podcasts, websites, music, comics, t-shirts, and even a tourist attraction (the Hollywood "Helter Skelter" tour). This course analyzes the history of the Manson murders as well as their incredible resonance in American culture over the past half century. Who was Charles Manson and who were the members of the Family? What was the Family's relation to the counterculture, to Hollywood, Vietnam, the Black Panther Party, and environmentalism? How might we fit the Manson murders into the long history of apocalyptic violence and terror? And what does it mean that the Manson murders have occupied our collective imagination for fifty years? To answer these and other questions, we will analyze a variety of sources including television and newspaper reports, trial transcripts, true crime writing, memoirs, interviews, novels, films and documentaries, podcasts and pop songs.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Claudia Verhoeven (cv89)
Full details for HIST 1850 : Thinking about History with the Manson Murders
HIST 1942 The History of Science in Europe: Newton to Darwin; Darwin to Einstein

What is modern science? And how did it get that way? This course examines the emergence of the dominant scientific worldview inherited by the 21st century, to trace how it, and its associated institutional practices, became established in largely European settings and contexts from the 18th to the early 20th centuries. It focuses on those broad conceptions of the universe and human knowledge that shaped a wide variety of scientific disciplines, as well as considering the twin views of science as "natural philosophy" and as practical tool. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Peter Dear (prd3)
Full details for HIST 1942 : The History of Science in Europe: Newton to Darwin; Darwin to Einstein
HIST 1950 The Invention of the Americas

When did the 'Americas' come in to being?  Who created 'them' and how? What other geographic units of analysis might we consider in thinking about what Iberian explorers and intellectuals initially called the 'fourth part' of the world?  Given the scope and extent of the Spanish and Portuguese empires, could 'the Americas' extend from the Caribbean to the Philippines?  This course takes up such questions as a means to explore the history of what would become-only in the nineteenth century-'Latin America.' We move from the initial "encounters" of peoples from Africa and Iberia with the "New World," the creation of long-distance trade with, and settlement in, Asia, and the establishment of colonial societies, through to the movements for independence in most of mainland Spanish America in the early 19th century and to the collapse of Spanish rule in the Pacific and Caribbean later that century. Through lectures, discussions and the reading of primary sources and secondary texts, the course examines the economic and social organization of the colonies, intellectual currents and colonial science, native accommodation and resistance to colonial rule, trade networks and imperial expansion, labor regimes and forms of economic production, and migration and movement.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Ernesto Bassi Arevalo (eb577)
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HIST 2001 Supervised Reading - Undergraduate

Independent Study based supervised reading with history faculty.  Student must complete Independent Study Form with faculty supervisor for determining requirements and for permission to enroll through the online system (https://data.arts/cornell.edu/as-stus/indep_study_intro.cfm).  Student then work with their faculty supervisor throughout the semester for successful completion and grading of the agreed upon requirements.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Edward Baptist (eeb36)
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HIST 2005 The First American University

Educational historian Frederick Rudolph called Cornell University "the first American university," referring to its unique role as a coeducational, nonsectarian, land-grant institution with a broad curriculum and diverse student body. In this course, we will explore the history of Cornell, taking as our focus the pledge of Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White to found a university where "any person can find instruction in any study." The course will cover a wide range of topics and perspectives relating to the faculty, student body, evolution of campus, and important events and eras in Cornell history. Stories and vignettes will provide background on the current university and its administrative structure, campus traditions, and the names that adorn buildings and memorials throughout campus. Finally, the course will offer a forum for students to address questions on present-day aspects of the university.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Corey Earle (cre8)
Shirley Samuels (srs8)
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HIST 2006 Understanding Global Capitalism Through Service Learning

This course is a seminar focused on a service-learning approach to understanding the history of neoliberal transformations of the global economy through the lens of an island (Jamaica) and a community (Petersfield.) Building on the success of previous year's global service-learning course and trip to Petersfield, and now bringing the course under the auspices of both the Engaged Cornell and Cornell Abroad administrative and funding capabilities. Students will attend class each week and will also take a one-week service trip over spring break to work with the local community partner (AOC) in Petersfield. We will also work with Amizade, a non-profit based in Pittsburgh, who is the well-established partner of the AOC and which works with numerous universities on global service learning projects. They have a close relationship with CU Engaged Learning.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Edward Baptist (eeb36)
Full details for HIST 2006 : Understanding Global Capitalism Through Service Learning
HIST 2010 Atlantic Travelers

The objective of this seminar is to introduce students to the subjects of mobility and empires in the early modern Atlantic World. Through close reading of primary and secondary sources and discussions, students will become familiar with the experiences of many types of travelers that between 1492 and the early nineteenth century traversed the Atlantic Ocean from the Old to the New World. The class will also draw students' attention to the multiplicity of perspectives from which history can be narrated. The cast of travelers will include conquistadors, puritan settlers, pirates, slaves, indentured servants, scientists, loyalist refugees, black sailors, creole patriots, military adventurers, and women. The discussions will emphasize the different ways in which these travelers crossed the Atlantic, adapted to life in the Americas, and, in the process, contributed to the creation of the Atlantic World. Although no prior knowledge of Atlantic history is required, this seminar is ideal for students who have previously taken courses on colonial Latin America, early modern Europe, colonial America, African history, and other related surveys and seminars.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Ernesto Bassi Arevalo (eb577)
Full details for HIST 2010 : Atlantic Travelers
HIST 2133 Social Debates in China

In this sophomore seminar, we will explore cultural, political, and social debates in China's transition from an early modern empire to a republic, and then from a vanguard of world revolution to a post-communist party-state. Through examining primary sources in various forms (treatise, speech, and film), we will focus on issues such as Confucianism, Western-inspired cultural and legal concepts, nationalism, communism, feminism, liberalism, as well as indigenous understandings and appropriations of imported -isms. The course is organized around four debates: those between constitutional reformers and revolutionaries at turn of the 20th century; between New Culture radicals and statist reformers in the 1920s and 1930s; between politicians who resorted to social and political revolutions to "save China" and writers who believed in the transformative power of "culture;" and between liberals and "leftist" intellectuals in post-1989 China; with an interlude addressing the 1960s and the 1970s, when dissenting voices were encouraged in some ways and brutally suppressed in others. Students will participate in four debates organized at the end of each 3-week section. Each student will submit four short response papers on the four social debates the course covers. In consultation with the instructor, each student will choose a social debate from modern China that is NOT addressed in the classroom, developing a historiographical paper as his/her final essay. There is no prerequisite, but pre-acquired knowledge in Chinese history and civilization is helpful.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Yue Du (yd367)
Full details for HIST 2133 : Social Debates in China
HIST 2220 From the New Deal to the Age of Reagan

This seminar will explore some of the major political and cultural trends in the United States,  from the era of the Democratic New Dealer, Franklin D. Roosevelt, through the era of the conservative Republican, Ronald Reagan? This seminar will explore through primary source research and secondary readings  the key economic, political, and cultural characteristics and transformations of the period from 1930 though the turn of the century.  The course will examine the rise, persistence, and breakdown of the so-called "New Deal Order" and the crucial political shifts that we call the "Reagan Revolution." A key theme in this course will be the transformations and critiques of American liberalism and conservatism.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Lawrence Glickman (lbg49)
Full details for HIST 2220 : From the New Deal to the Age of Reagan
HIST 2251 U.S. Immigration Narratives

Americans are conflicted about immigration. We honor and celebrate (and commercialize) our immigrant heritage in museums, folklife festivals, parades, pageants, and historical monuments. We also build fences and detention centers, and pass more and more laws to bar access to the United States. Polls tell us that Americans are concerned about the capacity of the United States to absorb so many immigrants from around the world. How often have we heard the laments "Today's immigrants are too different. They don't want to assimilate" or "My grandparents learned English quickly, why can't they?" The assumption is that older generations 'Americanized' quickly but that today's immigrants do not want to assimilate. Did 19th century immigrants really migrate to the United States to "become Americans"? Did they really assimilate quickly? Are today's immigrants really all that different from the immigrants who arrived earlier? Why do these particular narratives have such power and currency? This seminar will explore these issues and help students discern fact from fiction. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Maria Cristina Garcia (mcg20)
Full details for HIST 2251 : U.S. Immigration Narratives
HIST 2285 Fascism in the Twentieth Century: History and Theory

This course uses history and political theory to understand the fascist experience in the twentieth century. In the first part of the course, we will examine fascist ideology; its relation to democracy and dictatorship; whether fascism is best understood as another form of authoritarianism or as totalitarianism; the role of nationalism, race, religion, culture, gender, the family, and intellectuals in fascist regimes; and the institutional and economic foundations of fascist politics. The second half of the course covers the origins, development and defeat of fascist states in the mid-twentieth century. We will devote the most time to understanding what happened in Mussolini's Italy (1922-1945) and in Hitler's Germany (1933-1945), but will also examine fascist movements and regimes in Austria, Hungary, Romania, Spain and Portugal. We will finish the course by looking at the persistence of fascist movements and ideas beyond WWII and into the present, and ask how these are similar to historical fascism and in what ways they differ from that experience.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Nicholas Mulder (njm226)
Full details for HIST 2285 : Fascism in the Twentieth Century: History and Theory
HIST 2335 Making Public Queer History

In this course we will examine LGBTQ+ history in the United States with a focus on its recovery and public representation—what are the stakes of researching, preserving, and commemorating the LGBTQ+ past? We will investigate how archival, scholarly, curatorial, and creative practices shape popular conceptions of LGBTQ+ life, politics, and culture, and how those practices and conceptions have changed with evolving understandings of race, gender, sexuality, and oppression. Students will build skills in archival research and historical interpretation and explore possibilities and challenges in building archives and presenting LGBTQ+ history in a variety of public contexts—museums, libraries, monuments, movies and television, and community-based oral history projects. For their final project, students will locate and research a selection of archival materials (periodicals, letters, pamphlets, songs, advertisements, etc.) either online or at Cornell Library's Rare and Manuscript Collections, producing a final research paper and a proposal for a public history project.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Stephen Vider (sv484)
Full details for HIST 2335 : Making Public Queer History
HIST 2391 From Terra Incognita to Territories of Nation-States: Early American History in Two Dozen Maps

This course engages the rich cartographic record of colonial North America via an in-depth analysis of two dozen iconic maps.  Integrating visual and textual analysis, students will assess human representations of space across cultural boundaries, explore change over time in the mapmaking practices of indigenous peoples and various European intruders, and study the evolving relationship between cartography and power, attending particularly to the process by which mapping promoted a revolutionary new understanding of American geography as composed of the bounded territories of nation-states.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Jon Parmenter (jwp35)
Full details for HIST 2391 : From Terra Incognita to Territories of Nation-States: Early American History in Two Dozen Maps
HIST 2541 Modern Caribbean History

This course examines the development of the Caribbean since the Haitian Revolution.  It  will focus on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and our readings pay particular attention to the ways in which race, gender, and ethnicity shape the histories of the peoples of the region.  The course uses a pan-Caribbean approach by focusing largely on three islands - Jamaica, Haiti and Cuba - that belonged to competing empires.  Although the imperial powers that held these nations shaped their histories in distinctive ways these nations share certain common features. Therefore, we examine the differences and similarities of their histories as they evolved from plantation based colonies to independent nations.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Judith Byfield (jab632)
Full details for HIST 2541 : Modern Caribbean History
HIST 2581 Environmental History

This lecture course serves as an introduction to the historical study of humanity's interrelationship with the natural world. Environmental history is a quickly evolving field, taking on increasing importance as the environment itself becomes increasingly important in world affairs. During this semester, we'll examine the sometimes unexpected ways in which "natural" forces have shaped human history (the role of germs, for instance, in the colonization of North America); the ways in which human beings have shaped the natural world (through agriculture, urbanization, and industrialization, as well as the formation of things like wildlife preserves); and the ways in which cultural, scientific, political, and philosophical attitudes toward the environment have changed over time. This is designed as an intensely interdisciplinary course: we'll view history through the lenses of ecology, literature, art, film, law, anthropology, and geography. Our focus will be on the United States, but, just as environmental pollutants cross borders, so too will this class, especially toward the end, when we attempt to put U.S. environmental history into a geopolitical context. This course is meant to be open to all, including non-majors and first-year students.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Aaron Sachs (as475)
Full details for HIST 2581 : Environmental History
HIST 2641 Race and Modern US History

This course surveys modern U.S. history, from Reconstruction to the contemporary period. It will examine how race has been the terrain on which competing ideas of the American nation have been contested. From struggles over citizenship rights to broader meanings of national belonging, we will explore how practices, ideas, and representations have shaped political, cultural, and social power. A key concern for this course is examining how groups and individuals have pursued racial justice from the late-nineteenth century to the present.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Derek Chang (dsc37)
Full details for HIST 2641 : Race and Modern US History
HIST 2660 Everything You Know About Indians is Wrong: Unlearning Native American History

One thing many Americans think they know is their Indians: Pocahontas, the First Thanksgiving, fighting cowboys, reservation poverty, and casino riches. Under our very noses, however, Native American history has evolved into one of the most exciting, dynamic, and contentious fields of inquiry into America's past. It is now safer to assume, as Comanche historian Paul Chaat Smith has pointed out, that everything you know about Indians is in fact wrong. Most people have much to "unlearn" about Native American history before true learning can take place. This course aims to achieve that end by (re)introducing students to key themes and trends in the history of North America's indigenous nations. Employing an issues-oriented approach, the course stresses the ongoing complexity of Native American societies' engagements with varieties of settler colonialism since 1492 and dedicates itself to a concerted program of myth-busting. As such, the course will provide numerous opportunities for students to develop their critical thinking and reading skills.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Jon Parmenter (jwp35)
Full details for HIST 2660 : Everything You Know About Indians is Wrong: Unlearning Native American History
HIST 2689 Roman History

This course offers an introduction to the history of the Roman empire, from the prehistoric settlements on the site of Rome to the fall of the Western empire in the fifth century and its revival in the East with Byzantium. Lectures will provide a narrative and interpretations of major issues, including: empire building, cultural unity and diversity, religious transformations, changing relations between state and society. Discussion section will be the opportunity to engage with important texts, ancient and modern, about Rome.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Eric Rebillard (er97)
Full details for HIST 2689 : Roman History
HIST 2710 Introduction to the History of Medicine

This course offers an introductory survey of the history of medicine (principally in Europe and the United States) from classical antiquity to the early twentieth century. Using a combination of both primary and secondary sources, students will learn about the "Hippocratic Heritage" of contemporary western medicine; medicine in late antiquity; faith and healing in the medieval period; medicine and knowledge in the Islamic world; medicine during the Renaissance (particularly the rise of the mechanical philosophy); medicine in the age of Enlightenment; professionalization, women-doctors and midwives, and battles over 'quackery' in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; the role of medicine in colonialism and empire; and the promises and perils of modern medicine (dramatic decreases in mortality on the one hand, the rise of Eugenics and the importance of Medicine to the National Socialist State on the other). As well as this temporal survey, we will consider a number of ongoing themes: race, bodily difference, and medicine; medicine and the environment; women, gender, and medicine; the history of the body; the history of sexuality; and the close connections between forms of social order and forms of medical knowledge. The course meets three times a week (for two lectures and a section) and is open to all.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Suman Seth (ss536)
Full details for HIST 2710 : Introduction to the History of Medicine
HIST 2715 A Global South: Chile, the Pacific and the World

This course examines the history of Chile from the 1700s to the present, always with an appreciation for its place in a broader world but always also with attention to its regional and national specificities and its links to the Pacific. Lectures will be paired with readings from various genres: fiction, poetry, journalism, manifestos, speeches, historical monographs, and short stories. The course includes an optional 1-credit 7 to 10 day trip to Chile during spring break.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Raymond Craib (rbc23)
Full details for HIST 2715 : A Global South: Chile, the Pacific and the World
HIST 2721 History of Mental Health and Mental Illness in the United States

This course examines the history of mental illness—its conception and treatment—in the United States, from the early 1800s to the present, focusing on four major questions: (1) How have understandings of mental illness been developed and deployed by psychologists, psychiatrists, psychoanalysts, and social workers, and how have those understandings varied across time and place? (2) How have understandings and treatments of mental illness shaped, and been shaped by, conceptions of race, class, gender, and sexuality? (3) In what ways have treatment of mental illness and "social deviance" operated as a form of social control? (4) How do conceptions of mental illness come to circulate in popular culture and everyday life? Pairing historical scholarship with autobiographical writing and case studies from the 1800s to the present, the course moves chronologically in order to track, and draw connections between, a wide range of movements within American psychological and social welfare history, including the creation and closing of mental hospitals, the pathologization of racial, gender, and sexual difference, psychopharmacology, anti-psychiatry, and the politics of diagnosis.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Stephen Vider (sv484)
Full details for HIST 2721 : History of Mental Health and Mental Illness in the United States
HIST 2760 The British Empire

This course considers how a small northern European kingdom acquired and then governed a vast global empire. Beginning with the navigators, pirates and settlers of the Elizabethan era, and ending with the process of decolonization after World War Two, we will explore the diverse character and effects of British imperialism in the Americas, in Asia, in Africa, and the Pacific, and consider the legacies of the British empire in the contemporary world. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Thomas Travers (trt5)
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HIST 2931 Making of an Empire in China

The Great Qing (1644-1911), a multi-ethnic empire that conquered China proper from the northeastern borderlands, expanded into central Asia, Mongolia, and Tibet, and consolidated the China-based empire's control over its southwestern frontiers. An heir to both Chinese and Inner Asian traditions, the Qing empire laid the foundation for the modern Chinese nation-state. In this course, students will focus on the political, legal, social, cultural, and intellectual aspects of China's last empire. Students will also locate the early modern Chinese empire in a regional and global context, examining its power influence in Korea and Southeast Asia, and its encounters and interactions with Western and Japanese imperialist powers. These encounters and interactions contributed to the domestic turmoil and foreign invasions that would eventually led to the decline and demise of the Chinese empire, but they also gave rise to new forces that would shape the fate of modern China in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Yue Du (yd367)
Full details for HIST 2931 : Making of an Empire in China
HIST 2958 The Lands Between: Eastern Europe Between Empires and Nations

In the course we will study the history of the lands, peoples, and states of Eastern Europe during the 19th and 20th centuries as an integral part of modern Europlean and global history. We will ask what the East European experience can teach us about larger questions of cause and effect, agency in history, continuties and ruptures, the interplay between institutions, states and individuals, and the relationship between culture and politics. The course will define the region broadly, to include the lands stretching from today's Ukraine to Poland and the Balkans. But given the constant flux in borders, demographics, and sovereignities of this region, we will have to continually reconsider what and where Eastern Europe was.  We will survey key periods in the region's history, looking closely at cases from across Eastern Europe. We will learn about institutions, large-scale processes, personalities, events, cultural artifacts, and ideas using a combination of narrative history and literary essays, primary documents, works of fiction, and films.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Cristina Florea (cf476)
Full details for HIST 2958 : The Lands Between: Eastern Europe Between Empires and Nations
HIST 2960 East Asian Martial Arts

East Asian martial arts are often portrayed as ancient, timeless, and even mystical, but they have a history. In this course we explore how military techniques intended for use in war, policing, and banditry came to be practiced as methods of moral, spiritual, and physical self-cultivation. We examine the historical dynamics that shape martial arts transformation, transmission, and spread. All students conduct at least one field trip to a local martial arts demonstration or school, and consider the question: "What is East Asian about East Asian martial arts in Ithaca?" 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Tj Hinrichs (th289)
Full details for HIST 2960 : East Asian Martial Arts
HIST 3002 Supervised Research - Undergraduate

Independent Study based supervised research with a history faculty member.  Student must complete an on-line Independent Study form with a faculty supervisor to determine requirements and for permission.  Students then work with their faculty supervisor throughout the semester for successful completion and grading of the agreed upon requirements.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Edward Baptist (eeb36)
Full details for HIST 3002 : Supervised Research - Undergraduate
HIST 3181 Living in an Uncertain World: Science, Technology, and Risk

This course explores the history, sociology, and ethics of risk. In particular, we will focus on the complex and often ambiguous relationship between science, technology, and risk. A historical perspective shows how science and technology have generated risks while they have also played key roles in managing and solving those very risks. By examining several case studies, including 19th-century mining, the 1911 Triangle fire, nuclear science, the space shuttle disasters, asbestos litigation, Hurricane Katrina, and the contemporary financial crisis, we will consider how risk and ideas about risk have changed over time. By exploring different historical and cultural responses to risk, we will examine the sociopolitical dimensions of the definitions, perceptions, and management of risk both in the past and the present.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Rebecca Slayton (rs849)
Full details for HIST 3181 : Living in an Uncertain World: Science, Technology, and Risk
HIST 3200 The Viking Age

This course aims to familiarize students with the history of Scandinavia, ca. 800-1100 ad. Although well known as a dramatic chapter in medieval history, this period remains enigmatic and often misunderstood. Our goal will be to set Norse history within its European context, observing similarities with processes elsewhere in the medieval world, the better to perceive what makes the Norse unique. We will examine the social, economic and political activities of the Norsemen in continental Scandinavia, in Western and Eastern Europe, and in the North Atlantic. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Oren Falk (of24)
Full details for HIST 3200 : The Viking Age
HIST 3319 Small Countries in a Big World

There are 39 countries, 35 dependencies, and 6 disputed territories with populations of less than one million. There are 27 countries and one dependence with populations between one and five million. These places are located on every continent of the world. What historical contexts led to the existence of these polities, what are their roles in the modern world, what are their futures and why is it important to know about them? This course is both a survey and an analysis of them and of how the world looks from their vantages; it aims to open a view of the world much larger than the common focus on a limited number of large and medium-sized countries and to see how these small countries reveal a great diversity of human experience and  help us to understand the contemporary world.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Keith Taylor (kwt3)
Full details for HIST 3319 : Small Countries in a Big World
HIST 3519 History of State and Society in Modern Iran: Through Literature and Film

In the conditions of strict censorship and numerous limitations on various forms of political organization and activism, literature and cinema, especially Iran's internationally acclaimed art cinematography, have been the major outlets through which the social and political concerns of the Iranian society have been voiced throughout the modern period. The course explores major themes and periods in Iran's transition from the secular state of the Pahlavi dynasty to the religious state of the Islamic Republic in the 20th and 21st centuries. We will focus on social as well as political themes including the Anglo-Russo-American Occupation of Iran, the 1979 Islamic Revolution, U.S.-Iranian relations, Iraq-Iran War, the Green Movement and the crisis of Islamic government, Images of the West in Iran, Modern Youth Culture, Gender segregation, and the struggle between modernity and traditionalism in contemporary Iran. We will watch selected Iranian documentary and feature films and draw on modern Persian literature but will approach them not as art forms but as reflections of major socio-economic, political, and religious phenomena in Iran's modern history. We will read and watch what the Iranians wrote and produced, read and watched, in order to view and explain Iran and its relations with the West through the Iranian eyes. We will examine how the Iranians perceived themselves and the others, how they viewed their own governments and the West, what issues inspired and shaped their outlook outside the official censorship during the period in question. All readings are in English translation and the films are with English subtitles. The course includes lectures deconstructing political, religious, and social evolution of modern Iran as well as regular class discussions where we will address the issues in question from a variety of perspectives.

Distribution: (CA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Iago Gocheleishvili (ig44)
Full details for HIST 3519 : History of State and Society in Modern Iran: Through Literature and Film
HIST 3590 The Black Radical Tradition in the U.S.

This course provides a critical historical interrogation of what Black Marxism author Cedric Robinson called "the Black Radical Tradition." It will introduce students to some of the major currents in the history of black radical thought, action, and organizing, with an emphasis on the United States after World War I. It relies on social, political, and intellectual history to examine the efforts of black people who have sought not merely social reform, but a fundamental restructuring of political, economic, and social relations. We will define and evaluate radicalism in the shifting contexts of liberation struggles. We will explore dissenting visions of social organization and alternative definitions of citizenship, progress, and freedom. We will confront the meaning of the intersection of race, gender, class, and sexuality in social movements.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Russell Rickford (rr447)
Full details for HIST 3590 : The Black Radical Tradition in the U.S.
HIST 3677 The Search for the Historical Muhammad

As the founder of Islam Muhammad is one of the most influential figures in world history. An important source for his life is the Sira of Ibn Ishaq (d. ca. 761), a biography that opens with Muhammad's birth ca. 570 and ends with his death in 632. If we take the narrative reports in this text at face-value, then Muhammad appears to have been born in the full light of history. But is the Sira a reliable source for the historical Muhammad? In this seminar, we will read this text in its entirely and analyze selected episodes from a critical historical perspective, with special attention to biblical and post-biblical models for the writing of sacred history.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: David Powers (dsp4)
Full details for HIST 3677 : The Search for the Historical Muhammad
HIST 3960 Transnational Local: Southeast Asian History from the Eighteenth Century

Surveys the modern history of Southeast Asia with special attention to colonialism, the Chinese diaspora, and socio-cultural institutions.  Considers global transformations that brought "the West" into people's lives in Southeast Asia.  Focuses on the development of the modern nation-state, but also questions the narrative by incorporating groups that are typically excluded.  Assigns primary texts in translation. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Eric Tagliacozzo (et54)
Full details for HIST 3960 : Transnational Local: Southeast Asian History from the Eighteenth Century
HIST 4000 Introduction to Historical Research

This seminar is an introduction to the theory, practice, and art of historical research and writing. One key purpose of this course is to prepare students to work on longer research projects—especially an Honors Thesis. We will analyze the relationship between evidence and argument in historical writing; assess the methods and possible biases in various examples of historical writing; identify debates and sources relevant to research problems; think about how to use sources creatively; and discuss the various methodological issues associated with historical inquiry, analysis, and presentation.  This course is required for all students wishing to write an Honors Thesis in their senior year.  It should be taken in either semester of the junior year, or in spring of the sophomore year if you are planning to be abroad in your junior year.  NOTE: you do NOT need to be enrolled in the Honors Program in order to sign up for this course.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Eric Tagliacozzo (et54)
Full details for HIST 4000 : Introduction to Historical Research
HIST 4002 Honors Research

This course is designed to facilitate student's successful completion of their History Department Honors theses through regular deadlines and small group writing workshops.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Aaron Sachs (as475)
Full details for HIST 4002 : Honors Research
HIST 4122 Darwin and the Making of Histories

The power of a name is sometimes as great as that of an idea.  This course will study how Darwin became, then and now, an icon rather than just a Victorian naturalist.  We will look at writings of Darwin himself, especially On the Origin of Species (1859), Descent of Man (1871), and his short autobiography, and attempt to understand what they meant in their own time, how Darwin came to write them, and how his contemporaries helped to shape their future.  How did Victorian ideologies of gender, race, and class shape the production and reception of Darwin's work?  We will also examine the growth of "Darwinism" as a set of broader social and cultural movements, particularly in Britain and the United States.  Were eugenics movements examples or perversions of Darwinism?  Finally, we will consider how Darwin's name has been used by more recent evolutionary biologists and by American anti-evolutionists. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Peter Dear (prd3)
Full details for HIST 4122 : Darwin and the Making of Histories
HIST 4127 The Body Politic in Asia

Visions of bodily corruption preoccupy ruler and ruled alike and prompt campaigns for moral, medical, and legal reform in periods of both stability and revolution.  This seminar explores the links between political, sexual, and scientific revolutions in early modern and modern Asia.  The focus is on China and Japan, with secondary attention to South Asia and Korea.  Interaction with the West is a major theme.  Topics include disease control, birth control and population control, body modification, the history of masculinity, honorific violence and sexual violence, the science of sex, normative and stigmatized sexualities, fashion, disability, and eugenics.  The course begins with an exploration of regimes of the body in "traditional" Asian cultures.  The course then turns to the medicalization and modernization of the body under the major rival political movements in Asia: feminism, imperialism, nationalism, and communism.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Kristin Roebuck (kar79)
Full details for HIST 4127 : The Body Politic in Asia
HIST 4291 Marriage and Divorce in the African Context

Marriage was the widely expected norm within African societies. The institution was an important marker of adulthood, linking individuals and lineages in a network of mutual cooperation and support. Marriage practices and the concomitant gender expectations varied significantly between societies, and over time. As a result, marriage and divorce are especially rich terrain for exploring social history, women's agency, discursive constructions of 'women', masculinity and gender relations of power. This course explores some of the newest scholarship on marriage by Africanist scholars. The readings demonstrate the wide cultural variety in marriage as well as the dynamic relationship between marriage and historical change. They especially highlight women's roles and expectations in marriage, masculinity and the ways men and women negotiated the rules and boundaries of marriage. 

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Judith Byfield (jab632)
Full details for HIST 4291 : Marriage and Divorce in the African Context
HIST 4390 Reconstruction and the New South

This course focuses on the American South in the nineteenth century as it made the transition from Reconstruction to new forms of social organization and patterns of race relations. Reconstruction will be considered from a sociopolitical perspective, concentrating on the experiences of the freed people. The New South emphasis will include topics on labor relations, economic and political changes, new cultural alliances, the rise of agrarianism, and legalization of Jim Crow.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Margaret Washington (mw26)
Full details for HIST 4390 : Reconstruction and the New South
HIST 4466 Lightscapes

Sunset, polar night, Times Square, satellites in space—these are just four lightscapes. Light is essential to humanity in multifaceted ways. It both reflects and shapes human interactions with the environment. Yet light is also complex, multiple, and contested. This seminar explores diverse lightscapes in varied contexts. How do we know light? How does light define and shape landscapes and nightscapes? How have people managed, transformed, and valued different lightscapes over time? This course draws primarily from the history of science and technology, STS, and environmental history with forays into anthropology, environmental humanities, geography, media studies, and more. We will examine texts and images, and engage with lightscapes at Cornell and in Ithaca. The seminar culminates in a class project centered on student-selected lightscapes. 

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Sara Pritchard (sbp65)
Full details for HIST 4466 : Lightscapes
HIST 4543 State and Society in the Late Ottoman Empire

This seminar will examine the relationship between the imperial, provincial, and local state apparatuses and the various sections of society as the Ottoman Empire underwent a steady transition from the so-called Ancient Régime through the constructs of the so-called modern state. This course will look at specific case studies from across the empire, examining the similarities and difference, across provinces, and wherever possible, across imperial domains. From a theoretical point of view, the discussion will not simply focus on how the relationship between state and society changed, but will also investigate the construct of the separation of state and society conceptually, over the period of 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Mostafa Minawi (mm2492)
Full details for HIST 4543 : State and Society in the Late Ottoman Empire
HIST 4551 Race and the University

What is a university, what does it do, and how does it do it? Moving out from these more general questions, this seminar will focus on a more specific set of questions concerning the place of race within the university. What kinds of knowledge are produced in the 20th- century U.S. university? Why is it, and how is it, that certain knowledge formations and disciplines come to be naturalized or privileged within the academy? How has the emergence of fields of inquiry such as Ethnic Studies (with an epistemological platform built on the articulations of race, class and gender) brought to the fore (if not brought to crisis) some of the more vexing questions that strike at the core of the idea of the university as the pre-eminent site of disinterested knowledge? This seminar will give students the opportunity to examine American higher education's (particularly its major research institutions) historical instantiation of the relations amongst knowledge, power, equality and democracy.

Distribution: (SBA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Derek Chang (dsc37)
Sunn Wong (ssw6)
Full details for HIST 4551 : Race and the University
HIST 4647 The Energy Transition in the Nineteenth Century

This course explores the epochal transition from organic to mineral energy sources during the nineteenth century. The idea of an "energy transition" seems to pinpoint the underlying material transformation that wrought the modern world and the critical necessity of saving modernity from itself. On both counts, it is important to try to understand the shift from an organic to a mineral energy regime that occurred most decisively in the 1800s. Approaching the topic from multiple angles, the course aims to illuminate the structures, experiences and meanings of a transitional energy regime. For longer description and instructor bio, visit societyhumanities.as.cornell.edu/courses.

Academic Career: UG Instructor: Ariel Ron (ar2422)
Full details for HIST 4647 : The Energy Transition in the Nineteenth Century
HIST 4667 Nationalism(s) in the Arab World

This seminar examines the emergence of national identities, nationalist movements, and nation-states in the modern Arab world. First, we will examine various approaches to the question of nationalism, using Benedict Anderson's Imagined Communities as our basic reference. We will then test the applicability of these general theories to the Arab World through our examination of specific case studies.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Ziad Fahmy (zaf3)
Full details for HIST 4667 : Nationalism(s) in the Arab World
HIST 4672 Europe in Flames: World War II and its Aftermath

In this seminar, we will examine the war's major turning points on the European theater in order to understand not only the nature of this conflict, but also the forces that made it possible. We will look closely at the two superpowers that clashed on the continent, turning Europe into a veritable inferno for the people caught in between. What kinds of societies were Nazi Germany and Stalin's Russia? How did the war affect them and their regimes? We will also survey the spaces in between to discover why these two vast empires competed so ruthlessly over them. We will find out how the populations caught between these two giants made ends meet, both by cooperating and by resisting the great powers. Although some knowledge of what was going on at the front will be helpful, this class is not a course in military history. As a result, it focuses primarily on the social and cultural dimensions of war - which it explores through a variety of sources, including fiction, memoirs, and films. Topics include the occupation and destruction of Poland; the fall of France; Hitler's Europe and the Holocaust; resistance and collaboration with Nazi occupation forces across Europe; the Soviet experience of war; as well as the effect of war on family life, politics, and societies in Europe.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Cristina Florea (cf476)
Full details for HIST 4672 : Europe in Flames: World War II and its Aftermath
HIST 4723 Scandal, Corruption, and the Making of the British Empire in India

As the English East India Company conquered vast Indian territories in the late 1700s, it was besieged with allegations of corruption against its leading officials. This course will examine the origins of modern imperialism through the lens of corruption, exploring how corruption scandals became sites for generating new ideas and practices of empire. As well as reading prominent figures of the European enlightenment, including Adam Smith, Edmund Burke, and Denis Diderot, we will also study major Indian writers on corruption, including the historian Ghulam Husain, and the liberal reformer, Ram Mohan Roy. Students will conduct primary research into eighteenth century imperial corruption scandals, and consider the larger question of how modern ideas of political reform grew out of early modern theories of corruption.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Thomas Travers (trt5)
Full details for HIST 4723 : Scandal, Corruption, and the Making of the British Empire in India
HIST 4963 China's Early Modern

Theories of modernization have inspired, informed, and plagued histories of middle and late imperial China.  For the Song-Qing eras (roughly 10th-19th centuries), comparative studies have variously found and sought to explain modernization emerging earlier than in Europe, an absence of modernization, or alternative paths of modernization.  Regional models have argued for pan-East Asian systems and patterns of modernization.  Global models have argued that China had a vital role in European development as a provenance of modernizing institutions and ideas, as a source of exploited resources, or otherwise as an integral part of global systems.  In this course we explore these historiographical debates and develop critical perspectives, including approaches to escaping Eurocentric and teleological frameworks.

Distribution: (HA-AS)
Academic Career: UG Instructor: Tj Hinrichs (th289)
Full details for HIST 4963 : China's Early Modern
HIST 6000 Graduate Research Seminar

This seminar is devoted entirely to the writing of a substantive research paper, the dissertation prospectus, or fellowship proposal. Students will share research proposals, annotated bibliographies, outlines and portions of rough drafts. Class meetings will be devoted to discussing what students have produced, and general issues associated with constructing the dissertation prospectus and research papers.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Oren Falk (of24)
Full details for HIST 6000 : Graduate Research Seminar
HIST 6006 History Colloquium Series
Academic Career: GR Instructor: Raymond Craib (rbc23)
Full details for HIST 6006 : History Colloquium Series
HIST 6127 The Body Politic in Asia

Visions of bodily corruption preoccupy ruler and ruled alike and prompt campaigns for moral, medical, and legal reform in periods of both stability and revolution.  This seminar explores the links between political, sexual, and scientific revolutions in early modern and modern Asia.  The focus is on China and Japan, with secondary attention to South Asia and Korea.  Interaction with the West is a major theme.  Topics include disease control, birth control and population control, body modification, the history of masculinity, honorific violence and sexual violence, the science of sex, normative and stigmatized sexualities, fashion, disability, and eugenics.  The course begins with an exploration of regimes of the body in "traditional" Asian cultures.  The course then turns to the medicalization and modernization of the body under the major rival political movements in Asia: feminism, imperialism, nationalism, and communism.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Kristin Roebuck (kar79)
Full details for HIST 6127 : The Body Politic in Asia
HIST 6164 Trans: Bodies, Sexes and Histories

This course explores the changing historical relationship between the body's biological sex, individual subjectivity, and identity. It asks how culture shapes scientific understandings and possibilities of sex, gender and identity. And it seeks to make historical sense of the shifts that have enabled a revolutionary increase in transgender existence today by comparing histories of transgender in specific cultural contexts. When possible, we analyze the role of subjectivity—one's sense of one's relationship to the physical body—in the politics of transgender identities. We examined and critique contemporary theories about the category of "transgender" and its relationship to the body, self, and physical sex, which is understood as malleable rather than fixed.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Tamara Loos (tl14)
Full details for HIST 6164 : Trans: Bodies, Sexes and Histories
HIST 6291 Marriage and Divorce in the African Context

Marriage was the widely expected norm within African societies.  The institution was an important marker of adulthood, linking individuals and lineages in a network of mutual cooperation and support.  Marriage practices and the concomitant gender expectations varied significantly between societies, and over time.  As a result, marriage and divorce are especially rich terrain for exploring social history, women's agency, discursive constructions of 'women', masculinity and gender relations of power.  This course explores some of the newest scholarship on marriage by Africanist scholars.  The readings demonstrate the wide cultural variety in marriage as well as the dynamic relationship between marriage and historical change.  They especially highlight women's roles and expectations in marriage, masculinity and the ways men and women negotiated the rules and boundaries of marriage.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Judith Byfield (jab632)
Full details for HIST 6291 : Marriage and Divorce in the African Context
HIST 6322 Readings in 20th Century African-American History

This graduate seminar will explore major currents in historical writing about African-American life and culture in the twentieth century. Focusing on social, intellectual, and labor history, we will identify key themes in recent studies of the formation of modern black communities and politics before and after World War Two. The course will place special emphasis on class, gender, social movements, and migration.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Russell Rickford (rr447)
Full details for HIST 6322 : Readings in 20th Century African-American History
HIST 6335 Making Public Queer History

In this course we will examine LGBTQ+ history in the United States with a focus on its recovery and public representation—what are the stakes of researching, preserving, and commemorating the LGBTQ+ past? We will investigate how archival, scholarly, curatorial, and creative practices shape popular conceptions of LGBTQ+ life, politics, and culture, and how those practices and conceptions have changed with evolving understandings of race, gender, sexuality, and oppression. Students will build skills in archival research and historical interpretation and explore possibilities and challenges in building archives and presenting LGBTQ+ history in a variety of public contexts—museums, libraries, monuments, movies and television, and community-based oral history projects. For their final project, students will locate and research a selection of archival materials (periodicals, letters, pamphlets, songs, advertisements, etc.) either online or at Cornell Library's Rare and Manuscript Collections, producing a final research paper and a proposal for a public history project.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Stephen Vider (sv484)
Full details for HIST 6335 : Making Public Queer History
HIST 6378 Key Texts in European Cultural-Intellectual History

This graduate seminar focuses on some of the key texts to have set the contours of modern historical research. Readings will include works by Arendt, Bakhtin, Benjamin, Bourdieu, Burckhardt, Foucault, Koselleck, and more. The course is intended especially for students focusing on European cultural-intellectual history, but open to all graduate students interested in historical thought and method.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Claudia Verhoeven (cv89)
Full details for HIST 6378 : Key Texts in European Cultural-Intellectual History
HIST 6391 Reconstruction and the New South

This course focuses on the American South in the nineteenth century as it made the transition from Reconstruction to new forms of social organization and patterns of race relations. Reconstruction will be considered from a sociopolitical perspective, concentrating on the experiences of the freed people. The New South emphasis will include topics on labor relations, economic and political changes, new cultural alliances, the rise of agrarianism, and legalization of Jim Crow.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Margaret Washington (mw26)
Full details for HIST 6391 : Reconstruction and the New South
HIST 6543 State and Society in the Late Ottoman Empire

This seminar will examine the relationship between the imperial, provincial, and local state apparatuses and the various sections of society as the Ottoman Empire underwent a steady transition from the so-called Ancient Régime through the constructs of the so-called modern state. This course will look at specific case studies from across the empire, examining the similarities and difference, across provinces, and wherever possible, across imperial domains. From a theoretical point of view, the discussion will not simply focus on how the relationship between state and society changed, but will also investigate the construct of the separation of state and society conceptually, over the period of 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Mostafa Minawi (mm2492)
Full details for HIST 6543 : State and Society in the Late Ottoman Empire
HIST 6647 The Energy Transition in the Nineteenth Century

This course explores the epochal transition from organic to mineral energy sources during the nineteenth century. The idea of an "energy transition" seems to pinpoint the underlying material transformation that wrought the modern world and the critical necessity of saving modernity from itself. On both counts, it is important to try to understand the shift from an organic to a mineral energy regime that occurred most decisively in the 1800s. Approaching the topic from multiple angles, the course aims to illuminate the structures, experiences and meanings of a transitional energy regime. For longer description and instructor bio, visit societyhumanities.as.cornell.edu/courses.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Ariel Ron (ar2422)
Full details for HIST 6647 : The Energy Transition in the Nineteenth Century
HIST 6667 Nationalism(s) in the Arab World

This seminar examines the emergence of national identities, nationalist movements, and nation-states in the modern Arab world. First, we will examine various approaches to the question of nationalism, using Benedict Anderson's Imagined Communities as our basic reference. We will then test the applicability of these general theories to the Arab World through our examination of specific case studies.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Ziad Fahmy (zaf3)
Full details for HIST 6667 : Nationalism(s) in the Arab World
HIST 6672 Europe in Flames: World War II and its Aftermath

In this seminar, we will examine the war's major turning points on the European theater in order to understand not only the nature of this conflict, but also the forces that made it possible. We will look closely at the two superpowers that clashed on the continent, turning Europe into a veritable inferno for the people caught in between. What kinds of societies were Nazi Germany and Stalin's Russia? How did the war affect them and their regimes? We will also survey the spaces in between to discover why these two vast empires competed so ruthlessly over them. We will find out how the populations caught between these two giants made ends meet, both by cooperating and by resisting the great powers. Although some knowledge of what was going on at the front will be helpful, this class is not a course in military history. As a result, it focuses primarily on the social and cultural dimensions of war - which it explores through a variety of sources, including fiction, memoirs, and films. Topics include the occupation and destruction of Poland; the fall of France; Hitler's Europe and the Holocaust; resistance and collaboration with Nazi occupation forces across Europe; the Soviet experience of war; as well as the effect of war on family life, politics, and societies in Europe.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Cristina Florea (cf476)
Full details for HIST 6672 : Europe in Flames: World War II and its Aftermath
HIST 6677 The Search for the Historical Muhammad

As the founder of Islam Muhammad is one of the most influential figures in world history. An important source for his life is the Sira of Ibn Ishaq (d. ca. 761), a biography that opens with Muhammad's birth ca. 570 and ends with his death in 632. If we take the narrative reports in this text at face-value, then Muhammad appears to have been born in the full light of history. But is the Sira a reliable source for the historical Muhammad? In this seminar, we will read this text in its entirely and analyze selected episodes from a critical historical perspective, with special attention to biblical and post-biblical models for the writing of sacred history.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: David Powers (dsp4)
Full details for HIST 6677 : The Search for the Historical Muhammad
HIST 6715 A Global South: Chile, the Pacific and the World
Academic Career: GR Instructor: Raymond Craib (rbc23)
Full details for HIST 6715 : A Global South: Chile, the Pacific and the World
HIST 6723 Scandal, Corruption, and the Making of the British Empire in India

As the English East India Company conquered vast Indian territories in the late 1700s, it was besieged with allegations of corruption against its leading officials. This course will examine the origins of modern imperialism through the lens of corruption, exploring how corruption scandals became sites for generating new ideas and practices of empire. As well as reading prominent figures of the European enlightenment, including Adam Smith, Edmund Burke, and Denis Diderot, we will also study major Indian writers on corruption, including the historian Ghulam Husain, and the liberal reformer, Ram Mohan Roy. Students will conduct primary research into eighteenth century imperial corruption scandals, and consider the larger question of how modern ideas of political reform grew out of early modern theories of corruption.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Thomas Travers (trt5)
Full details for HIST 6723 : Scandal, Corruption, and the Making of the British Empire in India
HIST 6960 Transnational Local: Southeast Asian History from the Eighteenth Century

Surveys the modern history of Southeast Asia with special attentions to colonialism, the Chinese diaspora, and socio-cultural institutions. Considers global transformations that brought "the West" into people's lives in Southeast Asia. Focuses on the development of the modern nation-state, but also questions the narrative by incorporating groups that are typically excluded. Assigns primary texts in translation.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Eric Tagliacozzo (et54)
Full details for HIST 6960 : Transnational Local: Southeast Asian History from the Eighteenth Century
HIST 6963 China's Early Modern

Theories of modernization have inspired, informed, and plagued histories of middle and late imperial China.  For the Song-Qing eras (roughly 10th-19th centuries), comparative studies have variously found and sought to explain modernization emerging earlier than in Europe, an absence of modernization, or alternative paths of modernization.  Regional models have argued for pan-East Asian systems and patterns of modernization.  Global models have argued that China had a vital role in European development as a provenance of modernizing institutions and ideas, as a source of exploited resources, or otherwise as an integral part of global systems.  In this course we explore these historiographical debates and develop critical perspectives, including approaches to escaping Eurocentric and teleological frameworks.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Tj Hinrichs (th289)
Full details for HIST 6963 : China's Early Modern
HIST 7689 Roman History: Approaches and Methods

Offers a survey of Roman history, 700 BCE-500 CE in the lectures and both an introduction to the different disciplines studying the non-literary sources for Roman history (epigraphy, archaeology, among others) and a discussion of important topics relevant to Roman social history (travel, voluntary associations, death and burial, etc) in the discussion section.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Eric Rebillard (er97)
Full details for HIST 7689 : Roman History: Approaches and Methods
HIST 7937 Proseminar in Peace Studies

The Proseminar in Peace Studies offers a multidisciplinary review of issues related to peace and conflict at the graduate level. The course is led by the director of the Judith Reppy Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies and is based on the Institute's weekly seminar series, featuring outside visitors and Cornell faculty. 

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Rebecca Slayton (rs849)
Full details for HIST 7937 : Proseminar in Peace Studies
HIST 8004 Supervised Reading

Independent Study based supervised reading with a history faculty/field member.

Academic Career: GR Instructor: Edward Baptist (eeb36)
Full details for HIST 8004 : Supervised Reading
HIST 8010 Independent Study-PIRIP
Academic Career: GR Instructor: Raymond Craib (rbc23)
Full details for HIST 8010 : Independent Study-PIRIP