HIEU 3692 / GETR 3692
In this course we study the encounter between the Third Reich and Europe’s Jews between 1933 and 1945. This encounter resulted in the deaths of almost 6 million Jews. The course aims to clarify basic facts and explore competing explanations for the origins and unfolding of the Holocaust—in Hebrew, Shoah. We also explore the fate of persecuted non-Jewish groups under Nazism, survivors’ memories after the Holocaust, and the universal implications of the Holocaust.
This course is intended to acquaint students with the historical study of the Holocaust and assumes no prior training in the subject. We will read studies by important historians, including Saul Friedländer and Christopher Browning, contemporary documents, and memoirs, including Primo Levi’s Survival in Auschwitz. Class meetings will combine lecture and discussion. Course requirements include three written assignments and conscientious participation in class discussion.
Master's Essay Revision
This course is intended for PhD candidates to revise their master's essays for publication under the guidance of a member of the graduate faculty. It is typically taken in first semester of the second year of study.
Approaches to Historical Study
This course is designed as an introductory seminar for graduate students working in any area or period of history. The primary emphasis will be on gaining familiarity with the chief schools of interpretation in recent history writing. We will read innovative scholarship in a wide variety of fields. Class discussion will focus on the philosophical as well as practical questions that these works pose about causality, time and memory, the nature and interpretation of historical evidence, the status of truth, argumentation, narrative and the structure of history writing, and the public role and the responsibility of the historian, among other subjects. The goal is for students to become more sophisticated readers of the historiography of their own subfields and also to begin to think critically about the approach(es) that they will develop in their own scholarship.
Early Modern Europe and the World, 1550-1815
This course will survey the cultural, intellectual, political, and socio-economic history of Europe from the Reformation to the height of the Napoleonic Empire. Particular emphasis will be placed on the increasing engagement of Europe and Europeans with other parts of the world, including North and South America, West Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. Major topics will include the rise of global trade and colonial empires, the migration of peoples, the institution of slavery, the impact of the new science, the discovery of the diversity of cultures and Enlightenment universalism, the rise of new religious movements, warfare and international competition, the emergence of the idea of human rights, and the global age of revolutions. Readings will include many primary sources, including several novels. Class requirements will be a midterm, a final, two short papers, and active participation in weekly discussions of readings.
HIUS 2401 / RELC 2401
History of American Catholicism
Catholicism in the United States has often been in a dilemma. On the one hand, its spiritual loyalty to Rome and its growth through immigration made it appear "foreign" to most Americans. On the other, the American Catholic support for religious liberty drew suspicion from Rome. In 1960, the election of John Kennedy seemed to signal the acceptance of Catholics as Americans. In 1965, the Second Vatican Council seemed to ratify what had long been a cherished American Catholic tradition. To understand the significance of these events of the 1960s, the course will treat the following themes: the early Spanish and French settlements, the beginning of English-speaking Catholicism in Maryland, with its espousal of religious liberty, the establishment of the hierarchy under John Carroll and its early development of a strong sense of episcopal collegiality, immigration and nativism, American Catholic support of religious liberty and conflict with the Vatican at the end of the 19th century, and the American Catholic contribution to Vatican II (1962-1965). The course will conclude with an analysis of social, political, and theological developments in the American Catholic Church since the end of the council.
Course requirements: 1) a mid-term and final exam; 2) an analysis of an historical document selected from collections on reserve.
A graduate seminar covering topics in international economic history since 1870. Topics will include globalization, 1870-1913, the great depression, the economics of world war, and economic reconstruction and recovery after 1945.
HIUS 2061 / ECON 2061
American Economic History
This course concentrates on critical aspects of the history of American economic development. The issues covered include the nature and consequences of the colonial relationship to Great Britain, the political economy of the Constitution, the economics of slavery, the rise of the modern bureaucratic corporation, causes of the Great Depression, and the political economy of contemporary America. In addressing these issues, the course considers more general questions of what forces‑‑cultural, economic, legal, etc.--shape the pace and pattern of economic development in any society.
The required text for this course is:
Gary Walton and Hugh Rockoff, Economic History of the United States.
This will be supplemented by a course packet of readings. Readings will average c. 100 pages a week.
There will be two one-hour exams and a final.
This course examines the cultural lives, labor struggles, and political activities of the American working class from the end of the Civil War to the present . Over the course of the semester, students will analyze how working women and men both shaped and were shaped by the rise of big business during the Gilded Age, the social upheavals of the World War I era, the economic hardships brought about by the Great Depression, the social policies of the New Deal, the emergence of the Civil Rights Movement, and continuing debates over the meanings of work, citizenship, and democracy. Significant attention will be given to the organizations workers created to advance their economic interests. The course will explore the success and failures of the Knights of Labor, the American Federation of Labor, the Congress of Industrial Organizations, the Communist Party, among other groups. A major issue to be explored in our discussions of working-class movements will be the ways in which laboring people have been divided along racial, gender, ethnic, and regional lines. Since working-class history is about more than the struggle of laboring people to improve their material condition, this course will also focus on other topics, such as workers’ leisure activities, customs and thoughts, and religious beliefs.
This course explores the war of 1948 in Palestine from the UN partition resolution of November 29, 1947 to the cease-fire agreements in early 1949. It has two narratives. The first thread of the course is the voices of Jewish, Arab, and British contemporaries taken from diaries and letters from the period. We seek to capture the human element in this event, marked by such different outcomes as redemption and catastrophe, while telling a story of commingled Jewish and Arab histories. The second narrative places 1948 in Palestine in global perspective of decolonization, partitions, and forced migrations in the post-1945 world. We combine then the local and the global.
HIST 5559 (1)
New Course in History
"The Uses of History"
Historical reasoning, using analogies and references to the past, may be the most common form of human reasoning. This course studies several kinds of historical reasoning, illustrating common strengths and weaknesses, especially when such reasoning is used for decisionmaking in public life.
The course can thus introduce graduate and select advanced undergraduate students to different historical approaches, a few issues in the philosophy of history, and the close relation of such reasoning to the way questions are answered in fields like economics, law, and public policy. Throughout the emphasis is to help students reflect upon and improve the quality of their thought in practical situations.
The course is an adaptation of one I taught at Harvard during most of the 1990s, where I co-taught it with my late colleagues Ernest May and Richard Neustadt. There it was usually taught at the graduate level, though in a venue (Harvard’s Kennedy School) also open to students from the professional schools. This is the first time it has been offered at Virginia.
Class size is limited and the course will be taught as a mixture of lecture and discussion. Grades will be based mainly on several short papers and on class participation. Required texts will include Richard Neustadt & Ernest May, Thinking in Time: The Uses of History for Decision-Makers and a variety of case studies, book excerpts, and articles.