Fall 2022 Course Listings

UA Department of History
Fall 2022 Course Descriptions
Undergraduate

Note: There are no prerequisites for any courses in History. 300-level courses cap at 40 students and are lecture based. 400-level courses cap at 30 students, are discussion based, and usually have the “W” designation (double check below). 300 and 400-level courses have roughly the same workload.

HY 101 Western Civilization to 1648. A history of Western civilization from its origins in Greece and Rome through the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and Reformation, and the age of discovery and expansion during the emergence of modern Europe.

HY 102 Western Civilization Since 1648. Covers the development if the Western world from the Thirty Years’ War to the post-World War II era; the age of absolutism, the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, industrialization and the wars of the 20th century.

HY 103 American Civilization to 1865. A survey of American history from its beginning to the end of the Civil War, giving special emphasis to the events, people, and ideas that have made America a distinctive civilization.

HY 104 American Civilization Since 1865. A survey of American history from the Civil War to the present, giving special emphasis to the events, people, and ideas that have made America a distinctive civilization.

HY 105 Honors Western Civilization to 1648. A history of Western civilization from its origins in Greece and Rome through the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and Reformation, and the age of discovery and expansion during the emergence of modern Europe.

HY 106 Honors Western Civilization Since 1648. Covers the development of the Western world from the Thirty Years’ War to the post–World War II era: the age of absolutism, the Enlightenment, the French Revolution, industrialization, and the wars of the 20th century.

HY 107 Honors American Civilization to 1865. An honors-level approach to the American experience. Prerequisite(s): Invitation of the department or membership in the University Honors Program.

HY 108 Honors American Civilization since 1865. An honors-level approach to the American experience. Prerequisite(s): Invitation of the department or membership in the University Honors Program.

HY 111 Colonial Latin America. Professor Teresa Cribelli. MWF 11-11:50. Formation of the largely Spanish speaking New World, from the shock of conquest to the trials of freedom that spawned the modern nations of Latin America.

HY 113 Asian Civilization to 1400. Professor Di Luo. MWF 9-9:50. History 113 is an introduction to the societies and cultures of pre-modern Asia with a focus on China, Korea, and Japan. One goal of this course is to consider what is distinctive about “Asian civilization,” as manifested in these countries. A second goal is the study of the relationship between the evolution of China, Korea, and Japan as distinct cultures themselves.

HY 115 Science/Medicine to 1800. Professor Erik Peterson. MW 9-9:50. Also requires a recitation: R 8, R 9, F 10, F 11. Science and technology are ever-present in today’s world, defining not only how we live our daily lives but also shaping our conceptions and evaluations of modernity, civilization, and progress. How did science and technology become so important and pervasive to the modem world? This course is intended as an introduction to the history of modem science and technology from the enlightenment to the present. Our focus will be on the development of science and technology in the Western World (Europe and North America). However, we will also make comparisons across cultures to explore how science and technology shaped notions of what counts as “Western” and “modem.” In addition to learning about key developments in the history of science and technology, from Ford’s Model-T to Einstein’s theory of relativity, we will address larger themes, including the relationship between science and religion and the role of technology in war and empire.

HY 117 World History to 1500. Professor Patrick Hurley. MW 10-10:50. Also requires a recitation R 8, R 9, F 10, F 11. This survey course explores the history of several major parts of the world and their perspective histories from the earliest times to AD 1500. Such exploration will include studies of the Mediterranean and Near East, China, India, Mesoamerica, and Sub-Saharan Africa. When examining these topics, attention will be given to social, economic, and religious history as well as political history.

HY 225 History of Alabama to 1865. Professor David Durham. TR 2-3:15. This course offers a survey of Alabama history from the earliest settlements through the Civil War. The emphasis of the lectures and readings will be on major themes and trends throughout the period such as the contributions of indigenous peoples, colonial development, economic opportunity, republican democracy, religion, slavery, political parties, sectionalism, and war.

HY 306-001 Queer History of the Modern South. Professor John Giggie. TR 11:00-12:15. This class will explore the modern queer civil rights movement. Sponsored by the Summersell Center for the Study of the South and working the Invisible Histories project based in Birmingham, the class will read key works and meet with archivists and scholars active in preserving and telling the story of queer history. Students will end the course by conducting interviews with local queer leaders and building a website to host their research.

HY 307-001 Age of Samurai. Professor Patrick Hurley. MWF Noon-12-50. This course covers the history of Japan from earliest times to the period of the Meiji Restoration in 1868. For most of the period under discussion, Japan was a divided realm only nominally ruled by the emperor, while real power lay in the hands of the feudal lords who were occasionally controlled by a shogun (governor general) during the Kamakura and Ashikaga Periods from the late 12th to early 15th century. By the 16th century, power had fallen back into the hands of the feudal lords, backed up by their armed retainers, the samurai. The Period of the Sendoku Jidai was a time of civil war, in which these lords vied for power, and was only ended with the victory of Tokugawa Ieyasu, who formed the Tokugawa Shogunate in 1605. This regime lasted until its decline in the 1850s, and was replaced by the Meiji regime, which abolished feudalism in Japan altogether. This course covers the political, economic, social, and religious, and mythological history of this period, with some attention given to Japan’s relations with foreign powers as well.

HY 308 Colonial America. Professor Harold Selesky. MW 2-3:15. This course examines the ways in which Europeans created new societies on the North American mainland in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The focus is on two parts of the Atlantic world in which the dominant culture was English. In the Chesapeake the theme is the rise of African-descended chattel slavery, and in New England it is the evolution of Puritan religion. Attention will also be paid to the diverse societies that arose in New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and New France. The course has two goals. The first is to increase your understanding of the societies that immigrants from the Old World created in the New World. The second is to examine, through a critical reading of both primary and secondary sources, how we know what we think we know about these societies; readers must pay careful attention to how the historian is seeking to persuade you of the probity and accuracy of his or her vision of the past. Both aspects of the course depend on you reading, thinking about, and absorbing the assigned material before we deal with it in class.

HY 313 American South Since 1865. Professor Kari Frederickson. MWF 11-11:50. History of the South since 1865, covering Reconstruction, the Bourbon Democracy, the New South Creed, populist revolt, World War I, the 1920s, the Great Depression, the civil rights movement, and Southern politics.

HY 318 U.S. Since 1945. Professor Andrew Huebner. MW 9-9:50, Recitations R 9, R 10, F 8, F 9. This course will survey major social, cultural, and political trends in American history since World War II, with some attention to economic and diplomatic history as well. Course material will focus on Americans of diverse classes, ethnicities, genders, and orientations, and we will explore the ways they generated and reacted to the tremendous changes in American life since the 1940s in four interrelated areas: 1) realignment of American politics, and debates over the role of government; 2) “rights revolutions” incorporating diverse groups into American civic life; 3) increasingly open and divisive forms of cultural expression; 4) the changing nature of American foreign policy. Students will engage and interpret films, novels, memoirs, and secondary sources.

HY 323 U.S. Constitution History to 1877. Professor Lawrence Cappello. TR 2-3:15. Deals with the evolution of constitutional law and the interplay between the branches of government from the Colonial Period through the Civil War.

HY 332 Native American History. Professor Heather Kopelson. MWF 10-10:50. Examines the histories of hundreds of indigenous American peoples from early human habitation to the present day, with a focus on those residing in what is now the United States and Canada. We will study their experiences; their encounters with one another, Europeans, and Africans; and the different histories that people have told about those experiences and encounters. Class materials include art, film, and fiction and students will volunteer at the Moundville Festival in October.

HY 336 U.S. Disability History. Professor Heather Kopelson. MWF Noon-12:50. This course places the experiences of people with disabilities at the center of the American story, from long before Europeans arrived in North America through today. We will explore the changing lives of people with disabilities—from railroad workers and rights activists to wheelchair athletes and participants in freak shows to college students and more—as well as the history of disability policy and conceptions of disability. We will focus on the social and cultural history of disability rather than its strictly physical or medical aspects. U.S. Disability History takes a new approach to familiar topics in U.S. history, including colonization, slavery, immigration, racial and gender stereotypes, education, civil rights, and citizenship, among others.

HY 346-001 Epidemics. Professor Erik Peterson. MW 3-4:15. The history of medicine is the history of disease. Plague, bloody flux, yellow fever, the flu, cholera, ebola, smallpox, AIDS — at one time or another, each of these terms inspired terror. They’ve entered our otherwise flourishing civilizations and, like a wildfire, cut down men, women, children, rich, poor, religious, non-believers, even the healers themselves. Like phantoms, they disappeared as fast as they came; but once introduced to these mysterious visitors, no society remained unchanged. In this history of medicine, we examine six major epidemics over the last three thousand years. We’ll then turn to three epidemics of the present: cancer, healthcare-associated infections, and bioterrorism. How have humans responded to these threats? How has medicine adapted, if it has? What are our triumphs and when have we been unable to stop our invisible adversaries?

HY 355 German History Since 1740. Professor Ian Wasserman. TR 12:30-1:45. In the nineteenth century, the writers Goethe and Schiller penned an epigram about their homeland: “Germany? But where is it? I don’t know how to find such a country.” They posed a version of what would become known as the “German question”: Where should the boundaries of a German nation-state be drawn? What form of government would be best suited to a German nation-state? Who could be considered to be members of a German nation? People struggled to address these questions across two empires, more than a dozen different governments, two world wars, the Holocaust, and the division and reunification of the German state.

We will explore this “German question” as we look at the causes and impact of political, social, cultural and economic upheavals in German history, from the seventeenth century to the present. We will examine how and why authoritarianism, democracy, fascism, and communism came to power, as well as how and why Imperial Germany (and Austria), the Weimar Republic, the Third Reich and East Germany collapsed. Alongside these political ruptures, we will investigate the causes, consequences and remembrance of extreme violence in modern Germany. Furthermore, we will pay particular attention to how and why ideas about gender, race, ethnicity, nationality and modernity changed during this period. In investigating these topics, we will identify continuities and ruptures in modern German history.

HY 357  World War I. Professor Charles Clark. MW 10:00-10:50. World War I deals with the social, cultural, and economic aspects of the war, the role that technology played in the outcome, and the impact of the war on the world today. Students write two six to eight page comparative papers, identify important images from the war, and write in-class essays to assess understanding.

HY 362 Russia-Soviet Union Since 1894. Professor Margaret Peacock. MW 2-3:15. Crisis in Russian society and the coming of the Revolution; the emergence of Stalinism; and political developments since World War II, including the disintegration of the Soviet system.

HY 378 Drugs, Booze & Mexican Society. Professor Steven Bunker. TR 12:30-1:45. This course is a hybrid survey of Mexican history since conquest, the history of the US-Mexican border, and a view of that history through the lens of drug production, consumption, and influence on Mexican society and US-Mexican relations. In short, the goal of this course is to impart an understanding of drugs as embedded in Mexican social, political, economic, and cultural contexts, providing students with a view from the Mexican side of the border. Alcohol and marijuana will be the focus of the course, but other substances will enter into certain readings throughout the semester. An important theme in this course is to answer the question “What are the origins of today’s War on Drugs?” In addition, the course will endeavor to provide a broader, international context for the development and use of intoxicants and the drug trade, both legal and illegal.

HY 379 History of Modern Argentina. Professor Teresa Cribelli. TR 9:30-10:45. From the time of its incorporation into the Spanish Empire, the land now known as Argentina has held out the promise of fabulous wealth and opportunity. This potential made Argentina the foremost destination of European immigrants to Latin America in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, during which time it became one of the wealthiest nations in the world. Many Argentines have anxiously awaited the day when their nation would be included among the ranks of “first world” or “civilized” nations, and they take great pride in their adoption and adaptation of European culture. However, Argentina’s history has not always been so rosy. Political violence, economic catastrophe, and social unrest define the modern Argentine experience as much as economic prosperity, industrialization, and the development of a rich and dynamic culture. From the gauchos (Argentine cowboys) of the vast Pampas to the smoke-filled tango parlors, immigrant tenements, and factories of Buenos Aires, Argentina offers a fascinating case for examining the creation and sustainment of identity and nationality in Latin America.

HY 385 History of Greece. Professor Patrick Hurley. MWF 9-9:50. This course examines the History of Greece from its Minoan and Mycenaean origins in the 3rd millennium BC through to the end of the Classical Age which ended with the death of Alexander the Great (356-323 BC). By examining literary and archaeological source materials, students will especially focus on the periods of the Archaic and Classical Ages. In doing so, they will get a better understanding of Ancient Greece’s political, religious, economic, social, and philosophical history. While special attention will be given to Athens, the birthplace of democracy, as well as the militaristic society of Sparta, attention will be given as well to those areas of the Mediterranean colonized by the Greeks such as the Ionian Coast as well as Sicily.

HY 393-001 British Empire & Commonwealth. Professor Matthew Lockwood. TR 2-3:15. By the 1920s, the British Empire stretched over nearly a quarter of the Earth’s surface and governed nearly a quarter of its entire population. This course will examine the formation and dissolution of the British Empire from its earliest expansions into Ireland to the complicated process of decolonization that continues to this day. Topics covered will include world exploration, settlement formation, imperial warfare, consumption practices and luxury goods, imperial culture, slavery, migration and immigration, and the effect of empire on today’s world. From Ireland to Barbados, Virginia to India, Iraq to Canada, Australia to South Africa, we will explore the ways in which the British empire shaped and was shaped by world history.

HY 404 Modern China since 1600. Professor Di Luo. MWF 1-1:50. This course provides a general but analytic survey of the history of China from the 17th to the 20th century. After a brief introduction to China’s geography, languages, and cultural background, we will discuss key historical phenomena that have distinguished China’s evolution in the modern period. The course is organized around the paired themes of non-Chinese attempts to challenge or undermine China’s sovereignty and Chinese responses to those efforts, partly and especially since 1895 to achieve wealth and power for their nation. For this reason, emphasis is placed on political, military, and social developments, although some attention is also given to economic and intellectual ones

406-001 (W) War and Society. Professor Andrew Huebner. M 2-4:20. This course will survey the radiating impact of armed conflict and military service on individuals, communities, culture, politics, and the state in America since 1898. Subjects of inquiry will include the relationship between military service and citizenship, the consequences of war for soldiers and their families, the selling of wars to the public, the representation and memorialization of violence in popular and literary culture, and the role of the military as a venue for the politics of class, gender, ethnicity, race, and sexual orientation. At its core, the class will ask students to dedicate sustained attention to this question: Is America a militarized country, a militaristic one, both, or neither?

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 406-005 (W) Summersell Scholars. Professor John Giggie. TR 3:30-4:45. A research community of students dedicated to uncovering hidden histories of the South. Students share common readings and pursue community-based research that connect to research foci of the Summersell Center, including but not limited to queer history, civil rights, and legacies of racial violence. Requires permission of instructor and application.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 414 (W) Morality-Social Change in America. Professor Margaret Abruzzo. TR 3:30-4:45. The way Americans have thought about and explained morality changed significantly over the past three centuries. The purpose of this class is to examine the moral frameworks that have Americans have used to understand—and to change—their society. We will study Americans’ behavior, but we will also study how they thought about morality. What did it mean to be a moral person, or what counted as moral behavior at particular points in time? Why did they care about some issues rather than others? How did they try to solve their social problems. What kinds of arguments did they use? We will do this by focusing on major movements for social change. (Why, for example, did so many people support legal slavery for so long, and what motivated others to turn against it?) We will look at the way that Americans thought about issues such as slavery, animal cruelty, sex, family roles, labor, economics, war and citizenship, and civil rights. This class involves significant reading and writing.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 439 (W) Foundations in Public History. Professor Julia Brock. TR 12:30-1:45. In this course, you will absorb readings, participate in discussions, and undertake hands-on work that will begin your engagement with the field of public history. By the end of the course, you will be familiar with major debates that engage public historians; the professional workplaces of public historians; new directions in the field; and the ways in which we accomplish our goal of working in partnership with stakeholders to make the past accessible to public audiences. Writing proficiency is required for a passing grade in this course. A student who does not write with the skill normally required of an upper-division student will not earn a passing grade, no matter how well the student performs in other areas of the course.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 424 (W) American Thought Before 1860. Professor Margaret Abruzzo. TR 9:30-10:45. How did Americans understand the world in which they lived? This course provides a broad survey of the development of American intellectual and cultural life from the time of European-American contact to 1860. This course explores not only particular ideas and beliefs, but also the cultural, intellectual, and institutional climates in which particular patterns of thinking thrived. Topics include changing conceptions of society, politics, morality, science and the natural world, religion, gender, and racial categories. “Writing proficiency is required for a passing grade in this course. A student who does not write with the skill normally required of an upper-division student will not earn a passing grade, no matter how well the student performs in other areas of the course.”

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 477 (W) Imperial Spain’s “Golden Age.” Professor Juan José Ponce Vázquez. MW 3:00-4:15. Spain in the 15th century was a society in crisis, fractured and immersed in civil war, and by the 16th century it had become a powerful empire with possessions all over Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. During the 17th century, Spain entered into a period of political crisis from which it would not completely recover. This is also a period known as “The Golden Age,” a time of high accomplishments by artists, writers, and playwrights. We will trace the history of the region from the late medieval period to understand the place of Iberian society in the western Mediterranean, the roots of the Spanish empire, its impact on Spanish society, Europe, and the Americas. We will spend a good time of the semester reading Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quijote, one of the true masterpieces of world literature, a direct product of Spanish society and culture during these times, and a great reflection (and critique) of its values.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 481 (W) War/Dipl. in Med & Modern Europe. Professor Daniel Riches. TR 11-12:15. This course examines developments in European warfare and diplomatic practice in the late medieval and early modern periods.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 490 (W) England Under the Tudors. Professor Lucy Kaufman. TR 9:30-10:45. England was transformed under the Tudors. This course will chart that transformation: the Reformation, the beginnings of the British Empire, the educational revolution, the rise of humanism, the growth of the state, the last feudal rebellions, and the explosion of urbanization. We will study some of the most compelling figures of British history: the insatiable Henry VIII and his brilliant daughter, Elizabeth I; the poets Spenser, Marlowe, and Shakespeare; explorers Walter Raleigh and Francis Drake; thinkers such as Thomas More and Francis Bacon; statesmen like Wolsey, Cromwell, and Cecil. But we will also look at larger social and cultural forces that shaped early modern England, including the rise of literacy, a sharpening economic stratification, new understandings of magic and witchcraft, gender roles, the growth of the common law system, and the politics of migration.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 494 (W) Britain in the Victoria Age. Professor John Beeler. TR 11:00-12:15. Great Britain racked up an impressive number of “firsts” during the course of the nineteenth century: it was the first industrialized country in the world, the first urban society, one of the first countries to establish a mass electoral representative government, and the first to suffer industrial decline, to mention only the most dramatic transformations which took place between 1815 and 1914. This course will survey all of these subjects and many others.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 497 (Formerly HY 430) Capstone Research Seminar. This course offers students extensive training in historical research methods and writing. It will normally culminate in a 15-page research paper based on primary source materials, as well as an oral presentation. Instructors may also choose to offer a range of equivalent alternatives at their discretion. In all events the course will offer students a rewarding opportunity to practice the craft of historical research. A grade of C or higher is required for credit in the major. Writing proficiency is required for a passing grade in this course. A student who does not write with the skill normally required of an upper-division student will not earn a passing grade, no matter how well the student performs in other areas of the course.

HY 497-001 (W) The Crusades. Professor James Mixson. R 2-4:30. This course explores, from multiple perspectives, the troubled medieval marriage of religion and violence known as “Crusade.”  It offers not only an overview of the traditional, largely military narrative of  “numbered” crusades. It also explores the broader view – the general context of “holy war” down to c. 1100; tensions between the ideal and reality of crusading; the social and cultural impact of the Crusades, for good and ill; the Muslim perception of the “Franj” as both invaders and neighbors, and the long afterlife of the crusades down through the early modern period. The ultimate aim of this course is to complete an original, primary-source based research project. Students will work in close consultation with both the instructor and with peers to explore and engage a topic in Crusade studies, to develop an extensive bibliography, to research and write a formal written research paper of 15-20 pages. There are no prerequisites for the course, although prior enrollment in HY 388 and/or HY 442/443 will be beneficial.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 497-002 (W) History of Capitalism. Professor Ian Wasserman. T 2-4:30. What is capitalism? Unparalleled in importance, capitalism defines today’s global economy. Since its inception capitalism has not only been an economic endeavor but also an intellectual challenge. Critics and boosters have debated questions such as these: Is capitalism natural and inevitable? Is it equitable? Should it be? Does capitalism require a specific type of society and politics? Does it instill a certain type of culture and morality? This seminar introduces students to key texts about capitalism from the late 18th century to the present. Authors covered include Smith, Marx, Weber, Keynes, Hayek, Polanyi, Friedman, Foucault, and Piketty. We will also discuss how capitalism manifested at distinct moments in time and space, comparing historical varieties of this ever-important phenomenon.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 497-003 (W) Right to Privacy in US History. Professor Lawrence Cappello. M 2-4:30. This course examines the right to privacy in American history from the invention of the instant-camera in 1890 to the launch of Facebook in 2004. Major themes include government surveillance, tabloid journalism, large-scale data collection, corporate espionage, reproductive rights, the privacy v. security debate, and the relationship between privacy and technology. Students in this class will spend a considerable amount of time exploring the merits of the question: “If you’re not doing anything wrong, then what do you have to hide?”

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 497-004 (W) Antebellum America. Professor Sharony Green. W 2-4:30. This course will explore the antebellum period as an era of great change in the United State. Between 1820 and 1860, we witness an expanding frontier in the Cotton South, but also the rise of the “city,” among other things. While the South will always be on our radar, we will also be interested in finding meaning in other regions by paying close attention to the people who move through or live in them and the landscape itself.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.

HY 497-005 (W) Topics in Latin American History. Professor Teresa Cribelli. T 2-4:30. In this course, history majors will bring their history skills together to research, craft, and develop an original interpretation of a historical topic in Latin America. Latin American history spans 500 years and 26 countries with many possible lines of research from constructions of gender during the Conquest of the Aztecs to Cold War dictatorships to extraction economies and the environment. The final product of this course is 15-page (minimum) research paper (maximum of 20 pages) and a 15-minute presentation based on the paper topic. Students are encouraged to explore a variety of digital media for the oral presentation, including but not limited to video, graphs, and presentation formats such as PowerPoint. While reading proficiency in one of the languages of Latin America is beneficial, it is not required.

Writing proficiency within this discipline is required for a passing grade in this course.