History | The World in the 20th Century II
H102 | 16904 | Ipsen


Above section open to all undergraduates
Above section carries culture studies credit

Eric Hobsbawm (whom we’ll read in this class) describes the change
in the human condition that occurred in the second half of the
twentieth century as “the greatest, most dramatic, rapid, and
universal social transformation in human history.” We’ll start with
a look at that transformation and then switch to a topical approach
to post-1945 world history: the Cold War, Indian independence, the
Chinese Revolution, American foreign policy, the Arab-Israeli
conflict and so on. We’ll explore both dramatic moments and the more
gradual social transformations that accompanied them. With luck,
we’ll conclude with some reflections on how the social, political,
economic, and cultural forces we have studied continue to operate on
us as global citizens today. Twice-weekly lectures will be
accompanied by readings, short writing assignments, quizzes, and
weekly discussion sections in small groups. There will be a mid-term
and a final.