History | Seminar in U.S. History
H750 | 2804 | Gamber

A portion of the above section reserved for majors
Above section meets with AMST G751


This seminar is open to any graduate student who wishes to pursue any
topic in any period concerning the history of gender in America.
This includes topics in both womenís history and menís history.  It
also includes topics that explore social constructions of masculinity
and femininity, and/or their relationships to society, culture, and

We will begin by reading articles that address theoretical issues and
problems and then proceed to recent monographs that provide
interesting, exciting, and (I hope)useful models for historical
research.  Iíve chosen to focus the reading on four broad and
overlapping themes:  gender frontiers, gender and the state, gender
and war, gender and work, and gender and race.* (This is not intended
in any way to limit your choice of individual research topics.)

Your principal goal will be to produce an article-length paper (25-40
pages), based on primary sources.  This process will include
preparing a formal proposal as well as individual meetings with the
instructor.  While the course schedule will allow you
considerable "time off" for research and writing, we will
occasionally reconvene to collectively discuss progress, problems,
and approaches.  Each of you will be responsible for reading and
critiquing a colleague's paper.

In assigning grades, I will give the most weight to your research
paper, but I will also take participation and the quality of your
critique into account.

*Prospective reading (Please note: each week half of the class will
read one book and skim the other.  Please donít buy your books before
the first class meeting unless youíd like to own them all):

Gender frontiers:
Kathleen Brown, Good Wives, Nasty Wenches, and Anxious Patriarchs:
Gender, Race, and Power in Colonial Virginia
Susan Lee Johnson, Roaring Camp: The Social World of the California
Gold Rush
Gender and the state:
Mary Beth Norton, Founding Mothers and Fathers: Gendered Power and
the Forming of American Society
Nancy Cott, Public Vows: A History of Marriage and the Nation
Gender and war:
Kristin Hoganson, Fighting for American Manhood : How Gender Politics
Provoked the Spanish-American and Philippine-American Wars
Leisa Meyer, Creating GI Jane: Sexuality and Power in the Women's
Army Corps during World War II
Gender and work:
Angel Kwolek-Folland, Engendering business: Men and Women in the
Corporate Office, 1870-1930
Clark Davis, Company men: White-Collar Life and Corporate Cultures in
Los Angeles, 1892-1941
Gender and race:
Gail Bederman, Manliness and Civilization: A Cultural History of
Gender and Race in the United States, 1880-1917
Ruth Feldstein, Motherhood in Black and white: Race and Sex in
American Liberalism, 1930-1965