Early American History | History 2600


This graduate seminar explores the historiography of early America.  Readings proceed chronologically, from 1492 to 1800.  But since what constitutes “early America” is in dispute, we begin with that debate. While the emphasis in this course is on historiographical development over the course of the twentieth century, rather than on the most dazzling work of the past few years, certain recent trends emerge on this syllabus:  the interest on global or at least transatlantic approaches and the rise of both cultural history and what some scholars call the “new political history...

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The Election of 1800 | Freshman Seminar 47x


In 1800, Thomas Jefferson ran against the incumbent, John Adams, in arguably the most important presidential election in American history.  Students in this seminar will re-visit the election by researching the debate, state by state, in newspapers, political pamphlets, and the private letters of politicians and political observers.  Meanwhile, as the semester progresses, we will watch the current presidential election unfold, giving us ample opportunity to contrast contemporary political rhetoric with the charged campaigning of two centuries past.