History Courses

Courses in History


HIS 1010: History of Western Civilization I (3)
The historical development of western institutions, ideas and cultures from antiquity to around 1500.

HIS 1020: History of Western Civilization II (3)
The historical development of western institutions, ideas and cultures from around 1500 to the present.

HIS 1070: American History I (3)
The history of the United States from the colonial period through Reconstruction.

HIS 1080: American History II (3)
The history of the United States from Reconstruction to modern times.

3000-4000 level

HIS 3000:  Introduction to Historical Research and Writing (3)
Prerequisite:  Sophomore or junior standing
An introduction to the research and writing of history. The course will provide an overview of the historical craft and offer training and guidance in developing a topic, and researching and writing a historical research paper.

HIS 3020: Social Studies Teaching Methods (3)
Prerequisite: Junior or senior standing and admission to the TEP
A social studies method course intended to equip students to be effective middle and secondary social studies teachers by helping them to develop knowledge and skills suitable for the classroom. Requires 20 hours field experience/observation in a 6-12 classroom. Note: This course is a requirement for all history majors seeking a license to teach, but will not count as an upper level history course for purposes of satisfying the major. This course requires 20 hours field experience/observation in a 6-12 school setting.

HIS 3120/4120:  The Middle East and Arab World in the 20th Century (3)
The breakdown of the Ottoman Empire and the post-World War I creation of the various Middle Eastern states of today, from Egypt to Iran, the development of oil economies, divisions within Islam, the Arab-Israeli conflict, the rise of Iran, and attempts to create Arab unity. Emphasis will be placed on events and developments since 1900.

HIS 3160/4160:  Africa and the Slave Trade to 1800 (3)
A survey of African history from pre-contact societies in sub-Saharan Africa to 1800, including sub-Saharan Africa to about 1600, the impact of Islam and the empires of West Africa; slavery in Africa and the introduction of slavery to the Americas, the Middle Passage, the development of slavery in Latin America and North America.

HIS 3180:  Colonial Africa and the Modern African Diaspora (3)
A study of Africa since 1800 with a focus on European Imperialism in the 19th century, decolonization, and African nationalism in the 20th and 21st centuries, and the African diaspora with an emphasis on Africans in the Americas.

HIS 3230/4230:  The Age of Global Contacts (3)
Survey’s the oceans’ roles as highways for goods, services, and peoples. Each major oceanic region will receive analysis in regards to its specific history of human interactions, especially in the age of European expansion and under globalization, and the effects of these on civilizations.

HIS 3260/4260:  Colonial Latin America  (3)
Prerequisites:  Western Heritage sequence-6 hours
Pre-Columbian America, the coming of the European conquerors, colonial Latin America, and the rise of nationalism.

HIS 3270/4270:  Modern Latin America  (3)
Prerequisites: Western Heritage sequence or HIS 3260
This course traces the history of the region from post independence until the present day. Emphasis is on the failure of republican institutions and the rise of caudillos, the neocolonial status of the region, and the various revolutions of the twentieth century from the Mexican revolution to the Sandinista Revolution.

HIS 3300/4300: Byzantium and Islam: The Medieval Mediterranean (3)
A political, social, economic, and cultural survey of the Mediterranean region from the fourth century to the fifteenth, focusing of the Byzantine Empire, the rise and spread of Islam, and relations between the European and Arab worlds.

HIS 3355/4355: Medieval Europe I: The Making of Europe (3)
An examination of the foundations of Europe from the German migrations and the transformation of the Roman Empire, to the wave of invasions by Vikings and other groups and the creation of a fragmented, feudal Europe. The early developments of European political and social institutions are covered along with the process of Christianization.

HIS 3360/4360:  Medieval Europe II: The European Take-Off (3)
Follows the rapid expansion in size, wealth, and complexity of Europe during the first half of the second millennium AD. We shall investigate the dynamic political, social, economic, and cultural changes occurring in the High Middle Ages, followed by the catastrophe of the Black Death, its various effects, and the responses that will begin moving Europe in the direction of its modern form.

HIS 3380/4380: French Revolution and Napoleon (3)
This course will trace the causes and outbreak of revolution in 1789, the establishment of the revolutionary government and the fall of the monarchy, the Terror under Robespierre, the rise and fall of Napoleon Bonaparte.

HIS 3410/4410:  Early Modern Europe from 1500 to 1789 (3)
Early Modern Europe from the Middle Ages to the eve of the French revolution, focusing on the outstanding political, social, and cultural developments that begin what we call modernity: the Reformations, the Expansion of Europe, the Modern State, the Gunpowder Revolution, the Scientific Revolution, and the Enlightenment.

HIS 3420/4420:  Modern Europe from 1789 to 1914 (3)
A study of the history of Europe. during the ‘long’ nineteenth century – from the French revolution to World War I, with a focus on political, cultural, and social developments during this period. Topics include political ideologies, the rise of nationalism, and the important cultural movements of romanticism, realism, and positivism.

HIS 3430/4430:  Modern Europe from 1914 to the Present (3)
The study of Europe during the First World War, the rise of fascism, World War II, and post-war Europe.

HIS 3450/4450:  Intellectual History of Europe in the 19th Century (3)
Topics include romanticism, German idealism, the rise of the social sciences, and three traditions of political thought: liberalism, socialism, and the politics of cultural pessimism. (Dual listing with PHI 3450)

HIS 3460/4460:  Intellectual History of Europe in the 20th Century  (3)
Readings and discussions on selected topics of 20th century European thought. Topics include existentialism, the impact of science and technology, political thought, and others. (Dual listing with PHI 3460)

HIS 3470/4470:  Women in European History (3)
A study of the history of women in Europe from prehistory to the present, with primary emphasis on the Early Modern and Modern eras. The course will stress developments in the following areas:  the nature and extent of women’s participation in the public realm, educational opportunities for women, women’s economic roles, the impact on women’s lives of societal and cultural attitudes about women, the impact of major developments in western civilization on women’s lives, and the accomplishments and contributions of individual women.

HIS 3500/4500:  History of England to 1660 (3)
English life and the development of English institutions-monarchy, Parliament, common law, the Church-from Roman Britain to 1660.

HIS 3510/4510:  History of England since 1660 (3)
The development of English and British political institutions, and the growth of British commercial and industrial and intellectual power, from 1660 to the 20th century.

HIS 3515/4515:  History of Modern Russia (3)
The history of imperial Russia from Peter the Great to the Bolshevik Revolution, the Soviet regime.

HIS 3520/4520: History of Nazi Germany (3)
This course examines the political, societal, and intellectual origins of the anti-democratic impulse in Germany after 1919. It also examines the growth of the totalitarian one-party state, the rise of Hitler, World War II and the Holocaust.

HIS 3552/4552: History of the Early Church (3)
Prerequisite: HIS 1010 or permission of instructor
The history of ancient and mediaeval Christianity, including the origins and spread of the church, the emergence of its organization, its relations with non-Christian groups and the secular authorities, the development of Church literature, and the evolution of doctrine.

HIS 3600/4600:  American Military History (3)
A study of American military activities and institutions in war and peace from the colonial period to the Persian Gulf.

HIS 3620/4620:  Colonial America to 1763 (3)
The study of the English background and settlement of North America; the development of colonial political, social, economic and ecclesiastical institutions to 1763; backcountry issues and the significance of the French and Indian War.

HIS 3625: Religion in Early America (3)
A study of the religious foundations of the United States, from the European religious background through colonial religious developments, and the effects of the American revolution, and the religion in the early national period through the 1840s.

HIS 3630/4630:  History of Virginia (3)
The development of colonial institutions as influenced by frontier conditions and British policy and culture. A survey of Virginia history from colonial times to the present.

HIS 3640/4640:  Foreign Policy of the United States since 1900 (3)
Prerequisite:  HIS 1080
An examination of American foreign policy since 1900. The class emphasizes the foundations and the implementation of policy and examines the extent to which policy has remained consistent through the 20th century. Topics include the world wars, the development and end of the Cold War, and American involvement in the Middle East.

HIS 3650/4650:  Women in American History (3)
This course examines the history of women in the United States from the pre-colonial period to the present, and will consider the experiences of women of different races, classes and ethnic groups regarding work, family, sexuality and social/political activism.

HIS 3660/4660:  Jefferson’s America (3)
The coming of the American Revolution; Confederation and Constitution; the Federalist era and the rise of the first two-party system; the presidencies of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison; the War of 1812 and its aftermath; the significance of slavery in the early republic.

HIS 3665/4665:  Expanding America, 1815-1850 (3)
Prerequisite:  HIS 1070
An examination of American history from the aftermath of the War of 1812 to the Compromise of 1850.  It covers the forging of a national identity, politics and culture in Jacksonian America, the market revolution and the coming of industry, slavery and expansion, religion and reform.

HIS 3670/4670:  Civil War and Reconstruction  (3)
Prerequisite:  HIS 1070
A study of the middle period of American history in the 19th century with emphasis on the social, political, economic and military aspects of the Civil War and Reconstruction.

HIS 3690/4690: War and Memory in America (3)
This course will examine the ways that Americans have created and perpetuated popular memories and interpretations of warfare. Covering the American revolution through the War on Terrorism this class will explore the ways in which Americans commemorate, memorialize, and romanticize warfare.

HIS 3700/4700:  The South (3)
A study of the development of southern social, economic, political, and ideological trends and institutions, with particular emphasis on slavery, Civil War, Reconstruction, segregation, and civil rights.

HIS 3705/4705 Gilded Age America (3)
Prerequisite:  HIS 1080
This course offers a thematic approach to the key issues of the Gilded Age, defined as 1877-1917. It will explore the impact of the Civil war, the role of third party politics, the development of American diplomatic policy since reconstruction, the role and impact of race and gender, and the industrialization and urbanization of the nation.

HIS 3710/4710:  United States, 1900-1945 (3)
Prerequisite:  HIS 1080
An examination of the first half of the “American Century,” concentrating on the response to industrialization and reform, the birth of the modern liberal state, and the arrival of America as a world power.

HIS 3720/4720:  United States Since 1945 (3)
Prerequisite:  HIS 1080
A continuation of HIS 3710/4710. An examination of the American economic, political, and social scene in the Cold War era and during a period of great social upheaval, as well as the roots and course of the Cold War, the ‘60s, civil rights, the impact of Watergate, resurgent conservatism, and the end of the Cold War.

HIS 3725: America in the Age of Sex, Drugs, and Rock and Roll (3)
An examination of US history from the 1960s to the present. Topics include the social upheavals of the 1960s and the return to conservatism which began in 1968, and accelerated in the 1980s and 1990s. Through study of the culture and politics of each decade the course will focus on the ways in which developments of an era affected different groups of Americans.

HIS 3730/4730:  Intellectual History of the United States  (3)
A survey of the intellectual history of the United States from the Constitutional debates to the present. Topics which may be included are federalism and anti-federalism, transcendentalism, social Darwinism, socialism, liberalism, pragmatism, African-American thought, environmentalism and feminism. (Dual listing with PHI 3730)

HIS 3735: Reform and Reaction: Social and Political Movements of the Twentieth Century (3)
An exploration of the history and role of various social and political movements in twentieth-century American Politics. Traces the rise of the movement as a form of political expression and activism from its nineteenth century roots to its modern manifestations in an examination of such topics as the highly successful Temperance Movement to the modern Tea Party Movement. Each movement’s origins, history, goals and objectives, and tactics and strategies will be analyzed.

HIS 3740/4740:  Appalachia (3)
The course surveys the history of the Appalachian region from pre-European contact to the present. Special emphasis will be placed on the environmental history of the mountains and the effects of industrialization (timbering, coal, textiles, etc.) on the people.

HIS 3745/4745:  Introduction to Public History (3)
Introduction to the field of public history: how historians interpret and present the past to the public at large.  Lecture and discussion topics include collective memory, oral history and historic preservation.  Students will also work on projects at local history museums, historic sites, or archives.

HIS 3750/4750:  Local History (3)
A course examining local and regional history as a part of the larger Appalachian region and nation. Examination of sources, methods and practices of local history will culminate with a project element to allow students a more diverse educational experience.

HIS 3770/4770: Wars of the Cold War (3)
This course surveys major developments and patterns in American and world military history and diplomacy from the end of World War II to the end of the Cold War, to include a discussion of patterns of post-Cold War warfare. Topics include the nature of warfare in the Cold War, the interplay of civil-military relations, the impact of war on the homefront, the presentation of war in public space, and war’s place in historical and popular memory.

HIS 3930/4930:  Philosophy of History (3)
Readings and discussion of problems in contemporary historiography. Focus is given to the opposing positions of post-modernism (Lyotard, Foucault) and world systems analysis (Wallerstein). Dual listing with PHI 3930/4930

HIS 3940: Internship in Public History (3)
Prerequisite: HIS 3745 or permission of instructor
An internship affords students the opportunity to apply principles of history and public history into a practical, employment setting. Students will complete designated internship hours under the supervision of a professional public historian in coordination with the assigned academic curriculum major. Public history internships can include a variety of types of organizations, including museums, historic preservation agencies, historical societies, archives, state and regional parks, and other government and private agencies and community-based organizations which present history to the public.

HIS 3950/4950:  Special Topics  (3)

HIS 4780:  Readings in European History  (1-3)*

HIS 4790:  Readings in American History  (1-3)*

HIS 4800: Research in Intellectual History/Philosophy (3)
Prerequisite: HIS 3000
A directed research project in Intellectual History and/or Philosophy. Students will work independently with one or more departmental faculty to produce a research paper in a topic relating to Intellectual History and or Philosophy. Students will present their findings orally. This course serves as the capstone for the Intellectual History/Philosophy concentration within the History major.

HIS 4900: Research Seminar in History
Prerequisite: HIS 3000
A content based research paper in history. Students will research and write a paper on a topic in history. This course will be offered each semester, with topics rotating between U.S., European, and cross-cultural history. This course is intended as the capstone to fulfill the 4000-level research paper required of all history majors.

*Note:  Before a student may be registered in HIS 4780 or HIS 4790, he or she must present (a) the title of his or her reading project; (b) a statement of the course objectives; (c) a full bibliography containing those books and articles which will be read; and (d) a description of any special research projects which the student intends to carry out as part of the course.