Foundations of the Modern Age
Fall Semester 1999

Frank Luttmer
108 Classic Hall
M W F: 10-11, 12-1
866-7205 (office) 866-4073 (home)

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. 8:
Renaissance Humanism
Greer and Lewis, 326-336, 352-353; Petrarch; Vergerius

Sept. 9:
Renaissance Art and Music
Greer and Lewis, 336-352; Images of Renaissance Art

Sept. 10:
The Emergence of Capitalism
Greer and Lewis, 281-295; Mun

Sept. 13:
The Early Modern State and Political Theory
Greer and Lewis, 312-325; Machiavelli

Sept. 14
Early Modern Imperialism
Greer and Lewis, 295-312, 354-356; Montaigne

Sept. 16:
Debate: Civilization, Imperialism, and Relativism

Sept. 17:
The Reformations
Greer and Lewis, 360-385; Luther

Sept. 20:
Absolutism and Political Theory
Greer and Lewis, 400-411; Hobbes

Sept. 22:
The English Revolution and Political Theory
Greer and Lewis, 444-448; Locke

Sept. 23:
Debate: Absolutism and Constitutionalism

Sept. 24:
North American Colonies
Strayer, 138-142; Winthrop

Sept. 27:
The Scientific Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 411-415; Copernicus; Galileo

Sept. 29:
The Scientific Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 415-419; Bacon; Newton

Sept. 30:
Review for Exam

Oct. 1:
[Study Questions]

Oct. 4:
The Enlightenment
Greer and Lewis, 420-423; Hume; Voltaire

Oct. 6:
The Enlightenment
Greer and Lewis, 423-431; Montesquieu; Smith

Oct. 7:
Baroque and Classical
Greer and Lewis, 385-393, 431-441; Images of Baroque Art; Images of Rococo and Classical Art

Oct. 8:
The North American Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 448-454; Strayer, 142-143; Adams; Declaration of Independence; Federalist Papers

Oct. 11:
The French Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 454-462;
Declaration of Rights of Man and Citizen; Paine; Robespierre

Oct. 13:
The French Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 462-466, 469-471; Burke; Paine

Oct. 14:
Debate: The French Revolution

Oct. 15:
Conservatism, Liberalism, and Nationalism
Greer and Lewis, 466-471, 484-492; Metternich; Mazzini

Oct. 20:
Greer and Lewis, 492-494; Bismarck; Strayer; Douglass

Oct. 21:
Greer and Lewis, 471-484; Wordsworth; Images of Romantic Art

Oct. 22:
South Carolina;
Lincoln, Gettysburg Address;Lincoln, Second Inaugural

Oct. 25:
The Industrial Revolution; Marx and Marxism
Greer and Lewis, 495-500, 508-513; The Sadler Committee Report; Marx and Engels I

Oct. 26:

Oct. 27:
Marx and Marxism
Marx and Engels II

Oct. 28:
Debate: Liberalism and Marxism

Oct. 29:
Mature Industrial Society and Late 19th-Early 20th Century Socialism
Greer and Lewis, 500-508, 513-516; Bernstein; Webb; Gotha and Erfurt Programs

Nov. 1:
Mature Industrial Society and Late 19th-Early 20th Century Liberalism
Green; Spencer; Blease; Hearing

Nov. 3:
The US in the Late 19th-Early 20th Century
Strayer; Carnegie; Populist; Washington; Du Bois

Nov. 4:
Fin-de-Siecle Culture
Images of Art; Mallarme

Nov. 5:
Darwin's Theory of Evolution and Its Implications
Greer and Lewis, 515-526; Darwin; White

Nov. 8:
The New Imperialism
Greer and Lewis, 532-542; Strayer; Lin Cixu; Naoroji; Kipling; Beveridge

Nov. 11:
Review for the Second Exam

Nov. 12:
Study Questions

Nov. 15:
World War I
Greer and Lewis, 542-552; Poetry

Nov. 18:
Discussion of Research and Writing

Nov. 19:
The Russian Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 552-562; Stalin; Documents of the Stalinist Era

Nov. 22:
Greer and Lewis, 562-569; Mussolini; Hitler

Nov. 29:
The Depression and World War II
Greer and Lewis, 569-579; Strayer; T.S. Eliot; Roosevelt; Churchill; Himmler

Dec. 1:
Consensus and Cold War
Greer and Lewis, 579-602, 606-611; Strayer; Churchill; Krushchev; Nehru

Dec. 2:
Debate: The Cold War

Dec. 3:
Welfare State and Civil Rights
Greer and Lewis, 602-605; Strayer; Labour Party Manifesto;
Martin Luther King Jr.; The Black Panther Party Platform

Dec. 6:
New Left, Counter-Culture,and Feminism
Greer and Lewis, 639-646 ;The Port Huron Statement; NOW

Dec. 8
Conservatism and Politics in the 80s and 90s
Greer and Lewis, 611-619; Strayer; Thatcher; Reagan; Blair

Dec. 9
Revolutions in Eastern Europe
Greer and Lewis, 619-625; Perestroika;
Shevardnadze; Conservative Reaction, 1990

Dec. 10
Review for the Final

Dec. 13, 2-5 P.M.:
[study questions]

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