History | Survey of African American History: Since 1865
A356 | 27692 | Myers


This course will examine the multi-faceted responses of African
Americans to “the color line,” as conceived by black intellectual
W.E.B. DuBois, from the end of the Civil War to the post-Civil
Rights Era. We will consider the political, economic and social
forces that shaped the lives of black people in America after the
end of slavery and highlight the individual and collective responses
of African Americans to these forces as they struggled to shape
their lives to conform to their own desires, utilizing the lenses of
class, gender, region, color, and religion as we do so.

Reading some of the most important literature in the field, topics
for discussion will include: the politics of Reconstruction and
Redemption; life in the Jim Crow South; black life during
the “Progressive Era”; the Great Migration and Harlem Renaissance;
Great Depression and the New Deal; Civil Rights and Black Power;
urban decay and the growth of the black middle-class. Using primary
documents (written in the past by those who lived through the events
under study) and secondary sources (written by modern historians
studying past events), we will examine the past through the eyes of
those who experienced it and sharpen our ability to evaluate,
analyze, and interpret the arguments of leading historians in the
field.

Lecture attendance is mandatory and the course will require 80-100
pages of reading per week. Class time will involve informal lectures
as well as regular group discussions, and students will be evaluated
through their participation in daily discussions, two 5-7 page
papers based on class readings, and two 10-15 page take-home essay-
exams based on class materials.

While there is no official prerequisite for this course, this is an
upper-level class and the lectures and readings presume some prior
knowledge of modern American history. It is thus recommended, but
not required, that students have taken H106 (American History Survey
Since 1865) before taking this class.