History | World War II : The People
A200 | 2643 | Madison


TR 9:30A-10:45A BH310

Millions of people all over the world participated in World War II.  This
course will study their lives as factory workers, propagandists, soldiers,
mothers, political leaders, and survivors.  To understand how the war
changed their lives and the society in which people lived we will look at
war-time films, written documents, and propaganda posters and at later
writings, images, and monuments.  We will focus on life on the home front,
on social and cultural issues, as much or more than on military or
diplomatic issues.  We will certainly study the American people but will
also pay large attention to the Japanese, Russian, German, French, British
and other peoples whose lives were so drastically affected by the largest
war in human history.

We hope in the end to have a sense of how American war-time experiences
compared with those of other peoples and of ways in which World War II
changed ordinary people, nations, and the world of the late twentieth
century.

Students will read a course packet of documents and essays, a general book
on the war, and view several films.  There will be three essay exams and a
short out-of-class writing assignment.  There is no prerequisite.