Fall 2021 Courses

Looking for an exciting course this fall? Check out a few of our upcoming history courses.

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Highlighted Fall 2021 Courses

HIST 120: Topics in History: Handbooks and How-To Guides

Instructor: John Bauschatz
MW 11:00-12:15 p.m. (Flex In-Person)

Classical antiquity is famous for its epic poetry, drama and history, but decidedly less so for the dozens of volumes that survive on subjects ranging from the interpretation of dreams to the construction of aqueducts, the classification of fishes to the healing powers of plants. Ancient readers devoured such works, even if the topics contained within them were frowned upon by high society (e.g., astrology) or far removed from their everyday lives (e.g., siege tactics). The writers who fed the public craving for such texts wrote both in poetry and in prose and their works were products of meticulous research drawing upon the extensive scholarship available in their day (much of which has not survived).

In this course students will read selections (in translation) from a number of ancient Greek and Roman handbooks. Of great importance to the course will be questions of readership and practicality. The course will serve not only as a springboard for discussions about the nature of literature, but will also expose students to views of classical antiquity far different from those portrayed in history textbooks and Hollywood blockbusters.

HIST 296 Special Topics in History: The Mediterranean as a Borderland

Instructor: Linda Darling
TR 3:30-4:45 p.m. 

The Mediterranean is usually seen as a barrier or frontier, a dividing line, between the Christian and Muslim worlds. We in the Southwest live in a different sort of environment, a borderland society. This course will rethink the Mediterranean as a borderland, using the lens of the US Southwest. According to Borderlands scholar Oscar Martinez, “International boundaries have Crusades and attitudes toward the Other, early modern commerce, pircy, captivity, and travel, and urbanism in the Levant. We begin with the border societies of Muslim Spain and Christian Anatolia, where dividing lines between societies were blurred or nonexistent and where attitudes and relationships were flexible in the extreme. The Crusades hardened the ideological and geographical dividing lines but also encouraged people to cross those lines. Trade was a link between societies more similar materially than ideologically, creating a commercial nexus in which all could profit. This nexus altered but did not disappear in the early modern period as the center of commercial prosperity moved from the Mediterranean to the North Atlantic. Individual experiences of this movement appear in the literature of captivity and travel. The concept of borderlands, with channels of contact and movement, enables us to historicize the “othering” process. In order to rethink the course topics in terms of the concepts of the borderland, we will read some primary sources and some newer research on each topic. In addition to short reviews of the readings, students will write a bibliographical essay on a topic of their choice, reappraising it in the light of the course theme.


HIST 375A: Histories of Memories in the Nineteenth Century

Instructor: Susan Crane
TR 2:00-3:15 p.m.

This course examines histories of memories through the institutions and technologies that facilitate recall: museums, photography and cinema, print media and visual culture, as well as academic disciplines which emerged in the 19th C. to study memory phenomena. Topics include: histories of history, psychology, archaeology and paleontology; the human body as a site of memory (tattoos, funerary practices); Napoleonic and Civil War memorials; theories of extinction; the first public museums; tourism and souvenirs.


HIST 402P/502P: Archives, Museums, and Zoos: Introduction to Public History

Instructor: Marya McQuirter
M 3:30-6:00 p.m. 

This course is designed to introduce students to the theoretical and practical dimensions of public history. Public history is history written primarily for the public and not an academic audience. We will study the work of historians within and outside of the academy who are engaged in educating the public in the places where the majority of people learn history: universities, museums, zoos, YouTube, archives, libraries, film, Wikipedia, social media and on tours. We will also study the ways in which the public is questioning the authority and ownership of history through the creation of their own historical projects.

HIST 472/572: History of Medieval India

Instructor: Richard Eaton
MWF 10:00-10:50 a.m. (Live Online)

This course covers what is by far the most contested period of India’s long and rich history – the period from 1000 to the late 1700s, the beginning of British colonial rule.  Because of the 1947 Partition British India, which divided colonial India into two countries, one of which (Pakistan) was established explicitly on religious grounds, and because of the recent rise of militant Hindu nationalism in the Republic of India, the place of religion and politics before the British period has become an extremely fraught terrain.  For example….

What was the place of Islam in India’s so-called “Muslim period” (1000-late 1700s)?  Who were the rulers, and what did their subjects think about them?  Who, really, was Aurangzeb (r. 1658-1707) – shown above --  probably the world’s most powerful ruler in his day, but reviled by millions of Hindu nationalists today?  What can Indian history in this period tell us about the Indian roots of globalization, about the Industrial Revolution (conventionally thought of as an English thing), or about the idea of “feudalism” beyond Europe or Japan? 

Above all, what happens if we examine such questions based on contemporary evidence, instead of projecting today’s prejudices and agendas onto that immense screen known as precolonial India?  Come and find out.

HIST 496H / HIST 498: Senior Research Capstone

Options for fall 2021 include:

  • HIST 498 (001): Travelers and Cross-Cultural Encounters in World History (Prof. Richard Eaton) - Wednesdays, 3:00-5:30 p.m. (Live Online)

  • HIST 498 (102/202): Violence in the American West or National Parks in History (Prof. Jeremy Vetter) - Fully Online

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