Krieger Hall

Fall Quarter

Dept Course No and Title Instructor
This graduate seminar offers students the opportunity to develop their understanding of oral history theories and methods and the best use of oral source material in research and the writing of history.  Students will explore the art of oral history in both classroom and practical settings with discussions on the role of memory in first-person and community histories and ethical responsibilities of the researcher/historian in the digital age.  Students will conduct an interview of their choice for the course major research project and then transcribe, contextualize, and interpret their work into a final historical analysis.
Part one of a two-quarter sequence required of all Ph.D. students during the second year of the program; not required for M.A. students. Includes primary research and writing a research paper, often related to a future dissertation topic.

Restriction: Graduate students only. History Majors only.
Rooted Cosmopolitans: Mediterranean Jews Beyond the Nation State

The modern Mediterranean is what Mary Louise Pratt has famously called a “contact zone,” a space where “cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other, often in contexts of highly asymmetrical relations of power.” This course will employ the vantage point of Jewish history in its trans-Mediterranean entanglements to explore ways of rethinking the assumptions embedded in dominant historical conceptions of “methodological regionalism” (“Europe” vs. “Middle East”), as well as conventional paradigms of “methodological nationalism” (with the primacy of the nation-state as a frame of historical analysis). It will use the perspective of Jewish history to think comparatively about broader questions such as the formation of diasporic communities, complicating conceptions such as national belonging, citizenship, and indigeneity; about the use and limitations of a Mediterranean perspective in the study of European and Middle Eastern history; and about the relevance of religion in national, imperial, and colonial contexts. Readings will cover historical research on a period extending from the late eighteenth to the mid-twentieth century. Students are encouraged to think comparatively by bringing their own research interests to bear on discussions in the seminar.
Nation-building and imperial expansion were two sides of the same coin in Japan’s modern transformation in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Understanding the rise of modern Japan thus requires an investigation of how it simultaneously projected its power overseas. This course explores the interconnected process of how Japan shaped Asia and Asia shaped Japan, focusing on its colonial projects, practices, and legacies.

The course is broadly divided into three parts. The first part will examine Japan’s emergence as a modern empire in the Meiji period. We will ask how the Japanese expanded abroad while modernizing their country, how they defined themselves in relation to the colonized, and how they governed their newly acquired territories. The second part will look more closely at the activities of Japanese colonists on the ground, the variety of indigenous responses they generated, and the deepening of interactions between colonizer and colonized under total war. The last part will explore issues of empire beyond 1945: the legacies of colonialism, neo-imperialism, and the repatriation of settlers to the homeland. We will wrap up our discussion by analyzing the on-going politics of memory surrounding questions of war guilt and responsibility in Japan and its trans-Pacific inflections. We will approach these and other topics by reading a blend of seminal works on Japanese imperialism as well as more recent studies that point toward new directions in the field.
Colonial (Dis)order: Race & Gender in Latin America

How was colonial order simultaneously regulated and destabilized through race, gender, sex, class, and ethnicity? This course considers the mechanisms of colonial order in sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth-century Latin America alongside insurgencies, evasions, and refusals of Iberian, French, and British colonialism and slavery. We will explore how colonial authorities, ecclesiastical officials, and transatlantic merchants coopted Indigenous leadership, regulated sex roles, and trafficked Black people for profit to illuminate interwoven structures of early modern capitalism and modern state surveillance. Concurrently, we will ask: if the colonial state was extractive, then how did Andean laborers and Mexica vendors make the market their own? If conquering white patriarchs envisioned pious households, which of their daughters could challenge masculine impositions of honor? If Catholic clerics demanded conversion, how and where did Atlantic Africans imagine a new Christianity and hijack Church archives?

The course asks all participants to write weekly on the assigned reading. In addition, for a quarterly project, participants can choose to complete ONE of the following: 1) two short essays 2) an annotated bibliography and/or historiographical essay 3) a research or theoretical paper 4) a course syllabus with lesson plans 5) a creative writing, media, or public-facing project.
Black Radicalism in Theory and Practice 

This course explores histories of Black radicalism and Black radical social movements. Students will examine various theoretical articulations of Black radicalism including Cedric Robinson’s concept of the Black Radical Tradition, Black Feminism(s), Black Marxism, Black religious nationalism, and Pan-Africanism among others. We will also examine histories written about several Black radical social movements whose members sought to put such theories into practice. The readings for this course will be eclectic, including intellectual and social histories, memoirs and biographies, cultural histories, and more theoretical works penned by both academics and organizers. While the majority of these readings will consider the writings and the organizing work of twentieth century Black radicals in the US, we will also consider a few figures and movements from the African continent and the Caribbean as well. The goals of this course are 1.) to acquaint students with some of the major works, questions, and intellectual interventions that have characterized Black radicalism – primarily in the Americas during the twentieth century, 2.) to familiarize students with some of the major Black social movements of the period, 3.) to enable students to identify how theorizations of Black radicalism informed these movements, and to critically reflect on what they reveal about the uses and limits of such theories, and 4.) to further develop students’ ability to critical engage different genres of historical writings. 

To complete the course, students are expected to write brief, weekly responses to the assigned readings, to present to the class on a specific topic/reading once or twice during the quarter, and to complete a final project in the form of one of the following A.) a research or theoretical paper, or B.) a creative writing, media, or public-facing project.
This course is a survey of the Sasanian Empire (224-651 CE), which extended from Central Asia to that of Mesopotamia and in its heyday covered a large extent of Afro-Eurasia. The Sasanians dealt with a number of people internationally, both settled such as the Romans/Byzantines and nomadic, Arabs, Huns and others. We shall be studying the political, social and economic history of the Sasanians and the changes that it occurred with the empire throughout the four centuries of its existence. Furthermore, the course will discuss law, gender relations and religious life for the various communities such as the Zoroastrians, Jews, Christians and the Manichaeans.