Dr. Jeff Horn
Chair of the Department

A history major can be an ideal choice for a variety of careers. In addition to preparing students to be professional historians or researchers, it lays the foundation for professions such as law or teaching and for careers in business, public service, the military, the media, library science, and archival work.


Requirements for a Major in History. Students in the School of Arts who major in history must complete a minimum of 30 credits in history courses. These credits must include:

HIST 200Introduction to the Study of History3
HIST 217World History to 16003
HIST 490Senior Seminar3
One of the following:3
Great Issues in American History
Women in the United States
Modern America, 1930 to Present
European History at 300-level or above6
World History at 300-level or above3
Additional 300-level Electives9
Total Credits30

A minimum grade of C is necessary to receive credit in the major. Students are encouraged to pursue opportunities for study abroad. In addition, internships in a wide variety of related fields are available for history majors.

Students in the School of Education who concentrate in Social Studies must complete 27 credits in history courses if they specialize in Adolescent Education, and 24 credits if they specialize in Childhood Education. These credits must include:

HIST 206United States through 18763
HIST 207United States since 18763
HIST 217World History to 16003
HIST 218World History since 16003

Both Adolescent and Childhood Education majors must complete 6 credits in world history, at least 3 of which must be at the 300 level. In addition, Adolescent Education majors must complete HIST 200 Introduction to the Study of History and HIST 490 Senior Seminar. A minimum grade of C is necessary to receive credit in the major.


Requirements for a Minor in History

15 credits of history courses, with most at the 300-level or above. The program is worked out individually with the department chair. A minimum grade of C is required to receive credit in the minor.

All history majors and minors are invited to participate in the social, co-curricular, and vocational activities of the department. The department houses a chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the international history honor society. Outstanding history majors are elected to its membership. In addition, the department has two lecture series honoring the memory of past department chairs. An annual lecture in honor of Brother Casimir Gabriel Costello, F.S.C., features European history, and a biennial series focuses on topics in early American history in honor of Professor Robert Christen.





HIST 150. Roots: History. 3 Credits.

An intensive and critical examination of selected historical texts and developments from the medieval period to the present that contribute to an understanding of the modern world.

HIST 200. Introduction to the Study of History. 3 Credits.

This course introduces students to the discipline of history. An overview of historical writing will contribute to an understanding of how the craft of history is practiced and has evolved. Class assignments will develop and strengthen techniques of historical research, information literacy, and writing skills. Intended for history and social studies majors during the first or second semester of their major course work, this course is open to others with permission of the instructor.

HIST 204. History of the Ancient World. 3 Credits.

This course examines the development, spread, and transformation of empires in the Mediterranean world during antiquity. Special emphasis will be on the poleis of Greece, the Hellenistic World, and the Roman Republic and Empire.

HIST 206. United States through 1876. 3 Credits.

The United States, from its origins through the Civil War and Reconstruction, with an emphasis on the main political, economic, and social developments. Major wars and cultural trends will also be addressed, as well as the lives of important and representative individuals.

HIST 207. United States since 1876. 3 Credits.

The United States since the end of Reconstruction, with an emphasis on the major political, economic, and social developments. Major wars and cultural trends will also be addressed, as well as the lives of important and representative individuals.

HIST 210. Great Issues in American History. 3 Credits.

An examination of selected critical issues and events in the history of the United States.

HIST 217. World History to 1600. 3 Credits.

This course surveys the history of civilization before the seventeenth century. Focus will be on the developments of world cultures in Europe, South and East Asia, the Middle East, and Africa, as well as encounters between these regions. Topics will include the growth of cities, court culture, and the agricultural economies that supported them; global trade networks; spread of disease; religious movements, and military conflicts.

HIST 218. World History since 1600. 3 Credits.

This course surveys the history of the world from the European encounter with the non-Western world to the present day. It will explore the major trends which have shaped the modern world, including the rise of modern states; the revolutionary era; the ideologies of socialism, liberalism, and nationalism; European imperialism, and the shifting balance of power in the postcolonial world.

HIST 225. Hispanic America. 3 Credits.

An introduction to the history of the Spanish-speaking regions of the Western hemisphere beginning with the pre-Columbian period. Special attention will be given to the era since independence.

HIST 230. History of the American Economy. 3 Credits.

This course on the rise of American economy from the colonial period to the present will go beyond economic history to examine issues of politics, philosophy, and legal theory and their impact on economic developments. Special emphasis will be given to advancements in science and technology, the creation of educational systems, and the links between global economic conditions and the economy of the nation-state. The course will highlight themes of continuity and change that have characterized American economic history.

HIST 240. East Asian Civilizations. 3 Credits.

This course explores how the distinct cultures of China, Korea and Japan developed within a broadly shared civilization over the last 4000 years, but with an emphasis on early-modern and modern times. The focus is on socio-political, religious and cultural developments.

HIST 242. African Civilizations. 3 Credits.

This course introduces the geography and economy of the African peoples. A general survey of the continent and national case studies illustrate the differing regional experiences and diversity of African civilizations.

HIST 290. Special Topics. 3 Credits.

An introduction to a theme, problem, movement, or era in history.

HIST 304. Europe in the Middle Ages. 3 Credits.

This course will explore the economic, social, and cultural history of Europe from the fifth through the fifteenth centuries. Major topics will include the transformation of the Roman Empire into Christendom; the development of the church with the rise of the papacy and monastic reform; Germanic migrations; consolidation of the medieval monarchy; the Commercial Revolution; scholasticism and the universities; pilgrimage and the cult of the saints; the crusades, heretical movements, and the medieval family.

HIST 305. Early Modern Europe. 3 Credits.

This course traces the transformation of Europe between the Renaissance and the French Revolution. Special emphasis will be placed on the wars of religion, the revolution in European military practice, the emergence of national states, the structure and function of the absolutist monarchies and, especially, the wide-ranging impact of the Enlightenment.

HIST 307. Genocide and Racism. 3 Credits.

This course investigates the emergence of modern racism and its expression as genocide. In-depth examinations of the events in Armenia, Rwanda, Bosnia, East Timor, Cambodia, and Darfur complement an exploration of the German attempt to annihilate certain groups like the Jews during World War II. Recommended for Education majors to satisfy state education laws in New York and New Jersey that require the teaching of the Holocaust in all schools.

HIST 308. European Women to 1500. 3 Credits.

This course examines the history of women in Europe from the ancient period through the end of the Middle Ages. Emphasis is on women's lives and experiences as well as representations of women constructed during the period. Topics include women's roles in religious communities, the family, the workforce, politics, and portrayals of women in literary, legal, medical, and religious discussions. Special emphasis is on women's perceptions of their social and cultural lives, described in their own words.

HIST 312. Modern China 1839 - Present. 3 Credits.

The modern transformation of China, its values and institutions, resulting from the impact of the West and revolution.

HIST 313. Vietnam to the Philippines. 3 Credits.

Political, social, economic change, and the kaleidoscope of outside intervention in modern Southeast Asia since the founding of Singapore in 1819.

HIST 314. Modern Africa. 3 Credits.

This course introduces the multiple histories, diverse cultures and complicated geography of modern Africa. Three areas: modern-day Algeria; Ghana; and South Africa will serve as case studies in order to place continent-wide trends in their local contexts and to explore key historical events and developments from a consistent perspective that will illustrate change over time. This course will also emphasize the dynamic role of Africans in the events and processes that have shaped modern Africa.

HIST 318. Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. 3 Credits.

Political, economic, and cultural developments of the region, including the history of relations with the U.S.

HIST 319. The Crusades. 3 Credits.

The course examines the crusading energy of the High Middle Ages. Focus will be on the medieval imagination of the Latin West as Christendom and attacks on threats to that identity. Topics will include the strengthening of the papacy; the growth of chivalry; the history of Jerusalem and its crucial holy sites; relations between Christendom and the Byzantine Empire; the Islamic world; the Reconquista; the Albigensian Crusade; the rise of anti-Semitism; and the military orders.

HIST 320. History of Rome. 3 Credits.

This course examines the history of Rome from the city's foundation through the decline of its empire. Emphasis will be on the major political, social, military, and cultural developments of Rome's history.

HIST 321. Special Topics. 3 Credits.

An extensive study of a theme, problem, movement, or era in history.

HIST 322. Special Topics. 3 Credits.

An extensive study of a theme, problem, movement, or era in history.

HIST 325. The Byzantine Empire. 3 Credits.

The political, social, and cultural history of the Eastern Roman Empire from the fourth to the fifteenth centuries and its relations with Islam, the Latin West, and the Slavs.

HIST 326. Diplomatic History of Europe 1815-1914. 3 Credits.

The international relations among the European states from the Congress of Vienna through the era of Imperialism and the origins of the First World War.

HIST 328. Cold War Diplomacy in Asia. 3 Credits.

This course investigates Cold War diplomacy and international relations in the Asian context. Focus is not only on the politics and economics of international relations, but also on their interplay with societies, cultures and individuals. Topics include the Soviet-China split, the Korean War, the Vietnam wars, Nixonian diplomacy, and Japan's role as an aircraft carrier for American military bases.

HIST 334. Diplomatic History of the Vietnam Wars. 3 Credits.

This course explores the diplomatic history of the Vietnam Wars, approximately from 1945 to 1975. It treats these wars not as an American conflict, but as an international conflict between a multitude of actors, especially the Vietnamese themselves.

HIST 337. England to 1688. 3 Credits.

An overview of the history of the British Isles from antiquity to the Glorious Revolution. The creation of England as a unified kingdom with a centralized monarchy and its influence over Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. Emphasis will be on the power and personalities of the monarch and the nobility as well as on the lives of ordinary people. Roman Britain, the Anglo-Saxon period, Norman conquest, Plantagenet Empire, Hundred Years War, Tudor and Stuart dynasties, Anglican Reformation, civil war, plague, constitutionalism, monasticism, and the universities.

HIST 347. The Sixties. 3 Credits.

This important, contentious era in the United States will be examined from various angles, from the various protest movements to the conservative reaction, from music and cultural flowering to presidential politics. All of this will be analyzed in relation to the various historical interpretations of the era.

HIST 348. Modern Japan. 3 Credits.

This course introduces the history of Japan from the late Tokugawa period to the present day. The political, economic, social, cultural, and national dimensions of historical change compose the course's central focus, but the concept of identity is also strongly emphasized.

HIST 351. Age of the French Revolution. 3 Credits.

The course explores European history from the Enlightenment to the fall of Napoleon. The origins, course, and aftermath of the French Revolution will receive particular attention. Other themes include the Enlightenment, early industrialization, and the Napoleonic Empire.

HIST 352. Nineteenth-Century Europe. 3 Credits.

This course explores European history from the fall of Napoleon in 1815 to the start of World War I in 1914, with emphasis on the revolutions in 1830, 1848, and 1871, the acceleration of imperialism, nation-building, and the social transformations stemming from industrialization.

HIST 353. Modern Germany. 3 Credits.

The influence exercised in German history of the medieval empire, Luther, the Thirty Years War, Frederick the Great, and the Age of Revolution. A chronological treatment from 1848 to the present.

HIST 354. History of the Soviet Union. 3 Credits.

The course deals with the background, revolution, and establishment of the Soviet Union, focusing on both domestic developments and the role of the Soviet Union in world affairs. Special attention is given to the problems of continuity and change in Soviet policy between 1917 and 1991.

HIST 355. East Europe in Modern Times. 3 Credits.

A survey of the history of Eastern and Central Europe, the area between Germany and Russia, from the end of World War I to the present day. The countries of the region are examined both comparatively and individually to identify the economic, social, cultural, and national forces which have shaped their developments.

HIST 357. Nazi Germany and the Holocaust. 3 Credits.

This course explores the rise of the Nazis to power, their governance of Germany, their conquests, and their defeat. Special emphasis will be placed on the Nazis' treatment of various minorities. Their ideology and practical issues shaping the decisions and actions of both leaders and ordinary Germans will be examined. The Holocaust will be situated throughout in its contemporary context and understood through the eyes of perpetrators, victims, and bystanders.

HIST 358. The Industrial Revolution. 3 Credits.

This course examines the economic transformation known as the Industrial Revolution (1750-1850) from its roots in Western Europe to its later spread to other parts of Europe and then across the Atlantic Ocean primarily from the perspective of laboring people.

HIST 360. Women in the United States. 3 Credits.

This course will focus on the changing roles of women in American society from the 17th century to the present. Beginning with pre-industrial society and tracing women's experiences in agricultural, commercial, industrial, and post-industrial America, we will discover how women's roles have changed-and not changed-in the course of American history. In an historical context, the various experiences of women as housewives, mothers, consumers, workers, professionals, and citizens will be analyzed.

HIST 362. US Foreign Relations, 1900 to the Present. 3 Credits.

"The American Century." The rise of America to world power. Relations with other countries before, during, and between the world wars, in the Cold War, and in the post-Soviet era, including politics toward Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.

HIST 366. US Labor Patterns and Movement. 3 Credits.

This course analyzes the patterns of the US labor force and labor movements in the industrial age. Structural factors such as race, class, gender, geography and technology are considered along with the business and political contexts. The questions of individual agency on the part of labor leaders is also addressed.

HIST 371. The American West. 3 Credits.

A survey of the region that has long captured people's imagination. Enduring themes such as cowboys and Indians as well as newer concerns such as the role of women and the rise of technology will be analyzed in light of historical evidence, both primary and secondary.

HIST 375. Internship. 3 Credits.

Students participate in an off-campus training experience closely related to their area of study. Frequent meetings with the internship advisor and a paper are required. Internships are arranged through the Center for Career Development and must be approved in advance by the chair and the Dean of the School of Arts.

HIST 377. Science, Technology, and Society. 3 Credits.

This course explores major developments in both science and technology from the perspective of their social impact. Particular emphasis will be placed on industrialization and how science and technology affect society as a whole.

HIST 380. Sport and American Society. 3 Credits.

An interdisciplinary course on the history of American sport from the colonial era to the present. Special emphasis will be given to the economic, sociological, political, and psychological aspects of twentieth-century American sport.

HIST 381. Colonial and Revoluntionary America to 1789. 3 Credits.

The political, economic, social, and cultural status of the British-American colonies in the mid-eighteenth century; the coming of the American Revolution; the problems of war and independence; the constitutional development of the new nation; the impact of the Revolution on all of the American people.

HIST 383. Civil War and Reconstruction. 3 Credits.

The causes of the Civil War: economic and political, legal and constitutional, ideological and moral. The great people, the great battles, and the great events. The results and the cost of the war, human and economic. Reconstruction, racism and segregation.

HIST 385. Modern America, 1930 to Present. 3 Credits.

The nation's domestic, political, social, and economic issues from the Great Depression of the 1930s to terrorism in 2001. The New Deal and the Fair Deal, the Home Front in World War II, Civil Rights and the Great Society, consenus in the 1950s and conflicts in the 1960s, the domestic cost of Vietnam, Watergate, and Reagonomics, the Information Revolution and the Clinton Paradox.

HIST 386. American Biography. 3 Credits.

Analysis of signal figures of both genders and of different racial/ethnic backgrounds from a variety of eras and fields, from business leaders and inventors to labor leaders and social reformers, from presidents to creative artists. Perennial questions that will be addressed include what constitutes a significant life and the relative roles in a life of one's personality and choices -- and of fate -- along with such structural factors as one's race, class, gender, geographic region and particular generation. Various biographical schools of thought will also be addressed, along with variations on biography, notably autobiography and memoir.

HIST 387. New York City and the American Urban Experience. 3 Credits.

The colonial and Revolutionary city, urban imperialism, the city in the American mind, immigration, social mobility, the rise of the ghetto, the impact of the New Deal, suburbanization, the modern metropolis, recent trends.

HIST 388. Women in Modern Europe. 3 Credits.

This course surveys the role of women in European society in the modern period. Special emphasis will be given to the articulation and evolution of the "women's question" and the impact of industrialization, political revolution, and war on gender roles. Drawing on the contemporary documents as well as secondary analyses, the course will provide a historical context for debates on women and gender that continue to the present day.

HIST 390. Terror and Terrorism: The Uses of Political Violence. 3 Credits.

This course examines the major ideas and problems associated with terror and terrorism from the French Revolution to the present and considers the historical development and role of political violence both by and against the state in contemporary society.

HIST 475. Internship. 3 Credits.

Students participate in an off-campus training experience closely related to their area of study. Frequent meetings with the internship advisor and a paper are required. Internships are arranged through the Center for Career Development and must be approved in advance by the chair and the Dean of the School of Arts.

HIST 490. Senior Seminar. 3 Credits.

An exploration of a specific historical theme through class discussion and student papers, with an emphasis on proper research methodologies and presentation. Intended for advanced history and social studies majors, but open to others with the permission of the chair. Prerequisite: HIST 200.

HIST 498. Independent Study. 3 Credits.

Supervised reading and research. Permission of Department Chair required.

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