Undergraduate History Courses

Fall 2019

HISTORY 101 U.S. History to 1877

Through lectures, readings, and class discussions, students in this course will learn about the early formation of the colonies, the American Revolution, the National Period, slavery, territorial expansion, and the beginnings of industrialization. The clash of cultures that produced the United States and subsequently affected its development will be emphasized. The course will close by examining the Civil War that nearly destroyed the republic and the attempts to mend the nation’s wounds afterwards. This class will explore a wide variety of historical readings and perspectives encompassing political, economic, social, cultural, racial, military, diplomatic, and gender-related issues.

Instructors: This course will be taught in person by Dr. Rebecca Davis and online by staff.

HISTORY 102 U.S. History Since 1877

Through lectures, readings, and class discussions, students in this course will learn about industrialization, western migration, imperialism, progressivism, world wars, depression, the cold war, and the emergence of the equal rights movements. The course will close with an examination of the United States on the world stage and the emerging war on terror in the wake of September 11th. This class will explore a wide variety of historical readings and perspectives encompassing political, economic, social, cultural, racial, military, diplomatic, and gender-related issues.

Instructors: This course will be taught in person by Dr. Rebecca Davis and online by staff.

HISTORY 206 World History To 1450

This course surveys the cultural, social, economic, and political history of the world to 1450. It studies the development of civilizations in isolation as well as the origins, nature, and consequences of global forms of interaction and exchange.

Instructor: This course will be taught in person by staff.

HISTORY 208 World History since 1450

This introductory course in modern world history focuses on the period from 1450 to the present. It explores themes of global interactions and exchange in terms of economic, social, political, and cultural history. Students will learn about the global past through both secondary and primary sources, and they will learn how to write informed, historical interpretations about that past as a foundation for more advanced work in history and related disciplines.

Instructor: This course will be taught online by staff.

HISTORY 215 Getting High: Alcohol & Drugs in American History

This class will investigate historical transformations in how American society has defined and responded to problematic drinking and drug use. The class will analyze what controversies surrounding various forms of intoxication indicate about the nature of American society and culture.

Instructor: Dr. Matthew Osborn

HISTORY 300C Special Studies

Topic: Big History: From the Big Bang to the Present
This course serves as an introduction to the humanities, social science, and science disciplines through a sweeping overview of natural and human history from the Big Bang to the present.

Instructor: Dr. Kevin Fernlund, Professor of History at University of Missouri-St. Louis.

*This is a course share course. UMKC students will enroll in History 300C through Pathway, but will be taught by Dr. Kevin Fernlund via UMSL’s Learning Management System.

HISTORY 300SS Special Studies

Topic: War and Violence in Modern Times
This eight-week course examines the connections between warfare and resistance, gangs and poverty, and state and non-state officials as enactors of violence. It explores the effects of war and violence on the poor in Brazil and the United States, prisoners of war in Asia, and resistance fighters in Latin America.

Instructor: Dr. Deborah Cohen, Associate Professor of History at University of Missouri-St. Louis.

*This is a course share course. UMKC students will enroll in History 300SS through Pathway, but will be taught in the first eight-week session by Dr. Deborah Cohen via UMSL’s Learning Management System.

HISTORY 300WY Decade of Dissent: The 1960s

The social movements and conflicts that developed during the 1960s continue to define American culture. Questions of racial and gender equity, a greater willingness to challenge authority, concerns about the environment, and a new openness about issues of sexuality all developed during the sixties and remain as arenas of debate today. This course will examine the origins, contexts, and major themes of the these social and cultural movements.

Instructor: Dr. Rebecca Davis

HISTORY 301WI Historiography and Method

All history majors must take this course, ideally at the beginning of their junior year. Its content includes: 1) what history is; 2) its value and usefulness; 3) the diversity of historical fields, approaches, and methods; and 4) the techniques of preparing and writing history papers.

Instructor: Dr. Matthew Osborn

HISTORY 306 America, 1850-1877: Civil War and Reconstruction

A survey of the political, social, and economic factors leading to the dissolution of the federal union is followed by a consideration of the major features and developments of the war period. This, in turn, leads to an analysis of the major factors and relationships involved in the “reconstruction” of the federal union. The course covers the years 1850 to 1877.

Instructor: Dr. Diane Mutti Burke

HISTORY 306A History of Christianity to the Middle Ages

This course examines the cultural, historical, and theological development of Christianity from its origins to the High Middle Ages. The main themes follow the mechanisms and conditions shaping Christianity’s expansion into a major cultural, social, institutional, and intellectual force in Western Europe with a focus on patterns of crisis and reform.

Instructor: Dr. David Freeman

HISTORY 356 Rise of the City in the U.S.

This course treats the background and major developments of the urbanization of the United States. It includes the American urban tradition, the scope of urbanization, colonial beginnings, urban rivalries, promotion, case studies of cities, the growth of urban services, the slum, problems of government, population trends, urban planning, and suburban growth. Consideration is also given to the methods and techniques of urban research and history of the development of this field.

Instructor: Dr. Sandra Enríquez

HISTORY 365A American Environmental History

This course examines the changing relationships between human beings and the natural world through time. The main argument of this course will be that American History looks very different through an environmental lens. Nature is an important category of historical analysis – as well as a topic worthy of historical study itself – and this course will examine themes as diverse as Native American ecology and the modern environmental crusade.

Instructor: Dr. Brian Frehner

HISTORY 379 Museums, Monuments, and American Life: An Introduction to Public History

This course will investigate the ways America commemorates, invokes, and misremembers its history—what scholars call public history. Students will learn the skills professionals use to communicate historical scholarship to wider audiences, and will grapple with the political and ethical issues that arise when we expand the discipline’s stakeholders.

Instructor: Dr. Sandra Enríquez

HISTORY 400C Special Studies

Topic: German Film
This course introduces students to the important contributions of German films to the development of movies as a unique literary art form. The class will cover important terms and concepts in film theory, the specifically German context of film, and important themes and periods in German film history. Taught in English with subtitled films.

Instructor: Dr. Larson Powell

HISTORY 400D Special Studies

Topic: Digital Humanities
This course will focus on the following skills in the digital humanities related to the electronic publication and computational analysis of texts: XML markup of both texts and meta data according to the standards of the text encoding initiative, transformation of these texts for presentation in electronic environments, annotation of data such as named entities and geographic locations to help visualize texts and textual collections, and quantitative analysis of literary and linguistic features in texts. In the class, students will work with many different texts, but will repeatedly return to Herodotus’ History and Jane Austen’s Lady Susan. Although most of the work in this class will be computational, it does not require prior experience with coding or markup.

Instructor: Dr. Jeffrey Rydberg-Cox

HISTORY 406 Modern Latin America

This course studies social, political, economic and cultural trends in Latin America in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Discussion topics include nation building after independence with an emphasis on gender and race in the creation of national identities and new forms of social stratification; integration of national economies into the world economic system; the expansion of political participation and citizenship; immigration (national and transnational) and the tensions caused by the forces of modernization and tradition. Although the purpose of the course is to provide a general background for a large and diverse region (more than 20 countries), case studies from Argentina, Mexico, and Brazil will illustrate the above-mentioned themes and will provide the basis for a comparative regional perspective.

Instructor: This course will be taught by Dr. Viviana Grieco online.

HISTORY 430RA ‘We Are The Dead’: The Great War Experience Through its Artifacts

World War One was the “war to end all wars”; all previous wars were indeed eclipsed by its scale of destruction. And yet, it was a war that initiated a century of continual bloodshed and crimes against humanity. This course will explore the causes, nature, and consequences of the Great War of 1914-18. It will be taught at the National World War One Memorial Museum at Liberty Memorial.

Instructor: Dr. Andrew Bergerson

HISTORY 471 Ancient Greece 

This course begins with a survey of the pre-classical Minoan and Mycenaean civilizations and then describes the rise of prominent Greek city-states (with particular emphasis upon the evolution of Sparta and the political, social, and cultural contributions of Athens). The course concludes with the rise of Macedon and Alexander’s conquests and significance.

Instructor: Dr. Massimiliano Vitiello

HISTORY 498WI Senior Capstone

This is the capstone course in the department and is required for majors. It consists of tutorial sessions with a regular faculty member and independent research leading to a major paper using original source materials.

Instructor: This course will be taught online by Dr. David Freeman.

Suggested Anchor Courses

ANCHOR 204 Women in the Ancient World

This course focuses on women in the ancient Mediterranean world, particularly ancient Greece and Rome from about 2500 BCE to the end of the Roman Empire in the West. Through lectures and reading assignments, students will learn about a wide variety of aspects of women’s lives, status, and representation in the ancient world. Using primary and secondary sources, students will assess issues such as women’s social, legal, and economic status; their depiction in male-authored works of literature, history, philosophy, science, and art and how those depictions differ from those of female-authored works and the archaeological evidence; and the roles of women in the family, the household, and the public milieus. Given the broad range of topics and the long timeline, these issues will be analyzed in a comparative context.

Instructors: Dr. Linda Mitchell and Dr. Cynthia Jones

ANCHOR 209: World Cultures, Histories, and Ideas

Topic: Myths of the Spanish Conquest
This course studies the societies of central Mexico, the Andes, and the Iberian Peninsula on the eve of their encounter, the ways in which each of these distinct societies impacted one another, and the hybrid societies that emerged. Students will study historical and literary works, images and films that have reimagined the Spanish conquest and addressed its complexities, myths and enduring legacies. An examination of the historical and literary production from the 1970s will serve as a basis for discussing past to contemporary ways of thinking as well as marginal to dominant realities.

Instructors: This course will be taught online by Dr. Viviana Grieco and Ms. Kelley Melvin.

ANCHOR 318 From Oil Gushers to Fracking: A History of American Petroleum

This course asks students to consider civic engagement by studying how the history of oil production and consumption has influenced people’s relationships to their communities and environments at the local, regional, and global scale. Bringing together the fields of geology and history, this interdisciplinary course explores how carbon fuels shape life on the planet.  A fundamental component of the way humans have engaged with each other and the natural world has been to seek and burn fossil fuels, but this has created unintended consequences (both good and bad) throughout time and across the planet.  Students will use civic engagement as a lens to examine how the use of fossil fuels has impacted societies and to learn how their actions as individuals and community members presently leave carbon footprints.

Instructors: This course will be taught online by Dr. Brian Frehner and Dr. Tina Niemi.

Summer 2019

HISTORY 101 U.S. History to 1877

Through lectures, readings, and class discussions, students in this course will learn about the early formation of the colonies, the American Revolution, the National Period, slavery, territorial expansion, and the beginnings of industrialization. The clash of cultures that produced the United States and subsequently affected its development will be emphasized. The course will close by examining the Civil War that nearly destroyed the republic and the attempts to mend the nation’s wounds afterwards. This class will explore a wide variety of historical readings and perspectives encompassing political, economic, social, cultural, racial, military, diplomatic, and gender-related issues.

Instructor: This course will be taught online by Dr. Matthew Osborn.
Sessions: First 5-Week (May 20-June 21) and Second 5-Week (June 24-July 26)

HISTORY 102 U.S. History Since 1877

Through lectures, readings, and class discussions, students in this course will learn about industrialization, western migration, imperialism, progressivism, world wars, depression, the cold war, and the emergence of the equal rights movements. The course will close with an examination of the United States on the world stage and the emerging war on terror in the wake of September 11th. This class will explore a wide variety of historical readings and perspectives encompassing political, economic, social, cultural, racial, military, diplomatic, and gender-related issues.

Instructor: This course will be taught online by Dr. Rebecca Davis.
Sessions: Intersession (May 20-June 7) and First 5-Week (May 20-June 21)

HISTORY 202 European History since 1600 

This course surveys the political, economic, social, intellectual, and cultural history of Europe from about 1600 to the present. Emphasis is given to themes of continuity and change in European culture through the experience of political, scientific, and industrial revolutions; conservative reactions; liberal reforms; nation building; imperialism; world wars; fascism; communism; and the Cold War.

Instructor: This course will be taught online by Dr. David Freeman.
Session: 8-Week (June 3-July 26)

HISTORY 300G Special Studies

Topic: Girls and Pop Culture
This course focuses on the history of teenage girls and American popular culture from the late nineteenth century to the present. It will examine the emergence of female adolescence as a social construct and the ambivalences generated by girls’ unremitting claims to autonomy and empowerment. Within the context of new possibilities and enduring constraints in the lives of American girls, students will interrogate descriptions, prescriptions, and proscriptions of teenage girls in movies, magazines, music, cartoons, and other cultural texts produced for and by girls of different ages, genders, classes, races, ethnicities, and sexualities. Central themes include: the changing nature of girls’ cultures; girls’ sexual expressibility; girls’ participation in the realm of commercial culture and media production; girls’ youthful and gendered self-definition; girls’ independence as consumers, wage-earners, and students; girls’ contested relations with adults; girls’ bonds, bullying, and blogs.

Instructor: This course will be taught online by Dr. Miriam Forman-Brunell.
Session: Second 5-Week (June 24-July 26)

HISTORY 406 Modern Latin America

This course studies social, political, economic and cultural trends in Latin America in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Discussion topics include nation building after independence with an emphasis on gender and race in the creation of national identities and new forms of social stratification; integration of national economies into the world economic system; the expansion of political participation and citizenship; immigration (national and transnational) and the tensions caused by the forces of modernization and tradition. Although the purpose of the course is to provide a general background for a large and diverse region (more than 20 countries), case studies from Argentina, Mexico and Brazil will illustrate the above-mentioned themes and will provide the basis for a comparative regional perspective.

Instructor: This course will be taught online by Dr. Viviana Grieco.
Session: First 5-Week (May 20-June 21)

Suggested Anchor Courses

ANCHOR 209 – 0001 World Cultures, Histories and Ideas

Topic: Myths of the Spanish Conquest
This course studies the societies of central Mexico, the Andes, and the Iberian Peninsula on the eve of their encounter, the ways in which each of these distinct societies impacted one another, and the hybrid societies that emerged. Students will study historical and literary works, images and films that have reimagined the Spanish conquest and addressed its complexities, myths and enduring legacies. An examination of the historical and literary production from the 1970s will serve as a basis for discussing past to contemporary ways of thinking as well as marginal to dominant realities.

Instructors: This course will be taught online by Dr. Viviana Grieco and Ms. Kelley Melvin.
Session: Second 5-Week (June 24-July 26)