Course Descriptions

Lower Division Courses

Upper Division Courses

Graduate Courses

 

LOWER DIVISION COURSES

HIST 1301. U.S. History I

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Lower Division 

Prerequisite(s): TSI complete in Reading and Writing or a grade of “C” or better in ENGL 1300. 

Survey course of US history from 1492 to 1865 including social, political, intellectual, economic and military history will be explored. This course surveys ​United States history from its indigenous origins to the end of the American Civil War and the onset of Reconstruction in 1865. Through an analysis of major political, economic, cultural, and intellectual developments in the United States, with special attention to the shifting ways in which race, class, and gender shaped American life, it explores major topics such as indigenous nations, European ​colonization, slavery, American independence, and the Civil War.

HIST 1302. U.S. History II

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Lower Division 

Prerequisite(s): TSI complete in Reading and Writing or a grade of “C” or better in ENGL 1300. 

Survey course of US history from 1865 to present, including social political, intellectual, economic and military history will be explored. This course surveys ​United States history from the end of the Civil War in 1865 to the present. Through an analysis of major political, economic, cultural, and intellectual developments in the United States, with special attention to the shifting ways in which race, class, and gender shaped American life, it explores major topics such as Jim Crow segregation, civil rights, social movements, protest, war, and key political developments.

HIST 2310. Texas History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Lower Division 

Prerequisite(s): TSI complete in Reading and Writing. 

Survey of the social, economic and political history of Texas. This course surveys the long history of Texas from indigenous settlement to the present day. It explores major social, economic, political, and cultural changes, confronts the state’s symbols and myths, analyzes major events such as the Texas Revolution, and reconstructs a multi-faceted history of indigenous nations, European rivals, Spanish-speaking settlers, free and enslaved American colonists, and immigrants from around the globe.

HIST 2321. World History I

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Lower Division 

Prerequisite(s): TSI complete in Reading and Writing. 

Survey of world history from human origins to the sixteenth century. This course examines the political systems and conflicts within ancient, medieval, and early modern societies around the world. It pays particular attention to the role of religion and religious institutions, and their relationship to political systems and intellectual trends. This course also considers the processes of urbanization and how cultures transformed over time as a result of urbanization.  

HIST 2322. World History II

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Lower Division 

Prerequisite(s): TSI complete in Reading and Writing. 

Survey of world history from the sixteenth century to the present. This course covers world history from the sixteenth to the twentieth centuries, and it focuses on religious, political, and economic change in the modern world (“modern” meaning post-1500). It examines, in particular, the profound disruptions caused by imperialism, industrialization, the slave trade, social inequalities, and two World Wars.

HIST 2381. African American History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Lower Division 

Prerequisite(s): TSI complete in Reading and Writing. 

Survey of the history of African Americans in the United States, from arrival as enslaved people in 1619 through Barack Obama’s presidency. This course will survey African American history from the first arrival of Africans in the Virginia colony through the present. The course will focus on major events but also will assess how these events affected the lives of ordinary African Americans. We will focus on political, economic, social, cultural, and religious developments in black communities, and will pay special attention to the role that enslavement, racial discrimination, class barriers, and gender roles had on African Americans.

 

UPPER DIVISION COURSES

HIST 3301. Thinking Like a Historian

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

Introduction to the discipline of history with an emphasis on historiography and historical argumentation. Descriptions below are for specific versions of this course offered by UHV History faculty.

Mammina

This course has three goals: it introduces you to what the study of history is (and isn’t!), it helps prepare you for upper-level courses in history, and it begins your journey toward the history capstone experience: writing your own, unique research paper in Hist 4350: Historical Research. Because of these goals, this course will emphasize critical reading of primary and secondary sources, basic historical research techniques, and styles and strategies for writing research papers. The course is strongly encouraged for those planning on majoring and minoring in History. It is also very good preparation for students who plan to take other 3 or 4000 level courses in History.

HIST 3311. Sex and Society

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

Study of sex, gender, and sexuality in America from European settlement to the twentieth century. This course will examine how ideas of biological sex, sexuality, and gender roles affected Americans’ sense of themselves, their societies, and their country from the beginning of European settlement to the twentieth century. The course will consider different attitudes toward sex, sexuality, and gender as well as how these ideas affected the lives of ordinary Americans. Political, economic, social, cultural, and religious developments will all play a role in the story, and we will pay special attention to the role that race and class influenced ideas and attitudes about sex and gender. 

HIST 3312. American Ideas of Power and Justice

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

This course will exam ideas of power and justice from the Revolutionary period to today. Beginning with the founders’ ideal of decentralized political power, it will examine the role of politics, economics, and culture in the fabric of social relations.

HIST 4300. Selected Topics in U.S. History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

Topical courses in U.S. history. May be repeated for credit when topics vary. The descriptions below are courses that have been offered under this course number in the past.

Tomek

The Violent Century: America, 1800-1900

In an age where we hear reports of war and crime every night on the evening news, it can be tempting to see the times we live in as particularly violent.  In truth, however, violence and crime have always been part of the American experience, and in many ways the Nineteenth Century was even more violent than our own.  In this course we will look at the ways in which violence affected the lives of Nineteenth Century Americans in all regions of the country.  We will also explore the role of violence in the slave system and in taming the newly-settled areas of the country.  Finally, we will read about the intersection of crime and medical research as we examine the phenomenon of human anatomic study in the medical profession.  Each of these cases will allow us to ponder such questions as whether or not violence can ever be justified, why violence was such a necessary element of the slave system, what attitudes have led certain elements of the population to get by with violent acts while others have been condemned for less, and how violence played a role in the everyday lives of so many people throughout the country.

The Atlantic World

Students will emerge from this course understanding the complexity of the Atlantic World and the way in which the interaction of cultures transformed the worlds of people in Europe, Africa, and the Americas, leading to race-based chattel slavery as well as many new nations.

Slavery and Abolition in the U.S.

This course traces the ways in which human bondage and forced labor was an integral part of the American economic, political, and social system. It also explores the sustained effort of black and white activists to end human bondage and examines how slavery, the movement against it, and westward expansion of the nation sparked a Civil War. The system officially ended with the 13th Amendment, but it still affects life in the U.S. for blacks and whites today, and the course will conclude by exploring that legacy.

The Long Civil Rights Movement

This course focuses on the quest for civil rights and equality in the United States from the era of the American Revolution to the present.  Course readings and assignments will cover the African American, Mexican American, Native American, women’s, and LGBTQIA movements for equal treatment and may also include the efforts of other disenfranchised or neglected groups as well.  Students will read and analyze both primary and secondary sources, and they will participate in class discussions and writing exercises.

HIST 4302. Independent Study

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): 6 semester hours in History and consent of instructor.

Courses on any topic in history. Must consult with UHV History faculty to get approval for an independent study course. Descriptions below are for independent studies that have been offered in the past.

Cuenca

Late Medieval England: Readings in Social History, c. 1100-1500

This advanced seminar is designed to prepare students for graduate-level training in late medieval English history, focusing on the methods of social historians and the scholarship on everyday people in town and country between c. 1100 and c. 1500. Students will produce three short papers and critical annotations of the readings, an essay on Robert Bartlett’s The Hanged Man, as well as a historiographical paper of 15 to 20 pages in length on a suitable topic.

HIST 4303. Colonial and Revolutionary America

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

Covers the history of North America from the age of European colonization to the implementation of the U.S. Constitution.

HIST 4304. Early Republic and Antebellum U.S.

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

Covers U.S. history from 1789 to 1860. Between 1789 and 1850 the United States underwent major changes.  This period saw the testing of a new government, the industrialization of the nation, the deepening of sectional conflict, and the rise of major reform movements.  In this course we will explore all of these major changes, paying special attention to the social, political, economic, and geographical changes that transformed the nation.

HIST 4305. Civil War and Reconstruction

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

Covers the U.S. Civil War and Reconstruction, roughly from 1850 to 1877.

Mammina

This course will survey the origins, prosecution, aftermath, and memory of the American Civil War. While the course will primarily consider why the war came, why the war was fought, and how it ended, it will place just as much emphasis on the home front and conflicts that occurred away from the primary theater. We will consider major conflicts, battles, and events while always keeping in mind how the war affected the lives of ordinary Americans. Political, economic, military, social, cultural, and religious developments will all play a role in the story, and we will pay special attention to the role that race, class, and gender played before, during, and after the conflict. Finally, the course will investigate the contested meanings of the Civil War and how it was remembered after the fact by white Northerners, white Southerners, and African Americans. 

Tomek

The era of the U.S. Civil War is one of the most intriguing periods in the nation’s history. Scholars and general readers have sought the answers to questions about the causes of the war, the nature of the conflict and the day-to-day experiences of participants both in battle and on the home front. This course will examine each of these aspects of the conflict through primary source documents as well as books and articles written by the leading historians of the period. We will look into the ideological and political origins of the war, focusing on the question “What caused the Civil War?” before studying historiographical debates over such topics as military strategies, battlefield tactics and the role of leadership. We will view the war through the eyes of the social and cultural historians as we examine such topics as why the soldiers fought, how the war affected gender roles in both sections, and what role African Americans and immigrants played in the war. The course will conclude by examining the myths and realities of Reconstruction and exploring the legacy of the Civil War and Reconstruction.

HIST 4306. Gilded Age and Progressive Era

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval 

Covers U.S. history from the Gilded Age through the Progressive Era (1878-1920). The Gilded Age and Progressive Era explores the birth of modern America in the years after the Civil War. It covers the burst of technological innovations, the acceleration of economic inequality, the explosion of labor protest, the descent into Jim Crow, the rise of the women’s movement, and other major developments of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

HIST 4307. World Wars and the New Deal

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Covers World War I, the inter-war years, the New Deal, and World War II with a focus on the United States.

HIST 4308. Age of Consensus and Turbulent 60s

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Covers U.S. history in the 1950s and 1960s.

HIST 4309. U.S. History since 1970

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Covers U.S. History in the 1970s.

HIST 4311. U.S. Race and Ethnicity

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Comparative history of race and ethnicity, including the ways in which different racial and ethnic groups have interacted with each other throughout American history. This course will introduce important questions and themes in the history of race and ethnicity and investigate changing ideas of race and ethnicity in the United States from the vantage point of groups of people who have in the past or are now considered to be “nonwhite,” including Irish and Asian immigrants, indigenous people, Latinx people, and people of African descent. The course will take an intersectional approach to these problems, emphasizing not only the construction of racial and ethnic difference but also the effect of changing attitudes toward gender, class, religion, and nation or state of origin. Rather than presenting a holistic, complete overview of race and ethnicity in the U.S. during the period, it will explore certain moments, events, and interactions and how they might have defined or redefined the meaning of race, citizenship, and national inclusion.      

HIST 4312. U.S.-Mexico Borderlands

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Survey of the history of the U.S.-Mexico borderlands.

HIST 4320. Selected Topics in European History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Topical courses in European history. May be repeated for credit when topics vary. The descriptions below are courses that have been offered under this course number in the past.

Cuenca

Medieval Plague, Disease and Pandemics

This class covers the history of disease, plagues and pandemics in both the ancient and medieval world, though it also examined important developments in the history of medicine in the 19th and 20th centuries. This course aims to understand how people in the pre-modern world (that is, prior to 1800), particularly in Europe, discussed, reacted, and tried to remedy contagious diseases before the advent of modern medicine and scientific understandings of immunology and virology. In so doing, this course fosters a better understanding of how humanity has wrestled with the social problems posed by infectious diseases. Crucially, this course also focuses on how pandemics either disrupt or maintain the political, religious, or economic status quo in communities afflicted by them.

Medieval Digital History

This course explores the history of the Middle Ages in Europe and the Middle East from c. 300 to 1500. Besides being a traditional medieval history course, it also examines the tools and methods of digital historians, who have availed themselves of online databases, interactive primary source editions, and mapping technologies in recent years to cultivate new ways of understanding the past.

HIST 4323. The Age of Enlightenment

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Intensive study of the 17th and 18th centuries.

HIST 4324. The Age of Revolution

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Intensive study of the period from the American Revolution to 1850. This course focuses on the revolutions that occurred from the late 1600s to 1848 in the Atlantic World.  We will study England’s Glorious Revolution of 1688-89, the American Revolution, the French Revolution, the Haitian Revolution, and the revolutions of 1848.  Course readings and assignments will cover each of these revolutions and offer a broad view of the Atlantic world during this time period.  Students will read both primary and secondary sources, participate in class discussions, complete a number of writing assignments, and present their final research paper to the class.

HIST 4325. The Modern Era

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Major trends from the mid-nineteenth century to the present.

HIST 4331. Saints, Wives, and Witches

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Study of women and gender in in the pre-modern world, from the late Roman period to the French Revolution. This course examines women and gender in the pre-modern world, ranging from the holiest women (saints) to the most “wayward” (witches and prostitutes), from roughly the 3rd century CE to 1800. Women and gender are examined within the context of social rank and marital status, such as the noblewoman who influenced major political developments, the townswoman who served as merchant and producer, the wife and mother who provided the basis of family life, and the single woman who formed her own household independent of male relatives. Particular attention is also paid to Muslim and Jewish women, as well as non-elite women who were peasants, indentured servants, serfs, and slaves. The course will also cover attitudes toward women revealed in legal, religious, and secular literature of the period, and explore popular representations of pre-modern women in contemporary film.

HIST 4332. The Crusades

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Study of the crusades and the act of crusading in the Holy Land, Spain, France, and Eastern Europe during the Middle Ages. This course will contextualize the Crusades in the medieval world by examining the following questions: Why did medieval people go on Crusade? What were the motives and experiences of the Crusaders? How did the Muslims view the Crusaders? How have scholars interpreted the Crusades? These questions will be examined from the perspective of both the European Crusaders and the Muslims living in the East at the time of the Crusades. The first part of this course is dedicated to understanding the goals and progress of the first expedition to Palestine. The second part turns to three subsequent campaigns against the Muslims in Palestine, all largely unsuccessful, as well as to the crusades summoned against pagan Slavs in Northeastern Europe and against heretical groups within Europe itself. Lastly, the course will cover the Spanish Reconquista, yet another distinct form of crusading.

HIST 4333. The Middle Ages in World Cinema

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Study of medieval society, literature, fantasy, and historical events as they are portrayed in films from around the world. This course examines popular depictions of the middle ages in world cinema, with selected viewings of films from North America, France, Germany, Britain, Russia, Sweden, and the Middle East. Topics to be explored will be the cinematic representations of King Arthur, female mystics, warfare, monks, knighthood, peasants and common folk, and kings and queens. This course fosters a deeper understanding of the relationship between historical evidence and fiction, as well as how modern sensibilities shape popular representations of the medieval past.

HIST 4334. Revolution and Resistance in Europe

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division  

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Study of revolution and forms of political and social resistance from the later Middle Ages to the modern period. Home to the Enlightenment, Europe gave birth to ideas of human rights, free markets, and liberal democracy, but it also generated an aggressive imperialism, the horrors of two world wars, and the Holocaust: what are the relationships between these different phenomena? How were ideas of equal rights and freedoms reconciled –if ever—with the reality of an unequal socio-economic order and imperialism? Why is Europe today seeing the reappearance of poisonous nationalisms and racisms? How have people in the past resisted or rebelled against social inequalities? This course will try to answer these questions and make sense of the complex history of European countries in their interaction with the wider world since the later middle ages. Thematic emphasis will be placed on revolutions and the shaping of modern ideologies (liberalism and democracy, nationalism, racism, communism, fascism, anti-colonialism), and on the rise and fall of modern colonial empires. The course will stress the critical interpretation of primary sources and their use to evaluate contrasting historical interpretations.

HIST 4335. Nazi Germany

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Study of twentieth-century Germany that focuses on the origins of support for political extremism, the rise of Adolph Hitler, and the effects of Nazi control on Germany and the world.

HIST 4350. Historical Research

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Directed research in primary and secondary historical sources for advanced-level students.

HIST 4390. Selected Topics in Latin American History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: Upper Division 

Prerequisite(s): HIST 1301 and HIST 1302 or Instructor Approval

Topical courses in Latin American history.

 

GRADUATE COURSES

HIST 6300. Selected Topics in History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

Topical courses in graduate-level history. May be repeated for credit when topics vary. The descriptions below are courses that have been offered under this course number in the past by UHV faculty.

Cuenca

Middle Ages in Popular Culture

This course examines the afterlife of the middle ages—also called medievalism—and how medieval culture and events have been interpreted in modern popular culture, beginning with the early modern period (16th and 17th centuries) and ending in the 21st century. This course aims to foster a deeper understanding how the medieval past was imaged in various media, including literature, architecture, music, cinema, and role-playing games, as well as how modern sensibilities shaped popular (and often, politically charged) representations of the middle ages. In general, each week consists of an online discussion centering around a common theme and a set of readings, for which at least one student will come up with discussion questions. Students are expected to contribute actively to class discussions via the online message board available on BlackBoard. Other graded assignments include leading class discussion, a paper, and two short articles to be published online.

Mammina

African American Slavery to 1865

Slavery in the American South, with its many millions of enslaved and millions of those complicit in their enslavement, was an institution of unimaginable horror and nearly endless variation. It grew, expanded, and contracted along with the American colonies and, eventually, the United States. From its very beginnings in the seventeenth-century Chesapeake, racial-based chattel slavery was always a contested and contingent process. Its development and permutations have been the subject of debate not only by Americans who lived through, participated in, and/or resisted the institution, but also by Americans and American historians since emancipation.  Given the enormity of the subject, this course will focus on selected topics from the history of enslavement in the British colonies and subsequent United States. The emphasis will be twofold: on the ways in which slavery changed over time, and the ways in which historical interpretations of slavery have changed over time. We will consider slavery from many different angles—the enslaved themselves and their multi-faceted identities, slaveowners and whites complicit in slavery, those who bought and sold slaves, and free blacks.

Tomek

Colonialism in the 18th Century

From Africa to India to the New World, this course explores colonialism in the eighteenth century, paying special attention to the role of resistance and revolt. It follows the journey of an explorer in colonial India and examines life under enslavement in British North America before turning to key examples of resistance set by the Mayan revolt and the Haitian revolution.

The Long Civil Rights Movement

This course will look at the struggle for Black freedom and equality from colonial times to the present. It will pay special attention to the question of nonviolence versus self-defense during the long movement for civil rights.

HIST 6302. Independent Study

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

Prerequisite(s): Instructor Approval

HIST 6310. U.S. Social History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

Study of the major social, ethnic and racial groups in American society and the forces, including war, immigration and religion, which have changed them.

HIST 6311. 20th Century U.S. History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

Subjects to be considered include America’s role in the two world wars, the New Deal, the war in Vietnam and the reforms of the Kennedy-Johnson administrations.

HIST 6313. Religion in America

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

This course introduces students to religious trends in the U.S. from colonial times to the present.

HIST 6314. Modern British History

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

Study of 19th and 20th century British history with particular attention to the emergence of parliamentary democracy and the two world wars.

HIST 6315. African American Studies

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

This course introduces students to African American history and culture from colonial times to the present.

HIST 6316. Nazi Germany

Semester Credit Hours: 3

Course Level: GRADUATE 

Study of the origin and development of Nazi Germany through readings in key historical sources.