MERICA AND THE
This course examines the development of the United States in a global context, from
colony to empire. Surveying events over the past 500 years, we will consider not only the
diverse cultures that have created the American social fabric—Native American, European,
African, Asian, Latino, and Pacific Islander—but also the unique role the U.S. has played
in world history. Drawing on written documents, art, literature, music, and film, we will
investigate the extraordinary sweep of world-American history through several units:
Discovery and conquest, slavery and capitalism, world wars and military power, social
movements and repression, globalization and mass culture, development and environment.
In several units, the class uses Hawai‘i as a case study. The course will close with a
discussion of contemporary challenges facing the United States and the world, from global
warming and economic recovery to the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Short Writing Assignments & Quizzes
Review Essays (Due 10/15 & 12/3)
Midterm Exam (10/22)
Final Exam (12/17, 12:00-2:00 pm, HIG 110)
Jennifer Government: A Novel.
New York: Doubleday, 2003.
The Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, the African
N.Y.: Dover, 1999 (original, 1789).
Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet.
New York: Times Books,
The Complete Maus
(Vols I & II). New York: Pantheon Books, 1997
Stannard, David E.
American Holocaust: Columbus and the Conquest of the New World
York: Oxford University Press, 1992.
* Online Readings
: Required readings marked with an asterisk (*) are available online through