World History since 1900 Fall Term – HIST 1F95

The history of the world during the twentieth century, an era characterised by wars and revolutions of unprecedented violence as well as sweeping political, social and cultural change.

The fall term covers the years from the “Belle Epoque,” the twilight of European primacy and peace at the turn of the twentieth century, to the beginnings of decolonisation and the Cold War in the late 1940’s. During this semester the course concentrates on events in Europe, although we will also consider the other continents. Special attention will be paid to imperialism and its discontents, the two world wars, and the rise of totalitarian ideologies, such as fascism and communism. This course will also provide an introduction to basic historical skills, including library research, evaluating sources and writing research essays.

Although some background in world history would be helpful, it is not mandatory.

HIST 1F95 Syllabus


 

War and Peace in the Modern World – HIST 2P64

Why and how have states gone to war? How have they kept at peace? This course surveys the military and diplomatic history of the world beginning with the Napoleonic Wars, ca. 1800, through the dawn of the twenty-first century. While the focus will be on the Great Powers, it will also examine conflicts in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

HIST 2P64 Syllabus


 

Early Russia – HIST 2P96

The first millennium of Russian history, from its early Slavic origins in the ninth century through the reign of Catherine the Great at the end of the eighteenth. The lectures pay particular attention to the role of the Orthodox Church, Asian and European influences, the rise of absolutism, the challenges of modernization, and major historiographical controversies. The seminars acquaint students with canonical texts and films to consider how Russians and foreigners have considered important issues. Throughout, the course also considers continuities between the past and the present in Russian politics, culture and society.

HIST 2P96 Syllabus


 

Modern Russia – HIST 2P98

The history of Russia during the 19th and 20th centuries. It covers the late Imperial era (from the accession of Tsar Alexander I in 1801 to the reign of Nicholas II), the Revolution of 1917, the Soviet era, and the transition to post-Communism. We will pay attention, among other, to the challenges of westernization, the intelligentsia, reform and reaction, as well as social issues. The seminars acquaint students with canonical texts and films to consider how Russians and foreigners have considered important issues. Throughout, the course also considers continuities between the past and the present in Russian politics, culture and society.

HIST 2P98 Syllabus


The World of Genghis Khan – HIST 3P60

The history of nomadic Inner Asia, the area now comprising Mongolia, Tibet, Xinjiang, and the Islamic republics of Central Asia. It will provide an overview from 500 BCE to the present. The approach is chronological, although we will pay considerable attention to the nomadic worldview and Inner Asia’s encounter with the settled world. Selected topics include religion (Shamanism, Buddhism and Islam), the nomadic invasions of Europe and China, the Silk Road, the Great Game, and modern nationalism.

HIST 3P60 Syllabus



The Rise and Fall of the Russian Empire – HIST 3P90

The expansions and contractions of Russia from its Kievan origins in the 9th century to the present. Lectures will concentrate on the history of Russian diplomacy, warfare and imperial administration, while the seminars examine related topics, including geopolitics, ideology, culture, nationalities, and our own perceptions. Throughout the course we will also consider continuities with the past and their implications for today.

Some prior knowledge of Russian history would be helpful but is not absolutely necessary.

HIST 3P90 Syllabus 


  

The Russian Revolution – HIST 4V38

The collapse of Russia’s Romanov dynasty and its replacement by Bolshevism in 1917. It will be divided into two parts. The first half will be topical. During these discussions we will examine Russia’s ancien régime by focusing on major elements of pre-Revolutionary society, including the autocracy and nobility, peasants, workers, civil society, the intelligentsia and Vladimir Lenin. Towards the end of October, we will shift over to a chronological approach by looking at the major events in Russia between 1905 and 1917.

Some prior knowledge of Russian history would be helpful but is not absolutely necessary.

HIST 4V38 Syllabus


 

Empire – 5V00

This graduate seminar examines empires in the modern world. While it focuses on the 19th and 20th centuries, it will also consider earlier empires. After a survey of the principal theories, the seminar first takes a chronological approach, from imperial states in antiquity to twentieth-century decolonization. The course then turns to major themes, including ideology, culture, post-colonialism, the subaltern, and resistance. During the last two weeks students will present papers based on their essays. In addition to the assigned texts, students will also read a novel and see three films.

HIST 5V00 Syllabus