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Research Seminars (4930s) for Fall 2019

Course objectives for all 4930 Research Seminars:
1) introduction to the historiography of a specific topic
2) production of a substantial research paper based on primary source evidence

African-American & Latino History
AMH 4930, Class Number: 10397
W 7-9, FLI 0117
Instructor: Professor Paul Ortiz 
In this senior seminar, we will undertake a comparative study of African American and Latina/o histories, cultures, and politics. Major themes include slavery, forced labor, colonialism, and racial formation in the modern era. Special emphasis will be placed on overlapping as well as distinctive histories and struggles for human rights, citizenship and civil rights in the 20th century. The course will include analyses of African American and Latina/o oral traditions, literature, and various forms of expressive cultures.


Florida Environmental History
AMH 4930, Class Number: 10398
T 7, R 7-8, FLI 0111
Instructor: Professor Steve Noll
“The Three Marjories: Women & Environmentalism in Florida History”
Using the lives, legacies, and written work of Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, Marjory Stoneman Douglas, & Marjorie Harris Carr as a guide, the course will examine how these three women shaped the modern environmental movement in Florida and succeeded in stopping the two largest public works projects ever in American history. Students will work with primary and secondary sources to construct a 15-20 page research paper on a topic they choose related to Florida environmentalism and the activities of one of these three important women.


1968 to Now
AMH 4930, Class Number: 10399
R 7-9, FLI 0113
Instructor: Professor Louise Newman
This course enables students to research topics that have ongoing resonance in today’s world as they reflect on how to write a history of events that are still unfolding, and for which the preponderance of sources are journalistic. Topics will be taken from the headlines of major news outlets in the early weeks of the course (fall 2019), and can include such issues as political scandals, U.S. foreign policy, economic crises, environmental disasters, etc. Students will grapple with fundamental philosophical and methodological questions: How do historians make sense of contemporary events? How does the past bear upon the present? How do current actors (politicians, journalists, social activists and others) use or misuse historical information? What is required for an account to be appropriately “historical” as opposed to journalistic?


EUH 4930/WOH 4930,* Class Number: 15249
Instructor: Professor Mitchell Hart
T 7-9, FLI 0113
Nationalism has arguably been the most potent force for identity formation, at the individual and collective levels, over the past three centuries. This seminar on comparative nationalisms introduces students to some of the major works and foundational debates around nations and nationalism. What is a nation? When do nations begin? What is patriotism, and how does it differ from nationalism? What is the relationship between different forms of nationalism and other crucial historical categories such as gender, race, religion, and class?

Each week we will read one of the assigned books and/or articles and meet to discuss it. At least one member of the seminar will be responsible for leading the week’s discussion, though everyone in the seminar will be responsible for reading the assigned work and formulating questions. Grades will be based on level and quality of weekly participation, and on the assigned research paper.

*Students may be eligible to receive AMH credits, pending authorization of the instructor and the Undergraduate Coordinator, Professor Ben Wise


Race in the Caribbean
LAH 4930, Class Number: 15697
T 6-8, FLI 0115
Instructor: Professor Lillan Guerra
This class examines the direct relationship between dramatic shifts in the nature of the Caribbean’s economy and the black-forged freedom struggles that generated new racial identities, cultures and political consciousness. Using slave narratives, memoirs, poetry and more conventional histories and political sources, we will explore the experiences of Black, Chinese and Hispano-Caribbean peoples of the 19th to 21st Centuries.