United States History, 1866 to the Present
UNITED STATES HISTORY
1866 to the Present
Text: Boyer et al, Enduring Vision, concise edition*
Reading: Riis, How the Other Half Lives
Calloway, ed., Our Hearts Fell to the Ground
Yezierska, Bread Givers
Ogren, Jazz Revolution
Adams, Best War Ever
Kerouac, On the Road
Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Los Vegas
Zook, Color By Fox
Films: Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter
Eyes on the Prize
1) ATTENDANCE is required for all lectures, film, and discussions.
Students who fail to attend class will
have their grades reduced accordingly. Students are excused only with
a Dean's excuse or for College-recognized religious holidays. In the
case of an "excused absence" students should inform me. Students
who miss classes the day before and after Spring Break will receive
double absences. Be sure that your
travel arrangements do not require you to miss any classes.
2) Three, six-page, typed (1500 words) BOOK COMMENTS on three of the
four pair of assigned readings:
a) Riis, How the Other Half Lives & Yezierska, Bread
Givers (due February 4 or February 25); b) Callowway,
ed., Our Hearts Fell to the Ground & Adams, Best War
Ever (due February 11 or March 29); c) Ogren, Jazz
Revolution & Kerousac, On the Road (due March 1 or April
7); d) Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Los
Vegas and Zook, Color by Fox (due April 21 or April 28).
These writing assignments will be a graded and,
together, will comprise 1/3 of your final grade. Late assignments, not
turned in at the beginning of the class
in which they are due, will be reduced by one letter grade. If an
assignment is turned in more than one week
late, it will be reduced two letter grades. Your grade will be based
both on content and writing. See
3) Responsible for material in Enduring Vision and the other
eight assigned readings. Exam questions will
come from this material.
4) An HOUR EXAM ( March 1) and a cumulative FINAL EXAM to be taken
during the scheduled exam
period (1:30 to 4:30 am May 13).
Lecture and Discussion Schedule:
January 17 Introduction
January 19 Reconstruction
January 21 Black Reconstruction
Text: Enduring Vision, chpt. 16
January 24 Gilded Age Politics
January 26 New American City
January 28 American Renaissance
Text: Enduring Vision, chpt 19 & pp. 445-451
January 31 American System
February 2 Industrial Workers
February 4 Discussion: Riis, How the Other Half Lives
Text: Enduring Vision, chpts. 20 & 18
February 7 Agrarian Revolt
February 9 Conquest of the West
February 11 Discussion: Calloway, Our Hearts Fell to the Ground
Text: Enduring Vision, pp. 452-459 &
February 14 Imperial Democracy
February 16 Progressivism
February 18 Woodrow Wilson & World War I
Text: Enduring Vision, pp. 460-468 &
February 21 Return to Normalcy
February 23 Greenwich Village Rebellion
February 25 Discussion: Yezierska, Bread Givers
Text: Enduring Vision, pp. 524-535
February 28 The Jazz Age
March 1 Discussion: Ogren, Jazz Revolution
Text: Enduring Vision, chpt. 23 & pp. 517-523
March 3 ***MID-TERM EXAM***
March 20 Herbert Hoover and the Depression
March 22 The New Deal
March 24 World War II
Text: Enduring Vision, pp. 535-572
March 27 Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter (In Class)
March 29 Discussion: Adams, The Best War Ever
March 31 The Cold War
Text: Enduring Vision, pp. 572-580 &
chpts. 27 & 28
April 3 Crabgrass Frontier
April 5 Haunted Fifties
April 7 Discussion: Kerouac, On the Road
Text: Enduring Vision, chpt. 29
April 10 The Playing Fields
April 12 The Civil Rights Revolution
April 14 Eyes on the Prize: (Film to be shown in class)
Text: Enduring Vision, pp. 644-647,
654-656, 662- 667
April 17 The War on Poverty
April 19 The Vietnam War
April 21 Discussion: Thompson, Fear and Loathing in Los
Text: Enduring Vision, 660-663, 668-672,
April 24 The Women's Movement
April 26 Gay Rights
April 28 Discussion: Zook, Color by Fox
Text: Enduring Vision, pp. 673-679,
688-696 & chpt. 32
May 1 The Seventies
May 3 The New Conservatism
May 5 The American Crossroads
Text: Enduring Vision, chpt. 33
May 13 ***FINAL
EXAM*** 1:30-4:30 pm in Olin Auditorium
I Write thematically. Always organize your writing around a
theme, an argument, or a thesis.
Make sure that your introductory paragraph 1) identifies your subject, 2)
places it in context,
and 3) states the theme of your essay. Your theme not only gives your
essay direction and
interest, it should unify everything contained in the essay. The
introductory paragraph is
the most important paragraph in your essay. Make sure that it is truly
A good expository essay will contain a) an introductory
paragraph, b) the body of the essay
in which the theme is explicated and convincingly argued, and c) a
conclusion that explains
the significance of the theme, that answers the question "So what?"
II Focus on verbs. GOOD WRITING begins and ends with GOOD
VERBS. This means 1)
active voice, 2) simple past tense, 3) verbs of action, 4) no redundant,
auxiliaries, and 5) establishing clear causal relationships between the
agent of cause
(subject), the causal act (verb), and the object of cause (direct
object). Write with clarity,
coherence, economy, detail, and artfulness.
1) Always write in the ACTIVE VOICE. The passive voice
drains the life out of your prose and
obscures the true subject of your sentence, the agent of causation.
a) Alexander Hamilton was killed in a
b) The woman was beaten. p.v.
a) Aaron Burr killed Alexander Hamilton.
b) The woman's boy friend beat her. a.v.
2) Whenever possible use the simple past tense. The
strongest of all verb forms, consistent
use of the simple past avoids most verb tense confusions. The one
is past perfect when you refer to an event that occurred prior to the one
that you are
a) Eleanor Roosevelt was going to vote.
b) Eleanor Roosevelt would vote. Future Past
a) Eleanor Roosevelt voted. Simple Past
b) Eleanor Roosevelt had registered before she
voted. Past perfect and simple past.
3) Except in rare instances never
use verbs of being. Use verbs of action. Like the passive
voice, verbs of being kill your prose. They also tell you nothing except
that your subject
exists or that it is present. Don't waste a verb. It is, by far, the
most important element in
writing. Make it say something. Use it to hold readers' interest. Only
use verbs of being
occasionally for dramatic emphasis (The history teacher was boring!) or
to alter the tempo
of your writing.
a) John was in the house.
b) Hillary Clinton was the President's wife.
c) Thurgood Marshall was in court.
a) John lay dead in house.
b) Hillary Clinton stood along side her husband, the
c) Thurgood Marshall confronted the Supreme Court with the fundamental
inequity of racially segregated public schools.
III Write concisely and free of all jargon.
4) Do not use unnecessary phrases or words.
a) I stood up in order to go.
b) I started to leave.
c) I began to look.
a) I stood to go.
b) I left.
c) I looked.
IV Transitions knit your essays together. Make sure that
each sentence flows naturally from
the preceding sentence, that you link each paragraph to the preceding
paragraph, and that
you relate each new topic in essay to the preceding topic. Make your
transitions as artful
as possible. Don't tell your readers what you are doing, do it.
This essay is about Geronimo. I will discuss his
childhood and how he led the
Apache people against the Mexican and American governments. My theme is
Geronimo, the great Apache war-chief, resisted the
conquest of his people, first by
the Mexican and then by the United States Government. Even as a young
boy, born in the
rugged, isolated Sierra Madre Mountains, Geronimo spurned the idea of western
civilization, fighting all efforts to destroy the wildness of his native
people and land.