101Syllabus09-1 - 1 HISTORY 101-AMERICAN HISTORY TO 1865...

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1 HISTORY 101 - - AMERICAN HISTORY TO 1865 History 101 fulfills the requirements for a writing- intensive course Mr. Sharp Office Hours Fall, 2009 313 B Maxwell Hall Tues. 11:30-12:30 Extension 9649 Thurs. 1:00-3:00 Email [email protected] And by Appointment Website http://classes.maxwell.syr.edu/HIS101/ What is History 101? In the aftermath of “9/11” and as we have begun a new millennium, there is great anticipation of a “new era,” a new beginning—a disconnect from the past. However, the future is inescapably tied to the past and questions our society is facing and will face in the future are rooted in our past. Our attitudes on such issues as political democracy, social justice, economic opportunity, equality and the environment have all been shaped by our society’s previous experiences. In this course we will study how these attitudes and beliefs evolved in the first two and one half centuries of our history. Ultimately, history in large part, is a study and an attempt to understand those links between what we “were” to what we “are” and to what we “hope to be.” While this course is an "introductory" course in American history covering the period from 1607 to 1865, it is not a "survey" course in the sense that we will not attempt to discuss every fact or cover every event in 250 years of American history. Rather we will approach this period of history through a discussion of three themes. The first, essentially covering the period from the founding down to the middle of the eighteenth century, will deal with the question of how Europeans from a medieval culture became Americans. The second theme will explore the political, social and economic impact the Revolution had upon American society. And finally, we will focus on the modernization of American society in the nineteenth century and examine the relationship between modernization and the sectional crisis. In all three themes we will focus, in part at least, on issues of political democracy, social justice and equality. This course has two major objectives. First, we will study history as a process through which our society, our country came to be as it is today. Our society in 2009 is the product of a diverse and complex past and a fuller understanding
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2 of that past will give us greater insight and perspective into the historical roots to the problems that challenge us. One historian has written: "A nation's attitudes towards its own history is like a window into its own soul and the men and women of such a nation cannot be expected to meet the obligations of the present if they refuse to exhibit honesty, charity, open-mindedness and a free and growing intelligence towards the past that makes them what they are." The second objective of this course is to challenge you to develop your critical reading and writing skills. We will introduce you to sets of complex historical problems and ask you to order, assess, analyze and conceptualize the material in order to gain greater understanding of the particular problem
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This note was uploaded on 04/09/2010 for the course HST 101 taught by Professor Sharp during the Spring '08 term at Syracuse.

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101Syllabus09-1 - 1 HISTORY 101-AMERICAN HISTORY TO 1865...

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