Course Outlines

History 5001 3.0 F  Doing History: An Introduction

Open to all entering MA students, this course reads and discusses some great books in social history about a wide range of times and places. It is an opportunity to think big and to compare unfamiliar histories with more familiar ones. We will debate such questions as who gets a history? and how do concepts like imperialism or marginalization clarify and obscure the past? The course also provides a chance to step back from a focus on specialized information and to look at how historians put their works together.

Oral work and written assignments aim to cultivate skills useful for graduate studies in history. These include historiographical synopses (how to get a handle on a big book quickly) and primary source analysis. The course culminates in developing and presenting a proto-proposal for the required Major Research Paper.

HIST 5002 3.0 F Preparing Historians for the Twenty-First Century:  An Applied History Practicum

The historical profession is changing. Fewer historians with graduate-level training are pursuing lifelong careers as tenured faculty members, and even those that do are finding themselves translating and presenting their research to diverse audiences. Historians today must be prepared to adopt new forms of scholarship and public engagement, both within and beyond the academy. Blending experiential learning with a rigorous graduate-level exploration of the many uses of the MA and PhD in History, both historically and in the present, this course recognizes the diversity of careers historians pursue today.

The course begins by exploring the history of the discipline since the late-19thcentury, its origins in the German seminar, its exportation to and development within North America, as well as the establishment and maturation of standards and professional criteria across the 20thcentury. The course then turns to an investigation of the broader constellation of career paths open to historians within and beyond the academy. Students will explore the theories, practices and economics of, and the role of professional historians in, such fields as publishing, journalism, government, the law, public policy, entertainment, education, and entrepreneurship. Finally, the course involves two forms of experiential learning. First, students will gain hands-on experience working on a project such as the design and production of a website or podcast series, or the production of an issue of an academic journal. Second, students will be required to identify an individual with historical training who is pursuing a career outside the academy, research the field in which they work, interview the subject, and present their findings.

HIST 5172 3.0 State and Society in Canada, 1945 to the present

HIST 5542 3.0 F Nature and Society in the Pre-Industrial World: Global Environmental History from the 1400s to the 1800s

HIST 5543 3.0 W Nature and society in the industrial world: Global environmental history since industrialization

This course examines the relationships between people and their environments from the mid-nineteenth century to the early twenty-first century. It considers the global ecological consequences of industrialization and the growing human footprint on Earth from a historical perspective, drawing from the field of environmental history.

Through a number of different nineteenth- and twentieth-century case studies of industrialized societies around the world, students will examine the ways in which humans interacted with the rest of nature. In particular, this course looks at the extraordinary influence of humans on global ecosystems over that past 160 years that has led scholars to characterize this period as the Anthropocene, the beginning of a distinct geological and ecological epoch.

HIST 5561 3.0 F Issues in Comparative Women's and Gender History: Part I, The Late Eighteenth and Ninteenth Centuries

HIST 5562 3.0 W Issues in Comparative Women's and Gender History: Part II, The 20th Century

This course is intended to introduce graduate students to some of the ways that historians have investigated changing gender ideologies and changes in women’s embodied experiences around the world during the twentieth century. This year, the course will    concentrate on comparing historical studies of ideas and experiences in the Americas, but students also will have the option to look at the historiographies of western Europe, East Asia, South Asia or sub-Saharan Africa in some weeks of the course. We will examine the connections and comparisons among the historiographies of these distinct regions, looking at how historians have seen differences and similarities in gendered experiences of colonialism and decolonization, technological and economic modernization, revolution and warfare, mass media and popular culture, state formation and reformation, and transnational movements of ideas, images, commodities, and people.

HIST 5701 6.0 Y Modern Cultural History

This course deals with themes in cultural history from the late nineteenth century to the present, focusing on the interrelationships among cultural, ideological, political, social, and economic change. It draws on a wide range of readings in North American, British, and European history. In exploring the expression, social context, and impact of ideas and culture in particular societies and regions, it views culture not only in terms of forms of artistic expression but as any value or trait that shapes society and, hence, infuses social, political, and economic ideas and trends. Weekly readings deal with works in such areas as the cultural history of industrialism, imperialism, modernism, antimodernism, historical memory, social reform, social and behavioural science, the quantitative revolution, race, consumerism and advertising, popular culture, and postmodernism. Readings and weekly discussions also provide opportunities to consider the ways in which historians have approached the issue of culture and the forms of cultural history that have resulted.

HIST 5751 3.0 F Food in World History

This course examines food in world history to the present day.  Beginning in evolutionary prehistory, the course focuses on hunter-gatherers and the first farmers, the development of cuisines and cross-cultural contacts before 1500 CE, the Columbian exchange of peoples, plants, animals, and food technologies, and the effects of colonialization, industrialization, war, and commerce on world food production, consumption and cultures.

HIST 5752 3.0 W Themes in Food History

This course examines specific themes within food historiography.  Themes include the development of regional cuisines and food cultures; the politics of food supply and production; foodways and the environment; food and material culture; gender, race and food cultures; migration and cuisine diaspora; the history of haute cuisine, tableware, and restaurants; diet, medicine, and the formation of nutritional theories; food fads and taboos; food and religion; the historical study of recipes, menus, and cookbooks; and food technology, advertising, industrialization and commerce.

HIST 6030 6.0 Y Selected Topics in the History of Canada (Ph.D. Field Course)

The course is intended to assist doctoral candidates in preparing for the comprehensive  examinations in the broader field of Canadian history and any of its subthemes, as either the Major or Minor Field. It can also serve as the third field course. Its aim is to provide an introduction to some (but by no means all) of the major historical works, themes, and debates in Canadian history. The instructors are drawn from among the Canadian historians in the Graduate History Program. The seminars will meet weekly on Tuesdays from 2:30 to 5:30, except when other faculty teaching commitments require alternative times.