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Most courses focus on particular regions or nations, but offerings also include courses that transcend geographical boundaries to examine subjects such as African diasporas, Islamic radicalism, or European influences on US intellectual history.Some courses are surveys—of colonial Latin America, for example, or Europe since World War II.How did the early and diverse European colonists themselves deal with unfamiliar cultures at a time when the very concept of newness was alien to them?We must not forget that Columbus believed that he had simply discovered a new route to India.Yet in Europe, with its ancient institutions and deeply rooted traditions, this new form of civilization encountered greater resistance than it did in that other center of innovation, the United States.The resulting tensions between old and new in Europe set the stage for the devastating world wars and revolutions of the 20th century.Berlin, Paris, London, St Petersburg, and Vienna all had several million citizens.This urbanization shaped, and was shaped by, European history.
While history seminars center on reading and discussion, many also train students in aspects of the historian’s craft, including archival research, historiographic analysis, and oral history. This course seeks to challenge this assertion, as we consider not only how Americans in the period from 1607 to 1877 differed from us but also how much they differed from one another.
The classic narratives are stories of self-emancipation and self-determination.
The major developments range from the Atlantic Slave Trade to the Black Renaissance.
On the one hand, students examine the dynamics of modern racism; on the other hand, students explore the contours of African American social, cultural, and intellectual history.
In the middle of the 20th century, only 16 percent of Europeans lived in cities.
In our consideration of this question, we will focus on two interrelated themes: how these different cultures interacted with and affected one another and how Americans defined their identity.