The rise of industrialism, nationalism, socialism, and science.  The role of imperialism, Fascism, and Communism as challenges to traditional Western culture. The study of contemporary Western culture and its role in the modern world.

This course will examine key events, issues and developments in the 20th century world predominantly from the perspective of non-Western cultures. It will pay particular attention to the issues of European imperialism and de-colonization; the application of Western ideologies of liberalism, communism, and nationalism in non-Western settings; and economic and cultural globalization. Case studies will demonstrate differing responses to the challenges of modernization in the 20th century.

This course will begin with a study of colonial independence, ending with the study of contemporary characteristics of modern Latin American states.

The emergence of the federal system, democracy, states' rights, nationalism, territorial expansion, slavery and Civil War, Reconstruction.

The development of modern America.  Emphasis on expansion, industrialism, urbanization, race relations, and the growth of federal power.

This course places women at the center of a study of the history of the United States from the colonial period to the mid-20th century in order to explore the often hidden role of women in shaping our nation’s history. Topics include slavery, the domestic ideal, the American Revolution, wage labor, childbirth and midwifery, coverture and patriarchy, woman suffrage, the Civil Rights Movement and feminism.

This course examines the intellectual, cultural, and political foundations of traditional Asian societies, following their transformation from ancient times to twenty-first century modernity.

In this course, students will learn to use quantitative data through participation in an applied research project. Students will identify appropriate quantitative data to answer a research question and then use technological tools to organize, analyze and present that data. By the conclusion of the course students will generate a tangible product showcasing their participation in this project. Also offered as COM 235, POL 235 and SOC 235.

This course will address cultural, social and political issues in the Middle East since the late 19th and into the 21st century. Topics covered will include imperialism, nationalism, the creation of modern states, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the Iranian Revolution, the politics of oil, U.S. – Middle East relations, and the emergence of activist Islamic groups.  Also offered as POL-282.

This course will introduce students to some of the major themes in the study of women in a global context. We will gain knowledge of how women’s experiences changed over time and varied according to location through an examination of the construction of womanhood in the political, cultural, institutional, and intellectual frame-works of different societies and in different historical periods. Students will develop an appreciation of how a focus on gender transforms the traditional historical narrative and also enhances our understanding of contemporary global politics and culture.

An introduction to the theoretical background of public history and its disciplines; historic preservation, museum studies, archives and records administration and documentary editing. Students read literature in these disciplines and solve practical problems in public history.

This course will examine the significant political, social, economic, and cultural transformations that have shaped British history in the modern era. It will explore key events and themes that influenced British development, including: the nature of “Britain” as a multinational, multi-ethnic polity; the impact and influence of Britain as a commercial, and later military, global empire; the role of Britain as a “model” of evolutionary historical development; the British experience of the two world wars; the creation of a socialist welfare state in the intellectual homeland of economic and political liberalism; and recent efforts to question and reform the post-war social and political consensus.

The twentieth century has witnessed the mass destruction of peoples on a scale unprecedented on the planet. Using the Holocaust in Germany as a focus and point of departure, this class will examine the Holocaust experience, as it was understood by the participants-the persecuted and the persecutors, and by those who passively acquiesced and by those who resisted.

This course will examine the significant events, themes, and personalities that have shaped the turbulent history of Russia and the Soviet Union in the twentieth century. Key periods and topics will include: the failed “constitutional experiment” of late Imperial Russia; the dynamics of the Russian Revolution and Civil War; the impact of Josef Stalin's “revolution from above” and its program of collectivization, industrialization, and mass terror; the traumatic Soviet experience of World War II; the role of the Soviet Union in the Cold War; the rise of Gorbachev and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union.

This course will examine the significant events, ideas, and social transformations that shaped Europe in its most tumultuous and destructive century ever, a century marked by wars, revolutions, genocides, and the threat of nuclear annihilation. Topics will include: the nature and impact of mass industrialized warfare in the Great War; the legacies of post-war disillusionment, depression, and appeasement; the murderous conflict of the ideologies of liberalism, communism, and fascism; the European experience of Cold War and decolonization; the role of gender in modern consumer society; the evolution of European integration; and the place of Europe in the global community.

This course gives an historical overview of modern China that begins in the 19th century. It will be organized chronologically and discussed thematically. It will cover significant historical movements that marked great turning points of China. The course will also explore social and cultural transformations as a result of “revolutionary China.” In addition to covering historical accounts of modern China, this course will examine various sources through which we can understand China in a more vivid and substantial way.

After an overview of the contemporary scene in India, this course will explore traditional Indian history and culture, including the ancient Indus Valley civilization, Aryan civilization, the Indo-Aryan synthesis, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam in India, Mughal imperial unification, the arrival of the British in India, the rise of Indian nationalism with Gandhi and Nehru, Indian independence, modern India and the role of India in the world today.  Carefully selected films will complement the readings and lectures, and students will be made aware of resources concerning India in the academic community in Raleigh and in the Research Triangle.

The colonial origins of American society and ethnic diversity to the emergence of the American nation in the Revolutionary period.

A study of the years 1861-1876 with attention to causes and effects, social and political impacts, and lasting legacies of what was arguably the most important decade and a half in U.S. history.

An in-depth study of the United States since 1945. Major emphasis on domestic politics, foreign relations, economic policy, urban crisis, civil rights, youth movement, and women's rights.

A study of global issues involving the United States vis-a-vis Europe, the former Soviet Union, Latin America, Africa, Middle East, and Asia. May be taken for credit in political science or history.  Also offered as POL-330.

A study of those aspects of Southern experience which have made the South a unique region from its early settlement to the present; includes social, political, cultural, and economic developments.

An introductory course in historical research and writing that is required of all majors and is usually taken during the junior year.  It focuses on finding, evaluating, and using historical sources; on organizing and presenting historical research; and on analyzing historical literature. Each student should plan to take this course the semester before she undertakes HIS-499, Senior Research or HIS-498, Senior Thesis.
 

A study of North Carolina from the colonial period to the present.  Emphasis on the social, economic, and political forces which shaped the state and her contributions in the national history.

This course examines the powerful and enduring influence of warfare in European history within a global perspective. Students will explore the nature of war in the broadest sense, addressing its military, political, economic, social, and cultural aspects. Particular attention will be paid to the role of warfare in the social transformation, political development, and cultural evolution of Europe, as well as in Europeans' encounters with non-Western civilizations and cultures of war. Students will examine such specific issues as the nature of modern combat, the destructive role of technology, the influence of popular nationalism and militarism, values and attitudes regarding violence, conceptions of gender, the experience of the home front, and the practice of ethnic discrimination and genocide. A combination of lecture, discussion, and media will be used.
 

Though technology in various forms pervades and sometimes greatly enhances our lives, individuals in modern societies often have little say in choosing the technologies they will adopt. Using a case study approach, this course examines the social impact of technological innovation from antiquity to the present, and in diverse world cultures of our time. Reading and discussions lean toward team projects where students identify a problem or opportunity using technology and social change, research the issue, prepare a proposal for a foundation grant, and present the proposal to the class. Students are particularly encouraged to make personal contact with human resources. Students are also invited to publish proposals and presentations at the undergraduate research conference.

This course is designed to explore the global history of slavery and understand the growing role that slavery and “unfree labor” still plays in individual countries and the world economy. Because of its extensive history with this institution, the United States’ experience with slavery will serve as a reference point for comparing historic and contemporary forms of slavery and “unfree labor.”

This course will survey major developments in Western Europe from roughly 400 CE to 1300 CE.  It will use primary and secondary sources to explore the growth of a distinctly European civilization upon its Judeo-Christian, classical and Germanic roots, and will trace the expression of this civilization through its political, religious and educational institutions; its formal religious thought and vernacular literature; its art, architecture and music; and its interactions with different cultures both within and beyond its borders. Specific topics covered will include the Germanic invasions, monasticism, the conversion of Europe, the growth of the manorial and feudal systems, scholastic thought in the universities, heresy and the crusades, the growth of representative government and others. Also offered as RES-385.
 

This course will work primarily through class discussion of primary sources to understand the changes in outlook expressed in the Renaissance, the Reformation and the Scientific Revolution between the fourteenth and seventeenth centuries. In particular, it will focus upon the transition from medieval toward modern attitudes in areas such as historical and scientific thought, political and educational theory, philosophy, art, music and religious thought and practice. It will also address the economic, social and political variables that underlay these changes in intellectual life, as well as the impact that these ideas had upon European society. Students will be encouraged to explore individual interests from their own major fields and personal backgrounds. Also offered as RES-387.
 

This course will offer a study of selected topics in history as determined by faculty expertise and student interest. Topics may take a thematic, comparative, or regional approach within the fields of U.S., European, and/or non-Western history. The course may be repeated for credit.

A research and seminar course that brings together work done across the major, builds upon HIS-334 and includes a senior research project of exceptional quality. Students will improve oral and written communication skills through class discussion and formal presentations. They will also make and implement plans for postgraduate education and careers. Each student will also formulate and execute an original research project that will culminate in a paper and an oral presentation. The director of the research project must approve a preliminary research proposal during the semester before the student takes this course, as must the appropriate director(s) of Honors and/or Teaching Fellows. The project must meet Honors and teaching fellows requirements as well as those of the History department. The course substitutes for the HIS-499 requirement. Prerequisites: HIS-334 or permission of instructor. A student who completes the HIS-498 Seminar as a prerequisite may undertake a second elective HIS-498 or HIS-499 research project on her own with an individual faculty director without attending the seminar a second time.
 

A research and seminar course required of all majors that brings together work done across the major, builds upon HIS-334 and includes a senior research project. Students will improve oral and written communication skills through class discussion and formal presentations. They will also make and implement plans for post-graduate education and careers. Each student will also formulate and execute an original research project that will culminate in a paper and an oral presentation. The director of the research project must approve a preliminary research proposal during the semester before the student takes this course. A student who completes the HIS-499 Seminar as a prerequisite may undertake a second elective HIS-499 research project on her own with an individual faculty director without attending the seminar a second time.
 

A study of the methods required for teaching grades 6-9, and grades 9-12, social studies.  May not count toward a major.


Curriculum requirements and course descriptions are subject to changes with each catalogue.

Contact Information
Gregory Vitarbo
Head, History, Political Science, & International Studies Department
214 Joyner Hall
(919) 760-8089
vitarbog@meredith.edu
History & Political Science & International Studies Department »
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