Week 5: Sept 24-28 First Exam
paper topic due
preliminary bibliography due
Week 14: Nov 26-30 Research paper due Tuesday
Week 16: Dec 10-14 Final Exam
History 200-0201: Themes in Twentieth Century World History: Empires, Independence and Globalization
A Honduran Boy falls asleep at his workbench while making softballs to be exported to the US (photo courtesy of UNICEF). There is a rich history to be unpacked here - of Honduras' position in Latin America, its relationship with the U.S., its domestic social structure and its role in the world economy.
Course Description and Promises:
Class sessions will consist of lectures and class discussion, supplemented by various visual materials. Because the lectures will build upon the assigned readings, students are advised to complete assignments before each class. The professors and teaching assistant will be happy to help with any questions you might have regarding the course.
Students are asked not to disrupt the class by arriving late or leaving the room during the lecture. Cell phones and pagers should be turned off during the class period.
What Does the Course Promise You?
This class will consider some of the most controversial questions of twentieth century global history. We will explore how historians make claims about the past, what constitutes evidence, and how historians make arguments. You should emerge from the course with a better understanding of some of the major developments of modern global history, events that have shaped all of our lives. You should emerge also with an enhanced ability to analyze arguments and to make tentative judgments about other people's judgments. Ideally, the course will help you become a more critically intelligent, creative, and curious person, capable of making rational decisions based on extensive and accurate information.
If you are concerned about how well you think, you should also be concerned with your ability to write, and so we will spend a good bit of time writing in this class. Learning to write more effectively and logically is learning to think in the same manner. Concepts and thoughts exist in words. If you do not learn tocommunicate in words, you cannot formulate fully developed thoughts and will, instead, live by the vague impressions and emotions that often substitute for ideas.
You are responsible for keeping a copy of each paper or other materials you give me. Do NOT give me your only copy of anything!
Required Texts (Available at the student bookstore):
Dumb Luck by Vu Trong Phung, Peter Zinoman, Editor
A Man of the People by Chinua Achebe
Sources of Twentieth Century Global History, edited by James Overfield
Turbulent Passage: A Global History of the Twentieth Century, Michael Adas, et al
Learning Opportunities (click here for the schedule):
In order to achieve the promises of this course you will
- write two exams
- prepare reflections on two works of historical fiction
- research and write a short research paper (click here to find out more)
- prepare short written reflections for and participate actively in class discussions
I expect all papers and exams to be completed on the assigned due dates. Late exams and assignments will be penalized by one letter grade per day unless arrangements are made in advance and with good reason (good: illness, family emergency; bad: Orioles game, woke up late, American Idol finals last night) .
By enrolling in this course, each student assumes the responsibilities of an active participant in UMBC's scholarly community in which everyone's academic work and behavior are held to the highest standards of honesty. Cheating, fabrication, plagiarism, and helping others to commit these acts are all forms of academic dishonesty, and they are wrong. Academic misconduct could result in disciplinary action that may include, but is not limited to, suspension or dismissal. To read the full Student Academic Conduct Policy, consult the UMBC Student Handbook, the Faculty Handbook, or the UMBC Policies section of the UMBC Directory [or for graduate courses, the Graduate School. Students can read about these policies by clicking on this link.
Attendance and Participation:
Class participants should complete all readings before class, and come to class with questions raised by what you have read. Exams will be comprehensive and cumulative and will draw from both lecture and reading materials. You will not be able to achieve the promises of this class if you do not attend lecture each week and complete all readings before coming to class.
Short responses to novels: 50 points each (100 total)
Research paper: 100 points
Class preparation Exercises: 100 points
Total points possible: 500