510:502 Historian's Craft: II (Intro Course)
Professor Belind Davis
Introduction to the professional study of history, to the diverse methodological approaches of current historiography, and to the place of historical scholarship in both academic and non-academic spheres. First year graduate students only.
510:509 Teaching of History
Professor Susan Schrepfer
This course has been designed for doctoral students in history who plan to teach undergraduate courses. We will meet weekly to discuss designing courses, honing teaching skills, and navigating common problems encountered in the classroom. In addition to the specific reading below, we will explore material available from such sources as AHA Perspectives, the History Teacher, and the Chronicle of Higher Education. We will look at the AHA website on teaching and other sites with model syllabus and teaching support material. In addition to completing weekly readings and participating in class discussions, you will have three formal assignments.
First, you are to craft two syllabi, one for a broadly synthetic introductory course that you may expect to teach at some time. Your second syllabus will frame an upper division course in one of your primary fields. The format of these syllabi will be twofold: a hard copy, or “static” version, such as one would distribute the first day of class, and a web-based, or “dynamic” version, amenable to revision and used for students as an online course record. The latter will logically be keyed to Sakai unless you expect to be teaching soon at another campus (i.e. Rutgers-Newark).
Second, you are to develop five detailed, individual class sessions designed to accompany either your introductory syllabus or your upper division syllabus. Your lesson plans may take the form of a hard copy supplement to your static syllabus, or as components of the web-based version.
Third, you must deliver a lecture (between forty and eighty minutes in length) as a guest speaker in one of the History Department’s spring undergraduate courses. Since arrangements for these opportunities are often complicated, negotiations and scheduling with supervising faculty should be undertaken as quickly as possible. Everyone will present a preliminary version of their guest lecture to “The Teaching of History” class, ideally during weeks seven, eight, or nine. The guest lectures may be based upon one of the lesson plans submitted for this course. The guest lectures should be slotted, preferably, shortly after the spring break. Each student will attend one of their classmate’s guest lectures and be prepared to discuss its strengths and weaknesses.
510:511 Colloquium in Comparative History
Professor Michael Adas
The Global and Comparative Colloquium will focus on the Age of Expansion and Exploration, one of the most pivotal and controversial eras in world history. In recent decades the sub-field of world history has been revived and in many ways profoundly transformed. As a result, it has emerged as one of the most dynamic, innovative, and visible arenas of research and publishing in the discipline and a core component of many university history programs both in the U.S. and internationally. Designed for both Masters’ students in the Global and Comparative Program and PhD students minoring in Global and Comparative History, the course covers themes, areas and centuries that are essential parts of post-1500 World History courses at all levels.
Through major works dealing with the Early Modern Era (roughly 1450-1750), participants in the colloquium will explore major approaches to researching, writing and teaching global and comparative history. Drawing on some of the pioneering work by Marshall Hodgson and some of his more prominent successors, we will examine in detail and seek, where appropriate, to decenter the place of Western Europe in the global processes and transformations which define the age of exploration and expansion. Participants in the seminar will consider works which approach key, non-European culture areas – in the Islamic arc, East and South Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, the Americas (including the Caribbean) and the Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions – in depth and on their own terms. We will also discuss the key components of the comparative method and the challenges of cross-cultural analysis, and the importance of in-depth case studies, the mastery of relevant theoretical works, the literature of the sub-fields chosen for comparison, and critical primary sources. Some of the key themes and topics covered will include the means and motives for expansion and exploration on the part of states and empires in various regions of the globe; the spread of plantations and chattel slavery; the “military revolution:” the impact of science, technology and medicine: shifts in gender relationships and social status; the sources and effects of racial ideologies; conquest and resistance; the expansion of commerce and the rise of capitalism; and the exchange of plants, animals, humans and diseases among the culture areas and regions of Afro-Eurasia and the Americas. Participants will read and track key debates relating to books (or selected portions of same) and articles by influential scholars in the field and their often equally prominent critics, including Sidney Mintz, Geoffrey Parker, Alfred Crosby, Igna Clendinnen, Kenneth Pomeranz, George Fredrickson, and Eric Williams.
In addition to active engagement in ongoing group deliberations, each participant will be expected to co-organize and lead at least one discussion session that focuses on areas and issues that they are particularly interested in pursuing as historians. Together with a short review of the readings chosen by each student in the groups leading one of the weekly discussions, each participant will write a review essay on a book or essays on issues/themes that are of particular interest to her or him. The review will encompass a broader survey of the literature that results from each of the group critiques and will constitute the major written assignment for the course. We will also discuss ways of developing and teaching comparative and global courses with broad appeal.
510:222 Comparative Colonialism in Asia
Professor Chie Ikeya
This course offers a comparative study of colonial encounters in Asia, and explores various theoretical approaches used to analyze colonialism and its relationship to world history. Recent scholarship on the Japanese colonial empire has highlighted the continued failure of the Euro-American academia to make any concerted reference to Japan, the only “non-Western” colonial power, in its critique of colonialism. Challenging this systemic disavowal of comparability, this course draws scholars and critics of European, American, and Japanese colonial projects in Asia and the so-called semi-colonies of China and Siam into comparative conversations about colonialism and its role in shaping transcultural contacts and global interconnections. It considers specific and wide-ranging historical experiences of colonialism—the way particular individuals and groups negotiated the possibilities and constraints of colonial rule and shaped colonial ideologies, institutions, and practices—as well as important intersections in the goals, strategies, and outcomes of different colonial projects. It aims to problematize the dichotomy of colonizer/colonized by critically examining interactions and relations of intimacy, inequality, and contestation formed across the putative colonizer/secular/modern/West and colonized/religious/traditional/Asia divide.
510:539 Colloquium in Women’s & Gender History
Professor Leah DeVun
This colloquium considers how we understand the experience of embodiment. What happens to our basic beliefs about gender, race, and even humanity if the “naturalness” of the body is questioned? Readings will explore a range of themes, including sexual and racial difference, disability, disease, body modification, posthuman and immaterial bodies, human-animal boundaries, and other topics.
Course Requirements: Attendance and engaged participation are basic expectations of the course (20%). Students will prepare four response papers (approximately 2 pages) on books drawn from the syllabus (40%). These responses must be submitted via email on the day BEFORE the reading is to be discussed. At least two responses must be completed before spring break lest everyone decide to do them at the end of the semester. Students will also write a final essay of approximately 15-20 pages (40%). In this essay, students will select a topic germane to the course (subject to approval by the instructor) and prepare a historiographical essay that explores the literature on this topic. Please feel free to make use of assigned and unassigned readings.
510:541 Colloquium in Global History: Collecting the World: Objects, Collections and Museums from Antiquity to the Present
Professor James Delbourgo
This graduate colloquium aims to explore a vital cluster of themes in contemporary scholarly and critical inquiry: the relations between objects, materiality, knowledge, collecting and museums. Our approach will be historical, and chronological, while reading important theoretical statements, and aiming to move beyond an exclusively Euro-American focus to a more global framework. We will cover objects and collections in the ancient world (Alexandria and Pliny); Byzantine iconoclasm and medieval relics; Baroque universalism in European cabinets of curiosity; Enlightenment classification and the divergence of canons of knowledge/taste in science and art; early modern global commercial networks, accumulation and collections; the first universal public museums (the British Museum vs. the Louvre); Victorian museology in imperial perspective; global cross-cultural exchanges and collections (India, the Pacific, China, the Middle East); commodity fetishism and thing theory in the 19th and 20th centuries; the modern art museum; postcolonial restitution politics; and the virtual. There will likely be fieldtrips to New York museums. The instructor is currently writing a book about early modern global collecting focused on the career of Hans Sloane, whose collections the British Museum was created to house in 1753, as the world’s first public museum. We will also draw on material from this project, including discussions of collaboration between academic and museum communities, based on the instructor’s experience in “Reconstructing Sloane”: an ongoing collaboration to reorganize Sloane’s large surviving collections of specimens, objects, images and manuscripts in London’s Natural History Museum, the British Museum and the British Library.
510:543 Seminar in Cultural History
Professor Jackson Lears
Cultural history is the study of how people make meaning, using whatever materials are at their disposal--words, things, gestures, sounds. The boundaries of this field overlap with social and political history, as well as with anthropology, literary criticism, art history, and music history. The texts that cultural historians study range from sermons and speeches and novels to roller coasters and radios and fashionable suits, from public policy to private reflection. Pretty much everything is grist for the cultural historian’s mill.
Each student in this course will work on a research project of his or her choosing, producing a proposal and two drafts in consultation with the instructor and the other students. This is an opportunity to get some traction on your dissertation (and/or a separate article) in collaboration with your colleagues.
The assumption behind this course is that all of human experience can be approached from a cultural history perspective—collective fantasies and half-conscious yearnings as well as social movements and systematic arguments. Consequently the seminar welcomes research projects in a wide variety of topic areas: gender and race relations, political economy, science and medicine, the histories of sexuality and capitalism, not to mention others that haven’t occurred to me yet (but might occur to you.) The chronological and geographical boundaries of this course are fluid, but will mainly encompass the United States and its global connections during the 19th and 20th centuries.
510:550 Seminar in the History of Women II
Professor Barbara Cooper
Continuation of year long course; no new participants.
510:551 Seminar in World Comparative History: Cultural Memory
Professor Yael Zerubavel
Cultural memory introduces an interdisciplinary approach to the study of memory, drawing on historical, sociological, anthropological, and literary perspectives. The course focuses on the cultural production of the past and the politics of commemoration from a cross-cultural, comparative perspective. It explores the relations between history and memory, autobiographical and collective memory, memory and identity, space and memory, amnesia, countermemory, trauma and postmemory. We will examine a range of sites of memory, including commemorative narratives, commemorative rituals, monuments, museums, memoirs and fiction, photographs and films. Students are required to prepare the readings and write short responses for class discussion as well as develop their own research projects, selecting a topic according to their field of interest and disciplinary perspective and methodology. A final paper (around 25 pp) will present the research and the discussion of relevant theoretical issues drawing on the readings.
510:559 Problems and Directed Readings in American History III
Professor Dorothy Sue Cobble
This course engages key scholarly texts and debates in twentieth-century U.S. history. Topics include, among others: America in the world; transnational movements, identities and networks; Populism, Progressivism and the New Deal; civil rights, human rights, and freedom struggles; Cold War politics; women’s movements; families and sexualities; the rise of conservatism; global capitalisms. Particular attention is given to evaluating competing historical interpretations, situating individual texts in relation to the larger historical literature, and developing student proposals for future research. The course is also designed to prepare students for the U.S. History PhD exams and for teaching U.S. history. Course requirements: active participation in class discussions, two classroom oral presentations, two short review essays, and a longer historiographical paper.
510:574 Seminar in African American History
Professors Mia Bay and Beryl Satter
510:599 Problems and Directed Readings in Modern European History
Professor Paul Hanebrink
The PDR in Modern European history is meant to provide the foundation for further study of the central problems in this field. The emphasis will be on identifying the major themes around which we can frame a history of modern Europe – here understood as the period beginning with the French Revolution and going to the present (or at least till 1989). Readings will focus on possible answers to this question; we will be especially attentive to the ways in which methodological choices and political preferences have shaped the “master narratives” of modern European history. What do these narratives highlight? What is omitted? In addition, we will be interested in questions of periodization (Is it useful to talk about the “long” 19th century or the “short” 20th century?; Can we identify the turning points in modern European history?) as well as definition (what is Europe? Who is European?) Specialists in other fields are welcome.
510:615 Seminar in European History
Professor Belinda Davis
This two-semester course is an opportunity to pursue an original research project on a subject of your choice: a chance to try out a dissertation topic and to see where it takes you. This is a core course for Europeanists. However, non-Europeanists needing to complete a seminar may also enroll, with permission of the instructor, and will correspondingly pursue research in their own area of focus.
By the end of the first semester, you will have completed such research as is possible with regionally available sources, and will write up a preliminary draft based on that research. During the summer, it is hoped you will have the opportunity to pursue research in Europe (or elsewhere, as needed). Next fall, you will work on a final draft of the paper. The bulk of the work for this course will be identifying, researching, and writing up your project. However, you will also be responsible for offering serious commentary to your colleagues in class on their ongoing projects, just as you will benefit from the same. Finally, we will have some common class readings and presentations to help us consider issues of researching and analyzing materials, constructing an argument, and writing it up in compelling fashion.