This is a master list of graduate courses offered by the Department of History. For a listing of current course offerings, click here.
HSGA 5002 Advanced Readings: Early Modern European History (4 credits)
In this course, we will study some of the most important historiographical literature on European history from the Renaissance to the French Revolution. We will not be able to cover all aspects of history for all historical periods, but we will read representative studies of political, socio-economic, cultural and intellectual history.
HSGA 5003 Advanced Readings: Late Modern Europe (4)
A general survey of recent historiography of late modern Europe.
HSGA 5004 Advanced Readings: American History (4)
This course surveys American history from the colonial period to the present. We use the lens of gender to examine major topics in American history such as colonization, the Revolution, citizenship, slavery and the Civil War, industrialization, the West, the Sixties and major approaches in the field, such as political, cultural, social, and urban history. As gender history has developed in the last decade, historians have begun investigating manhood as well as womanhood, and considering gendered ideas and beliefs, as well as gendered human beings, as integral to American history. Using gender as our point of access into US. history allows us to investigate one of the major directions in the field.
HSGA 5005 Advanced Readings: Latin American History (4)
The main goal of this course is to prepare graduate students to teach an introductory survey of the history of modern Latin America (1820s to the present) at the undergraduate level. In order to achieve this goal the course will combine in-depth discussions of the relevant historiography and a parallel dialogue on the pedagogical aspects of teaching introductory survey courses. The course will be organized around the issue of the struggles of the Latin American peoples to obtain full participation both in the political system and in the benefits of the economy. To stress the need to constantly update the content of survey courses, each session will include a discussion of review-essays of recent contributions to the literature for each period.
HSGA 5455 Religion and Revolution (4)
This course will examine the interplay of religion and revolution in France, Russia, China, India and the Muslim world. Topics to be discussed include: religion as a destabilizing force; appropriation by secular revolutionaries of religious motifs; fundamentalism as an ideology of protest; and the use of religion to cement the power of new regimes.
HSGA 5517 Fascism (4)
This course examines the history and historiography of European fascism from its origins to WW II, focusing on Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany and Vichy France. By adopting a comparative perspective and examining conflicting historical interpretations, we will try to understand what distinguished fascism from the old authoritarian Right, and what constituted fascism's "style" of rule and its peculiar ideological make-up. We will examine the way fascists seized power in different countries, and how they were able to consolidate their rule through the use of terror and the manufacturing of consent. Particular attention will also be devoted to racism and the racial policies that ended with the Holocaust, and to issues of collaboration and resistance.
HSGA 5550 19th and 20th Century France (4)
Exploration of political, socio-economic, intellectual and cultural history of France from Napoleon to the present.
HSGA 5577 The Vietnam Wars (4)
This course has two major purposes. The first is to introduce and explore some of the most pivotal problems and controversies that animate the history of the Vietnam Wars. In terms of thematic orientation, we will start by investigating the historical roots of Vietnamese nationalism, the impact of French colonization, and the indigenous revolutionary response. With that framework in mind, we will then analyze the origins and consequences of Japanese, Chinese, Soviet and American intervention. Finally, we will evaluate the reasons for the radical victory and its economic and political legacies. The second purpose is to widen our scope by analyzing the Vietnam Wars as a microcosm of the global forces of imperialism, decolonization and revolution that shaped an increasingly interdependent 20th-century world.
HSGA 5579 America at War (4)
The course is designed to encourage students to explore the relationship between war and society through extensive reading and class discussion. Designed not as a comprehensive study of military history, nor an exhaustive overview of all of the social, cultural, political and economic aspects of America's many wars, the class instead will use a few specific wars to come to an understanding of how American society and culture shaped the way Americans fought their wars, the way Americans defined their nation and lived their lives in the aftermath of war, and how these things changed over time.
HSGA 5640 Early American Law and Society (4)
This course is an exploration of early American legal culture through cases and secondary literature.
HSGA 5851 America Between the Wars (4)
The course will focus upon political, economic and social events and trends in America during the era between the two World Wars of this century.
HSGA 5904 Education and State: Latin America (4)
This course will explore what changes in educational systems say about the formation of the state in different Latin American countries. As the state made efforts to impose school systems, a bureaucracy, and a curriculum, different groups reacted differently. The conceptions of the new systems, as well as the efforts of different groups to contest them, appropriate them for purposes different than the original intentions, and to create alternative systems, speak volumes about Latin American society and the process of state formation. The organization of the course is roughly chronological and will include discussions about different approaches to the history of education in Latin America. Among other issues the course will discuss the liberal project of forming citizens in newly independent states, efforts to "modernize" Latin Americans in the late 19th century, and the steps taken by the revolutionary movements of Mexico, Cuba and Nicaragua to create new societies through changes in education. The course ends with a discussion of the neoliberal educational reforms of the 1990s.
HSGA 5907 Gender and Honor in Latin America (4)
In this seminar we explore the links between notions of gender and honor in Hispanic societies. We will follow both a temporal and thematic focus from early modern Spain and preconquest America to contemporary Latin America and Spain.
HSGA 5909 Atlantic Slavery, 1400-1900 (4)
For more than 300 years, slavery and the slave trade formed the backbone of the Atlantic world and united Africa, Europe and the Americas. In this class we will explore aspects of the rise and fall of this massive system, looking back to the medieval origins of the African slave trade and forward to the struggle to define freedom after emancipation in the Americas. How did the slave trade to the Americas begin? What role did European and African conceptions of enslavement and work play in the development of New World slavery? How did the different peoples involved in the slave complex adapt to and interpret their worlds? What caused the destruction of this entrenched and productive form of labor and social organization?
HSGA 5953 African American Women's History (4)
This course is an examination of key topics in African American women's history since 1965, beginning with post emancipation and ending with the post-civil rights and black power eras. Topics include black women's creation of and involvement in a counter public; the dialectics of women's work and resistance; the politics of uplift and respectability; women's migration and social networks; the creation of leisure and a female blues culture; and the shaping and reshaping of social movements including black feminism. One of the main objectives of the course is to examine the activities, ideas and leadership within mass-based or working class communities along side those of middle class women and intellectuals.
HSGA 6023 Late Medieval Spain (4)
Later medieval Spanish history and historiography have been marked by sharp differences and striking contrasts. Was medieval Iberia characterized by "convivencia," the interaction of Muslims, Jews and Christians, or by religious unification under the Christian Reconquest? To what extent was Iberia, even under Ferdinand and Isabel, a single society and culture, or several regional societies, such as Portugal, Castile, Catalunya and Granada? These and other recent debates in the history of later medieval Spain will be considered through discussion of historical studies, and the analysis of relevant sources.
HSGA 6024 Medieval Chronicles (4)
Medieval historians re-appraising how to read historical narratives have replaced expectations of finding fact amid medieval fictions with an awareness that the structure, function, genre features and historical attitudes contained in the chronicles themselves are the sources' best evidence for past values. In the course, the new methods of reading will be tested on narratives from the medieval centuries. Texts include late antique court propaganda, early medieval ecclesiastical or tribal legends, high medieval monastic chronicles, world histories from east and west, late medieval vernacular accounts, and the deeds of monarchs, knights and nobles. The emphasis will be on the narratives, and what we can understand from them about past authors, audiences and the societies that read and copied the histories.
HSGA 6025 Religion, Society and Culture 400-1100 (4)
The literature on religion and society in the early medieval period considers topics such as saints and asceticism, holy places and the cult of relics, the development of ecclesiastical orders and rituals, church reform, and the relations between religion and rulers. Issues presented in current works in the field will be tested through the close reading of selected primary sources.
HSGA 6070 Medieval France (4)
Survey of medieval French history and historiography, focusing in particular on political, cultural and social history.
HSGA 6072 Medieval Law and Society (4)
This course is designed as an introduction to medieval law and society through selected primary and secondary sources. The "law and society" perspective studies law not as a distinct entity governed by its own rules, but rather as an element of a larger society, both influencing and influenced by broad social patterns.
HSGA 6073 Medieval Historiography (4)
The writing of history is deeply influenced by the world in which an author was, and is, embedded. This course surveys the prevailing ideas and influences that shaped how medieval history was written from the late 18th century through the present. Common readings range from contemporary works of history and novels to modem historiographical works. Special focuses include romanticism, scientific racism, nation-building, the notion of progress, biological metaphors, positivist methodologies, anti-Catholic and anti-religious prejudice, and the formation of medieval studies. Although the course focuses on trends in North America, it will also consider history writing in Europe, especially England.
HSGA 6110 Medieval Monasticism (4)
The people of the medieval Latin world considered ascetic, monastic lives, whether lived alone or in community, among the most perfect forms of living and surest routes to salvation. This medieval assessment resulted in unusually rich and abundant textual and material records, the basis for numerous modern studies. Monastic goals and ideals, the ways in which monastic lives were defined and regulated, and the relations between monastic communities and social or cultural changes are some of the topics that will be considered in the course through study of the monastic record and the modern debates on medieval monasticism.
HSGA 6132 Medieval Law and Family (4)
In modern terminology, the concept of 'family' comprises the notion of the 'nuclear' family centering on marriage and offspring, and that of the 'extended' family including the nearer blood relations of the two spouses. This understanding traces back to the later Middle Ages, when the Christian Church began its successful drive towards imposing a wide array of pertinent canonical norms on lay society. Traditional connotations of the term such as 'clan,' 'household' and 'kin' were increasingly relegated to the background. The seminar will explore this process by focusing particularly on medieval ecclesiastical or 'canon' law and its attempts to regulate family life.
HSGA 6133 Medieval Religious Institutions (4)
Today, the Catholic Church appears as a hierarchical entity united under the supreme leadership of the pope. This is in contrast with the situation in the Middle Ages, when people made careful distinctions between monks, nuns, canons, secular priests, minor and major orders, cardinals, lay brothers and sisters, and a multitude of other clerics. Committed to their respective ranks and vocations, churchmen and churchwomen often found themselves competing with one another. In so doing, they were less likely to submit to papal authority than to enlist it for their own purposes. The seminar will examine these groups, their institutional identities and typical conflicts of interest.
HSGA 6134 The Medieval Empire (4)
In the Middle Ages, the term Empire stood for a large territory as well as for an elevated idea. The kingdoms of Italy, Burgundy and Germany remained for centuries under its rule, whereas legal, theological and political writers, regardless of boundaries, referred to imperium as something at the basis of all legitimate and divinely sanctioned lay government. The seminar will study aspects of both, the intellectual discourse and the changing fortunes of medieval imperial rule, from Charlemagne to the Golden Bull of 1356 and beyond.
HSGA 6154 Medieval Warfare and Society (4)
This course examines the role of warfare in medieval society from the “barbarian invasions” through the Hundred Years War and the Wars of the Roses. We sill focus in particular on the impact of technological developments on the conduct of war and on social hierarchies; on the relationship between social stratification and the conduct of war; on the influence of the church on warfare; and on the social consequences and economic costs of warfare. Students will be required to do a short oral report and annotated bibliography, as well as an historiographical
HSGA/RSGA 6175 Topics in Jesuit History (4)
The purpose of the course is to introduce students to scholarship on the Society of Jesus, 1540-1773. Most attention will be paid to recent trends, especially in North American and French scholarship, and to the important reevaluations this scholarship is suggesting, especially in the history of education, rhetoric, art patronage, missionary objectives, and the general scope of the Jesuits' manifold activities. Some attention will be paid to older works, including anti-Jesuit tracts like the Monita Secreta. Besides shorter papers, students will work toward a larger, bibliographical/historiographical paper exploring scholarship on a particular topic. After an introductory lecture or two, the class will consist in discussion of selected secondary sources and, toward the end of the semester, student presentations.
HSGA 6200 Development of Modern Europe (4)
This course is designed to prepare graduate students for the teaching of a modern European history survey course. Approximately two-thirds of the course will be devoted to the content; the last third will address preparation (drawing up a syllabus and selecting required reading) and teaching methods (lecturing, class discussions, exams and papers, and certain common problems that might arise in a classroom situation).
HSGA 6262 Law and Crime in Europe (4)
This course will explore the evolution of criminal law and justice in continental Europe from AD. 1500-1800. Of special interest are the definition of criminal behavior and the developing institutions for investigating and punishing that behavior. Topics will include the definition of crime and the growth of law, the emergence of inquisitorial process, the nature of evidence, torture, physical punishment, the growth of penal institutions, and reform movements in the 18th century. Study will range over the whole of continental Europe.
HSGA 6264 Reformation Europe: Topics (4)
A discussion of basic texts and issues in the history of the Reformation and its impact on European society in the 16th and 17th centuries. The second half of the course will focus on a specific topic or area of concern.
HSGA 6411 Britain, 1688-1867 (4)
From the internal strife and political instability of the 17th century, Britain emerged in a position of unchallenged dominance in the world, as both a diplomatic and an economic power, and with a political system that served as the model for liberal aspirations globally. This course will explore the causes and consequences of this promethean transformation, including constitutional and political changes resulting in a gradually, evolving democracy; the profound economic, social, and cultural changes associated with the industrial revolution; and the emergence of class society, and with it the growing assertiveness of middle-class and working-class social and political movements. We will explore these changes by looking at the work of prominent historians of the period (many of the books we will read are classics in the field while others represent significant departures from traditional historiography).
HSGA 6461 European Thought 1600-1800 (4)
The intellectual infrastructure of modern Europe (and of the United States) was constructed in the 17th and 18th centuries. This course will treat the major figures of the Age of Reason and the Enlightenment, situating their thought in its social and political context.
HSGA 6464 European Thought 1800-present (4)
Major figures in 19th and 20th century thought in political, social and cultural context.
HSGA 6500 The French Revolution (4)
In this course, we will analyze the French Revolution its origins, its events, and its legacies. We will pay particular attention to the liveliest historiographical debates as well as some of the most exciting recent historical literature.
HSGA 6507 Early Modern European Family and Women (4)
This course will provide an in-depth study of one of the most vital and interesting topics of historical scholarship: the family as a social, political, and economic unit in pre-industrial Europe. We will trace how families were created, composed, and dissolved in northern Europe (especially England, but also in the Low Countries and even Russia) in the 16th, 17th, and early 18th centuries. We will concentrate upon some of the newest issues in the field, which will include: gender; the internal hierarchies of family life; the ways in which families were run and governed; the economic role of the family in society; the differing life cycles of women and men; the role of children and their economic importance; and the great rites of passage, including weddings, christenings and funerals.
HSGA 6720 African American History to 1877 (4)
An examination of the development of the African-American community in the U.S. Slavery and slave culture, black abolitionism and northern black life, the Civil War and the black war effort, emancipation and the freedmen's community, Reconstruction.
HSGA 6731 U.S. Immigration and Ethnicity (4)
This course will examine several important issues that have engaged the attention of historians of immigration and ethnicity. These include such perennial concerns as the nature of the processes of settlement and Americanization, and the evolution of American views on citizenship and immigration policy. Also among the issues to be discussed are recent trends in thinking about the invention of racial identities and about ethnic diasporas and "transnationalism." Finally, the course will cover several cases of the stresses of ethnic identity in wartime. Readings will include recent scholarly monographs and articles, as well as several examples of ethnic memoir literature. Note that the course is organized thematically, and that readings have therefore been chosen because they reflect on the themes under discussion. As a result, not all ethnic groups are covered adequately. Students will have a chance to deal with the ethnic groups of their choice in their independent work.
HSGA 7057 Proseminar: Topics in Cultural History (4)
This course seeks to introduce students to four topics in cultural history that can serve as useful theoretical approaches to medieval European history, namely emotions, space, commodities and gossip. Within each topic, we will begin with a selection of some of the modern secondary literature on the subject, then consider the work of some medieval historians, and then conclude the topic with a week devoted to selections from a few relevant primary sources. This sequence is designed to show students how to develop a research proposal that can be successfully applied to a body of primary sources. Though the focus will be on medieval Europe, the course is designed so that non-medievalists can develop seminar papers in their own fields of interest. In addition to preparing a bibliographic essay, the students in the class, working in teams, will develop a select bibliography of primary sources relevant to each course topic and will make presentations of their findings to the class. These sources should form the basis of seminar papers to be written the following spring.
HSGA 7110 Proseminar: Church Law and Medieval Society (4)
This course will consist of a two-semester proseminar/seminar sequence inviting graduate students to formulate and conduct original research projects in the field of medieval church law. The proseminar will be devoted to surveying bibliography and research tools that are important for investigations into the subject. It will also help students to define their topics.
HSGA 7150 Proseminar: Medieval England (4)
This is the first half of a year-long course that focuses on the social, economic and administrative history of England from the 11th through 15th centuries. Special emphasis is placed upon: how to identify and exploit a widevariety of primary sources (such as wills, cartularies, court rolls, account rolls, chronicles, among others); how to use major historical collections (such as the Rolls Series, VCH, Record Commissioners, Royal Historical Manuscripts Commission, the Ordnance Survey, Selden Society, and others); and gaining an awareness of the regions and landscape of medieval England, as well as the contributions of historical geography. Besides treating thematic issues such as the church and society, law and the legal system, the growth of government and administration, maritime trade, and industry in town and country, the weekly discussions will also consider society and economy among the peasantry, townspeople and the landowning elite.
HSGA 7620 Proseminar: U.S. History 1783-1860 (4)
The pro-seminar/seminar on the United States from the Revolution to the ante bellum period is designed to give students a broad understanding of the period, its problems and of its rich historiography.
HSGA 7750 Proseminar: U.S. History (4)
This course introduces students to the wide-ranging field of American history. Chronologically, we will explore topics from the colonial period to the post-World War II era. We will cover the diverse fields of U.S. history such as work in political, social, cultural, gender, racial and diplomatic history, as well as the history of ethnicity and immigration. Finally, we will examine the sources that underpin these fields, looking at memoirs, institutional history, journalism, film, policy statements, captivity narratives and others. The goal of this broadly conceived course is to prepare students to write a major original research paper (for many, their M.A. thesis) by exposing them to multiple fields and sources in U.S. history. To give students the strongest possible exposure to these fields, the proseminar draws on the expertise of Fordham's faculty. Fordham faculty members who have chosen readings to reflect issues, themes and important developments in their specialties will lead course meetings on alternate weeks. Students will thus also have the chance to meet faculty in their field of interest and consult with individual faculty members who might serve as the secondary advisor for their seminar papers in the spring.
HSGA 8057 Seminar: Topics in Cultural History (4)
Continuation of HSGA 7057.
HSGA 8150 Seminar: Medieval England (4)
Continuation of HSGA 7150.
HSGA 8620 Seminar: U.S. History 1783-1860 (4)
Continuation of HSGA 7620.
HSGA 8750 Seminar: U.S. History (4)
Continuation of HSGA 7750.
HSGA 8920 - Seminar: U.S. - Central America Relations (4)
Research on the history of relations between the U.S., Central America, and the Caribbean since the late 19th century.