CURRENT HISTORY COURSES FOR SUMMER 2020

All courses will be delivered remotely. Students should plan to be available during the scheduled time in the Eastern Standard Time zone.

Contact the instructor with questions.

HSTY 113

Intro to Modern World History

MWF 10:30-11:50 Geller

The history of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in global context. Emphasis on the forces that have created or shaped the modern world: industrialization and technological change; political ideas and movements such as nationalism; European imperialism and decolonization; and the interplay of cultural values.

Dates: June 1-July 27, 2020

HSTY 124

Sex and the City: Gender & Urban History

MWF 1:00 – 3:30 Rabinovitch-Fox

Gender is an identity and an experience written onto the spaces of the city. The urban landscape – with its streets, buildings, bridges, parks and squares – shapes and reflects gender identities and sexual relations. This course examines the relationship between gender and urban space from the 19th century to the present, giving special attention to the city of Cleveland. Using Cleveland as our case study, this course will explore some of the many ways in which cities and the inhabitants of cities have been historically sexed, gendered, and sexualized. We will explore the ways in which gender was reflected and constructed by the built environment, as well as how urban space and urban life shaped gender and sexual identities. The course is organized thematically and explores different aspects of city life such as prostitution, urban crime, labor, politics, urban renewal and decay, consumption and leisure and the ways in which sex and gender intersects with these issues. In addition to reading and analyzing secondary and primary sources, we will also experience ourselves how gender is being written onto the urban landscape by walking in the city and going to its museums.

Dates: June 1-July 2, 2020

HSTY 241

Inventing Public Health

TR 4:00 – 7:00


The core principle of this course is that public health is a concept that was formed in different ways at different times in different places. It had no existence as we know it before the nineteenth century, but course participants will learn how it grew out of an ancient tradition of the political elite’s concern that its subjects were a threat to them and the stability of the realm. Course participants will discover how, in the nineteenth century, it became a professional practice as we know it and realized advances in human health, longevity, and security perhaps greater than any made since. At the same time, the course will also cover how many of the assumptions of those that inaugurated public health were completely alien to present-day practitioners–even though in many ways it is a practice that helped inaugurate the modern world so familiar to us. Course participants will learn about the close relationship between public health agencies and agendas and various kinds of social authority: political power, moral influence, colonial power, and others. Ultimately, the aim of the course is to show participants that even though public health seems a supremely common sense practice, it had a highly contested birth and early life that was anything but natural or pre-ordained. That complicated birth continues to shape public health to this day.

Dates: June 15 – July 27, 2020

HSTY 270

Introduction to Gender Studies

MTWRF 9:30 – 12:00 Howe

This course introduces women and men students to the methods and concepts of gender studies, women’s studies, and feminist theory. An interdisciplinary course, it covers approaches used in literary criticism, history, philosophy, political science, sociology, anthropology, psychology, film studies, cultural studies, art history, and religion. It is the required introductory course for students taking the women’s and gender studies major.
Offered as ENGL 270, HSTY 270, PHIL 270, RLGN 270, SOCI 201, and WGST 201.

Dates: May 11 – May 29, 2020

HSTY 299

Topics in History: The Kent State Shootings and the “Global Sixties”

MWF 2:30 – 5:00


On May 4, 1970, the National Guard killed four Kent State University students who were protesting America’s involvement in Vietnam. The events that unfolded on Kent State’s campus were far from unique in the “long sixties.” In the 1960s and early 1970s, students and young people around the world mobilized and protested the war in Vietnam, racial injustice, and colonialism. Like the students at Kent State University, some died in their efforts to realize a more just and peaceful world. This course will examine the Kent State shooting through a national and global lens. We will critically examine the roots and expansion of student movements in the 1960s; how global events and transnational connections influenced the ways student activists understood political power and movement goals; and how governments and state actors responded to students and young people’s demands for social change. May 4, 2020 will mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Kent State shooting. This course will equip students to analyze how state institutions and the public choose to remember such events. In this way, the course will shed light on the politics of memory as they relate to the Kent State shooting and related events in the “global sixties.”

Dates: June 1 – July 2, 2020

HSTY 396

Advanced Topics in History: History of Epidemics

MWF 1:00 – 3:30 Sadowsky

Advanced topics in history, changing from semester to semester. The course provides students an opportunity to explore special themes or theoretical issues in history that are too briefly covered in broader surveys. Students may take this course more than once for credit, when different topics are covered.

This course will look at the history of epidemics and pandemics, focusing on select cases. Topics will include social origins of epidemics, the evolution of scientific responses, stigma and blame, the comparative study of political responses, and long-term social and cultural effects of outbreaks. In most weeks, there will be a choice of readings.

Offered as HSTY 396 and HSTY 496.

Dates: June 1 – July 2, 2020