David Halberstam, Ho
Michael Harrington, The Other America
Harvard Sitkoff, The Struggle for Black Equality, 1954-1992
Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. The Disuniting of America
Goals and Objectives:
The primary goal of this course is to describe and evaluate the main issues and events in American history since 1945. The course will also acquaint students with the major historical interpretations of the period. The main objective of the course is to help students develop their analytical skills in both oral and written forms by encouraging critical thinking and policy analysis.
Students will read four books and we will have a class-long discussion of each of them during the semester. There will be questions relating to these discussions on the midterm and final examinations. All students are expected to participate actively in class discussion. Failure to do so will result in the lowering of your final grade.
Undergraduates will be asked to read three items (one of which must be a book)from the course bibliography and then write a review essay (of about 10-12 pages)in which they describe and, where appropriate, criticize the main findings and viewpoints of each author.
Graduate students will select five items (two of which must be a book) and write 15-20 pages. Graduate student essays should be written at a higher level than the rest of the class and should be patterned after the review essays often found in history journals. We will discuss their further after class.
Any student may also write an original paper based on primary sources. See me about this if you are interested.
Papers are due the last day of class.
Grades will be determined primarily by your performance on the midterm and final examinations. Once a grade is calculated, your term paper can raise or lower the grade to the next level. For example, a grade of B+ would become an A- with a good term paper. A great paper could bump the grade higher. Extraordinary discussion can also bump up a grade.
If you have a documented disability that may require assistance, you will need to contact disability services to coordinate your academic accommodations. They are located in Reynolds Student Services CSB 212J Phone: 895-0503.
Tests will not be given on a major religious holiday or during "study week" (the last week of class).
Plagiarism or Cheating:
Anyone engaging in plagiarism or cheating on a test will receive a grade of F for the course.
- The Truman Years: Demobilization and Domestic Controversy
- Origins of the Cold War: Yalta to Korea, 1945-1953
- McCarthyism and the Assault on Civil Liberties--Read Rovere
- Containment in Crisis: The Eisenhower Years, 1953-1960
- America and the "Organization Man:" The Mass Society
- Mass Media: Its Critics and the Cult of Marshall McLuhan
- The "Affluent Society:" Economic Development Since WWII
- The "Other America"--Read Harrington
- "Up from the Pedestal": Rise of the Modern Feminist Movement
Midterm Examination--Date to be Announced
- The Warren Court and the Expansion of Civil Liberties
- The Charismatic President: John F. Kennedy: The Man and the Myth
- The "Great Society": A Forgotten Achievement
- The "Tragedy of Lyndon Johnson: Vietnam, Violence, and Protest
- Dissent and Non-Conformity: The Rise of a Counter Culture
- Martin Luther King and the Black Revolution--Read Sitkoff
- The Modern Urban Crisis; Suburbs, Ghettos, and Megalopolis
- The "Closing Circle;" America's Ecological Crisis
- Henry Kissenger and the Politics of Detente--Read Schlesinger
- The Imperial Presidency Dethroned: Richard Nixon's Last Crisis
- Cold War into Terrorist War: 1975-Present
- Curtain Call for Liberalism?: Carter and Reagan to the Present
Final Examination--Date to be Announced
On Reserve: a textbook—Jeanne Boydston, et al., Making a Nation: The U.S. and its People Vol. 2