Fall 2022 Undergraduate Course Syllabi

Fall 2022 Graduate Course Syllabi

  • HIST 131-201 World History to 1500
    Instructor: David M Divalerio (divaleri@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    In recent decades, the academic discipline of History has come to see the value in highlighting connections and comparisons to be seen across different geographical areas, cultural complexes, and timeperiods—rather than simplying doing more History in the old way, in which our attention is focused on geographical areas or timeperiods as strictly siloed and cut off from one another. This new approach is often referred to as World History (or Global History). This course employs the world historical approach to understanding human cultures, up to around the year 1500 (its counterpart, HIST 132: World History Since 1500, is offered each spring semester). Using ten chapters drawn from the leading textbook in the field, A History of World Societies (Eleventh Edition), we will learn about the early histories of a number of societies and cultural complexes, while focusing on commonalities and points of comparison. Major themes to be emphasized include the class and social organization of societies, language, gender relations, and technology (in the broad sense of the term). Religion will be an especially prominent theme, as our purview for this course includes the origins and rise of all of the world’s major religions. While learning about history, we will also be doing History. Each week, students will participate in an online discussion forum devoted to the interpretation of primary-source documents drawn from Sources of World Societies (Third Edition), thus practicing the critical skills of close reading, interpretation, and writing about texts.

  • HIST 151-201 American History: 1607 to 1877
    Instructor: Brian Scott Mueller (bsm@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    A century after its founding, the future of the United States remained uncertain. War had preserved the Union, but at a tremendous cost in terms of blood and treasure. Fissures still remained. Racial, social, economic, and political issues continued to divide much of the nation. African Americans, immigrants, workers, farmers, and myriad other groups struggled to make the United States “a more perfect Union,” as declared in the preamble of the Constitution. At the same time, the footprint of the United States grew, first westward across the continent, then to the farthest corners of the globe. As “We the People” took on a new, more expansive form and the size of the republic expanded, the U.S. government had to adapt, though not without controversy. This course will explore the interactions among these various groups, looking at how they viewed one another and how disputes between them came to change the role and functions of the national government.

  • HIST 151-402 American History: 1607 to 1877
    Instructor: Rachel I Buff (rbuff@uwm.edu)
    Meets: MW 11:30am-12:20pm
    This is the “first half” of the survey in United States history. You may notice, however, that the time span of this first half clocks in at 270 years, whereas the second half, 1877-present is a little more than 140 years. This brings up the important historical question of periodization: how do we date the span of time we call “United States history”? When this continent was “discovered” by Europeans it had long been known and inhabited by native peoples. So, when does U.S. history start? By the time the nation now known at the United States decided to constitute itself as such in 1789, we will be more than 180 years into its history. Questions like these will inform our study of the past. We will be looking at the many peoples that become the United States, by choice, by forced importation, and by conquest, and at what kind of a nation they became together. Our work relies partially on primary documents, the raw materials left by people in the past. In addition, we will examine the ways we remember the past though public memorials and markers. Students will have the opportunity to examine these materials and make their own assessments. Note: it is a working assumption of this course that much of the history we are covering is that of indigenous and Afro-descended people. Coverage of these histories, along with the development of the United States as a country, is a central part of this class.

  • HIST 152-201 American History: 1877 to the Present
    Instructor: Gregory T Carter (cartergt@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    Intercollegiate Studies Institute’s 2007 survey, “What Will They Learn?” found that 7,000 college seniors, on average, got the equivalent of an “F” on their sixty-question test on United States history and institutions. In 2012, even though History is one of seven core subjects taught in college, only seventeen percent of college graduates could attribute the phrase, “government of the people, by the people, for the people” to Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. Yearly articles like these point to college curricula as the reason why students are not gaining the general knowledge they need to be informed adults. History 152: American History, 1877 to Present is one of the classes at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee that attempts to give you this knowledge. On one hand, this is a lower-level elective that may remind you of high school. On the other, this may be the last time that you study U.S. History in a structured way for the rest of your life. What you do here will influence your attitudes towards others’, your understanding of contemporary issues, and what you teach your children decades from now.

  • HIST 152-402 American History: 1877 to the Present
    Instructor: Brian Scott Mueller (bsm@uwm.edu)
    Meets: MW 9:30am-10:20am
    A century after its founding, the future of the United States remained uncertain. War had preserved the Union, but at a tremendous cost in terms of blood and treasure. Fissures still remained. Racial, social, economic, and political issues continued to divide much of the nation. African Americans, immigrants, workers, farmers, and myriad other groups struggled to make the United States “a more perfect Union,” as declared in the preamble of the Constitution. At the same time, the footprint of the United States grew, first westward across the continent, then to the farthest corners of the globe. As “We the People” took on a new, more expansive form and the size of the republic expanded, the U.S. government had to adapt, though not without controversy. This course will explore the interactions among these various groups, looking at how they viewed one another and how disputes between them came to change the role and functions of the national government.

  • HIST 203-001 The History of Medieval Europe: The Early Middle Ages
    Instructor: Martha Carlin (carlin@uwm.edu)
    Meets: TR 10am-11:15am
    This course will survey the history of Europe in the early Middle Ages, c. 500-1000 CE. During the first ten weeks of the semester we will examine the broad history of the period, and we will look at some individual events and developments and trace their long-term effects on European society. These special topics will include the collapse of the Roman empire in the West and its survival in the East, the spread of Christianity and Islam, the invasions and migrations of the Germanic peoples in Western Europe (including the Anglo-Saxons, the Franks, and the Vikings), and the rise and fall of the Carolingian empire. In the latter part of the semester we will examine in some detail the conditions of daily life in early medieval Europe. To do all this we will read works by modern scholars who have attempted to reconstruct pieces of the medieval past, and also accounts by medieval people of their own world as they saw it, and we will consider examples of the art, architecture, and material culture of the period.

  • HIST 210-201 The Twentieth Century: A Global History
    Instructor: Marcus B Filippello (filippem@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    Histories of the twentieth century often focus on changes in national attitudes and the ideological battles shaped by warfare. While we will explore some of these themes in this course, our approach will offer a broader global perspective by emphasizing the roles non-Western actors played in shaping historical landscapes of this era. This is a class designed for students who want to expand the breadth of their understanding about a more recent past as a means to better understand the present. It will also include an examination of narratives often overlooked by investigating the lives of people we rarely hear or learn about.

  • HIST 229-201 History of Race, Science, and Medicine in the United States
    Instructor: Thomas D Haigh (thaigh@uwm.edu)
    Meets: W 12:30pm-1:20pm
    Explores the intersection of health and race in the US, from the Columbian Exchange (when European diseases killed most of the native inhabitants of the Americas) to Obamacare and Covid-19. We will be integrating the history of specific diseases such as TB, AIDS, syphilis, schizophrenia, and cholera with the development of medical science and the broader history of the United States. Topics include health and slavery, the history of public health, immigration & ethnic communities, Jim Crow, urban segregation, the Great Society programs of the 1960s, the culture wars of the 1980s, healthcare reform, the opioid crisis, and the decline and sudden reemergence of epidemic infectious disease.

  • HIST 241-201 Women and Gender in Europe: 1350 to 1750
    Instructor: Andrew E Larsen (larsena@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    This course will examine the position of women in the period from about 1200 to 1750. This period is one of enormous importance. It sees the emergence of new views on issues of marriage, family, work, and religion that continue to shape Western society’s views on women. The course aims to familiarize students with some of the major figures in women’s history and to look at some of the major scholarly issues relevant to this period. It will also focus on helping students learn to read primary sources with more nuance and comprehension, and to learn a little about how to work with scholarly sources.

  • HIST 248-401 The First World War
    Instructor: Winson W Chu (wchu@uwm.edu)
    Meets: TR 11:30a-12:20p
    The First World War has been called the “great seminal catastrophe” of the twentieth century (George F. Kennan). This course covers the armed conflict fought mainly in Europe between 1914 and 1918, but the war had deep roots in the global events and trends of the nineteenth century. Likewise, the end of the war was not apparent for many people even after the signing of armistices and peace treaties. This course examines not just the political and diplomatic history leading up to the “Great War,” but also the cultural and societal changes that were both the root and result of the conflict. With a focus on Central Europe, general topics in the course include the deepening of state power, the rise of nationalism, and the decline of multiethnic empires. The course also looks at the war outside Europe and the role of colonies. YOU MUST GET THE PAPERBACK VERSIONS OF THE BOOKS ON THE SYLLABUS. E-BOOK OR KINDLE VERSIONS ARE NOT ALLOWED.

  • HIST 274-001 Ancient Egyptian Civilization
    Instructor: Jocelyn E Boor (joceboor@uwm.edu)
    Meets: MW 11:30am-12:45pm
  • HIST 274-202 Ancient Egyptian Civilization
    Instructor: Jocelyn E Boor (joceboor@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
  • HIST 294-201 Seminar on Historical Method: Research Techniques
    Instructor: Brian Scott Mueller (bsm@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    What is it that historians do? Can anyone be a historian? Does it require a special skillset? Based on the bestseller lists for works of non-fiction, it would seem as though anyone can do history. The names atop these lists include television hosts like Bill O’Reilly and journalists such as Cokie Roberts, neither of whom are trained historians. Technology, moreover, makes it easy for everyone to access genealogical records and other digital archives with the click of a button. In reality, history is no different than medicine, engineering, or quantum physics. Doing the work of a historian requires learning the crucial skills that allow for a true understanding of the past, as opposed to just skimming the surface. This course will help you understand how historians read and conduct research by doing so yourself. Over the course of the semester, you’ll be carrying out tasks designed to help you understand historiography, methodology, research methods, and writing. This includes the use of Chicago Style citations, locating reference materials, carrying out bibliographic research using traditional and electronic resources, and the critical evaluation of primary and secondary sources. Throughout the course, you’ll be completing the steps that make up the preliminary stages undertaken before the major research and writing undertaken for a major project, as you might complete in the capstone course, History 600.

  • HIST 343-001 Russia Since 1917
    Instructor: Christine E Evans (evansce@uwm.edu)
    Meets: MW 1pm-2:15pm
    This course will introduce students to the complex and fascinating history of the Soviet Union and post-Soviet Russia. Although Russia’s “Soviet experiment” lasted for only 74 years, the lifetime of a single generation, the memory of Soviet socialism remains very important in Russia today and in our own national political imagination. We will consider when and whether the 1917 revolution ended, whether it was betrayed, and the fate of its various utopian dreams through the transformations of Stalinism, World War, and Cold War. Throughout, we will focus on how the very diverse peoples of the former Russian empire experienced Soviet rule, how the Soviet Union was (or was not) different from other “totalitarian” states of the 20th Century, how it fits into European history more broadly, and how the Party and State leadership balanced ideological imperatives with pragmatic ones as domestic and international conditions changed dramatically over the course of Soviet history. Finally, we will look at how the Soviet Union ended, the evolution of Russia and its fellow former Soviet countries, and how the past has been understood and politicized in contemporary Russia.

  • HIST 363-001 Germany: Hitler and the Nazi Dictatorship
    Instructor: Winson W Chu (wchu@uwm.edu)
    Meets: TR 2:30pm-3:45pm
    This course examines how the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP) gained and exercised power first in Germany and then in much of Europe. The course will cover the political and social conditions that contributed to German support and toleration of National Socialism before and after 1933. The concepts of dictatorship, totalitarianism, and Germany’s “special path” are explored, as well as the nature of Nazi rule on the local, German, and European levels. Course participants will assess the historiographical debates on the nature of Hitler’s role in the Nazi Party and in governing the “Third Reich.” Special emphasis is on Nazi racial and expansionist policies, wartime Germany, and German attempts to remake occupied Eastern Europe. The course also examines the roots of anti-Semitism, the path to the Holocaust, and the collaboration of Europeans under German rule. Weekly topics are not in strict chronological order, but rather introduced around themes. Besides readings from books and articles, primary source materials are included for analysis and discussion. The graded items include midterm and final exams as well as two writing assignments that will help students understand key aspects of researching and writing history papers. YOU MUST GET THE PAPERBACK VERSIONS OF THE BOOKS ON THE SYLLABUS. E-BOOK OR KINDLE VERSIONS ARE NOT ALLOWED.

  • HIST 379-201 Introduction to Jewish History
    Instructor: Lisa D Silverman (silverld@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    Have you ever wondered about Jewish life before the Holocaust? Or wanted to know what the big fuss is about Kabbalah? And where did Yiddish words like “schlemiel” and “schlimazel” come from? This online course covers the historical foundations of Jewish civilization from antiquity to the present day. Through a combination of lectures, readings, class discussions, and films, you will learn about Jews and the variety of their responses to political, socioeconomic, and cultural challenges in history. We will examine this broad span of Jewish history using traditional sources as well as alternative perspectives, including books, essays, memoirs, tracts, letters, and other documents. Assignments include quizzes, discussions, and papers based upon primary and secondary sources.

  • HIST 399-001 Honors Seminar: Making of Revolutionary in 1950s Latin America
    Instructor: Kimberly L Hernandez (hernandk@uwm.edu)
    Meets: TR 11:30am-12:45pm
    This course tracks the transition of Ernesto "Che" Guevara from idealistic, somewhat sheltered life as an Argentine medical student of privileged background studying in Buenos Aires to legendary Latin American revolutionary whose iconic image today graces everything from leftist publications to coffee mugs. The political awakening that would ultimately lead to his decision to join Fidel Castro’s efforts in Cuba and to export the revolution from there began with a college-break road trip through Latin America, as recorded in "The Motorcycle Diaries" and solidified with a second trip taken upon his graduation, recorded in "Back on the Road." We ride along, paying particular attention to the places visited, the geography, topography, peoples, and cultures; the political-economic contexts; and the histories Guevara references in his writings. Beyond exploration and discovery, we will witness and contemplate Guevara’s personal transition within the historical context of the Cold War. As we uncover Guevara’s "America," we will pay careful attention to the following themes: contrasts (peaks and deserts; rich and poor; race and power; self-determination and servitude); turning points; and travelogue as literary pedagogical tool.

  • HIST 449-201 Popular Culture in America, 1800 to the Present
    Instructor: Richard K Popp (popp@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    This class explores the development of popular culture in the United States. Surveying more than 200 years, we’ll cover topics that range from the music of enslaved people in the early US to the the dawn of our own digital media age. In between, we’ll examine the rise (and sometimes fall) of such phenomena as the popular theater, the saloon, daily newspapers, spectator sports, the circus, comics, magazines, advertising, Hollywood, pop music, radio, TV, and video games. A key precept of the course is that the commercialization of pop culture over the past two centuries has been one of the most important long-term historical processes in the nation’s formation, influencing everything from its political culture to its social structures. A second key idea is that popular culture has long served as a resource through which ordinary people have laid claim to a sense of dignity, happiness, and self-concept and that it is a site upon which power struggles have been fought at a societal level. As such we’ll pay close attention to how popular culture has shaped conceptions of class, ethnicity, race, gender, and sexuality in dynamic ways across various eras. Though the focus will be on the US, we will also pay close attention to how American culture took shape in a global context, whether it be through the influence of immigrant cultures or through the global influence of US media.

  • HIST 450-001 Growth of Metropolitan Milwaukee
    Instructor: Amanda I Seligman (seligman@uwm.edu)
    Meets: TR 10am-11:15am
    Welcome to History 450, the Growth of Metropolitan Milwaukee. All of the major assignments in this class are public-facing. In this class, you will learn about the broad history of the Milwaukee area and the deep history of one thematic topic. In fall 2022, the theme is the history of Milwaukee's Mitchell family, including Alexander Mitchell, the richest man in 19th century Wisconsin, and Billy Mitchell, the father of the American Air Force. You will develop research skills and interpret the them to public audiences. You will collaborate with your classmates in a live Twitter re-enactment of the theme, write for the course blog about your research, curate a primary source, and enjoy professional development opportunities presented by the staff of the Milwaukee Public Museum.

  • HIST 593-001 Seminar on Historical Method: Theory and Approach
    Instructor: Christine E Evans (evansce@uwm.edu)
    Meets: MW 10am-11:15am
    This class will prepare you to navigate growing uncertainty about how we establish truth by focusing on the careful production and wise consumption of historical arguments. Students will learn how to find and interpret primary and secondary sources, from archival documents to photographs, newspaper articles, maps, documentary films, and museum exhibitions. Rather than reading these sources for “the facts,” we will examine how different people, writing in different times and places, can represent the same set of events in strikingly different ways. At the same time, we will practice using the powerful tools that history gives us for uncovering, documenting, and communicating credible and important stories about the past. By the end of the class you should be well prepared to research and write a historical essay, but you should also be better equipped to notice and interrogate the many historical claims and assumptions that surround us in our everyday lives.

  • HIST 595-201 The Quantitative Analysis of Historical Data
    Instructor: Lex Renda (renlex@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    This is a “how to” course. It teaches you how to use (and not use) statistics to answer questions, and it provides you with a solid introduction to the application of quantitative methods to history. I do not assume that you have knowledge of statistics or any math beyond basic algebra, and your calculator will perform all of the computations. Your job will be learning how to interpret the results of those computations. While the questions, data, and applications we shall examine will usually be drawn from the disciplines of history and other social sciences, you will be able to use the skills you learn to analyze all types of quantitative questions. These skills will be important to you if you pursue graduate training in history or other social sciences, and they will be equally useful if you pursue a career in business, government, or teaching. I also use several “everyday” examples of statistical inference that will enable you to understand the use and abuse of statistics, regardless of your chosen career. This course is being taught online, asynchronously. This course satisfies the university's QL-B requirement and (for students who entered the university prior to this fall), the History major's method requirement and method course prerequisite to Hist 600.

  • HIST 600-001 Seminar in History: Non-Human History
    Instructor: Nigel T Rothfels (rothfels@uwm.edu)
    Meets: W 11:30am-2:10pm
    This senior research seminar will focus on the presence and significance of the non-human in human history. If you look around and you notice how profoundly living things like viruses, bacteria, birds, mammals, fish, and plants, forces like weather and climate, and even the rocks around us (including things like diamonds and gold, but also just sand or particular stones) can be so important in our lives, you might begin to ask yourself whether we should think more about these kinds of other-than-human presences in human history. Throughout the course, we will read and discuss the work of historians and others doing this kind of work, while you will each pursue our own original research and writing related to the topic.

  • HIST 600-203 Seminar in History: U.S. Constitutional History
    Instructor: Lex Renda (renlex@uwm.edu)
    Meets: No Meeting Pattern
    This version of Hist 600 provides the opportunity for an in-depth investigation of some aspect of U.S. constitutional history, with the main emphasis on writing a research paper of 20+ pages (5,000 words, exclusive of the title page, footnotes/endnotes, and bibliography) that is based preponderantly on primary sources (but with secondary sources utilized as well). Students negotiate their research topics with the professor, but they have considerable latitude. Papers may address the historical evolution of specific constitutional issues (for example, "freedom of religion," "the rights of the accused," "equal protection," "federal commerce power") by focusing on specific cases or a set of cases. Other papers may focus on political developments surrounding constitutional questions (such as the ratification of specific constitutional amendments, or the “Constitutional Revolution” of 1937). Papers might also involve a comparison of some specific aspect of constitutional development at different points in time (for example, a paper which compares levels of partisanship on the Supreme Court in the 1870s and the 2010s). Primary sources may include (but are not limited to) the Supreme Court's published opinions, legal briefs before the Court, contemporaneous newspaper editorials and news coverage, private manuscripts of the justices, debates and roll call votes in Congress and state legislatures on constitutional amendments, and analyses of Court decisions in law review journals at the time they were rendered. Secondary sources will include books and articles (written after the fact) by political and legal historians. This course is conducted online and asynchronously.