History Courses


The history program offers a wide-range of fascinating courses, from global history and the history of western civilization to more focused courses about nations, social groups and special topics.

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HIST 346: Boy working in a factory, 1911. (Credit: US National Archives [Public domain])

HIST 333: ‘Cleric, Knight and Workman’, 13th century. (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])

100 Level Courses
Important Information for Registering Students:
Students who plan to complete a minor, major, joint major, advanced major, joint advanced major or honours degree in history should ensure they complete any two of the following six (6) 100-level courses.

Broughton Castle, Oxfordshire, England. (Photo: Dr. L. Stanley-Blackwell)

101     Western Civilization: Earliest Civilizations to the Wars of Religion
This course explores the varied history of our modern world from early complex societies to the Wars of Religion in the 17th century. From the ziggurats of ancient Mesopotamia, to the fracturing of “Christendom” during the Reformation, this class explores the events shaped the modern world. The course also provides an introduction to the practices of history. Lectures are supplemented by discussions, exercises and assignments about how historian find and use sources. Three credits.Offered in 2017-2018.

102     Western Civilization: Columbus to Decolonization
This course explores the history of Western Civilization from the discovery of the so called “New World” to decolonization. From Jesuit and Franciscan missionaries to the liberal and sexual revolutions, this class explores the events that shaped the world we live in today. The course provides an introduction to the practice of history. Thus, our tour of Western civilizations will be supplemented by discussions, exercises and assignments about how historian find and use sources. Three credits. Offered in 2017-2018.

Great Mosque of Córdoba, Spain, from 8th century. (Photo (crop): B. Kaufmann /CC-BY)

111     Introduction to Global History 1300-1795
By the 1300s technology allowed sea trade to supplant overland trade between western and eastern Asia. More closely connected societies became culturally distinct, while growing economies allowed for political stability. This three-credit survey traces the growing interconnectedness of human society and historical processes that have shaped institutions and ideas from the 14th century to the end of the 18th century. Three credits. Offered in 2017-2018.

Top (HIST 112): Music box, ca. 1793, where the tiger represents Indian leader Tipu “the Tiger of Mysore” goring an English soldier. (Credit: V&A Museum / CC-BY)
Left (HIST 111): Anti Ranters Publication proposed by Royalists 1650. (Credit: Foxhunter22 via Wiki / CC-BY)

112     Introduction to Global History from 1789
We are all connected in this global world. The ideas that sparked the French Revolution were in part the result of earlier exploration and they generated change throughout the Atlantic world and as far away from Europe as south Asia. The world has remained interconnected ever since. This course examines how this is the case by investigating human society and the historical processes that have shaped institutions and ideas since the 18th century. Three credits. Offered in 2017-2018.
113     Life and Times: Pre-Confederation Canada
This introductory survey lecture course is designed to examine the life and times of Pre-Confederation Canada from a political, social, cultural and economic perspective.  In this journey back in time in Canadian history, students will learn about a diversity of historical figures, experiences, events, and ideas. Three credits. Offered in 2017-2018.
Ice fishing in winter on the Assiniboine and Red Rivers, 1821, by Peter Rindisbacher (crop). (Credit: LAC-BAC,C-001932 /CC-BY)
115     A History of Canada: Post-Confederation
This course provides an introduction to the major themes in Canadian history from Confederation to the contemporary era.  It will explore the crucial political, economic, and social themes in Post-Confederation history. Regional, racial, ethnic, and gender variations will be addressed in this survey.  Students will learn to identify, analyze, and discuss key issues in Canadian history. Three credits. Offered in 2017-2018.
HIST 115: Students and parents from the Saddle Lake Reserve (Alberta), going to the Red Deer Indian Industrial School. (Photo (cropped): Woodruff. Canada. Department of Interior. LAC-BAC, PA-040715 / CC-BY)


216     Modern France, 1789 to the Present
Explores French history from the end of the old regime to the present. Topics include the 1789 revolution and its aftermath, Napoleon, the July Monarchy, the Second Empire, class and gender in 19th-century France, the Third Republic, the Dreyfus Affair, the “Hollow Years” of the interwar era, the defeat of 1940 and the authoritarian Vichy Regime, decolonization and the rise of De Gaulle, and the role of feminism/ memory/multiculturalism in post-war France with concentration on social, intellectual, cultural trends, and politics. Prerequisite: 6 credits of HIST 100, 101, 102, 110, 111, 112, 113 or 115, or permission of the instructor. Three credits. 
      Left: Liberty Guiding the People by Eugène Delacroix. (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])  
221     Medieval Russia
Topics include the origins of the Slavs; their adoption of Christianity; the establishment and development of the Kievan state; the coming of the Mongols and the Mongol “yoke”; the slow emergence of Muscovy; Ivan the Terrible and the Time of Troubles. Three credits.  
Above: Tsar Ivan the Terrible(crop). (Credit: Wiki [Public domain]) 

222     Imperial Russia

Topics include 17th-century Muscovy: the Romanovs, serfdom, schism, and territorial expansion; the 18th century: Peter the Great, Catherine II, and Westernization; and the 19th century: autocracy, culture, the abolition of serfdom, industrialization, the revolutionary movement, foreign policy, World War I and the collapse of tsarism; the revolution of 1917. Three credits.

    Left: Hist 222 - Catherine II of Russia, ca. 1770 (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])                  

228    History of the Maritime Provinces: Pre-Confederation
This survey lecture course is designed to examine the political, social, cultural and, economic development of the Maritime Provinces from the early 16th century to 1867. It will explore such topics as the  relations between Europeans and First Nations; the clash of empires; the Acadian Expulsion; the impact of immigrant cultures; the Age of Sail and federation with Canada. Three credits.

229    History of the Maritime Provinces: Post-Confederation
This survey lecture course is designed to examine the political, social, cultural, and economic developments of the Maritime Provinces from the 1860's to the 1960's.  It will examine such topics as the the federation with Canada; the industrialization and de-industrialization; labour unrest; social reform; the world wars; the impact of modernity and state intervention; out-migration; and the historical experiences of African-Maritimers, Mi'kmaq, Acadians, and Maritime women. Credit will be granted for only one of HIST 229 and HIST 209. Three credits. Offered in 2017-2018.


Staffordshire Hoard, Anglo-Saxon gold and silver metalwork from 7th or 8th century.
(Photo (crop) by David Rowan / CC-BY)

231     Martyrs, Monks & Marauders: Piety & Violence in Early Medieval Europe (300- 1050 CE)
The history of the Early Middle Ages has been much debated in recent years. Did Rome fall as Germanic warlords poured over its borders or were the Germanic migrations peaceful? Did Vikings only seek to pillage and destroy or to trade goods and share knowledge? What were the social, political and military roles of early Christian martyrs and monks? This course will answer such questions, while providing an overview of the history of Europe between 300 and 1050 CE. Three credits. 

232     Surviving Chivalry & the Four Horsemen: Europe’s High & Late Middle Ages (1050-1521 CE)
In 1050, Europe embarked on a long period of economic, intellectual and cultural growth. This was the time of the Crusades, chivalry and scholasticism. Beginning in 1300, however, Europe faced new crises characterized by some as the horsemen of the Apocalypse: famine, plague, war and death. Yet out of this disastrous period of history, new intellectual and artistic growth occurred, leading to the Renaissance. This course traces the history of medieval Europe through the highs and lows discussed above. Credit will be granted for only one of HIST 232 or HIST 230. Three credits. 
Right: Horseman Death, detail of the Apocalypse Tapestry - the oldest remaining medieval French tapestry, produced between 1377 and 1382 for Louis I. Credit: Wiki [Public domain PD-1923])

Algerian Prince Abdul Qadir Al-Jazairi wearing the sash of the French Légion d'Honneur, circa 1850s. (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])

233     French Imperialism
This course examines the history of French Imperialism during the 19th and 20th centuries in the Maghreb, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific. It explores various themes associated with colonial politics, society, economy, and culture, including the historiography of French imperialism, the construction and maintenance of the colonial governing system, the gendered nature of colonial discourse and practice, the social impact of religious customs in various locations within the empire, racial hierarchies and concomitant administrative repression, colonial representations in metropolitan French culture, and nationalist movements and revolts before and during the era of decolonization. Prerequisite: 6 credits of HIST 100, 101, 102, 110, 111, 112 113 or 115, or permission of the instructor. Three credits.

235     Introduction to South Asian History
The Indian sub-continent has been a crossroads of people and cultures throughout human history and its diasporas provide working communities, successful business models, rich history and beautiful culture from yoga to Freddy Mercury. South Asia is of central geopolitical, economic and cultural importance in the modern period. This course begins with the arrival of the Mughals in the 16th century and ends with decolonization and partition in 1947. Three credits. 

Manuscript detail: The marriage procession of Dara Shikoh, 1740s. (Credit:Wiki [Public domain])

Image to depict how to transport slaves in a ship (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])

242     The United States Before 1865
Survey of the US from colonial times to the Civil War, with emphasis on aboriginal beginnings and civilizations; colonization; the rise of slavery and racism in British North America; the place of the colonies in the British Empire; the War of Independence; territorial expansion; the beginning of industrialization and its effects on the Jeffersonian notions of republicanism; the “problem” of slavery and growing sectionalism; and the road to Civil War and disunion. Three credits. 

244     The United States After 1865
Topics emphasized are the Civil War as a black freedom movement; the federal government’s brief and grudging commitment to black citizenship during Reconstruction; the abandonment of Reconstruction and the imposition of segregation in the late 19th century; industrialization and age of fabulous robber barons and desperate immigrants; the Depression and the coming of the New Deal; the civil rights movement and Vietnam and its sequels. Three credits.  Offered in 2017-2018.
Right: Mulberry Street, New York City, ca. 1900. (Credit:Library of Congress via Wiki [Public domain])

247     Crusades and Their Cultures
A This class explores history of the medieval religious wars that are now known as the crusades. Although often treated collectively, these wars differed greatly in character, from penitential crusades to the holy land to disciplinary crusades against the Cathars and Hussites, to the economic war of aggression that was the Fourth Crusade. Organized as a brief chronological survey of the crusades from 1096 to 1430. This course will also examine various themes in recent crusade historiography. Three credits.  Offered in 2017-2018.
Left: First Crusade by Saint-Jean d’Acre (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])

250     A Survey of German History from 1648 to the Present
This survey of German history emphasizes the 19th and 20th centuries. It includes topics such as the rise of Brandenburg Prussia; German nationalism; Bismarck and the unification of Germany; the industrial revolution and organized labour; the coming of the war in 1914; the revolution of 1918; the trials of democracy in the Weimar Republic; Hitler and Nazism; and Germany in a divided world. Six credits.
Right: German coin, 1925 (Credit: Pixabay.com [Public domain])

255     History of Colonial Latin America
Surveys Spanish and Portuguese America, 15th to the 19th centuries. Themes include the indigenous, African and Iberian heritages of Latin America; the clash of civilizations and conquest in the Americas; the interaction of diverse cultures and the creation of new societies; the social, economic and cultural evolution of colonial Latin America; the age of piracy and challenges to the Spanish and Portuguese empires; the rise of hierarchies and inequalities based on gender, sexuality, ethnicity and class; and the struggle for independence. Three credits. 

HIST 255: O'Higgins leading the Chilean troops in the Battle of Rancagua (1814). (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])

HIST 256: Fidel Castro meets cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, June 1961. (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])

256     History of Modern Latin America
Introduces the political, social, economic and cultural history of Latin America from independence to the present. Themes include the struggles for independence; the creation of new nations and cultures in the 19th century; the abolition of slavery; the struggles of indigenous peoples to preserve their culture; modernization in the late 19th century; the evolution of social classes and ideas about ethnicity, gender, and sexuality; economic dependency and neocolonialism; nationalism and revolution; foreign intervention in Latin America; and the contemporary impact of democratization and globalization. Three credits.  Offered in 2017-2018.
257 Canada and the "Global South": Connections and Disconnections in the 20th Century
This course examines economic, political, military, and cultural ties between Canada and the Global South during the 20th century.  The course explores how Canada's relationships with the Global South was shaped by its own colonial history and then examines differnet aspects of governmental, organizational, and person-to-person relations.  Topics will include: policies on immigration and refugees, business investments, concerns related to human rights, and international aid.  Three credits.  Offered in 2017-2018.

Locomotive built by George Stephenson (Credit: Wiki [Public Domain])

261     Europe in the 19th Century
A survey of the European “long” 19th century from the French Revolution until the Great War. The course covers a variety of political, economic, social, cultural, and intellectual themes, including: Revolutionary/Napoleonic France, the Industrial Revolution, the age of ideologies (liberalism, conservatism, nationalism, socialism), bourgeois and working class society and culture, Italian/German unification, the evolution of gender roles, the rise of consumerism/material culture, scientific/technological/intellectual trends, the “new” Imperialism, and the origins of the Great War. Three credits.

262     Europe in the 20th-Century
A survey of the European “short” 20th century from the Great War to the collapse of the USSR. The course covers a variety of political, economic, social, cultural, and intellectual themes, including: the Great War/Russian Revolution, European society and culture during the “roaring 1920s”, the Great Depression, interwar dictatorships (Fascist Italy, Nazi Germany, Stalin’s Russia), World War II/the Holocaust, the Cold War, Decolonization, post-1945 economic prosperity and social change, intellectual/cultural trends and protest during the 1960s, and the fall of the Soviet Union. Credit will be granted for only one of HIST 262 or HIST 260. Three credits.  Offered in 2017-2018.

The Beatles, June 1964. (Photo(crop): VARA (Beeld en Geluidwiki)/ CC BY-SA 3.0 nl)

Etching representing British public’s appetite for conquest. Published after Nelson’s victory at the Battle of the Nile. (Credit: Wiki [Public domain])

282     Cool Brittania: Four Nations & One State
This course surveys the political, social and economic history of Great Britain from the Acts of Union until the present. Over this period Britain shifted from an agrarian society ruled by aristocratic landowners to an industrialized nation comprised of distinct but complicated classes with competing interests. It also became an imperial power with possessions circling the globe. By the mid-20th century empire ended formally but this past still reshapes the social and political climate of Britain. Three credits. 

283     Making Britain Great
Britain was the world’s first modern superpower. From the late 18th century it dominated the world. This course will examine both the measurable of imperial domination, but also the intangibles; Britons themselves came to believe that they exemplified national characteristics that denoted imperial rulers. What led to that mindset, and how was it viewed by subject populations. Regional studies enable us to understand relationships between the metropole and the settlers, administrators and people of British colonies. Three credits.  Offered in 2017-2018. 
297 Canada and the Monarchy
This course will explore the history of Canada’s constitutional monarchy from the earliest days of European settlement. From Francois 1er and Henry VII, to The Queen and Will & Kate, the people who have inhabited this land from the past five centuries have had a deep and complicated relationship with a long succession of monarchs, both French and British, and now Canadian. We will explore the many ways in which Monarchs and their representatives have shaped Canada, going well beyond the constitution to explore the role of the monarchy in patronizing and encouraging the arts, culture, and national unity; we’ll also discuss the relevance of the institution, and the people who embody it, for Canadians in the 21st century. Three credits. Offered in 2017-2018
299 World War II: Causes and Battles
This class will study the political, economic, cultural, and social origins as well as the course of the Second World War - the largest and most deadly conflict in human history. Three  credits. Offered in 2017-2018.

Armoured elephant, Royal Armouries Museum, Leeds, England.  (Photo(crop): Jamie Dobson / CC-BY)