Introduction to Historical Thinking        Dr. Bob Miller

30HIST201-001                                                             7142 One Edwards

Fall 2000                                                                         work: 556-9128

Thursday, 6:30-9:10                                                       home: 573-1446

53 McMicken Hall                                                 

Purpose of the Course:

This course will look beyond simple facts and figures.  By talking with a variety of historians, students will have an opportunity to learn how history is conceptualized, organized, researched, and written by academic scholars.  Students will also learn how to interpret different sources of historical evidence (written accounts, films, oral history, etc.).

Introduction to Historical Thinking is designed for students wishing to learn more about the study of history and how scholars practice their craft.  It is highly recommended for any CECE student wishing to take upper division (300 and 400 level) lecture courses in history.  This course is also required for anyone wishing to fulfill requirements for the CECE History Focus for the LASS program.

For five of the weeks during this quarter, you will have an opportunity to interact with guest lecturers.  All of these people are CECE history professors.  They will present a wide range of interesting topics. 


Gary B. Nash,, History On Trial: Culture Wars and the Teaching of the Past, 2d ed. (New York, 2000) 


It is very likely that the UC Bookstore ordered the wrong edition of this book.  If that is the case I would prefer that you return your books and purchase the paperback edition online.  In some cases, if you are willing to pay extra, you can have your book the next day.  Check out the following links:

 Course Packet (will be available at DuBois Bookstore within a few weeks)

 Course Work:

Writing Exercises for Prof. Miller (2)                   20 pts

In-Class Writing for Guest Lecturers (5)              50 pts

Final Paper                                                                20 pts

Participation                                                              10 pts

                                                                                  100 total pts


You will have three opportunities to earn points in short in-class writing exercises.  Also, at the end of each class in which a guest lecturer is present, you will be asked to do a short writing exercise.  There will also be a capstone paper that will draw together the concepts presented in class.


Your attendance in this course is vital and required.  Repeated absences, tardiness, or leaving early will negatively affect your grade.  If you know of conflicts bring them to my immediate attention. 

Schedule of Classes:

Week 1: September 21, 2000

Meet the Teacher

Week 2: September 28, 2000

The Dynamic Nature of History

Week 3: October 5, 2000

The Dynamic Nature of History (cont'd)

Week 4: October 12, 2000

The Dynamic Nature of History (cont'd)

Week 5: October 19, 2000

Professor Terri Premo: The Importance of Gender in American History

Assigned Readings:

Jane Sherron DeHart and Linda Kerber, " Introduction: Gender and the New

Women's History" from Women's America: Refocusing the Past, 5th ed.

(New York: Oxford University Press, 2000), pp.3-24. 

Week 6: October 26, 2000

Professor Fred Krome: Studying Religious History

Assigned Readings:

Norman Cohn, Noah's Flood: The Genesis Story in Western Thought (New

Haven: Yale University Press, 1996), pp.1-21. 

Lance J. Sussman, "Isaac Leeser and the Protestantization of American

Judaism" in American Jewish Archives Journal (April 1986):2-21. 

Week 7: November 2, 2000

Professor Eric Jackson: Race As a Factor in American History

Assigned Readings:

Kenneth W. Goings and Raymond Mohl, "Towards a New African American

Urban History" in Kenneth W. Goings and Raymond Mohl, eds., The New

African American Urban History (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 1996), pp.1-16. 

Joe W. Trotter, "African Americans in the City: 1900-1950" in Goings and Mohl,

eds., The New African American Urban History, pp.299-319. 

Week 8: November 9, 2000

Professor Howard Todd: Global Perspectives in History

Assigned Readings: TBA 

Week 9: November 16, 2000

Professor Clinton Terry: Historical Trends in Technology and Culture

Assigned Readings:

Leo Marx, "What is Technology?" in Merritt Roe Smith and Gregory Clancey,

eds., Major Problems in the History of American Technology (Boston:

Houghton Miffllin Co., 1998), pp.1-25. 

John M. Staudenmaier, "Recent Trends in the History of Technology" in

American Historical Review 95 (June 1990):715-25.


Week 10: November 23, 2000


Week 11: November 30, 2000