Course Offerings

FALL 2017


HIS 300 – H001 Historical Research Seminar

Professor Andrew Haley

Reg. Code 1369

MW 2:00-3:15

History is our best effort at reconstructing and understanding the past.  In this required core course, students will learn the basics of historical research from note taking to thesis formation, and over the course of the semester will prepare a term paper based on original research.  Topics explored by the course will include:  What do historians do?  What is historical significance?  How does one identify a research problem?  What are primary and secondary sources?  How does one locate sources?  Why read what others have already written about a topic?  How does one organize original research?  What constitutes a meaningful historical thesis?  How does one structure a historical argument?  What are footnotes and why are we required to cite everything we use?  How does one construct an introduction, conclusion, and bibliography?  What is editing?  Where do I find a scholarly voice (or how can I sound professional without being pompous)?  And, what is the best way to celebrate a finished research paper?

History 300 is a task-based class.  Students will have regular reading and research assignments leading up to the final paper, a major research work on a topic of your choice.  The course is organized around a course website and one required textbook.

Required Texts:

Pocket Guide to Writing in History   Mary Lynn Rampolla, Bedford/St. Martins, 8th Edition, 2015     978-1457690884


HIS 300 – H002 Research Seminar

Professor Allison Abra

Reg. Code 2914

TTH 1:00-2:15

What is history, why does it matter, and how do historians study and write about it? The goal of this course is to introduce students to the practice and writing of history, both by reading historical scholarship and through the production of their own original research paper. The course will be composed of discussions and assignments designed to help students develop their skills in critical reading, archival research, and the mechanics of historical writing (ranging from how to find sources in the library and on the internet, to when and how to employ citations and footnotes.) Students will also complete a series of assignments based around the stages of historical research: identifying a topic, locating primary and secondary sources, and writing multiple drafts of their findings. By the end of the semester, every student will have produced a substantial and polished piece of original historical writing, and be better prepared to undertake upper-division work as a student of history.

Required Books

Michael Salevouris and Conal Furay, The Methods and Skills of History: A Practical Guide, 4th Ed. Wiley-Blackwell, 2015. ISBN: 978-1118745441


HIS 307 – H001 Africa 1500-Present

Professor Douglas Chambers

Reg. Code 5079

TTH 9:30-10:45

This course will be an opportunity to explore early African history, to about 1800 CE, with a focus on the several centuries of the “classical era” (14th-18th), including the importance of migration and adaptation, of Islam, of classical empires and kingdoms, of the rise of new civilizations, of the many consequences of the transatlantic slave trade, of the African Diaspora and slave cultures of resistance, and of connections with the larger world (Mediterranean, Atlantic, Indian Ocean worlds). The class will be a mix of lectures and discussion, and with particular attention to historical diversity, cultural history, and change over time.  Basic assignments will be 2 map quizzes, several textbook chapter summaries, 1 book essay, a midterm essay, and a final exam essay.

Required Texts:  

Kevin Shillington, History of Africa, 3rd edition (2012) [textbook]

Robert J. Allison, Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano: Written by   Himself. Bedford Cultural Editions, 3rd edition. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2016


HIS 310 – H001 Survey Latin America

Professor Matthew Casey

Reg. Code 7196

MWF 9:00-9:50

This course is designed to introduce students to the social, cultural, and political history of Latin America from pre-Columbian times to the present. The course will focus on three themes of fundamental importance to the region: (1) the challenge of political stability and economic growth, (2) the relationship between Latin America and other regions, and (3) the effects of racial, socioeconomic, and gender inequality in the region. Each unit will begin with a broad overview of the region during a specific time period before focusing on a single country case study. Throughout the semester, students will be exposed to music, film excerpts, paintings, poetry and other non-traditional primary sources in order to understand the cultural history of the region. One of the main goals of this course is to illustrate the ways that individuals and local communities experienced history. In addition to a textbook, students will read two first-person accounts and another book on contemporary Latin America that is yet to be determined. Students will be evaluated on three papers (4 to 5 pages each), two essay exams (a mid-term and a final), and their participation in class discussions.

This class will also have an optional service learning component which will allow students to participate in one or more community service projects that have educational benefits as well.

Required Texts:
John Charles Chasteen, Born in Blood & Fire: A Concise History of Latin America, Third Edition, (W.W. Norton & Company, 2011).
ISBN-13: 978-0393911541

Diego de Castro Titu Cusi Yupanqui, History of How the Spaniards Arrived in Peru, Dual Language Edition, translated, with an introduction, by Catherine Julien, (Hackett Publishing Company, 2006).
ISBN-13: 978-0872208285

Carolina Maria de Jesus, Bitita’s Diary: The Childhood Memoirs of Carolina Maria de Jesus, Edited by Robert M. Levine, Translated by Beth Joan Vinkler (M.E. Sharpe Inc, 1997)

Jason De León, Land of Open Graves (University Press of California, 2015)


HIS 328 – H001 Ancient & Medieval Women

Professor Courtney Luckhardt

Reg. Code 8771

TTH 11:00-12:15

In this course, we will explore the ancient and medieval roots of our modern ideas about women, marriage, and gender roles. Ranging from the Roman period through the Middle Ages and ending in the Renaissance, we examine the ancient and medieval practices of marriage and divorce, as well as the important role that childbearing, motherhood, and sexuality played in women’s lives. Relationships between women and men, including the personal, the professional, the political, and the spiritual, will be a way into this material as well. The women of the past faced the same challenges that modern women face in terms of domestic violence, rape/abduction, prostitution, abortion, and access to contraception, and we will explore as a class how they dealt with those issues. From queens to peasants, from abbesses to brewsters, ancient and medieval women’s experiences and work were as diverse as our own, with social and cultural changes affecting women's daily lives and reality.


HIS 370 – H001 Mississippi History

Professor Max Grivno

Reg. Code 1370

MWF 10:00-10:50

This course offers a broad overview of Mississippi History from the beginnings of human migration to the Gulf Coast region through the Civil Rights Movement.  The course is divided into four sections.  The first, “Chiefdoms, Confederacies, and Empires in the Gulf South,” examines the earliest inhabitants of present-day Mississippi and traces the evolution of human societies during the Paleo-Indian, Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippi periods.  It explores the rise and fall of the Mississippian civilizations and considers the impact of the De Soto expedition of 1539-42.  It then moves to a discussion of the Natchez, Chickasaw, and Choctaw confederacies and their struggles to maintain their independence in the face of encroachment from the English, the French, the Spanish, and later the Americans.  The second section, “The Domain of King Cotton” begins with the colonial struggles that secured Mississippi territory for the United States and examines how the territory became the heart of the Cotton Kingdom and the engine of the American economy during the 1800s.  This section examines the American Revolution and the War of 1812, Indian Removal, the expansion of cotton production during the “Flush Times” of the 1830s, and the flourishing of Jacksonian Democracy.  The third section, “War, Reconstruction, and Redemption,” examines why Mississippi’s slaveholders took the desperate gamble of seceding from the United States and explores the effects of the Civil War, emancipation, and Reconstruction on Mississippi.  In this section, we will consider how the state’s economic and political landscape changed from the 1860s through the early 1900s, examining the successes and failures of Reconstruction, the collapse of the worldwide cotton economy, and the rise of Jim Crow Segregation.  The final section, “Mississippi Remade” traces the state’s history during the twentieth century and considers how the World Wars, the Great Depression, and the Freedom Struggle transformed Mississippi—altering its economy, destroying legal segregation, and changing the state’s politics, all while leaving persistent pockets of poverty, poor education, and public health problems. 


HIS 400 – H001 Senior History Seminar

Professor Andrew Ross

Reg. Code 3971

Wednesday 2:00-4:45

History 400 is the capstone of the history major at the University of Southern Mississippi; it requires that students demonstrate their facility with historical thinking by crafting an original research paper and participating in advanced discussion of secondary texts on a central theme. This section of History 400 will use “Histories of Popular Culture” as the entry point into discussions of how historians have approached the study of gender, race, and class in American and European history. Students will complete their own research on this theme, broadly construed, and we will use our secondary texts as lessons in historical thinking and research methods.


HIS 416 – H001 World War II

Professor Allison Abra

Reg. Code 7204

TTH 9:30-10:45

From the late 1930s through the mid-1940s, people of all sexes, ages, backgrounds, and regions of the world, were gripped by the dangers, deprivations, and duties that accompanied a “total war.” Millions took on new roles and responsibilities on the home and battle fronts, and endured the horrors of aerial bombardment, occupation, and genocide. At the same time, the war inspired remarkable acts of compassion and feats of heroism. The effects of this global conflict were profound and enduring, and more than seventy years later it continues to fascinate historians and the general public alike.

This course will survey the history of the Second World War, with attention being paid to social, cultural, political, and military contexts and perspectives. We will examine a wide array of primary and secondary material, including scholarly writing, diaries and memoirs, novels, public papers, photographs, music, and film.  An over-arching goal of the course will be to get you to question established truths, deviating from a vision of warfare that highlights winners and losers. Rather, we will consider the impact and trauma of global war in a more holistic sense, considering different nations and social groups, popular culture and everyday life, and victims and perpetrators on all sides of the battlefield.

Required Books

  • Diana Lary, The Chinese People at War: Human Suffering and Social Transformation, 1937-1945, (Cambridge, 2010). ISBN: 978-0521144100
  • Christopher Browning, Ordinary Men: Reserve Police Battalion 101 and the Final Solution in Poland. New York: Harper Perennial, 1993. ISBN: 978-0060995065
  • J. Samuel Walker, Prompt and Utter Destruction: Truman and the Use of Atomic Bombs Against Japan, (UNC Press, 2004). ISBN: 978-0807856079
  • Primo Levi, Survival in Auschwitz, (Touchstone, 1996). ISBN: 978-0684826806
  • Mary Louise Roberts, What Soldiers Do: Sex and the American GI in World War II France, Chicago:  Chicago University Press, 2014. ISBN: 978-022692311


HIS 423 – H001 Gay Lesbian History

Professor Andrew Ross

Reg. Code 8769

MWF 11:00-11:50

This course traces the history of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender identities in America and Europe. Together, we will explore the very different ways people in the past understood gender and sex in order to better understand how and why modern gender and sexual identities emerged in the first place. Topics will include the sex-gender system of pre-industrial society, the formation of sexual subcultures in the nineteenth century, changing medical, psychological, and technological understandings of sexuality and gender identity, and the modern LGBTQIA rights movements.


HIS 424 – H001 World in the 20th Century

Professor Matthew Casey

Reg. Code 8768

MWF 11:00-11:50

This course offers a global history of the major social, political and cultural currents of the twentieth century. Lectures and course readings will introduce students to the global processes and individual case studies whose legacies we, as humans, are still experiencing. The course is presented chronologically but focuses on a number of important sub-themes:

  • Citizenship, claims-making and political activism
  • Empire and anti-imperialism
  • Intersections of politics and culture
  • The power of race and gender
  • State-building, nationalism, borders and violence      
  • Science, statecraft and society

Students will be evaluated according to a mid-term and final exam, five short papers, a brief presentation and class participation.

Required Books (There will also be additional readings):

George Bernard Shaw, Heartbreak House (1919)

Roland Clark, Holy Legionary Youth: Fascist Activism in Interwar Romania (Cornell University Press, 2015).

Aimé Cesaire, Discourse on Colonialism translated by Joan Pinkham (Monthly Review Press, 2001)

Rachel Carson, Silent Spring (1962)

John Cooley, Unholy Wars: Afghanistan, America and International Terrorism, 3rd edition (Pluto Press, 2002)


HIS 452 – H001 Muscovy and Imperial Russia

Professor Brian LaPierre

Reg. Code 7203

MWF 12:002-12:50

This course will explore the history of Muscovite and Imperial Russia from the reign of Ivan III to the death of Alexander III. Through a close reading of a wide variety of primary and secondary sources, students will learn the basic outline of medieval and modern Russian history, be introduced to the period’s pivotal people, movements and ideas and develop an understanding of Russia’s diverse ethnic, religious and gender hierarchies. Topics to be covered include Russia’s Byzantine and Mongol legacy; the triumph of Muscovy in Russia’s competitive city-state system; the development and abolition of serfdom in Russia; the empire’s encounter and exchange with the Islamic world and the rise of revolutionary radicalism and political terrorism. 

Course Texts:

Nicholas Riasanovsky and Mark Steinberg, A History of Russia (New York: Oxford University Press, 2010), ISBN: 9780195341973.

Olga Semyonova Tian-Shanskaia, Village Life in Late Tsarist Russia (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1993), ISBN: 978-0-253-20784-5.

Anton Chekhov, Five Great Short Stories (Dover Publications, 1990), ISBN: 978- 0486264639.

Anna Labzina, Diary of a Russian Noblewoman: The Memories of Anna Labzina, 1758-1821 (DeKalb, IL: Northern Illinois University Press, 2001), ISBN:  978-0875805894

Course Requirements

Two Quizzes

Three Exams

Two Papers


HIS 461 – H001 The American Revolution

Professor Joshua Haynes

Reg. Code 8766

MWF 1:00-1:50

When Americans seek to define the United States and American identity, they often turn to the American Revolution. Americans’ highest ideals can be found in that spellbinding story, yet so can some of Americans’ most glaring failures. To understand the United States and American identity, this course will plumb the political, military, social, and economic history the American colonies and the United States, 1754-1800. Students will read a wide range of primary and secondary works that present contrasting interpretations of the Revolution. People experienced the Revolution in many different ways, yet all were American. Students will also conduct original research on a topic of their choosing to arrive at a more nuanced understanding of the moment that defined America.


HIS 476 – H001 Intellectual and Cultural History of  USA

Professor Bo Morgan

Reg. Code 8770

MW 2:00-3:15

This course is a survey of philosophy, social thought, and cultural developments from the seventeenth century to the present, with an emphasis on the influence of ideas in shaping American society.  We will explore subjects as varied as Puritan theology, republican political ideology, notions of American exceptionalism, and the emergence of modernist thought.

We will use a textbook (Intellectual Life in America by Lewis Perry) and four supplementary volumes (The American Adam by R. W.  B. Lewis, Mind and the American Civil War by Lewis P. Simpson, The End of American Innocence by Henry F. May, and The Making of a Counter Culture by Theodore Roszak), as well as a few selected shorter readings.

Grades will be based on four equal components:  three exams, based largely on class lectures, and composite score based on quizzes or writing assignments on the readings.


 HIS 485 – H001  Topics War Society (Topic: Military Leadership)

Professor Andrew Wiest

Reg. Code 8069

TTH 1:00-2:15

The very idea of leadership is a hot topic both inside and outside of the academy, in areas as diverse as politics, religion, business, and conflict.  Nowhere in history, though, is the question of leadership more laser focused than in wartime.  Suitable for History majors and non majors alike HIS 485 investigates the concept of leadership as it applies to both warfare and combat.  History is replete with the notion that great leaders such as Hannibal or Napoleon win battles and wars, while poor leaders like Hooker or Westmoreland lose battles and wars.  This course will investigate the topic of leadership in conflict across the span of history and at a variety of levels.  Students will investigate wartime leadership at its highest level as a philosophic vision through accessing Sun Tzu and Carl von Clausewitz.  Students will investigate leadership at the political level, looking at leaders as diverse as Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Mao, and Anwar Sadat.  Students will learn of leadership at the field level with Robert E. Lee, Vo Nguyen Giap, and Scipio Africanus.  Finally students will access leadership at perhaps its most meaningful level of young lieutenants and sergeants leading men who had become their brothers into battle.

Students will read four books linked to the broad scope of military leadership.  The books include: Sun Tzu, The Art of War (the classic study of wartime leadership), Elliot Cohen, Supreme Command: Soldiers, Statesmen, and Leadership in Wartime (the leading modern study of leadership and war) John Keegan, The Mask of Command (the groundbreaking study of leadership from Alexander to the nuclear age), and Michael Bilton, Four Hours in My Lai (a study of a crisis in small unit leadership).

Each student will also research and make a presentation to the class on a specific case of military leadership, or lack thereof.  The presentations will take place the last two weeks of the semester.

Students will produce a book report on each reading.  The reports will form 25% of the final grade.  Students will take one midterm and a final – each counting for 25% of the final grade.  The presentation will account for 25% of the final grade. 


HIS 487 – H001 Current Issues in Social Studies

Professor Jill Abney

Reg. Code 5342

Wednesday 3:30-6:15

Recommended to be taken before HIS 488  An introduction to current issues in social studies education.  Gold Card Required.


HIS 488 – H001 Teaching & Practicum

Professor Jill Abney

Reg. Code 1371

Methods of lesson planning, preparing materials, teaching and testing in secondary social studies courses; not to be counted toward 36-hour major requirement in history. Open only to students seeking social studies licensure.