The History of the United States from 1865 to the Present
This course is an interpretive survey of American History covering the fifteen decades since the end of the Civil War. The main topics are the creation of a huge capitalist market economy, the ascent of the U.S. to world power and difficult engagement in world affairs, and the domestic challenges of keeping a mass society democratic. There are two lectures and a discussion section each week. While a textbook supplies background, documents and iconography selected from primary sources emphasize the diversity of this nation’s past and highlight conflicting viewpoints. The heart of the class is the students’ engagement with the documents and iconography, in light of the lectures, and active participation in weekly discussions.