Foundations of the Modern Age
Fall Semester 1998

Frank Luttmer
108 Classic Hall
M W F: 10-11, 12-1

Course Description and Objectives

Foundations of the Modern Age is an historical introduction to the ideas, institutions, and events that shaped modern Western civilization. The course is designed both to build essential knowledge about the modern world and to encourage a basic understanding of historical context and perspective. It seeks to promote the skills essential to historical inquiry, including the capacity to define historical questions, analyze primary documents carefully, evaluate alternative interpretations critically, develop original arguments, and write essays clearly and effectively.

Required Readings

1. Thomas Greer and Gavin Lewis, A Brief History of the Western World, vol. 2
2. Robert Strayer, et al, The Making of the Modern World (on reserve in the Duggan Library)
3. Electronic Texts and Images from the Internet


Final grades will be based on an evaluation of the following.

1. Two mid-term exams (15% each) and a final exam (20%)

2. A research paper submitted in two drafts (15% for the first draft and 20% for the second)
3. Class participation and daily writing assignments (15%)


Sept. 9:
The Emergence of Capitalism
Greer and Lewis, 281-295; Mun

Sept. 10:
Early Modern Imperialism
Greer and Lewis, 295-312; Columbus; Equiano

Sept. 11:
The Early Modern State and Political Theory
Greer and Lewis, 312-325; Machiavelli

Sept. 14:
Renaissance Humanism
Greer and Lewis, 326-336; Petrarch; Vergerius

Sept. 16
Renaissance Humanism
Greer and Lewis, 352-359; Montaigne

Sept. 17:
Renaissance Art and Music
Greer and Lewis, 336-352; Images of Renaissance Art

Sept. 18:
The Lutheran Reformation
Greer and Lewis, 360-369; Luther

Sept. 21:
Protestant and Catholic Reformations
Greer and Lewis, 369-384; Calvin; The Council of Trent

Sept. 23:
Religious Wars and the Baroque
Greer and Lewis, 385-393, 400-404; St. Bartholomew's Day;
Magdeburg; Images of Baroque Art

Sept. 24:
Absolutism and Political Theory
Greer and Lewis, 396-411; Bossuet; Domat

Sept. 25:
Absolutism and Political Theory

Sept. 28:
The English Revolution and Political Theory
Greer and Lewis, 444-448; Locke

Sept. 30:
The Scientific Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 411-415; Copernicus; Galileo

Oct. 1:
The Scientific Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 415-419; Descartes; Bacon; Newton

Oct. 2:
[Study Questions]

Oct. 8:
The Enlightenment
Greer and Lewis, 420-423; Hume; Voltaire

Oct. 9:
The Enlightenment
Greer and Lewis, 423-431; Montesquieu; Smith

Oct. 12:
The Classical Aesthetic
Greer and Lewis, 431-441; Images of Rococo and Classical Art

Oct. 14:
The North American Colonies
Strayer, 138-142; Winthrop; Franklin

Oct. 15:
The North American Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 448-452; Strayer, 142-144; Adams; Declaration of Independence

Oct. 16:
The North American Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 452-454; Federalist Papers; Washington

Oct. 21:
The French Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 454-460; Cahier of 1789;
Declaration of Rights of Man and Citizen;
The Civil Constitution of the Clergy

Oct. 22:
The French Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 460-466; National Convention; Robespierre; Napoleon

Oct. 23:
Greer and Lewis, 466-473; Metternich; Burke

Oct. 26:
Greer and Lewis, 471-484; Wordsworth; Images of Romantic Art

Oct. 28:
Nationalism, Liberalism, and Revolution; Nation-Building
Greer and Lewis, 484-494; Mazzini; French Revolution of 1848; Bismark

Oct. 29:
Strayer, 144-147; O'Sullivan; Black Hawk; Douglass; South Carolina

Oct. 30:
Lincoln, Gettysburg Address; Lincoln, Second Inaugural

Nov. 2:
The Industrial Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 495-500; The Sadler Committee Report

Nov. 4:
Marx and Marxism
Greer and Lewis, 508-513; Marx

Nov. 5:
Mature Industrial Society and Late 19th Century Politics
Greer and Lewis, 500-508; Hobhouse; Hearing of the Woman Suffrage Association

Nov. 6:
Mature Industrial Society and Late 19th Century Politics
Greer and Lewis, 513-515; Bernstein; Webb; Gotha Program; Erfurt Program

Nov. 9:
The US in the Late 19th Century
Strayer, 147-149; Washington; Du Bois

Darwin's Theory of Evolution and Its Implications
Greer and Lewis, 515-526; Darwin; White

Nov. 13:
Study Questions

Nov. 16:
Fin-de-Siecle Culture
Greer and Lewis, 526-531, 634-635; Nietzsche; Images of Art

Nov. 18:
The New Imperialism
Greer and Lewis, 532-542; Strayer, 149-150; Lin Cixu; Ferry; Kipling; Morel;

Nov. 19:
World War I
Greer and Lewis, 542-552; Poetry

Nov. 20:
The Russian Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 552-557; Lenin

Nov. 23:
The Russian Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 557-562; Stalin; Documents of the Stalinist Era;

Nov. 30:
Greer and Lewis, 562-569; Mussolini; Hitler

Dec. 2:
The West Between the Wars
Greer and Lewis, 569-573; Strayer, 150-152; T.S. Eliot; Roosevelt

Dec. 3:
World War II
Greer and Lewis, 574-579; Churchill; Himmler; Wannsee Protocal

Dec. 4:
Consensus and Cold War
Greer and Lewis, 579-602, 606-611; Strayer, 152-154; Churchill; Nehru

Dec. 7:
Welfare State and Civil Rights
Greer and Lewis, 602-605; Strayer, 154-156; Labour Party Manifesto;
Martin Luther King Jr.; The Black Panther Party Platform

Dec. 9:
New Left, Counter-Culture,and Feminism
Greer and Lewis, 639-646 ;The Port Huron Statement; NOW

Dec. 10:
Conservatism and Politics in the 80s and 90s
Greer and Lewis, 611-619; Strayer, 156-158Thatcher

Dec. 11:
Revolutions in Eastern Europe
Greer and Lewis, 619-625; Perestroika;
Shevardnadze; Conservative Reaction, 1990

Over the break:
Twentieth Century Culture
Greer and Lewis, 626-639, 647-664; Camus

Dec. 14-18:
[study questions]

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