History | The United States in the Century of Globalization, 1898-Present
A300 | 11833 | Baesler
People around the world identify globalization and Americanization
as the same thing: They perceive the United States as expanding its
power by promoting deregulation of markets and opening of borders,
exercising its military might around the world, and imposing its own
values on other cultures. The United States as the engine of
globalization is often welcomed, but maybe even more frequently it
is seen as a threat to local societies and cultures.
Our class will treat the history of U.S. foreign relations and the
process of globalization as powerfully interconnected phenomena. We
will explore the rise of the United States as a commercial and
cultural, as well as military and political power through two world
wars, booms and depressions, the Cold War, to the present. There are
numerous important questions we will ask: How and why did the U.S.
use its diverse sources of power to foster globalization? What was
the impact of globalization on the lives of Americans at home? What
tensions and kinds of resistance did United States-led globalization
create? What were the limits of one country’s control over the
process of globalization? Our class goal is to understand the
contemporary world as the product not only of single events, but
also of long-term developments, intersecting in ways not always
immediately obvious to us.
While there are no prerequisites, some basic knowledge of the
history of the United States in the 20th century will help you
succeed in this course. Weekly readings are drawn from our textbook
Globalization and the American Century by Eckes/Zeiler, as well a
variety of e-reserve readings which include documents and works by
historians. Tasks will include pop quizzes, short homework
assignments, and two in-class exams.