History | Sex, Lies, and Diaries: Untold Southern Stories
A300 | 28324 | A. Myers
A portion reserved for majors; open to undergraduates and Education
Meets with Gender-G 302
This course is designed to expand and deepen our understanding of
life in the American South before 1865. Over the course of the
semester, we will go beyond traditional examinations of the region,
which focus heavily on enslaved African Americans and plantation-
owning white men, to engage in a more multi-faceted analysis.
Utilizing the lens of sex, particularly cross-racial sexual
relations, class materials will bring Native Americans, free blacks,
non-slaveholding whites, urban dwellers, and women of various
backgrounds into conversation with enslaved persons, rural folks,
slaveowners, and white men in order to help us construct a richer
and more detailed portrait of life in the Old South.
Engaging with some of the newest literature in Southern History, we
will examine how Southerners grappled with issues of race, class,
gender, and sexuality and struggled to create lives that reflected
their own understanding of liberty, power, equality, rights, and
citizenship. Using primary documents and secondary sources, we will
study the past through the words of those who lived it and sharpen
our ability to evaluate, analyze, and interpret primary source
materials as well as the arguments of leading historians in the
field of Southern History.
Attendance is mandatory and the course will require 50-75 pages of
reading per week. Class time will focus almost exclusively on large
and small group discussions based on the readings, and students will
be evaluated through their participation in these discussions in
addition to their performance on a combination of short response
essays and lengthier research papers.
While there is no official prerequisite for this course, this is an
upper-level class and the lectures and readings presume a prior
knowledge of early (pre-1865) American history. It is thus
recommended that students take H105 (US History Survey, Part I: To
1865) before taking this class.