1000 Level Courses

AP/HIST 1010 6.0A : War, Revolution and Society in the 20th Century

Course Director: J. Stephen, FC  129, (416)736-2100 x 66930, stephenj@yorku.ca

Calendar Description:
A study of the major political and social upheavals which have helped to shape the contemporary world. The course will concentrate on the origins of the two World Wars and the Cold War, and on their consequences. Topics chosen for detailed examination will vary from year to year. Course credit exclusions: None. Prior TO FALL 2009:Course credit exclusion: AS/HIST 1010 6.00.

Expanded Course Description:
In this course we explore the most violent century in human history. We will pay special attention to the two defining wars of the 20th century, World Wars I and II, and we also aim to contextualize and understand the world-changing revolutions in Russia, China and Latin America. We will discuss the crucial development of colonialism and the consequences of decolonization, the impact of the Cold War, and the roots of horrific genocides such as the Holocaust, the Rwandan genocide, and the Killing Fields of Cambodia. We will also explore the ways in which societies have sought to deal with the impact of the traumas they have faced, and discuss how concepts of human rights have developed and changed as a result of the horrors of the twentieth century. A detailed course syllabus will be distributed during the first session.

Students will read the following required texts, together with a range of additional sources available on the course website: Richard Goff et al., The Twentieth Century and Beyond: a Global History (7th edition) and Sean Kennedy, The Shock of War. Civilian Experiences, 1937-1945.

Students will:

-Learn factual information about the world in the 20th century, including dates, names, key events, geography

-Learn how a historical argument is constructed

-Learn how to work with both primary and secondary sources

-Understand how historians present different views of past events (historiography)

-Evaluate the written work of historians (critical reading and thinking)

-Write your own historical essay

-Learn how to debate and discuss historical issues in groups

Tentative Grade Breakdown/Overview of Assessment:

Participation (ongoing evaluation in tutorial): 12.5%
On-Line plagiarism tutorial (due date set by your TA): 2.5%
Map Quizzes (in tutorial, due dates set by your TA): 10%
2 Mini-Papers (due October 15, 2015 and January 19, 2016): 15%
Memoir Study (due December 3, 2015): 15%
Essay proposal (due Week 19 in your tutorial – pass or fail grade)
Major Paper: (due March 24, 2016): 20%
Final Exam (as scheduled by the registrar): 25%

AP/HIST 1025 6.00A: Ancient North America From the Last Ice Age to European Contact

Course Director: C. Podruchny, 722 Kaneff Tower, carolynp@yorku.ca


This course studies the history of Indigenous people in North America from “time immemorial” to the regular settlement of Europeans in the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries. Using a wide variety of sources it ranges from Meso-America to the High Arctic, and examines theories of the peopling of the continent; hunting, fishing and gathering; and the rise of corn civilizations.

AP/HIST 1040 6.0A: The Presence of the Past: Commemoration, Memorials, and Popular Uses of Public History

Course Director: J. Bonnell, 416-736-2100 ext. 30422, bonnellj@yorku.ca

Course Calendar Description: This course focuses on the problem of memory and history, and especially on the ways historical interpretations are negotiated through commemorations, monuments, museums, historical reenactment, living history sites, film, and other locations constituting access points to history for the general public. Foregrounding issues of race, class, ethnicity, and gender, we explore debates surrounding the production of historical interpretation and memory.

Expanded Course Description:  This course examines the relationship between history and memory: the ways the past has been interpreted and remembered in different periods and by different groups. We will begin by exploring popular uses of the past in the 1997 film The Titanic, and the manner in which the film highlights particular memories and experiences while erasing others. From here we will explore the ways historical memories are created, popularized, and occasionally challenged in museums, monuments, documentary film, and online exhibitions. We will focus our explorations on a series of case studies of the interplay between history and memory in the interpretation of events such as World War II and the Holocaust, 9/11, and Truth and Reconciliation processes in Canada and South Africa. Throughout, we will pay particular attention to the way power has enabled certain groups (political, social and intellectual elites) to dictate how the past is understood, and how these interpretations have been challenged by less powerful groups, including women, workers, and ethnic and racialized groups.

Throughout the course, we will explore primary documents from the past and learn to critically connect, debate and discuss historical themes and narratives, and use them to shed light on the interpretation of present-day events. Course assignments and class discussions will help students to develop their formal writing skills and more effectively communicate their ideas and research.

Course readings: TBA. Readings will include a combination of required texts for purchase and articles posted to the Moodle course site.

Learning objectives: This course will introduce students to core skills in historical practice, such as distinguishing between primary and secondary sources, and interpreting and critically evaluating secondary sources and historical arguments. Students who complete this course will also gain some knowledge of the field of public history, and an awareness of ways historical knowledge is constructed and contested in the public realm. A term 1 historical monument analysis, for example, will see students research the history and changing interpretations of a historical monument close to home, applying questions and concepts from the course readings.

Tentative Grade Breakdown/Overview of Assessment:

Participation: 20%
Writing assignments and oral presentations: 50% (two short assignments in term 1 and a longer essay in term 2)
Quizzes and exams: 30% (In-class quizzes: 10%; Final Take-Home Exam: 20%)

AP/HIST 1075 6.0A: Food and Clothing in Traditional China and the West: Daily Life, Technology and Science in Cross-Cultural Perspective

Course Director: J. Judge, 2122 Vari Hall, (416)736-2100 x 20593, judge@yorku.ca

Calendar Description: This course introduces students to the study of the history of science and technology through the comparison of two major aspects of daily life in traditional China and the West.
Course credit exclusions: None.
Prior TO FALL 2009: Course credit exclusion: AS/HIST 1075 6.00.

Expanded Course Description:

This course uses the Chinese body as an entry point into the richness and complexity of daily life as it was lived and experienced in Chinese history. It focuses on two preeminent concerns in Chinese civilization—health and food—and on one of the most mysterious, widely condemned, and little understood Chinese bodily practices—footbinding.

The course is divided into three sections:


We will explore these themes through readings, images, film, and literature. Throughout these explorations we will continue to revisit the following overriding questions: How does an examination of everyday bodily experience deepen our understanding of Chinese history and highlight the particularities of Chinese history in comparative perspective? How do Chinese and Western notions of the body differ and what do these differences signal about broader cultural differences?

A detailed syllabus will be handed out on the first day of class.

We will use three kinds of materials in class:
-books that students are encouraged to purchase and which they can also borrow from the library’s Reserve desk
-electronic resources which will be posted on our class Moodle site
-electronic resources which can access through York library accounts

The main course textbook:

Patricia Buckley Ebrey. The Cambridge Illustrated History of China. Cambridge University Press; 2nd edition, 2010.

Our main textbook for the section on food:
N. Anderson. The Food of China. Yale University Press, 1990.

A novel we will read in the third part of the course on footbinding:
Feng Jicai, The Three-Inch Golden Lotus: A Novel on Foot Binding. University of Hawaii Press: 1994.

-marked in the syllabus as available either on our Moodle site or through electronic resource collections such as JSTOR, Project Muse

Samples of assessments:
-there will be two small assignments, one on using electronic resources and our Moodle site and one map exercise
-there will also be two mid-terms and a short essay and a final long essay
-for both of the essays 5 potential topics will be handed out 2 weeks in advance
-students will work on these in groups in the tutorial. Two of these five topics will be on the assignment handed out the last day of class, students will write on one of the two.

Tentative Grade Breakdown/Overview of Assessment:

Participation: 20%
Small assignments: 10%
Exams: 30%
Short essay: 15%
Final essay: 25%

AP/HIST 1080 6.0A: Growing Up in North America

Course Director: M. Ladd-Taylor, 2136 Vari Hall, (416)736-2100 x 30419, mltaylor@yorku.ca

Calendar Description: This course examines what it meant to be young in different times and places in the United States and Canada, and explores the interplay of cultural and material circumstances that shaped ideas about childhood and children's actual lives.

Course credit exclusions: None.

PRIOR TO FALL 2009: Course credit exclusion: AS/HIST 1080 6.00.

Expanded Course Description:

What is childhood?  How has it changed over time?  This course examines what it meant to be young in different times and places in the United States and Canada, and provides an historical perspective on what is often seen as a ‘natural’ developmental stage.  We will ask how gender, race, class, religion, nationality, and ability have affected children’s experiences and concepts of childhood, and how children and childhood have influenced adults.  The course also provides an introduction to critical skills in research, writing, and historical analysis.

Topics include the changing economic and sentimental value of children; child labour; the impact of colonization, slavery and war; residential schools; the invention of adolescence; the civil rights movement; youth culture in the 1960s. Readings may include: Horatio Alger, Ragged Dick; David Nasaw, Children of the City: At Work and At Play; Mona Gleason, Small Matters: Canadian Children in Sickness and Health; Melba Pattillo Beals, Warriors Don’t Cry.  A detailed syllabus will be provided on the first day of class.

Tentative Grade Breakdown/Overview of Assessment:

20 %    Tutorial participation
25 %    First-term papers and assignments
20 %    Final essay
10 %    Quizzes
25 %    Exams