US I Syllabus 2016 06

US I Syllabus 2016 06 - US History I To 1877 21:512:201.06...

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US History I – To 1877 21:512:201.06 Instructor: Dr. Matthew Friedman Email: [email protected] Office: Conklin 337 | Office Hours: TBA Class Time and Location: Tuesday-Friday, 1:00-2:20 pm, Hill Hall 105 This course will explore the narratives of America from the first contacts between native North Americans and Europeans to Reconstruction. It will focus on the stories Americans told of themselves and of “The Other,” and how they converged in the construction of an American nation and identity. In discussing how these narratives intersect, interact and sometimes contradict each other, we will discover the richness and complexities of American life. We will focus on a number of themes: Race and slavery; the family, gender and sexuality; class, economic growth and the rise of market capitalism; and, above all the negotiation of the idea of “America” in the spaces around geographical, conceptual and cultural frontiers. Students will develop their analytical skills in the written assignments and the class discussions by identifying the course readings’ main theses, supporting arguments, evidence, assumptions, and rhetorical strategies. READINGS All class readings are available on Blackboard. Thomas Paine's Common Sense and Frederick Douglass's Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave are available at the library, at virtually every bookstore and online as a PDF or e-book. ASSIGNMENTS AND GRADING Attendance: Attendance is mandatory. Students are expected to attend every class, arrive on time and stay for the duration of the class. Students may be excused for illness, family emergency and similar extreme situations, and religious observance. Absences for work, job interviews and similar events will not be excused. Unexcused absences will be penalized one (1) mark (out of ten) of the student’s attendance grade. Six unexcused absences will result in an automatic failing grade. Students who miss eight or more sessions through any combination of excused and unexcused absences will not earn credit in this class. Such students should withdraw from the course. Participation: Everyone is both expected and required to participate in class discussions. The participation grade will reflect the quality and quantity of your in-class participation. Summaries: Students will write a one-to-two-page summary of the readings for every class, identifying the main points that each author makes and the way in which the readings are related. I will collect them at random times throughout the term. Papers: Students will write three 3-4 page papers on topics to be announced, based on the readings. See "Submission Guidelines," below. In-Class Tests: There will be five in-class tests. Final Exam: A final exam will be held on 20 December, 3-6 pm.
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