DLynx at Rhodes College >
Academic Affairs, Office of >
History, Department of. Syllabi >
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
|Title: ||HIST 151-01, American Society to 1877, Spring 1999|
|Authors: ||Murray, Gail S.|
|Date Issued: ||13-Jan-1999|
|Publisher: ||Rhodes College|
|Series/Report no.: ||Syllabi CRN|
|Abstract: ||“American Society to 1877” will not trace the entire development
of the American past. That is impossible in one semester. Instead, we will follow a
chronological framework, but lift up particular themes or controvesial issues within each period.
The emphasis in this course will be on understanding the cultural diversity of America, on
recognizing the differences that race, class, and gender bring to the American experience, and in
analyzing the development of American myths and values. The course ends with the redefining
of the nation during Reconstruction.
The basic framework for the course is the textbook TheAmerican Promise, I; this
provides the chronological narrative of U. S. history. This narrative will be supplemented by
primary documents in Reading the American Past, I and three other monographs. These three
studies illustrate different approaches to understanding history: material culture, autobiography,
and fiction.The objective in college history is NOT to
tell you yet again what happened in the past, but to analyze WHY events happened, HOW
historians have interpreted those events, and what meaning they had for people of that time.
Each class will begin with the assumption that you KNOW the basic “story” of what happened
already. My task is to provoke discussion about the MEANING of the past.
Every class will begin with an outline covering the main topics and issues for that day.
Wewill not discuss all the points in class but you are responsible for understanding each
one. Use the assigned material in your textbook to fill in the gaps. Thus, reading the text is a
basic requirement. Reading assignments are designed to take about 3 hours per class session.
You will find expectations in this class different from most High School history classes.
Knowledge of “facts” is assumed; how you construct those “facts” into an intellible
understanding of the past is what counts. The following activites will assure your success in this
1. Reading the assigned material
2. Formulating questions about what you read and bringing those to class
3. Making notes in the margins of your readings or in a separate notebook. This
will save time when reviewing for the test.
4. Taking notes in class, not just copying down the outline from the board
5. Actively participating in class discussions. No student can expect to make an
“A” unless she/he can articulate in both oral and written form the subtleties of interpreting the
|Description: ||This syllabus was submitted to the Office of Academic Affairs by the course instructor|
|Appears in Collections:||History, Department of. Syllabi|
Items in DLynx are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.