The “long” nineteenth century in American history encompasses the American Revolution and the First World War; the “discovery” of much of North America and the closing of the frontier. This class explores this long century through the most recent readings in nineteenth-century American history. These texts often feature new methods and approaches, and center the experiences of non-elites as well as the historical actors we are more familiar with.
Command of information – by the end of the semester you should know:
● Major changes in North American space, demography and politics over time
● Americans’ changing ideas about their own nineteenth-century history
● Arguments for various approaches to American history.
● Major debates in nineteenth-century American history.
Historical skills – by the end of the semester you should be able to:
● Frame a familiar historical issue in terms of different historical approaches.
● Craft a proposal for a research project on an historical topic.
● Clearly express ideas and arguments through writing and speech.
● Read, digest and analyze scholarly work on American history.
● Use and critique the use of primary sources in making historical arguments.