HIST 8.06; X-list: LACS 8

History of Food

We will look at issues of food production and consumption, and how our relationship to food contributes to the political and social structures that we live with.  Our approach will be historical and pay special attention to the ways in which our production and consumption of food has been shaped by the movement of people over the last century.  The readings explore how food creates ways for people to form bonds of belonging while also creating bonds of control and regimes of inequality.

HIST 41.02

Race, Gender and Revolution in the Atlantic World

This course examines how the events and intellectual production of the Haitian Revolution and decolonization struggles in the Spanish Empire shook the Atlantic World and forced a reconsideration of political categories such as liberty, tyranny, citizenship, rights, and the relationship of race and gender to all of these concepts. The Enlightenment influenced Latin American and Caribbean revolutionaries, but these rebel intellectuals in turn challenged some of the Enlightenment’s fundamental tenets, ushering in new polities with radical notions of citizenship and belonging.


History of Africa since 1800

(Identical to African and African American Studies 15)

This course explores some of the major historical processes unfolding in Africa since 1800. Our analysis will focus on social and economic history as we examine Africa's integration into the international economy during the nineteenth century, the rise of new social classes, and the creation of the colonial and post-colonial state. Our primary case studies will be drawn from east, west and southern Africa to highlight both the similarities and differences of their historical development.


The History of Modern South Africa

After an initial overview of colonialism in Africa, this course will concentrate on Southern Africa, with special emphasis on the historical development, effects, and implications of the racial situation in the Republic of South Africa. Readings will be drawn from primary and secondary materials and from works of fiction. Illustrative films will be shown, and some opportunity offered to compare the history of race relations in South Africa with that in other African countries and in the United States.

HIST 70.02; X-LIST: MES 12.13

Modern Iran

This course examines the history of Iran from the early modern to the contemporary period. We will start in the era of the Islamicate empires then move through European imperialism, the rise of modern nationalism, the Constitutional Revolution (1905-1911), the formation of Pahlavi state institutions, the 1953 coup, the 1979 revolutionary movement, the establishment of the Islamic Republic, the Iran-Iraq War, and more. Students will learn to think through Iranian history in domestic and global contexts.


Violence and Conflict in the Middle East

This course will explore the major episodes that have transformed the Middle East since World War I through the prisms of conflict and violence. Challenging the discourses that characterize Middle Eastern societies as essentially stagnant, authoritarian and violent, this course will look critically at the complexities and dynamism of the conflicts with respect to their origins, the actors involved, and the key historical and political factors that have shaped them.

HIST 72.01

Imperial China in a Global Context

China’s history, from the 3rd century BCE to the twentieth century, examined in the context of global developments in demography, economy, urbanization, technology, trade, and the arts.

HIST 72.02

Nomad Rulers and the Origins of the Modern World

Between the twelfth and sixteenth centuries, government by rulers of nomadic origin produced similar changes in China, the Middle East, and  Russia, and were later diffused by various means to Europe, South Asia and Southeast Asia. These changes included the promotion of vernacular languages, increasing influence of folk and dissident religions, and the rise of self-legitimating rulership. These influences later challenged cultural and political authorities across Eurasia, laying the foundation for the modern world.


Intellectual History of East Asia

A comparative exploration of Chinese and Japanese thought, from the formation of Confucianism in the Warring States period to the confrontation between traditional thought and the imported ideologies of the twentieth centuries. In writing assignments, students may concentrate upon either Chinese or Japanese topics.

HIST 75; X-LIST: AAAS 50, ENVS 45, ASCL 54.07

Colonialism, Development, and the Environment in Africa and Asia

This course examines the environmental history of Africa and Asia, focusing on the period of European colonialism and its aftermath. Topics include deforestation and desertification under colonial rule; imperialism and conservation; the consequences of environmental change for rural Africans and Asians; irrigation, big dams and transformations in water landscapes; the development of national parks and their impact on wildlife and humans; the environmentalism of the poor; urbanization and pollution; and global climate change in Africa and Asia.


The History of Modern South Asia

This course examines the history of South Asia during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Themes of the course include the development of British imperialism, the impact of colonial rule on Indian rural society and economy, processes of cultural change, the development of nationalism, the historical role of Gandhi, the emergence of Hindu-Muslim conflict, and the character of post-colonial South Asia.

HIST 77; X-LIST ASCL 80.08

Imperialism in Modern East Asia

An examination of Western and Japanese imperialism in East Asia from the Opium War to the Pacific War. Subjects to be treated include the imposition of unequal treaties, the "scramble for concessions" in China, the creation of Japan's formal and informal empires, and the rise and fall of the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. Open to all classes.

HIST 78.1

Christianity in Korea

(Identical to AMES 11)

This course examines Korean Christians’ beliefs and practices, which have shaped and brought tensions to current socio-religious phenomena. Topics include the Korean origins of Christianity, the encounter between Catholicism and Neo-Confucianism in the eighteenth century, Protestant missionaries’ role in medicine and education, the rise of nationalism and Christianity under Japanese colonialism, churches in North Korea, Pentecostalism under South Korea’s rapid industrialization and democratization, Korean missionaries around the world, and Christian musicians and entertainers in Korea, as well as the interface between gender and Korean Christian culture.

HIST 78.2

North Korea, Origins and Transitions

(Identical to Asian and Middle Eastern Studies 21.04)

This course explores the history of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea) from a global perspective. Topics include the Japanese colonial legacies; liberation, division, and foreign occupation between 1945 and 1950; the meanings of the Korean War; comparing Kim Il-Sung's North Korean revolution with Park Chung-hee's state building in the South; the reality of "Self-Reliance"; social control and everyday life; and issues around human rights.

HIST 78.04; X-LIST: ASCL 64.14

Slaves and Rebels in Korea, 1392-1910

This course explores the history of Choson Korea (1392-1910) through the experiences of outcasts and commoners. By examining the desires and despair of peasants, slaves, rebels, entertainers, and religious minorities, thls course assesses the foundation of the state and the operation of society as manifested at the margins of society. How did the religious and intellectual heritage of Korea legitimize hereditary status, slave ownership, gender division, and regional discrimination? In what ways did ordinary people conform to or struggle against elite governing?  Does the longevity of the Chason dynasty testify to the successful control of the status system by those at the top? Or does the stability elucidate social mobility and dynamic interactions across the status divisions? Focusing on various status groups illuminates the mechanisms of domination, compliance, and resistance carried out at the micro level. The experiences of the underrepresented shed light on the transition to modern Korea and present the complicated process of constructing Korean identity over time. A background in Korean history is not required.


Postwar Japan: From Occupied Nation to Economic Superpower

This course examines the internal and external forces that have shaped Japan’s government, economy, and society since 1945. Topics to be treated include American Occupation reforms, the conservative hegemony in politics, rapid economic growth and its costs, the mass middle-class society, and Japan’s changing world role.


Popular Struggle, Political Change and U.S. Intervention in Central America

This course will explore the history of popular struggles, political change and U.S. intervention in Central America. The region’s rich and complex history has been marked both by repressive dictatorships and by struggles for national liberation, social justice and indigenous rights. We will look at the different factors that played a part in determining this history including commodity production, labor systems, U.S. foreign policy, race relations, liberation theology and revolution.

HIST 82.01

The Politics of Natural Disaster in Latin America

In September 2017 two massive hurricanes, Irma and María, swept the Caribbean. As a result, Barbuda was left uninhabitable, Puerto Rico's unofficial death toll was estimated in the thousands, and Dominica resembled a war zone. Hundreds of thousands were left without electricity and potable water in a region that was already suffering from stagnating economies and humanitarian crises. These natural events and their unnatural consequences laid bare the region's legacy of colonialism, underdevelopment, and failing infrastructures. Things will never go back to the way they were before. Yet, these events are hardly unique in the Caribbean and Latin American experience.

Latin America, and the Caribbean region within it, have not only been shaped by human development but also by natural events. Hurricanes and earthquakes—the two natural events this course focuses on—have transformed the region's landscape. This course seeks to answer the question of what can the history of natural disasters teach us about political structures, national projects, and social relations. Through interdisciplinary readings, students will use secondary and primary materials, including chronicles, art, and news reports to explore how natural events have shaped human societies.



Twentieth-Century Latin America

This course seeks to address major issues in twentieth century Latin America through the history of three or four countries. Topics discussed will include development, imperialism, nationalism, revolution, state formation and violence.


Culture and Identity in Modern Mexico

(Identical to Latin American and Caribbean Studies 76)

From the Porfiriato and the Revolution to the present, a survey of Mexican society and politics, with emphasis on the connections between economic developments, social justice, and political organization. Topics include fin de siècle modernization and the agrarian problem; causes and consequences of the Revolution of 1910; the making of the modern Mexican State; relations with the United States; industrialism and land reform; urbanization and migration; ethnicity, culture, and nationalism; neoliberalism and social inequality; the problems of political reform; and the zapatista rebellion in Chiapas.

HIST 92.03

Slavery and Emancipation in Latin America and the Caribbean

(Identical to African and African-American Studies 83.3)

For over 300 years, Africans were transport to Latin America and the Caribbean to work as enslaved laborers. This course will examine the history of African slavery in the region from the beginning of the Atlantic slave trade to the abolition of slavery in Brazil in 1888. For each class session, students will review primary source documents such as autobiographies, slave codes, plantation journals, visual images, and anti-slavery tracts as well as historical scholarship.