Krieger Hall

Fall 2022

Course Title Instructor Region(s)
200 Oral History Nguyen, D.  
This graduate seminar offers students the opportunity to develop their understanding of oral history theories and methods and the best use of oral source material in research and the writing of history.  Students will explore the art of oral history in both classroom and practical settings with discussions on the role of memory in first-person and community histories and ethical responsibilities of the researcher/historian in the digital age.  Students will conduct an interview of their choice for the course’s major research project and then transcribe, contextualize, and interpret their work into a final historical analysis.
204A 2nd-Year Research Seminar Raphael, R.  

Part one of a two-quarter sequence required of all Ph.D. students during the second year of the program; not required for M.A. students. Includes primary research and writing a research paper, often related to a future dissertation topic.

Restriction: Graduate students only. History Majors only.

230 Rooted Cosmopolitans: Mediterranean Jews Beyond the Nation State Lehmann, M. Europe, Middle East

The modern Mediterranean is what Mary Louise Pratt has famously called a “contact zone,” a space where “cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other, often in contexts of highly asymmetrical relations of power.” This course will employ the vantage point of Jewish history in its trans-Mediterranean entanglements to explore ways of rethinking the assumptions embedded in dominant historical conceptions of “methodological regionalism” (“Europe” vs. “Middle East”), as well as conventional paradigms of “methodological nationalism” (with the primacy of the nation-state as a frame of historical analysis). It will use the perspective of Jewish history to think comparatively about broader questions such as the formation of diasporic communities, complicating conceptions such as national belonging, citizenship, and indigeneity; about the use and limitations of a Mediterranean perspective in the study of European and Middle Eastern history; and about the relevance of religion in national, imperial, and colonial contexts. Readings will cover historical research on a period extending from the late eighteenth to the mid-twentieth century. Students are encouraged to think comparatively by bringing their own research interests to bear on discussions in the seminar.

240 History of Empires - Japan Fedman, D. World, Asia

Nation-building and imperial expansion were two sides of the same coin in Japan’s modern transformation in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Understanding the rise of modern Japan thus requires an investigation of how it simultaneously projected its power overseas. This course explores the interconnected process of how Japan shaped Asia and Asia shaped Japan, focusing on its colonial projects, practices, and legacies.

The course is broadly divided into three parts. The first part will examine Japan’s emergence as a modern empire in the Meiji period. We will ask how the Japanese expanded abroad while modernizing their country, how they defined themselves in relation to the colonized, and how they governed their newly acquired territories. The second part will look more closely at the activities of Japanese colonists on the ground, the variety of indigenous responses they generated, and the deepening of interactions between colonizer and colonized under total war. The last part will explore issues of empire beyond 1945: the legacies of colonialism, neo-imperialism, and the repatriation of settlers to the homeland. We will wrap up our discussion by analyzing the on-going politics of memory surrounding questions of war guilt and responsibility in Japan and its trans-Pacific inflections. We will approach these and other topics by reading a blend of seminal works on Japanese imperialism as well as more recent studies that point toward new directions in the field.

250 Colonial (Dis)order: Race & Gender in Latin America O'Toole, R. Latin America

How was colonial order simultaneously regulated and destabilized through race, gender, sex, class, and ethnicity? This course considers the mechanisms of colonial order in sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth-century Latin America alongside insurgencies, evasions, and refusals of Iberian, French, and British colonialism and slavery. We will explore how colonial authorities, ecclesiastical officials, and transatlantic merchants coopted Indigenous leadership, regulated sex roles, and trafficked Black people for profit to illuminate interwoven structures of early modern capitalism and modern state surveillance. Concurrently, we will ask: if the colonial state was extractive, then how did Andean laborers and Mexica vendors make the market their own? If conquering white patriarchs envisioned pious households, which of their daughters could challenge masculine impositions of honor? If Catholic clerics demanded conversion, how and where did Atlantic Africans imagine a new Christianity and hijack Church archives?

The course asks all participants to write weekly on the assigned reading. In addition, for a quarterly project, participants can choose to complete ONE of the following: 1) two short essays 2) an annotated bibliography and/or historiographical essay 3) a research or theoretical paper 4) a course syllabus with lesson plans 5) a creative writing, media, or public-facing project.

260 Black Radicalism Miller, R. U.S.

This course explores histories of Black radicalism and Black radical social movements. Students will examine various theoretical articulations of Black radicalism including Cedric Robinson’s concept of the Black Radical Tradition, Black Feminism(s), Black Marxism, Black religious nationalism, and Pan-Africanism among others. We will also examine histories written about several Black radical social movements whose members sought to put such theories into practice. The readings for this course will be eclectic, including intellectual and social histories, memoirs and biographies, cultural histories, and more theoretical works penned by both academics and organizers. While the majority of these readings will consider the writings and the organizing work of twentieth century Black radicals in the US, we will also consider a few figures and movements from the African continent and the Caribbean as well. The goals of this course are 1.) to acquaint students with some of the major works, questions, and intellectual interventions that have characterized Black radicalism – primarily in the Americas during the twentieth century, 2.) to familiarize students with some of the major Black social movements of the period, 3.) to enable students to identify how theorizations of Black radicalism informed these movements, and to critically reflect on what they reveal about the uses and limits of such theories, and 4.) to further develop students’ ability to critical engage different genres of historical writings.  

To complete the course, students are expected to write brief, weekly responses to the assigned readings, to present to the class on a specific topic/reading once or twice during the quarter, and to complete a final project in the form of one of the following A.) a research or theoretical paper, or B.) a creative writing, media, or public-facing project.

270 The Sasanian Empire Daryaee, T. Middle East
This course is a survey of the Sasanian Empire (224-651 CE), which extended from Central Asia to that of Mesopotamia and in its heyday covered a large extent of Afro-Eurasia. The Sasanians dealt with a number of people internationally, both settled such as the Romans/Byzantines and nomadic, Arabs, Huns and others. We shall be studying the political, social and economic history of the Sasanians and the changes that it occurred with the empire throughout the four centuries of its existence. Furthermore, the course will discuss law, gender relations and religious life for the various communities such as the Zoroastrians, Jews, Christians and the Manichaeans.


Winter 2023

Course Title Instructor Region(s)
200 History, Temporality, Event Robertson, J.  

Time and its conceptualizations are the fundaments of history. While we too often view time as the flat canvas over which we plot events, historical times are in fact governed by their own distinct velocities and rhythms, operating within their own horizons and scales. Under conditions of uneven development, the modern world has been shaped by a multiplicity of temporal regimes in a variety of configurations: dynamically imbricated, peacefully coexisting or violently erupting in moments of conflict. Temporal regimes underpin ideological regimes, they structure political and juridical orders, frame horizons of expectation and anticipation and infuse our understandings of modernity itself. 

These temporalities intimately inform the production of history, the ways in which we secularize, periodize, rescale and animate historical time. They shape how we perceive events, whether as moments pregnant with transformative change or incidental distractions from the steady unfolding of deep temporal structures over centuries or millennia. They set the rhythms over which we narrate, revise and silence the past. Through a selection of readings at the crossroads of history, anthropology and critical theory, this seminar will draw students into a critical discussion of temporal regimes and their importance for the study of history.  

Readings may include: Ernst Bloch, Walter Benjamin, Reinhart Koselleck, Marshall Sahlins, Fernand Braudel, Benedict Anderson, Francois Hartog, Manu Goswami, Michel-Rolph Trouillot, Kristin Ross, Lynn Hunt, William Sewell, Kathleen Davis, Vanessa Ogle.

202A 1st-Year Research Seminar Chaturvedi, V.  

Introduction to historical methodologies and preparation for the first-year research paper. Required of all first-year doctoral students and M.A. students.

Restriction: Graduate students only. History Majors only.

204B 2nd-Year Research Seminar Raphael, R.  

Part two of a two-quarter sequence required of all Ph.D. students. Taken during the second year of the Ph.D. program; not required for M.A. students. Includes primary research and writing a research paper, often related to a future dissertation topic.

Prerequisite: HISTORY 204A

Restriction: Graduate students only. History Majors only.

230 “French” Revolution/s?: Rethinking Race, Religion, Gender in France, Haiti, and the Revolutionary World of the late 18th Century Coller, I. Europe, World

How does the affirmation of neglected actors, spaces and processes reshape our understanding of the French Revolution? What is a Revolution that includes people of color, the enslaved and colonial subjects; women, same-sex attracted people, and transgender folx; Protestants, Jews, Muslims and neo-Pagans; vegetarians, utopians and proponents of free love? What happens when we think about borderlands, colonies, exclaves and entrepots, and consider precursor, parallel, conjunctural and counter-revolutions across the globe? The French Revolution was once treated as the founding event of modernity, whether as the realization of Enlightenment ideas, the paradigmatic bourgeois revolution, or the birthplace of modern political culture. This was a Revolution conceived within narrow national confines, focusing on white men, and telling a story of secular, Western modernity. Over the last fifty years, that conception has been progressively dismantled to reveal an event on a global scale that was not simply “French” with a radiant impact, nor even “Atlantic”, but a far more plural experience both shaped by and shaping emerging global dynamics. If the outcome of that struggle was the birth of a nineteenth century imperial order, the tools of resistance to that order would include the radical ideas and symbols of the French Revolution and its “unthinkable” Haitian counterpart. This class will investigate the French Revolution on a global scale, across the French Empire and the world, from Europe to Latin America, and from Africa to China.  Students will be welcome to consider any of these spaces in connection to the 18th century revolutionary crisis.

250 Modern Mexico Aguilar, K. Latin America

In this graduate seminar, students will engage with historical works on modern Mexico. Recent contributions to the field have not only expanded what has historically been considered “Mexican history;” they have utilized methods, theories, and archival materials that demonstrate the promise of interdisciplinary research projects. Our course readings will explore some of the most innovative contributions to the field, with special attention to works on race, indigeneity, revolutions/counter-revolutions, print culture, and migration. Along with weekly student presentations, students will also engage in conversations with some of the authors of our weekly readings.

260 Slavery and Diaspora Millward, J. U.S., World

This class introduces graduate students to classic and current scholarship on slavery in the African Diaspora.  The course is designed for students interested in a field examination in African America, Diaspora, or race and gender in early America (s).  The course will be taught with a history focus and is open to scholars from other disciplines.  Some of the questions explored include but are not limited to the following: What is Diaspora? What are the challenges for teaching and researching enslaved life?  What were the precursors of contact between Africans and the rest of the modern world prior to chattel slavery? How did Africans survive the harrowing middle passage?  How did Africans form community in the various parts of the Atlantic world? What were the gendered differences between enslaved men and women in the Diaspora? How did region and crop cultivation impact African life in the Diaspora? Where was resistance to slavery most prominent? And what can a presumed absence of armed rebellion also tell us about the Diaspora? How can slavery and Diaspora inform conceptions of colonialism and nation?

Assignments include at least one oral presentation and written summaries. Students will also prepare a research proposal that can (but does not have to)  incorporate student’s doctoral projects with course material.  Potential topics include: enslaved agency, cultural and artistic expression, literacy, digital humanities, gender and the law, the Black freedom struggle and Black radicalism from within the perspective of enslaved communities and the African Diaspora.


Spring 2023

Course Title Instructor Region(s)
204B 1st-Year Research Seminar Chaturvedi, V.  

Research and writing of a paper demonstrating command of historical methods explored in HISTORY 202A. Required of all first-year Ph.D. students and M.A. students.

Prerequisite: HISTORY 202A
240 Neoliberalism Schields, C. World

What is neoliberalism? Is it a coherent intellectual and political movement; an historically specific process characterized by deregulation and privatization; or perhaps even a subjectivity rooted in the entrepreneurship of the self? This course explores these questions by engaging recent historical and theoretical literature on neoliberalism. Moving across various global locales, it tracks the challenges to global capitalism posed by nationalist and decolonization movements in the early twentieth century through to the successive oil and debt crises of the 1970s and 1980s. All through, the course explores the interrelation of capitalism, sexuality, race, and “the family,” and considers methods for telling multiscalar histories that grapple with the daily experiences and lived realities of global capitalism. 

250 Gender & Sexuality in Latin American History Tinsman, H. Latin America

Historians of Latin America have long focused on “the state” as a key actor (if not the driving force) shaping Latin American societies. Feminist and queer studies scholars have long emphasized the centrality of gender and sexuality to state-led modernization: from ideals of citizenship, family, race, and nationalism; to policies of social welfare and economic development (both capitalist and socialist); to transformations of revolution and military dictatorship. This class explores historical scholarship on gender, sexuality, and the state in 19th and 20th century Latin America.  It considers debates over what constitutes “the state” and people’s ability to contest and shape state projects as well as debates over how “gender” and “sexuality” organize power and shape struggles within society.  Requirements include weekly written responses and two papers.

260 The Power of Institutions: New Historical Perspectives on the State and Civil Society Malczewski, J. U.S.
This graduate course will explore the role of institutions in state-building, politics, and social reform in the 19th and 20th Century. This course will draw on scholarship in policy history and American political development and seek a more expansive sense of the alternative mechanisms of power that exist outside of a more traditional understanding of the “state”. The readings in the course will place institutions at the center of the analysis and, in the process, refocus narratives of race, class, and gender. 
280 Chinese Historical Documents Guo, Q. Asia

This seminar is designed to introduce graduate students to some of the major genres of primary sources for research in late imperial and twentieth-century Chinese history.  Reading material includes Qing documents, local gazetteers, short biographies, diaries, short stories, journal articles, newspaper articles, speeches, scholarly prose, and field reports.  Each week will focus on one or two texts, representing the above-mentioned genres.  Most of these documents are written in classical Chinese; some of them are not punctuated.  The course should give the seminar members some sense of the pitfalls and pleasures of working with Chinese historical documents.  Typicality and brevity are the guiding principles for the selection of these texts.  The main purpose of the seminar is to provide advanced language training for graduate students.  It is expected that through studying these typical texts, the seminar members will receive some preparation in dealing with similar sources in their future research.

The meetings will focus on the language of the texts and the genres they represent, while briefly discussing their contexts and larger meanings.  Students are encouraged to ask questions about the grammar, allusions, idioms, and whatever else they might not understand about the reading materials.  To get a better understanding of the historical genres covered in the seminar, as well as of various related issues in a general nature, the seminar participants are encouraged to read through Endymion Wilkinson’s enormously useful handbook, Chinese History: A Manual.

It is essential for the seminar members to learn how to use Chinese dictionaries (not Chinese-English dictionaries) for checking difficult characters, special terms, cultural allusions, etc.  The instructor intends to focus on two important and most commonly used Chinese dictionaries, to be introduced in the first meeting: 1) Cihai, a kind of encyclopedia which is good for checking background knowledge about Chinese culture and language; and 2) Ciyuan, particularly good for classical Chinese terms.

It is strongly suggested that each participant prepare at least two questions for each meeting.  The seminar members will be asked in class to translate parts of the texts to be read for each week; it is therefore expected that students will have finished the assigned reading prior to the class meeting.

290 Pedagogy Mitchell, L.  

This graduate seminar introduces students to basic pedagogy methods and practices at the college level, with special attention to the particular challenges of teaching history.

The History Pedagogy Seminar provides a solid foundation for students to continue their pedagogical development as their teaching experience and skills become more advanced. Students will develop a robust knowledge of and experience in applying basic pedagogical methods and practices for effectively teaching history at the college level. These skills are transferable to other spheres, including high school teaching, curriculum development, and training in a wide variety of professional settings. The course is in dialogue with other types of doctoral training and professional development, including preparation for qualifying exams, the job market for assistant professors, and other employment opportunities.


Directed Reading

To register for a Directed Reading, submit the Directed Reading Contract (download here) with a reading list to Graduate Program Coordinator, Aryana Valdivia, by:

  • Fall 2022: Thursday, September 8, 2022
  • Winter 2023: Thursday, December 8, 2022
  • Spring 2023: Wednesday, March 8, 2023