HIST 4773 Twice A Stranger: Transnational Figures and Their Stories (also CAPS 4773) (GB)(HA-AS, HST-AS, GLC-AS)(HAN)
Monday: 2:00-4:30 plus Independent Research
Professor Mara Du
What does it mean to travel across political and cultural boundaries? How are people’s thought, behavior, and identity shaped by such experiences and vice versa? How do historians explore and represent transnational and transcultural figures and their stories? Is it possible for historians to help the audience not only understand but also “experience” transnationality through narrative? The relationship between analytical history and history as narrative is complex and everchanging. We build on this relationship not by theorizing it but by examining history works and practicing writing history, in the context of lives and stories of transnational figures, that integrates analysis and narrative. Students read analytical works and narratives about people who operated, willingly or not, in multiple geographical, political, cultural, and religious worlds. While reflecting on the pros and cons of approaching history writing in different ways, students also develop skills in working on primary sources and develop projects on transnational figures of their own choice from any areas or historical times, from proposal to full-fledged papers.