Wednesday, January 11, 2012

World History II

Posted below is my new syllabus for World History II. The list of themes seems weaker to me than it does in my World History I class, but that may be because specific events and developments become more important in this one. The biggest experiment is the "U.S. and the World" theme, which I'm developing in response to the particular situation of Shippensburg University, where few students who are not history majors take U.S. history. I'm actually enthusiastic about developing this as an aspect of world history education, however. Our department is built for it.

HIS 106: World History II
204 Dauphin Humanities Center, MWF 9:00 a.m.
Dr. Brian J. Ulrich

Office: 201 Dauphin Humanities Center, ex. 1736
Office Hours: 11 – 11:50 a.m. MWF, 1-3:00 p.m. W

“History cannot give us a program for the future, but it can give us a fuller understanding of ourselves, and of our common humanity, so that we can better face the future.”
-Robert Penn Warren

“I want to start discussions. Arguments. Preferably a bar fight or two.”
– J. Michael Straczinski

Required Texts:

Voyages in World History, Vol.II, Valerie Hansen and Kenneth R. Curtis
The Origins of the Modern World, 2nd Ed., Robert Marks
America in the World: United States History in Global Context, Carl Guarneri

Electronic reserves found on Blackboard

Course Overview:

World History I is specifically required under the “Required Skills and Competencies” category of the Shippensburg University general education program. As such, educational objectives reflect not only historical content, but skills important for success at Shippensburg University and after graduation. In addition, it means that to ensure there are enough seats for future students, any student who drops this course may not be able to enroll in it again during a spring or fall semester at this institution.

In this course we will frequently revisit the following themes:

1.) Identity construction – People have many different identities, which can include national, religious, and ethnic. An understanding of how these are formed is among the most important elements of core curricula around the United States, and is crucial to understanding many developments in history over the past few centuries, which have seen the rise of countries and political movements and the outbreak of wars based on such identities.
2.) Economics – Making a living is among the most basic human activities, and during the last 500 years, the world has come to be dominated by monetized market economies shaped by economic principles. In addition to covering basic concepts such as credit and commodity markets, we will introduce major economic philosophies such as mercantilism, laissez-faire capitalism, and socialism in their historical context.
3.) Technology – Technology impacts societies in many ways, from new forms of communication actualizing new communities to affecting how goods and services are produced and delivered and hence how people go about making a living. Examples of technological change will occur from time to time in this course, including the critical developments associated with the Industrial Revolution.
4.) The United States – The United States is often considered alone, but it is part of the larger world. This course will explore the American experience and the idea of American exceptionalism by relating American history to broader global trends and developments.

With these themes as our focus, assignments will ensure you develop a foundational understanding of world history since 1500, an ability to write clearly and think critically about world history since 1500, an ability to analyze historical events and trends effectively, and the cognitive tools of inquiry-based research. There will be three exams during the course of the semester, which will not all have the same format. The final exam will emphasize the last section of the course, but still have a cumulative component. On March 19, you will also hand in an “Identity Construction Essay.” You will receive an assignment guide for this essay in mid-February. Deadlines and exam dates are noted on the “Schedule of Readings and Major Assignments” below. Attendance and participation are mandatory. Students are allowed to miss three classes. After that, your total participation grade will be lowered by 5% for each additional absence. Late papers will be accepted only if we do not discuss the assignment in class in a substantial way, and then with a penalty usually amounting to one full letter grade. Late take-home exams are acceptable only under extraordinary circumstances. Any student who has a reason for missing an exam must make inform the professor as soon as possible.

Students should complete all readings for the course on the date listed. You will not be allowed to make up reading quizzes. Pages include primary sources found in the “Visual Evidence” and “Movement of Ideas” sections. The insets on “World History in Today’s World” are handled separately and are indicated by the abbreviation “WHTW.”


Quizzes and Reading Thoughts: 15%
Identity Construction Essay: 15%
First Exam: 15%
Second Exam: 20%
Final Exam: 25%
Participation: 10%

Schedule of Readings and Major Assignments

January 18 – Course Introduction
Part I – The Early Modern World
January 20 – Marks, pp. 1-16; Guarneri, pp. 1-12; Hansen and Curtis, p. 767 WHTW, p. 966 WHTW (historiography)

January 23 – Marks, pp. 21-39; Guarneri, pp. 12-22 (agrarian societies)
January 25 – Marks, pp. 67-74; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 541-5; Guarneri, pp. 24-35 (polities of 1500)
January 27 – Marks, pp. 43-66; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 431-36, 559 WHTW (European expansion)

January 30 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 450-60; Michael Pearson, “Europeans in an Indian Ocean World,” The Indian Ocean, (London: Routledge, 2003), pp. 113-30 (Europeans in the Indian Ocean)
February 1 – Marks, pp. 74-79; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 418-20, 436-47; Guarneri, pp. 56-67 (Conquest of Americas)
February 3 - Marks, pp. 79-82; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 463-8, 472-6, 568-79, 590-5, 577 WHTW (Far East)

February 6 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 460-3, 462 WHTW, 471-2; John F. Richards, The Mughal Empire, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993), pp. 190-8. (Mughal Empire)
February 8 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 480-90, 503-7 (Ottoman and Safavid Empires)
February 10 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 468-71, 490-5; Tridentine Creed; Martin Luther, “The Three Walls of the Romanists”; Westminster Confession, “Of Good Works,” “Of the Lord’s Supper” (Reformation)

February 13 - Marks, pp. 84-89; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 498-503 (Rise of European states)
February 15 – Benedict Anderson, “The Origins of National Consciousness,” Imagined Communities, New Edition, (London: Verso, 2006), pp. 36-46 (nationalism)
February 17 – Exam – The Early Modern World

Part II – Transformations and Connections

February 20 – Marks, pp. 82-4; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 538-40, 545-56, 564-5; Guarneri, pp. 42-50, 69-79 (Slavery and plantation economy)
February 22 - Hansen and Curtis, pp. 510-534, 426 WHTW; Guarneri, pp. 79-87 (American societies)
February 24 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 598-608; James E. McClellan III and Harold Dorn, Science and Technology in World History, 2nd Ed., (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006), pp. 227-33, 249-56 (Scientific Revolution)

February 27 – Marks, pp. 90-101; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 579-90, 608-25 (18th Century India)
February 29 - Hansen and Curtis, pp. 561-3, 628-36; Guarneri, pp. 95-103; U.S. Declaration of Independence; Edmund Burke’s “Address to the British Colonists in North America (American Revolution)
March 2 - Hansen and Curtis, pp. 637-44, 655-7; Guarneri, pp. 103-7; Declaration of the Rights of Man; Maximilian Robespierre, “On the Festival of the Supreme Being” (French Revolution)

March 5 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 644-57, 656 WHTW; Guarneri, pp. 108-12 (Latin American independence)
March 7 - Mark Pendergrast, “The Coffee Kingdoms,” Uncommon Grounds: The History of Coffee and How It Transformed Our World, (New York: Basic Books, 1999), pp. 21-41 (Plantation economies and societies)
March 9 – Guarneri, pp. 115-36; Gordon S. Wood, Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, 1789-1815, (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009), pp. 20-36 (Early U.S.)


March 19 – Marks, pp. 101-12, 131-5; Hansen and Curtis, 660-67 (identity construction essay due) (Industrial Revolution)
March 21 - Marks, pp. 135-42; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 668-87 (effects of Industrial Revolution)
March 23 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 720-39; Guarneri, pp. 136-48, 166-75 (American nation-building)

March 26 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 740-9; Guarneri, pp. 148-63 (Slavery and emancipation)
March 28 - Marks, pp. 112-8, 123-30; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 690-701, 709-714 (Late Qing China, British Raj)
March 30 – Marks, pp. 142-51; Hansen and Curtis, pp. 752-69, 773-7 (Scramble for Africa)

April 2 – Guarneri, pp. 209-31; Thomas Bender, “Being the Whale,” A Nation among Nations: America’s Place in World History, (New York: Hill and Wang, 2006), pp. 192-206 (American Empire)
April 4 – Exam ID Section – Transformations and Connections
April 6 - Exam Essay Portion – Transformations and Connections

Part III – The World in Which We Live

April 9 - Hansen and Curtis, pp. 782-802; Guarneri, pp. 231-5 (World War I)
April 11 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 802-09; Vladimir Lenin, “What is to be Done?”; Declaration of the Rights of the Toiling and Exploited Peoples” (communism)
April 13 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 702-9, 714-7, 826-34, 707 WHTW (new nationalisms)

April 16 – Guarneri, pp. 175-99 (Early 20th century American society)
April 18 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 812-28, 834-40; Guarneri, pp. 199-207 (Great Depression)
April 20 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 844-66; 860 WHTW; Guarneri, pp. 235-42; Holocaust testimonies (World War II, Holocaust)

April 23 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 866-70, 874-87, 882 WHTW, 911-8; Guarneri, pp. 247-62 (Cold War)
April 25 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 887-905; Guarneri, pp. 262-74; Vietnamese Declaration of Independence (decolonization)
April 27 – Hansen and Curtis, pp. 930-8; Guarneri, pp. 274-96 (globalization today)

Final Exam: Monday, April 30, 8 a.m.

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