2016-2017 Academic Catalog 
    Dec 02, 2020  
2016-2017 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

HIST 217H - The American Century

Credits: Four (4)
Prerequisite: Membership in Bascom Honors Program
In 1941, publisher Henry Luce proclaimed “the American century” and declared that the United States should “exert upon the world the full impact of our influence, for such purposes as we see fit and by such means as we see fit.”  In addition to surveying major events that shaped domestic society and eventually made the United States into a global superpower, a central goal of this course will be to come to terms with the meanings of modern America. What makes modern America modern? In answering this question, we will pay particular attention to a wide range of issues: immigration, work, reform movements, war, peace, consumption and poverty, politics, mass culture, economic crisis and abundance, education, health, and family. During the past century, how and why have race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and other dimensions of public and private identity changed Americans’ ideas about equality and freedom so profoundly?  Another goal of the course is to introduce students to history as a way of thinking about the world and to help them develop their own historical questions and answers.