2018-2019 History: Topic Courses

HIS221H5F: Themes in Medieval History: Medieval Monasticisms (L. Brouillard)

This course explores the history of monasticisms from its origins in the Late Antique Near East to its development in medieval Western Europe. We will also approach our chronology with a set of questions: who became a monk or a nun, and why? What was the role of religious men and women at a given time and place? What did monks and nuns do on an average day?

HIS308H5F: Themes in the History of Women Before 1800: Colonial Intersections and 'Witchcraft' in the Early Modern World (A. Logue)


HIS392H5S: Topics in Global History: North Africa and Western Asia Before World War I (J. Hanssen)

This course offers a cultural history of North Africa and Western Asia from the 1870s to World War I. This epoch, known in Europe as the fin de siècle, was marked globally by New Imperialism, nationalisms, Pan-Islamism, Zionism, revolutionary optimism, cultural anxiety and social alienation. The course examines how these and other issues turned the Mediterranean Sea into an intellectual laboratory of contested modernities with lasting effects for our present. Students are exposed to an analytical ‘toolkit’ to distinguish modes of political imposition from modes of human experience, focusing on concepts like hegemony and Orientalism, counter-hegemony and discursive tradition.

HIS395H5F: Topics in History: Comparative Colonialisms (W. Fysh)

This course examines European colonial histories from the 1700s until the 1960s. We will compare and contrast imperial ideologies, different global experiences of European colonialism, and anticolonial movements. In particular, we will explore the complexities and contingencies of colonial rule and resistance, looking at questions of violence, culture, and colonial and anticolonial imaginaries.

HIS494H5S: Advanced Topics in the History of the Americas: The U.S.-Mexico Borderlands (J. Kuhn)

Indigenous peoples, Spain, Mexico, and the United States have all vied for control of the borderlands, an area stretching from California to Texas. Focusing on the nineteenth century, this course examines how large-scale political events such as the emergence of the nation of Mexico, the Mexican-American War, and the California gold rush affected the lives of everyday people in terms of national, ethnic, and racial identities as well as gender and sexual regulation. The conflict-laden history of this region impacted larger U.S. discourses of race, indigeneity, Manifest Destiny, slavery, national belonging, and more. In addition to providing necessary context for contemporary debates surrounding immigration in the U.S., this class will offer students a historically-grounded introduction to racial formation theory - how and why racial categories form and change over time.