Teaching

Welcome to the new CHA Syllabi Central

This portal will showcase the different methods used by members to teach History. We hope this resource will be of value to graduate students, new instructors, and established teachers who want to shake up their approaches in the classroom. We invite you to submit syllabi from all levels of classroom instruction, representing any geographical region or historical period, and written in either official language. All submissions should have a description of the course that will be searchable and can be up to 250 words in length.  We trust that members will use these shared resources responsibly.

History of Canada Since 1867 Author: Shawn W. Brackett
Course Subject: History of Post-Confederation Canada
Posted: July 18, 2019

Canada has changed tremendously in the past 150 years. Families moved in large numbers from the country to cities; the economy and military became more integrated and entangled with global trends; immigrants changed the social and cultural makeup of communities; and ordinary people staked more radical claims for equality and opportunity. In short, the lives of our forebears would be hardly recognizable—or would they? We will learn what life was like for the powerful and the poor, how individuals and communities faced, resisted, and harnessed global forces, and try to understand the people of Canada’s past. Throughout this course, we will explore how Canada has changed and how it has remained surprisingly similar. Above all, we will consider the meaning and progress of equality for Canadians of many walks of life.

Consumption Author: Danielle Kinsey
Course Subject: HIST 5211
Posted: November 18, 2018

This is an MA-level course on the history of consumption in modern Europe. Much European historiography considers the production side of the economy by discussing the Industrial Revolution and explaining its rise, stages, consequences, and apparent lack in certain contexts. It is only in the last thirty years or so that historians have begun to take seriously the consumption side of the economy, some going as far as to argue that the development of consumer culture was the true engine of modernity (concepts to be unpacked, for sure). In this course, students will identify and analyze key debates, priorities, and methodologies that have been at work in writing about consumption in European history. We may contend with concepts of the domestic sphere, consumer revolution, emulation theory, modern advertising, mass distribution, consumer agency, addiction theory, thing theory, habitus, performativity, the history of the senses, the digital revolution, and the history of everyday life. Students will begin by considering how consumption is conceived of in theoretical texts. We will then analyze examples of how the history of consumption has been written. Students will end the course by identifying current trends in the field and considering how the frameworks and concepts they have learned can be applied to their graduate projects. 

Victorian London Author: Danielle Kinsey
Course Subject: First Year Seminar on "Turning Points in History"
Posted: November 18, 2018

This is a full year course taught to a small group of 25 incoming first-years of any major. Course Description: From Sherlock Holmes to Ripper Street, Dracula to Queen Victoria, we continue to be fascinated by nineteenth-century London as the “city of dreadful delight.”  This course will examine the causes and consequences of the city’s "modernization" between the 1830s and early 1900s as it was shaped by new technologies, the politics of reform, mass migration, industrialization, environmental crises, cholera, the threat of rebellion, hunger, population pressure, and crime.  We will look at topics such as the Thames river, sewage, and clean water infrastructure; the East End versus the West End; overlapping administrative jurisdictions; the rise of department stores and shopping culture; museums, cemeteries and parks as places of leisure; London as a port-city-center of a vast empire; immigration and racism; the flâneur and the flâneuse, so-called urban wanderers; class and fashion; the Great Exhibition; Chartism and Anglo-African activist William Cuffay; ideas about crime and criminality; the politics of housing, public transport, and mobility; newspapers and print culture; photography and the city; and ideas about gender and sexuality.  In addition to exploring the history of Victorian London, this course will also be an introduction to the methodologies of historical research, writing, and thinking.

Hist 3120O: The History of the Body Author: Danielle Kinsey
Course Subject: the body; women's, gender, and sexuality histories; disability studies; European history
Posted: November 18, 2018

Course Description: In this course we will examine the History of the Body in two interrelated ways: as a topic and as a methodology. As a topic, we will talk about how ideas about physical attributes, body parts, and bodies in general have developed over time, space, and cultural context. What does hair or scars or height or skin colour say about us, to whom, and how does this change from context to context? How have people worked within or resisted these ideas? Who has had the power to make pronouncements about the body and how have these pronouncements shaped the world we live in?  Thinking about the histories of bodies and body parts will lead us to examine health, science, religion, and ideas about sex, gender, sexuality, race, class, and many more “categories of difference” that some argue are biologically “true” and others contend are cultural assumptions. Who decides “the Truth” about bodies, now or in the past?  Modules within the course will be based on the histories of certain body parts or bodily processes: bones, eyes, stomachs, penises, legs, and so on. As a methodology,we can think of the body as a perspective from which we can analyze any historical topic, not just ones that are pointedly about bodies. We will study how ideas about the abled versus the disabled body changed over time and how they offer us unparalleled insight into power structures of the past. We will also study how people worked within and fought against various kinds of ableism.
tl;dr This course is about three things: 1) how ideas about bodies and body parts have changed over time; 2) how we can better understand all historical contexts by thinking about them from the perspective of the body; and 3) how ableism and the concepts of the abled versus disabled body have been fundamental to societies in the past and present.   Most – but not all -- case studies we will look at will be from European history.

HIST 1001: The Making of Europe Author: Danielle Kinsey
Course Subject: European history
Posted: November 18, 2018

This is the winter half of a first-year survey course on "The Making of Europe."  Course description:  This course surveys the origins, development and continuities of the dominant European societies from Antiquity through to the present day.  The Fall term of the course explored the development of the physical, cultural, and political space that would become known as Europe from Antiquity to the Renaissance.  The Winter term will follow these themes from the seventeenth century to the present, considering the rise of new social and intellectual communities, the development of nation-states and modern empires, and how European culture both shaped and was shaped by substantial interaction with the wider world.  This course provides a general overview of European history by focusing on key themes:
 ·       forms and uses of power
·       the creation and control of religious belief and worship
·       social and cultural exchange
·       transformation of communication structures and forms of cultural representation
·       gender/sex/sexuality/class/race
 In addition to providing an overview of the history of Europe, this course teaches students the basic tools of academic historical inquiry.  Lectures will offer an outline of major historical currents and ask the student to engage with many different ways of doing history.  In discussion groups, students will read, analyze, and discuss primary sources under the direction of a Teaching Assistant. Students will be asked to adopt a critical attitude towards the past and to understand what sorts of questions can be answered by different types of sources.

Hist 3217: Empire and Globalization Author: Danielle Kinsey
Course Subject: European imperial histories; global histories; colonialism
Posted: November 18, 2018

This is a third year course in European imperial/colonial histories. Course description: “Globalization” and “imperialism” are both terms fraught with ambiguity and overuse.  Some, believing in visions of inevitable progress, argue that as populations have grown and technologies have become more sophisticated, the world has naturally become more “globalized” or more integrated in political, social, economic, and even cultural ways.  Others argue that this interconnectivity has come about not because of natural growth but through projects designed to exploit peoples around the world.  They read the term “globalization” as a kinder, gentler way of describing Western imperialism in its present day incarnation. By examining various empires in world history and with particular emphasis on modern European imperialism, this course will explore the relationship between empire and globalization. Four themes will be: difference; intermediaries; resistance; the global. Specific content to be discussed will include: mercantilism, the Atlantic slave trade, science and medicine, time, religion and civilizing missions, the colonial archive, racialized and gendered categories of difference, reproduction and sexuality, métissage, technology, bureaucracy, nationalism and citizenship, decolonization, Commonwealth, postcoloniality, and indigenous resistance movements.

Hist 1707: World History Author: Danielle Kinsey
Course Subject: world history
Posted: November 18, 2018

This is the 2nd half of a first-year survey on World History. This half uses Donald Wright's book The World and a Very Small Place in Africa as its main textbook.  Course description: The Winter term will continue to expose students to historically informed, critical analyses that frame contemporary discussions about globalization but we’ll do so by focusing on three interrelated lines of inquiry:
·      How have relationships between the “local” and the “global” changed over time and why is this important? Who and what are local and who and what are global?
·      What can the histories of hybridity and appropriation tell us about world history?
·      How can we study the relationship between globalization and power inequality and how it has changed over time? Why should we?
We’ll be examining historical case studies from about 1250 CE to the present.  These will include discussions about the Mongol Empire, the Indian Ocean World, the histories of various global commodity chains, European empires in the nineteenth century, the rise of fascism as an anti-globalization stance, transnationalism, transnational resistance movements, and the digital revolution.

Hist 1707: World History Author: Danielle Kinsey and Susanne Klausen
Course Subject: world history
Posted: November 18, 2018

This is a full year, first-year level survey of World History from the 4th century CE to the present. Course description:  This course examines the growth of global connections over the last sixteen hundred years, from about 400 CE to the present. We will begin by looking at how people, ideas, and things travelled over vast distances throughout the Pacific, American, Mediterranean, African and Eurasians worlds, stimulating commodity trades, religious innovation, and the intermingling of populations. This increase in traffic supported many far-flung empires, including those in Scandinavia, West Africa, the Middle East, Central America, and northern Asia. The first semester of the course will be devoted to tracing connections and analyzing the hybrid political and cultural formations that were engendered as people promoted, resisted, and negotiated their way through growing translocal networks. The second half of the course will be focused on the last three hundred years, the so-called modern era. We will discuss the systems and effects of the past few centuries of globalization in terms of mass migrations, industrialization, environmental change, global communications infrastructure, universalist ideas, the international system, multinational corporations, consumer culture, world war, and transnational activism. In addition to learning the content of global history, students will also develop the skills necessary to write history: identifying the difference between primary and secondary sources, analyzing and interpreting evidence, engaging in research, crafting historical arguments, and evaluating historical claims in today’s popular culture. 

Public History in Canada - Memory, Representation, Interpretation Author: Laura Ishiguro
Course Subject: Canadian history / public history
Posted: January 15, 2018

This course is an introduction to public history in Canada. Through lectures, discussions, assignments, and activities, we explore how and why Canadian history has been interpreted or represented in public, and consider why it matters. Units explore common professional settings for public historical work in Canada; how historical interpretation enters our lives in more everyday ways; and controversies or points of contention in public history in Canada today. Like other 200-level courses in the UBC History department, HIST 236 is also designed to introduce key areas of historical practice including primary source analysis, historical writing, library and media skills, and (of course) public history.

This is a 200-level course with no pre-requisites, and is designed to be suitable for students with little or no background in Canadian history. (This means that the course doubles as an introduction to public history and an introduction to Canadian history.) In this version (2017-18), the assigned materials are almost all publicly accessible sources, and I am teaching the course with a parallel "light" version on Twitter that is intended to allow interested members of the public to follow along with course content - making the course both about public history, and a form of public history itself.

HIST 2500: Canadian History (York University Author: Sean Kheraj
Course Subject: Canadian History
Posted: November 4, 2017

This is a syllabus for HIST 2500: Canadian History. This is an introductory survey course in Canadian history taught at York University in 2016-17.

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