Undergraduate Studies

Spring Courses

2017 Spring Semester

Below is the list of Undergraduate courses offered by the History Department for Spring 2017. Extensive course listings can also be found on the Undergraduate Catalog.

Click here to download the course descriptions in PDF form.

79-104 Global Histories

Lecture 1 Global Histories: Environment and Empire: Making and Remaking the Modern World
Lecture 2 Global Histories: Environment and Empire: Making and Remaking the Modern World

Human activity transcends political, geographical, and cultural boundaries. From wars to social movements, technological innovations to environmental changes, our world has long been an interconnected one. Acquiring the ability to understand such transnational and even worldwide processes is an indispensable part of any college education. This course provides students with an opportunity to develop the skills and perspectives needed to understand the contemporary world through investigating its global history. A variety of sections are offered in order to give students the opportunity to choose between different themes and approaches. All sections are comparable in their composition of lectures and recitations, required amounts of reading, and emphasis on written assignments as the central medium of assessment. The sections all aim to help students: (1) master knowledge through interaction with the instructors, reading material, and other students, (2) think critically about the context and purpose of any given information, (3) craft effective verbal and written arguments by combining evidence, logic, and creativity, and (4) appreciate the relevance of the past in the present and future.
79-104/1 Global Histories: Environment and Empire: Making and Remaking the Modern World

Instructor Units Lecture 1: MW 12:30-1:20
A. Ramey 9 units Recitations on Fridays
This course begins with the idea that history is not a static collection of past events, but rather an ongoing engagement with the dynamic links between past and present that are shaping and reshaping our world. We will narrow our focus to the relationships between environments and empires because people throughout the world are caught up in multiple interconnected processes that cross national boundaries, link distant regions, and in many cases, encompass the planet as a whole. These interrelated phenomena include uneven global industrialization, the dissolution of empires into nation-states, and the increasing gap between wealthy and impoverished peoples and nations, all occurring within the context of local and global environmental change. These transnational, transregional, and planetary processes have been developing for a long time, but our journey through the unfolding drama that has created the modern world as we know it will begin in the 14th century. Students will learn to apply key issues and ideas to concrete times and places through cases studies that include analyses of how mosquito ecology helped defeat the British Empire in Latin America, how the connection between climate and imperial expansion influenced the creation of third world, and finally how oil and empire converged to create many of the problems facing the modern Middle East.
79-104/2 Global Histories: Environment and Empire: Making and Remaking the Modern World

Instructor Units Lecture 2: MW 1:30-2:20
A. Ramey 9 units Recitations on Fridays
This course begins with the idea that history is not a static collection of past events, but rather an ongoing engagement with the dynamic links between past and present that are shaping and reshaping our world. We will narrow our focus to the relationships between environments and empires because people throughout the world are caught up in multiple interconnected processes that cross national boundaries, link distant regions, and in many cases, encompass the planet as a whole. These interrelated phenomena include uneven global industrialization, the dissolution of empires into nation-states, and the increasing gap between wealthy and impoverished peoples and nations, all occurring within the context of local and global environmental change. These transnational, transregional, and planetary processes have been developing for a long time, but our journey through the unfolding drama that has created the modern world as we know it will begin in the 14th century. Students will learn to apply key issues and ideas to concrete times and places through cases studies that include analyses of how mosquito ecology helped defeat the British Empire in Latin America, how the connection between climate and imperial expansion influenced the creation of third world, and finally how oil and empire converged to create many of the problems facing the modern Middle East.
79-104/3 Global Histories: Global Empire: Commerce, Finance, and Naval Power in the Rise & Fall of the British Empire

Instructor Units Lecture 3 MW 12:30-1:20
J. Roszman 9 units Recitation U Friday 12:30-1:20
This course begins with the idea that history is not a static collection of past events, but rather an ongoing engagement with the dynamic links between past and present that are shaping and reshaping our world. We will narrow our focus to the relationships between environments and empires because people throughout the world are caught up in multiple interconnected processes that cross national boundaries, link distant regions, and in many cases, encompass the planet as a whole. These interrelated phenomena include uneven global industrialization, the dissolution of empires into nation-states, and the increasing gap between wealthy and impoverished peoples and nations, all occurring within the context of local and global environmental change. These transnational, transregional, and planetary processes have been developing for a long time, but our journey through the unfolding drama that has created the modern world as we know it will begin in the 14th century. Students will learn to apply key issues and ideas to concrete times and places through cases studies that include analyses of how mosquito ecology helped defeat the British Empire in Latin America, how the connection between climate and imperial expansion influenced the creation of third world, and finally how oil and empire converged to create many of the problems facing the modern Middle East.
79-185 Grand Challenge Interdisciplinary Freshman Seminar: Racism

Instructor Units Lecture
N. Slate,
M. Achugar,
R. Purcell
9 units TR 9:00-10:20
Racism is everywhere in the twenty-first century. In August 2009, the renowned Indian actor, Sharukh Khan, was detained at Newark International Airport. According to Khan, his Muslim surname led American immigration officials to question him about the nature of his visit for over two hours. Was his treatment racist? In 2011, Luis Suarez a Uruguayan soccer player was punished for allegedly calling French footballer Patrice Evra "negro" in England. But was the word "negro," said in Spanish, racist? Racism is a complex phenomenon that refers to historically hierarchical power differences between groups (e.g. Native populations and Europeans during the conquest), ideas about how humans can be classified into groups by "race," and also discriminatory practices against non-dominant groups. This system of social relations and ideology serves to justify social inequality and differential treatment. If we are to end racism, we must strive to understand it. What are the historical origins of racism? How is racism reproduced? How does race influence identity formation? Can racism produce positive identities? Why has the struggle against racism shifted from a demand for human rights to a search for diversity and inclusion? This course will examine racism in Pittsburgh, in the United States, and in several other countries and regions throughout the world. We will approach racism from multiple academic perspectives with a team of three faculty from the departments of History, English and Modern Languages. This team-based interdisciplinary approach to Freshman Seminars draws on several departments and guest speakers.
79-200 Introduction to Historical Research & Writing: Documenting the 1967 Arab-Israeli War

Instructor Units Lecture
L. Eisenberg 9 units MW 3:00-4:20
This course introduces students to methods and materials that historians use to study the past. Its goals are: first, to familiarize students with ways that historians think about their research, how they carry it out, and how they debate findings with other historians; second, to train students in "best practices" for doing historical research in primary and secondary sources. We discuss how to ask questions about the past and develop a one-semester research topic, find appropriate primary and secondary sources, take notes from those sources, and write a paper that answers an original question using skills we have studied. In the Fall 2016 semester, we will use the topic of World War I to focus the class. In the Spring 2017 semester, we will use the topic of the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. Work includes reading and discussing a variety of sources; completing short assignments such as primary document analyses, response papers, and reports related to students' research topics; occasional oral progress reports to the class, and outlines or drafts. There is a final 10-15 page research paper.
79-205 20th/21st Century Europe

Instructor Units Lecture
M. Friedman 9 units TR 12:00-1:20
[Note: students who have already taken this course under its former title 79-205, 20th Century Europe may not enroll.]

This course surveys the history of Europe from 1900 to 2000 and beyond. While it covers major political trends and social/economic changes of the last century, it concentrates on the following themes: the extraordinary violence of the two World Wars -- and their continuing impact on politics, society, and culture; social and political movements/regimes of the Far Right and of the Socialist/Communist Left; the rise and crisis of the European welfare state and of the European Union; reactions to U.S. power and to Americanization; cultural and political controversies surrounding Islam and Muslims in Europe today.
79-206/A4/Mini Crime and Punishment in Early Modern Europe

Instructor Units Lecture
A. Creasman 6 units TR 3:00-4:20
This mini course will examine early modern European legal institutions and their role in defining and enforcing societal norms of conduct and belief. We will focus especially on how shifting definitions of "crime" and "punishment" within the period reflected prevailing societal attitudes and anxieties toward perceived acts of deviance and persons on the margins of society. Assigned readings will examine early modern European criminal court systems, investigation and punishment of crime, and criminalization of social deviance (witches, vagrants, religious minorities and other outcasts).
79-208/A3/Mini The Early Modern Witch-Hunts, c. 1400-1700

Instructor Units Lecture
A. Creasman 3 units R 3:00-4:20
Between the late 15th and the early 18th centuries, many Europeans became convinced that their society was threatened by a conspiracy of diabolic witches. Although Western beliefs in witchcraft and diabolism dated back to antiquity, the 16th and 17th centuries witnessed the most intense campaign of witch-hunting in all of Europe's history. Before it was over, the "Great European Witch-Hunt" of the early modern era cost the lives of thousands across Europe and in its American colonies. Ever since, historians have struggled to explain why fears of witchcraft suddenly became so acute in this period and why - seemingly just as suddenly - Europeans ultimately came to repudiate them. This course examines the phenomenon of the early modern witch-hunts in both their European and colonial contexts, focusing on the origin and rationale of early modern witch beliefs and the factors driving the timing and intensity of witch-hunts, the patterns of accusations, and the ultimate end of the prosecutions. Throughout, we will examine the many regional variations in witch beliefs and prosecutions that make the early modern witch-hunts such a complex historical puzzle. In the process, we will explore how early modern witch-hunting reflected major issues in European society, culture, and politics -- including the relationship between "popular" and "elite" culture; religious reform; the formation of the modern state; gender and patriarchy; and the rationalization of law, medicine, and science.
79-213/A4/Mini The American Railroad, Past & Present

Instructor Units Lecture
H. Posner 6 units MW 9:00-10:20
Railroads in the USA are often considered as a subject for nostalgia or public sector failure, an image largely based on passenger service. However, the USA's private sector freight rail industry is considered a model for the world as the result of its renaissance following deregulation in 1980. This is a "stealth" industry whose history and economics are both intertwined and complex
79-215/A4/Mini The End of Colonialism and the Birth of Modern Africa, 1945-1975

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Weigel 6 units MWF 10:30-11:20
From 1945 to 1975 conflict and hope in Africa went hand in hand. Africans fought to be free of European rule. Then they struggled to shape a new political order. Entangled in the US-Soviet Cold War, postcolonial states sought the favor of one side or the other. At the same time they experimented with capitalism or socialism. Everywhere Africans aimed at a better material life.

Join us to examine these exciting events through primary sources and books and articles by leading scholars.
79-223 Mexico: From the Aztec Empire to the Drug War

Instructor Units Lecture
P. Eiss 9 units MW 1:30-2:50
This course provides a survey of Mexican history and culture over a variety of periods, from the rise of the Aztec empire, to Spanish conquest and colonization, to national independence, to the Mexican Revolution and contemporary Mexico. A wide range of topics will be addressed, such as: race, ethnicity, and indigeneity; state formation and politics; national identity and the politics of memory; migration and the border; and the drug war. Students will discuss historical and anthropological scholarship on Mexico, but will also consider cultural documents of various kinds, like Mexican music, art, and food.
79-228 Global Empire: Commerce, Finance, Naval Power in Rise & Fall of the British Empire

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Roszman 9 units MWF 12:30–1:20

  • Time of 79-228 has been changed to Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays -- 12:30 – 1:20.
  • This course is cross-listed with 79-104 (Lecture 3, Section U) -- Global Histories: Global Empire: Commerce, Finance, Naval Power in Rise & Fall of the British Empire.
  • Students who have already taken this course under 79-104, Global Histories: Global Empire: Commerce, Finance, Naval Power in Rise & Fall of the British Empire, may not enroll.

Great Britain at the height of its power controlled a quarter of the world’s population, a fifth of its dry surface, and mastery across its oceans. The British Empire operated as a vast network of people, institutions, commercial interests, and commodities that fueled Britain’s rising geopolitical importance and made London the financial capital of the world through the First World War. Often relying on the power of the Royal Navy, the Empire incorporated far-flung territories into this web of interconnectedness and unleashed what we now call “globalization.”

Using the writings of historians, as well as primary sources such as newspapers, travel accounts, letters, and literature, “Global Empire” will follow the development of the British Empire from the sixteenth century to its demise after the Second World War. We will pay particular attention to the way Britain’s economic interests shaped its imperial project. Thus, the course will explore topics such as colonial commodities, slavery, imperialism, naval power, free trade, and war in the Americas, Asia, Africa, and the British Isles. Ultimately, students will not only be able to recognize and assess the role of the British Empire in the development of “globalization,” but will also be able to identify the ways that economic interests shape state policy in the world we live in today.
79-234 Technology in American Society

Instructor Units Lecture
A. McGee 9 units TR 12:00-1:20
This course explores technological change and innovation in the United States in broader political, social, cultural, and business context. Questions of how technologies developed concurrently with the American experience from the late eighteenth century to the present will drive classroom discussion, examination of primary documents and technological artifacts, and theoretical exploration of change over time. Strong focus is given to the twentieth and twenty-first centuries as products of a longer historical narrative.
79-235 Caribbean Cultures

Instructor Units Lecture
S. Alfonso-Wells 9 units TR 9:00-10:20
This course will examine the cultures and societies of the Caribbean focusing on their colonial past, their current positioning in the world, their social structure, cultural patterns and current transnationalism. Using social history, film and music we will explore the topics of race, class, family, gender, religion, national identity and underdevelopment. Comparative research projects will provide concrete instances of the differences and similarities between the Anglo-Caribbean, Franco-Caribbean, and Hispanic Caribbean. This course is open to all students.
79-239/A4/Mini The Great Depression in America, 1929-1941

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Suzik 6 units MW 6:30-7:50 pm
Until the “Great Recession” of 2008, it had become virtually unthinkable that the United States would ever again experience a financial downturn coming close to that which followed the stock market crash of 1929; and we likely still haven’t. Lasting for more than a decade, the Great Depression affected American life and culture in ways that were both pronounced and profound. This course looks at the multiple and complex manner that American life changed in the decades between the two world wars. It assesses social, cultural, political, economic, and technological changes that, in the midst of deprivation and economic uncertainty, ultimately brought “modernity” to everyday American life. Relating to the Great Depression itself, students will evaluate varying political approaches to the complex financial and social issues wrought by economic downturn, comparing and contrasting Herbert Hoover’s local and regional relief focus with Franklin Roosevelt’s massive, federally-funded New Deal initiatives. In addition, students will analyze first-person narratives from everyday Americans describing their day-to-day experiences. Finally, the course will explore how the Depression became a near-constant cultural focus in this era, reflected in popular movies, music, and works of fiction.
79-255/A4/Mini Irish History

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Roszman 6 units MWF 11:30-12:20
This course surveys Irish history from the earliest human settlements until the present day, with emphasis on the period since the sixteenth century. Our main objective is to understand the sources of conflict in modern Ireland. In order to do that, however, we look at a number of topics such as the role of religion in Irish society; the causes of population growth, movement, and decline; changing forms of protest; and the formation of rival myths of the Irish past and its meaning.
79-262 Modern China: From the Birth of Mao … to Now

Instructor Units Lecture
B. Weiner 9 units TR 1:30-2:50
[Note: students who have already taken this course under its former title 79-262, Modern China, may not enroll.]

This course is an introduction to major themes in twentieth-century Chinese history, including the transition from empire to nation, revolution, social change and modernization, western and Japanese imperialism, the rise of the party-state, Chinese socialism, economic liberalization and the so-called "Chinese Dream." The first half of the class is devoted to the period between the fall of the imperial system and the founding of the People's Republic of China (1911-1949). If the victory of the Chinese Communist Party and development of the socialist state are to be considered in historical context, it is necessary to first understand the political, cultural, economic and intellectual currents that immediately preceded them. During the second half of the course, we will examine the Maoist period (1949-1976). We will investigate the Chinese Communist Party as both a state-building institution and an engine of social transformation, and consider the tensions these dual roles produced. Finally, we will look at the Reform Period (1978-present), and reflect on a newly robust China's attempts to come to terms with its own recent past and what the consequences might be for both China and the world.
79-264/A4/Mini Tibet and China: History and Propaganda

Instructor Units Lecture
B. Weiner 6 units TR 10:30-11:50
[Note: students who have already taken this course under its former title 79-264, Tibet in History and Imagination, may not enroll.]

This course is an introduction to the “Tibet Question,” the dispute over whether Tibet should be part of China, an independent nation-state, or, as the current Dalai Lama now advocates, something in between. “History” often serves as the battleground on which competing visions of the nation are fought - who should be included and excluded, where “natural” boundaries begin and end. This almost always requires a process of simplification in which inconvenient details are forgotten or repurposed in the service of national agendas. The “Tibet Question” is a telling example. In this class, we investigate the historical relationship between “China” and “Tibet” from the 13th century through the present, and note the ways advocates on both sides of the “Tibet Question” have constructed historical narratives (propaganda) in support of their political positions. We will also discuss the prospects for a political solution and consider the lessons the “Tibet Question” may hold for understanding other outstanding “historical” disputes.
79-267 The Soviet Union in World War II: Military, Political, and Social History

Instructor Units Lecture
W. Goldman 9 units TR 10:30-11:50
On June 22, 1941, Hitler invaded the Soviet Union. German troops quickly reached the hills above Moscow, surrounded Leningrad in the longest running siege in modern history, devastated the country's economy, and slaughtered millions of Soviet civilians. Over 26 million Soviet citizens died in the war. Eventually, the Red Army came back from defeat to free the occupied territories and drive Hitler's army back to Berlin. Using history, films, poetry, veterans' accounts, documentaries, and journalism, this course surveys the great military battles as well as life on the home front. It highlights the rise of fascism, the Stalinist purges of the Red Army, and the Nazi massacres of Soviet Jews, peasants, and partisans. Occasional required evening film screenings.
79-275 Introduction to Global Studies

Instructor Units Lecture
P. Eiss 9 units MW 9:00-10:20
"Globalization" is a familiar term that is often used to invoke the idea that places around the world are rapidly becoming more interconnected. This is so, but it is also true that this is far being from a simple or harmonious process. Rather, "globalization" involves a wide range of uneven and disputed cultural, political, economic, and social developments that often influence one another but vary markedly in their significance, impact, and intensity. Economic crisis, impoverishment, rising inequality, environmental degradation, pandemic disease, and militant ethnic, religious, and nationalist movements are just as much a part of the contemporary global landscape as are technological innovation, instantaneous communication, shifts in the global division of labor, the creation of new wealth and knowledge, the promotion and defense of human rights, and the rise of cosmopolitan values and perspectives. This course introduces you to important ways of thinking about globalization and will acquaint you with the kinds of research, evidence, and information upon which these kinds of thinking rely. It serves as a foundation for further study of the contemporary world in advanced Global Studies courses.
79-281 Introduction to Religion

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Gilchrist 9 units MW 1:30-2:50
Religion can be viewed from the “outside,” through the academic lenses of history, sociology, psychology, philosophy, etc., and from the “inside,” listening to the experiences and reflections of those who practice various faiths. The course will examine major religious traditions from several perspectives, and begin to explore such topics as the relationship between religion and science, faith and reason, and religion in public life. For students with a general interest in religion as well as those contemplating a religious studies minor.
79-283 Hungry World: Food and Famine in Global Perspective

Instructor Units Lecture
A. Owen 9 units TR 12:00-1:20
The science and technology of the Green Revolution in the second half of the 20th century were heralded as a miracle. Agricultural science promised seeds, peasants, companies, governments, scientists, economists, exporters, and planners would work together to support growing populations, especially in the post-colonial world. The human population on Earth reached six billion before the end of the second millennium; seven billion were estimated around 2011. The United Nations predicts eight billion by 2025.

Awareness of living in this unique period of human history brought new debates among scholars, practitioners, and planners thinking about the critical role of agriculture and development on Earth. How can we conceptualize, hope, and plan for best possible outcomes for a human population that depends on agriculture and development? How has the legacy of the Green Revolution encouraged (or betrayed) public enthusiasm for innovative fixes?

This interdisciplinary course will use methods and case studies drawing on History, Historical Demography, Anthropology, Cultural Studies, Regional Studies, Geosciences and Agricultural Sciences, and International Economic Development. If students wish to pursue a particular thematic or regional interest, there will be room in this course to explore particular cases in depth.
79-284 Introduction to Archaeological Methods: The Social Life of Things

Instructor Units Lecture
L. Herckis 9 units TR 3:00-4:20
This course serves as an introduction to archaeological research methods, including the theory and techniques archaeologists use to understand the ancient world. People leave their mark on the natural world, and create artificial environments, in ways deeply tied to culture, practice, and experience. Over the past 150 years, archaeologists have developed many effective methods for studying the past. How can we better understand people by exploring the physical world in which they lived? How we can evaluate competing interpretations of the past? This seminar course will critically review the research history of, research methods in, and current problems and issues in archaeology.
79-302 Drone Warfare and Killer Robots: Ethics, Law, Politics, and Strategy

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Aronson 9 units TR 10:30-11:50
[Note: students who have already taken this course under its former title 79-302/Mini Course, Drone Warfare: Ethics, Law, Politics, History, and Strategy, may not enroll.]

Unmanned aerial vehicles (commonly referred to as drones) have become a central feature of the United States' global counterterrorism strategy since September 11, 2001, and autonomous weapons systems (which some critics call “killer robots”) are increasingly being used in conflict and law enforcement. According to proponents, drones and autonomous weapons systems are much safer than manned systems (because there is no operator to be injured or killed), so accurate that they can be used to target individuals and detect threats in real time, and efficient and inexpensive enough to be used for long-term surveillance and protection missions around the globe. According to critics, the use of such systems is often highly problematic because it is illegal to target individuals outside of formally declared war and because autonomous weapons systems can obfuscate historically accepted chains of military/police accountability and responsibility. Further, in the context of drone warfare, hidden costs are underreported in the mainstream media (including high civilian casualties, the intense psychosocial trauma inflicted upon communities that experience drone strikes, and the psychological impact on drone operators who witness the damage they cause through a computer monitor thousands of miles away). This course will evaluate these issues through the lenses of law, ethics, politics, history, and military strategy. The final project will involve crafting policy recommendations on drone warfare and autonomous weapons systems (both for military and law enforcement use) to the new president.
79-303/A4/Mini Pittsburgh and the Transformation of Modern Urban America

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Tarr 6 units MW 1:30-2:50
This course will focus on the transformations, both negative and positive, of Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh region in the period from 1945 through the present. It will explore the following themes: the redevelopment of the city in the Pittsburgh Renaissances, the collapse of the steel industry and the development of an Eds/Meds service economy, and the city's changing economy, demography, and neighborhoods. In addition, environmental conditions and change will be examined.
79-305 Moneyball Nation: Data in American Life

Instructor Units Lecture Section A Section B
C. Phillips 9 units MW 11:30-12:20 F 11:30-12:20 F 121:30-1:20
From conducting clinical trials and evaluating prisoners' parole cases to drafting professional ballplayers, we increasingly make decisions using mathematical concepts and models. This course surveys the development of-and resistance to-such tools by grounding them in the recent cultural history of the United States. Focusing on baseball, medicine, and the law, we'll explore how and why Americans have come to believe mathematical and computational methods can solve complicated problems, even in seemingly unrelated moral, political, and social domains. The course encourages students to think critically about the wider implications of these transformations by situating their development historically.
79-307 Religion and Politics in the Middle East

Instructor Units Lecture
L. Eisenberg 9 units MWF 12:30-1:20
This course looks at the historic relationship among Islam, Judaism and Christianity and what they have to say about the nature of government, the state's treatment of religious minorities, and relations among states in the Middle East. We will consider the impact of religion on domestic and foreign policy in selected Middle Eastern countries and communities, the role of religion in fueling conflicts, the phenomenon of religious fundamentalism, the challenge and opportunity this presents to the United States, and the potential for religion to help advance Middle East peace. We will take advantage of the unprecedented upheavals roiling the Arab world since 2011 and use contemporary social media to contact people on the ground in the states we are studying to produce "updates" as to where religion and politics seem to be intersecting at this time.
79-314 The Politics and Culture of Memory

Instructor Units Lecture
E. Grama 9 units TR 3:00-4:20
What is the relationship between an individual person and collective memories? How do societies "remember"? This course proposes an interdisciplinary approach to the relationship between memory and history. It explores various ways in which societies have mobilized their remembrances of the past for political and economic ends in the present; how and whose memory began to matter in a global 20th century; and how individual testimonies have highlighted the role of body, experience, trauma, and nostalgia for writing new, more inclusive and heterogenous histories. We will analyze how the politics of memory intermesh at a local and global scale, via a set of case studies that focus on: the use and erasure of the past in post-1945 Western and Central Europe; political violence, civil war, and reconciliation in post-1990 Guatemala; and the role of remembrance and testimony for claims of moral retribution in the aftermaths of colonialism (the Mau Mau in Kenya). The course is organized as a discussion-based seminar. The requirements include: mandatory attendance, one in-class presentation on a course topic, weekly discussion questions/comments submitted through CMU Box, and two essays based on the class readings (9-10 pages each, double spaced).
79-320 Women, Politics, and Protest

Instructor Units Lecture
L. Tetrault 9 units MW 12:00-1:20
This course examines the history of women's rights agitation in the United States from the early nineteenth-century to the present. It investigates both well-known struggles for women's equality--including the battles for women's voting rights, an Equal Rights Amendment, and access to birth control--and also explores the history of lesser-known struggles for economic and racial justice. Because women often differed about what the most important issues facing their sex were, this course explores not only the issues that have united women, but also those that have divided them.
79-321/A4/Mini Launching the Presidency: The First 100 Days

Instructor Units Lecture
K. Allen 6 units MW 12:00-1:20
Since Franklin D. Roosevelt "set an impossible standard" after his whirlwind first 100 days in office, U.S. Presidents have been judged on their action (or inaction) during their honeymoon period. This course will analyze the political, policy, and institutional issues faced by presidents immediately after taking office. We will also have the opportunity to evaluate the first one hundred days of the next administration as it unfolds.
79-325/A4/Mini U.S. Gay and Lesbian History

Instructor Units Lecture
T. Haggerty 6 units TR 12:00-1:20
U.S. Gay and Lesbian History offers an overview of the changing context and circumstances of sexual minorities in American culture. From early constructions of moral opprobrium, criminal deviance or medical pathology, the LGBT community emerged in the twentieth and twenty-first century as a political constituency and a vital part of contemporary society. Students should be aware that this course will necessarily address issues of intimate relations and sexuality as well as broader historical issues.
79-328 Photographers and Photography Since World War II

Instructor Units Lecture
L. Benedict-Jones
D. Oresick
9 units Tuesdays 6:30-9:20pm
Invented in 1839, photography was a form of visual expression that immediately attracted a large public following. Starting around 1900, photography was practiced with two dominant strands. One of these firmly believed in the power of photographs to provide a window on the world, and was led by Lewis Hine, whose documentary photographs for the National Child Labor Committee helped to ameliorate living and working conditions for thousands of immigrant children. The other strand adhered to the philosophy of Alfred Stieglitz who adamantly affirmed that photographs were first and foremost reflections of the soul and were art objects, equal to painting, drawing and sculpture. These two schools of thought guided photographers throughout the twentieth century. This course explores in depth the tremendous range of photographic expression since World War II and examines in particular the contributions of significant image-makers such as Helen Levitt, W. Eugene Smith, Robert Frank, Diane Arbus, Garry Winogrand, Charles "Teenie" Harris, Cindy Sherman, Carrie Mae Weems, Nan Goldin, James Nachtwey, and many others. Classes include a slide lecture, student presentation, and video segments that introduce a focused selection of images by major photographers in an attempt to understand their intentions, styles, and influences. In Spring 2017, students will be expected to make one or more visits to photography exhibitions on view in Pittsburgh (locations to be announced at the first class in January.)
79-331 Body Politics: Women and Health in America

Instructor Units Lecture
L. Tetrault 9 units MW 1:30-2:50
Women's bodies have been the sites of long-standing, and sometimes deadly, political battles. This course takes a topical approach to the history of American women's health in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in order to understand why women's bodies have been such heated sites of struggle. It covers topics such as the history of contraception, abortion, menstruation, sexuality, female anatomy, rape, domestic abuse, menopause, pregnancy, and childbirth. It explores how American culture has constructed these issues over time, while also examining women's organizing around them. This course is open to all students.
79-335 Drug Use and Drug Policy

Instructor Units Lecture
A. Tallaksen 9 units MW 9:00-10:20
This course examines the use of psychoactive drugs in American history, as well as medical, scientific, and policy responses to that use. Drugs we will consider include alcohol, heroin, marijuana, tobacco, and cocaine. We will examine changing theories of addiction, ethnographic studies of drug using groups, and the cultural meanings of drug use. We will also consider drugs as commodities in international trafficking. Although the primary focus is on the U.S., we will look at policy approaches to drug use in other countries as well, to put American drug policy in a comparative perspective.
79-341 The Cold War in Documents and Film

Instructor Units Lecture
N. Kats 9 units MW 3:00-4:20
This course is based on use of historical documents and films to study problems that reshaped the world during and after the Cold War. We will examine how documentary and feature films depicted the most important events of the Cold War, such as the Korean War, the construction of the Berlin Wall, the Cuban missile crisis, and others. In addition to films, sources will include documents, lectures and readings.
79-345 Roots of Rock & Roll

Instructor Units Lecture
S. Sandage 9 units TR 1:30-2:50
This course is about open source, collaborative innovation and the impact of social and technological change on American music. We will spend the first 8 weeks on early "remix" music (slave songs, Anglo-Appalachian ballads, ragtime, and Depression era blues and country). After studying Bessie Smith, Woody Guthrie, Lead Belly, Hank Williams, and other early artists, we'll spend the last 7 weeks on revolutionaries like Chuck Berry, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, and Janis Joplin. The format is informal lecture and discussion. Assignments include reading two books plus some articles, weekly music listening, short papers, and a final project.
79-349 The Holocaust in Historical Perspective

Instructor Units Lecture
B. Burstin 9 units TR 3:00-4:20
How should one approach the Holocaust? Multiple perspectives are possible, but in this course we will consider not only fundamental questions related to the Holocaust- Why the Jews? How did the process of destruction unfold? How could the perpetrators do what they did? Did the Jews go like “sheep to the slaughter,” etc.- but we will look at the role of non-European actors, particularly the United States. How did the US respond to events in Europe? What was the role of President Franklin Roosevelt? Does America bear any guilt for what happened? We will try to meet with at least one Holocaust survivor and consider the Holocaust in an age of genocide and murderous fanaticism.
79-350 Early Christianity

Instructor Units Lecture
A. Creasman 9 units TR 1:30-2:50
In this course we examine the origins of Christianity. Although we deal with biblical as well as other contemporary materials, the approach is not theological but historical. We want to understand how and why Christianity assumed the form that it did by examining its background in the Jewish community of Palestine, its place in the classical world, its relationship to other mystery religions of the time and certain variant forms (now known as Gnosticism) which it assumed prior to the crystallization of orthodoxy.
79-354 Energy & Climate: History, Science, Technology, and Policy in the US, 1776-2076

Instructor Units Lecture
D. Hounshell 9 units MW 3:00-4:20
This course provides CMU students with a historically grounded, technically informed, and policy-centered examination of energy and climate in the United States from the American Revolution to the nation's tri-centennial, by which time the nation will either have taken the necessary action to avoid massive catastrophes related to global warming or will be destined for-and perhaps already experiencing--a series of vastly catastrophic climate events that visit apocalyptic-like suffering and misery on large segments of the nation. Energy procurement and expenditure in the US and climate change have been surprisingly linked over the nation's entire. Now is the time for CMU students to understand these relationships historically, technically and scientifically, and politically and geopolitically. The course is structured around the reading and discussion of landmark scholarship on energy and climate sewn together by lectures, films, and various unorthodox pedagogical methods.
79-356 Neuroscience and the City

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Tarr,
M. Tarr
9 units TR 1:30-2:50
Do we, as human beings, experience the urban environment? We explore the underlying neural basis of our perceptions as the city changes over time.
79-364/A4/Mini The Birth of Modern Childbirth

Instructor Units Lecture
K. Walsh 6 units TR 9:00-10:20
At-home births, epidurals, C-sections: women's experiences with childbirth vary widely. Many of these differing experiences stem from societal developments that occurred in Europe during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Amidst these changes, the ritual of childbirth was transformed. Women went from giving birth at home with a midwife, surrounded by female friends and relatives, to giving birth in a hospital with male obstetricians.

This course asks students to identify the factors (e.g., human agents, ideologies, etc.) that influenced major changes in the childbirth process, and to examine how these changes affected women of the time. Additionally, students will be asked to consider what implications historical study holds for interpreting contemporary debates surrounding women's health issues, including but not limited to childbirth.

Throughout this course, we make liberal use of primary sources to develop arguments about the large-scale changes that occurred between 1600 and the present. Through assigned readings, class discussions, and diverse course assignments, students will develop an informed perspective on the transformation(s) of childbirth.
79-368 The Philosophy of Rebellion: From Ancient Greeks to Modern Times

Instructor Units Lecture
V. Strelkov 9 units MWF 1:30-2:20
Rebellion is a fundamental aspect of human existence. Descartes declared: "I think therefore I am." We might say that over the course of the twentieth century this formula became: "I rebel therefore I am." Relying on historical and philosophical analysis, this course will examine the preconditions and events that led to this transformation. We will consider how violence, revolution, utopian thinking, and the relationship between individuals and institutions inform our understanding of rebellion. The philosophical history of rebellion stretches from the Ancient Greeks (the Cynics) through to the 19th and 20th centuries in the works of Marx, Bakunin, Nietzsche, Sartre, Camus, Adorno, and Marcuse. Over the course of the semester we will explore the philosophical underpinnings of rebellion by reflecting on anarchism, nihilism, and dialectical processes.
79-373/A4/Mini Love, Sex, and the Avant-Garde in Pre-Revolutionary Russia

Instructor Units Lecture
V. Strelkov 6 units MWF 10:30-11:20
The Silver Age of the late nineteenth century began a sexual revolution in Russia. It encompassed daring experimentation with prevailing cultural forms and content. Poets, writers, painters, and musicians rebelled against traditional conventions to create a new and exciting avant garde, which nurtured a new erotic sensibility. This course focuses on the erotic aspects of Russian cultural production in this period, including the link between eroticism and decadence. We will explore the literary and philosophical texts of leading writers, poets, and philosophers. We will study the eroticism of the Silver Age within its larger European context, examining its relationship to Freudianism, as well as prominent new ideas about death and history.
79-388/A3/Mini JFK’s America: The Politics, Crises, and Legacy of the Kennedy Era

Instructor Units Lecture
A. McGee 3 units W 12:00-1:20
This course employs the politics, policies, and cultural interpretations of the presidency of John F. Kennedy as a lens to understand the United States of the early 1960s. How JFK came to be elected, his actions while in office, and his legacy inform our understandings of elements as diverse as the presidency, elections and campaigning, the Cold War, the Civil Rights movement, the War in Vietnam, the Space Program, relations between the government and the private sector, the nature of public figures as celebrities, popular fascination with assassinations and conspiracy theories, and broader transformation of American culture during a tumultuous decade. Class lectures and discussions will draw from a wide variety of primary documents, secondary readings, and period media and cultural artifacts.
79-390/A4/Mini History of Computing Workshop: The Formative Years

Instructor Units Lecture
A. McGee 6 units TR 1:30-2:50
The course examines the history of the electronic digital computer -- and the entire digital age it birthed -- within broader social, political, cultural, and business contexts. How did computing technologies transform governments, corporations, and daily lives in the decades following World War II? How do information technologies shape an emerging information society, and vice versa? How do the technological innovations, limitations, and quirks of computers reflect and shape the broader context in which they emerged? Particular attention will be given to the earliest decades of computing and the "deep history" of contemporary information technologies.

Though focused largely on computing and digital technologies in the United States, some course readings and discussion will explore computing in international context. Students will have the opportunity to explore in-depth primary documents and media from key moments in the innovation of hardware and software, the business of computing, and the broader context of digital transformation of economy, society, and culture.
79-394/A4/Mini Exploring History through Geography

Instructor Units Lecture
A. Owen 6 units TR 9:00-10:20
For studying the past, space can be as important as time. Digital mapping and GeoLocation technologies influence our everyday interactions and perceptions of the world around us. Historians are thinking about how these technologies can change their fields of study, too.

Through the “spatial turn” in the Humanities and Social Sciences, historians are using spatial experience to think more deeply about the meaning of place and space. Visualizing spatial relationships via new technologies can offer meaningful new ways to approach historical questions. This course will consider viewpoints from the discipline of Geography and explore the impact of new methods in the Digital Humanities, including the impact of digital tools such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS).
79-396 Music and Society in 19th and 20th Century Europe and the U.S.

Instructor Units Lecture
N. Kats 9 units Mondays 6:30-9:20pm
This course will explore the interrelations between society and classical and popular music in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in Europe and the United States. We will examine the importance of different musical forms in the life of society and how music contributed to the making of political consciousness, especially in the twentieth century. In addition to reading assignments, seminar discussions, and research papers in the history of music, students will be taken to the performances of the Pittsburgh Symphony, Pittsburgh Opera, and Chamber Music Society. A supplemental fee of a minimum of $275 will be charged to subsidize part of the considerable expense of purchasing tickets for concerts and performances. Prerequisite: Availability to attend musical events on several Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings.
79-400 Advanced Seminar in Global Studies

Instructor Units Lecture
E. Grama 12 units TR 9:00-10:20
This research seminar is the capstone course for Global Studies majors. The course is designed to give you a chance to define and carry out a research project of personal interest. The first few weeks of the course will be devoted to developing a research topic and locating sources. We will then work on how to interpret and synthesize sources into a coherent and compelling thesis or argument before you begin drafting your paper. Your research may be based on in-depth reading of a body of scholarly work, field notes from ethnographic observations, archival research, analysis of literary or visual media, or some combination of these sources. Incorporation of some non-English language sources is strongly encouraged where possible. Independent work, self-initiative, participation in discussion, and peer evaluations are required. There are several interim deadlines that will be strictly enforced in order to ensure successful completion of the course.

Prerequisites: 79-275 and Theoretical and Topical Core must be complete or concurrently enrolled. Corequisite: 79-275.
79-424 History of German Film

Instructor Units Lecture
S. Brockmann 9 units TR 3:00-4:20
This course is a chronological introduction to one of the world's greatest cinema traditions: German cinema. It moves from the silent cinema of the 1910s to the Weimar Republic, when German cinema represented Hollywood's greatest challenger in the international cinema world. It then addresses the cinema of Hitler's so-called "Third Reich," when German cinema dominated European movie theaters, and moves on to the cinema of divided Germany from 1949-1989, when cinema in the socialist east and cinema in the capitalist west developed in very different ways. In the final week of the semester, the course will address German cinema in the post-unification period, which has experienced a revival in popularity and interest. The two historical foci of the semester will be the Weimar Republic, the classic era of German cinema, and the era of the so-called "New German Cinema" of the 1970s and 1980s, when major German directors developed radical new approaches to cinema and critiques of Hollywood. Among the great directors focused on in the course of the semester will be Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau, Fritz Lang, Leni Riefenstahl, Wolfgang Staudte, Werner Herzog, Wim Wenders, and Rainer Werner Fassbinder. No knowledge of the German language is required for this course. Most of the films will be in German with English subtitles. The course will be cross-listed in the departments of Modern Languages, English, and History. Students will be required to attend class, including all film screenings, to actively participate in discussion, to write a term paper on a topic related to German cinema history, and to take two midterm examinations.
79-427 Radicals, Heretics, Hackers: Russian Outlaws in History, Literature, and Film

Instructor Units Lecture
T. Gershkovich 9 units TR 3:00-4:20
The Russian hacker looms large in the global imagination. He's the cyber outlaw who we imagine can take down the powerful with the click of a finger, sometimes serving as an agent of the Russian government, at other times threatening the state itself. This course will examine the mythology and reality of the Russian hacker by tracing its prehistory, from anarchists in Imperial Russia, to Bolshevik revolutionaries, to dissident artists of the Soviet Union, and finally to contemporary heretics such as Pussy Riot and Edward Snowden. The course will culminate in a student-led symposium on the sociocultural role of the Russian hacker.

The course follows a seminar format. Attentive reading and enthusiastic participation in class discussions are musts. Also required are four thoughtful and full-blown essays about the authors and works under study, at least one of which is research based. This is a 9-unit course. But for those proficient in Russian, a total of 12 units can be earned by conducting some portion of the work in Russian and meeting outside of class for some additional hours. Details are to be worked out in advance, in consultation with the instructor.
79-506 Global Studies Internship

Instructor Units Lecture
J. Soluri Variable TBA
This course provides Global Studies majors with a chance to explore global connections in Pittsburgh. Majors, working in close consultation with the Global Studies director and advisor, will arrange an internship with a non-governmental organization (usually in Pittsburgh) whose mission has a global reach. This could include an organization that supports projects in other countries, works with immigrants in the Pittsburgh area, or participates in international policy making/governance. We strongly encourage students to seek out opportunities that require use of a second language. Students will be required to maintain a weekly journal; write a short critical reflection on how the internship connects to academic work; and share their experience with other Global Studies majors. Global Studies advisor and director will assist students with matching their interests to local organizations and identifying an on-site supervisor available to collaborate in the ongoing and final evaluation of the student's work. Prerequisite: Students must be Global Studies majors and obtain permission for the proposed internship from the Global Studies advisor.

Updated on 12-22-16