Professors: Chandler, Silkey
Associate Professor: Pearl (Chair)
Assistant Professor: Seddelmeyer
- Major: History
- Courses required for major: 10 (not including zero or 1 credit courses)
- Non-credit Colloquium: 2 semesters
- Capstone requirement: HIST 449
- Minors: American History, European History, Global History, History
A major consists of 10 courses, including either HIST 115 or 116; one additional course from 115, 116, 125, or 126; at least one from 401, 402, 404, or 405; and 449. At least seven courses must be taken in the department, three of which must be numbered 300 or above. In addition, majors are required to successfully complete at least two semesters of History Colloquium, one of which must be HIST448. The following courses may be counted toward fulfilling the major requirements: AMST 200, GSWS 200, MDVS 200, PSCI 140, and REL 226 and 228. Other appropriate courses outside the department may be counted upon departmental approval. For history majors who student teach, EDUC 465 Professional Semester of Student Teaching may count as one course for the history major. In addition to the courses listed below, special courses, independent study, and honors are available. History majors are also encouraged to participate in the internship program.
Students interested in teacher certification should refer to the Department of Education listing.
All majors must successfully complete HIST 449.
Diversity and Writing Courses
The following courses satisfy the Domestic Cultural Diversity Requirement: HIST 230, 338, 342, and 402. The following courses satisfy the Global Cultural Diversity Requirement: HIST 200, 211, 212, 221, 232, 243, 244, 246, 329, and 336. The following course satisfies either the Domestic or Global Diversity Requirement: HIST 242. A list of courses that, when scheduled as W courses, count toward the Writing Requirement, can be found on the Registrar’s website and in the GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS section of the catalog.
Four minors are offered by the Department of History. The following courses are required to complete a minor in American History: HIST 125, 126, and three courses in American history numbered 200 and above (including HIST 221). A minor in European History requires the completion of HIST 115, 116, and three courses in European history numbered 200 and above. A minor in Global History requires the completion of four courses from the following: HIST 200, 221, 230, 232, 242, 243, 244, 246, 329, 336, or 342. To obtain a minor in History (without national or geographical designation), a student must complete six courses in history, of which three must be chosen from HIST 101, 115, 116, 125, and 126, and three must be history courses numbered 200 and above.
EXPLORING HISTORY TOPICS
Exploration of selected historical problems, themes, periods, or movements. Not open to juniors or seniors except with consent of instructor.
WESTERN CIVILIZATION I
A survey of the major developments in the history of Western Civilization from its roots in the Ancient Near East to the era of the Renaissance. Considers the political, social, and cultural aspects of Mesopotamia, Egypt, the ancient Hebrews, Greece, Rome, and Western Europe. Byzantine and Islamic civilizations are studied to provide a wider scope for comparison.
WESTERN CIVILIZATION II
A survey of the major developments in the history of Western Civilization from the era of the Renaissance to the present. Focuses on the political, economic, social, intellectual, and cultural aspects of European history and how Europe interacted with the rest of the world.
UNITED STATES TO 1877
An introduction to the history of the United States of America from before European colonization to the end of Reconstruction. Examines the people, measures, and movements of this history, endeavoring to do justice to the people, in all their diversity, who together created the ideals, institutions, and realities, which we inherit today.
UNITED STATES SINCE 1877
A study of people, measures, and movements which have been significant in the development of the United States since the end of Reconstruction. Examines the social and political struggles that established the rights, ideals, and institutions of modern American society and explores the diversity of experiences within this rapidly changing nation.
ENERGY, SECURITY, AND GLOBAL COMPETITION
Examines the historical relationship between energy and security from an international perspective. Emphasizes how energy sources such as coal, oil, and natural gas brought competition that shaped and reshaped global strategy and world politics. Explores topics such as different perspectives on energy security, the roots of oil policy, resource competition during the World Wars, oil production in the Middle East and its impact, and the increasing role of Asia. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate Years
ANCIENT GREECE AND ROME
A study of the ancient Mediterranean world, including the establishment of the notion of citizenship in Greece, the emergence and expansion of the Roman state, its experience as a republic, and its transformation into the Empire. Focus is placed on the society and culture of Greece and Rome as well as political and economic changes. Alternate years.
FROM ROME TO THE VIKINGS
A history of Late Antiquity and the early Middle Ages concentrating on western Afro-Eurasia. The political, cultural, and economic conditions in Europe and the Mediterranean during the period roughly 300-1100 are considered in the context of connections to the wider world. Addresses the emergence of ‘barbarian’ kingdoms of the west, the Eastern Roman or ‘Byzantine’ Empire, and the Islamic caliphate; the development of political and religious institutions; and the interactions among these peoples and other civilizations in Europe, Africa, and Asia. Alternate years. Fulfills Global Diversity Requirement.
MEDIEVAL EUROPE AND ITS NEIGHBORS
A history of western Afro-Eurasia during the medieval millennium, concentrating on the high and late Middle Ages, 1000-1500 CE. Addresses the development of political and cultural institutions in western Europe, the Byzantine Empire, and Islamic civilization; their interactions with each other and with civilizations elsewhere in Africa and Asia. The course ends with the first forays of Europeans into the Western Hemisphere. Alternate years. Fulfills Global Diversity Requirement.
MONARCHY AND MODERNITY
Explores the development, function, and transformation of European monarchies from the 16th to the 20th century. Considers topics such as power and authority, revolutions, and institutional reform from political, economic, social, and cultural perspectives. Alternate years.
20TH CENTURY EUROPE
Explores the evolution of Europe in the late 19th and 20th centuries from a variety of perspectives. Evaluates how topics such as imperialism, nationalism, global wars, economic upheaval, revolution, and Cold War relations shaped the identities of 20th century Europe. Alternate years.
An examination of the native civilization, the age of discovery and conquest, Spanish colonial policy, the independence movements, and the development of modern institutions and governments in Latin America. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
ERA OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
The establishment of British settlements on the American continent, their history as colonies, the causes and events of the American Revolution, the critical period following independence, adoption of the United States Constitution, and the ending of the American Revolution in 1804. Alternate years.
AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY
A study of the diverse experiences and contributions of African Americans in the United States. Beginning with a discussion of African societies and the development of the international slave trade, the course examines the evolution of American slavery, emancipation and urbanization, and the civil rights/Black Power movement. Fulfills Domestic Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
THE RISE OF ISLAM
A survey of early and medieval Islamic civilization, illuminating the foundation of the religion and its spread in the seventh and eighth centuries, the development of a high civilization thereafter, and the subsequent changes in political and social structures over time. Muslim interactions with other civilizations are included, but the emphasis is an understanding of the history of Islamic civilization in its own right. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
CIVIL WAR AND RECONSTRUCTION
An intensive study of the political, economic, social, cultural as well as military history of the United States in the Civil War era. Topics include the rise of sectional tensions leading up to the secession crisis in 1860, the extent to which the war can be considered the first modern war, the mobilization of the home fronts to support the war effort, the impact of the war on specific groups such as women and African-Americans, and the failed effort to “reconstruct” the South. Alternate years.
VIETNAM WAR AT HOME AND ABROAD
An examination of the impact of the Vietnam War on American and Vietnamese societies. Rather than focusing on traditional military history, this course investigates the diversity of perspectives and individual experiences among soldiers, civilians, families, and protestors during the war. Explores topics such as the impact of combat experiences on American soldiers, the anti-war movement, and the social and political legacies of the Vietnam War. Fulfills either Domestic or Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
ASIA IN A GLOBAL CONTEXT
An examination of major themes and developments in Asian history with an emphasis on interaction between Asian nations and the wider world. Explores topics such as Western presence in Asia, Asian nationalisms, and economic development. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
THE PACIFIC WORLD
An examination of the histories of Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands (Micronesia, Melanesia, and Polynesia) to better understand how regional cultures, colonial invasions, and post-colonial experiences created links to one another and to the wider world. Explores topics such as diverse regional cultures, the portrayal of the ‘exotic’ Pacific, the challenges of and responses to colonization, Pacific nuclear programs, and the changing dynamic between the colonies and the colonizers. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
SPECIAL TOPICS IN HISTORY
A study of selected historical problems, themes, periods, or movements. May be repeated for credit with consent of department when topics are different.
AFRICA AND THE WORLD
An examination of major themes and developments in African history centered on relations between African nations and the rest of the world. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
EARLY AMERICAN LAW AND SOCIETY
A study of the interaction between legal and social change in Early America from the colonial period through the “Age of Jackson.” Examines both the substance of law (legal doctrine and judicial opinions) and society’s use and reaction to that law. Using primary and secondary sources, students examine the different ways in which men and women, free and enslaved, frontier settlers and Indigenous People viewed and interpreted the way law reflected or challenged basic social, political, and economic values. Prerequisite: HIST 125 or consent of instructor. Alternate years.
EMPIRES AND RESISTANCE
An exploration of imperialism and the resistance to imperial expansion at home and abroad. Considers topics such as the expansion and dissolution of European Empires, methods of resistance, and colonial nationalism. Prerequisite: One history course or consent of instructor. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
ORIGINS OF EUROPE
Takes an in-depth look at the formative period of European civilization during the early Middle Ages. Special focus falls on the Carolingian period of the 8th and 9th centuries, with emphasis on the intertwining of political and religious institutions, the related cultural efflorescence, and the challenges facing imperial unity. Prerequisite: HIST 115, 212, or consent of instructor. Alternate years.
CRUSADES: CONFLICT AND ACCOMMODATION
An intensive consideration of interactions between Muslims and Christians in the Middle Ages. Hostile and fruitful relations in Spain, warfare in the Holy Land, and the status of religious minorities are studied. In addition to the often violent relations between these major religious groups, this course addresses their intellectual, artistic, and literary developments as well as reciprocal influences. Prerequisite: HIST 115, 212, or consent of instructor. Fulfills Global Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
RIGHTS, REFORM, AND PROTEST
An exploration of the evolution of social justice movements in American society. This seminar examines interconnections between diverse protest movements such as women’s suffrage, welfare reform, civil rights, disability rights, and LGBTQ+ liberation. Prerequisite: One history course or consent of instructor. Fulfills Domestic Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
WOMEN AND REFORM
A study of the development and evolution of transnational women’s reform networks, exploring the particular challenges faced by women reformers and the role they played in shaping American society. The seminar examines topics such as antislavery, temperance, woman’s suffrage, anti-lynching, club and urban reform movements. Prerequisite: One history course or consent of instructor. Fulfills Domestic Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
SPECIAL TOPICS IN HISTORY
Study of selected historical problems, themes, periods, or movements. Prerequisite: One history course or consent of instructor. May be repeated for credit with consent of department when topics are different.
THE MIDDLE AGES IN MODERN EYES
An in-depth study of medieval history by way of modern understandings of the period. Focuses on academic interpretations, but also considers the Middle Ages in the popular imagination such as in film. Examination of the documents, literature, and art of the period constitutes the second major area of course assignments. Student work culminates in a major research project based on the study of translated primary sources. Prerequisite: HIST 115, 212, or consent of instructor. Alternate years.
REVEL, RIOT, AND REBELLION IN EARLY AMERICA
An in-depth look at the place of popular resistance in Early America. Focuses on the many riots and rebellions of Indigenous, enslaved, and Euro-American peoples in the 17th, 18th, and early 19th centuries to get a better understanding of the politics, society, and culture of Early America. Students develop a substantial research paper on a particular riot or rebellion drawing on academic interpretations and primary sources. Prerequisite: HIST 125 or consent of instructor. Fulfills Domestic Cultural Diversity Requirement. Alternate years.
An in-depth study of historical understandings of modern American political, social, and intellectual developments with special emphasis on the years following World War II. Focuses primarily on academic interpretations, but also considers American society in the popular imagination, as represented by film, music, and literature. Student work culminates in a major independent research project incorporating both primary and secondary source analysis. Prerequisite: HIST 126 or consent of instructor. Alternate years.
An in-depth study of European history through an examination of the rise and fall of the British Empire. Focuses not only on academic interpretations of empire, but also considers the legacy of empire, as represented in documents, film, and literature. Student work culminates in a major independent research project, which incorporates primary and secondary source analysis. Prerequisite: HIST 116 or consent of instructor. Alternate years.
248, 348, 448
This non-credit but required course for students majoring in history offers students opportunities to meet for a series of occasional events, including methodology workshops, career exploration and preparation, and presentations by faculty, guest speakers, and departmental majors. Students taking HIST 449 concurrently deliver formal presentations; those who have not yet taken HIST 449 develop research topic ideas. A letter grade is assigned in a semester when a student gives a presentation. Otherwise the grade is Pass/Fail. History majors are required to successfully complete a minimum of two semesters of colloquium, one of which must be HIST 448. HIST 449 is a corequisite for HIST 448. Non-credit course.
HISTORICAL METHODS IN PRACTICE
This capstone experience focuses on the practice of historical research, analysis, and writing. It provides students with the opportunity to apply historical methodology through the completion of a substantial independent research project incorporating historiographical and primary source analysis of a proposed topic, subject to instructor approval. Required of majors in their junior or senior year. Prerequisite: HIST 248 or 348 and one course from HIST 401, 402, 404, and 405, or consent of instructor. Corequisite: HIST 448.
Typically, history interns work for local government agencies engaged in historical projects or for the Lycoming County Historical Museum.
Recent topics include Viking migrations, medieval paleography, public law in colonial America, AIDS activism, gendered responses to the Moynihan Report, and the history of Lycoming County.