Foundations of the Modern Age
Winter Semester 2004

Frank Luttmer
113 Classic Hall
M W F: 8:30-9:00 and by appointment
866-7205 (office) (502)454-8348 (home)

Course Description and Objectives

Foundations of the Modern Age is a historical introduction to the ideas, institutions, and events that shaped modern Western civilization. The course is designed both to develop essential knowledge of the origins and evolution of the modern world and to encourage a basic understanding of historical perspective and context. It also 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, 8th edition, vol. 2
2. Robert Strayer, et al, The Making of the Modern World (on reserve in the Duggan Library)
3. Electronic Texts from the Internet


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

1. Four exams, three covering roughly one-third of the course (15% each) and one comprehensive (10%)
2. Two papers (15% and 20%)
3. Class participation (10%)


Jan. 13
Analyzing Primary Texts

Jan. 14
The Renaissance
Greer and Lewis, 320-321, 371-380; Pico

Jan. 16
Renaissance Political Theory

Jan. 19
The Reformation
Greer and Lewis, 405-424, 430-435

Jan. 20
Analyzing Primary Texts

Jan. 21
Greer and Lewis, 451-463; Hobbes 1

Jan. 23
The English Revolution and Political Theory
Hobbes 2

Jan. 26
The English Revolution and Political Theory
Greer and Lewis, 498-503; Locke 1

Jan. 27
Writing Papers

Jan. 28
The English Revolution and Political Theory
Locke 2

Feb. 2
The Emergence of Capitalism
Greer and Lewis, 329-339; Mun

Feb. 4
Early Modern Imperialism
Greer and Lewis, 354-370; Equiano

Feb. 6
The Scientific Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 463-468; Galileo
First Paper

Feb. 9
The Scientific Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 468-472; Newton

Feb. 11
The Enlightenment
Greer and Lewis, 448-451, 472-475; Hume; Voltaire

Feb. 13
The Enlightenment
Greer and Lewis, 475-479; Montesquieu; Smith

Feb. 16
The North American Colonies
Greer and Lewis, 504-505; Strayer, 138-142; Winthrop; Franklin

Feb. 18
First Exam

Feb. 20
The American Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 505-509; Strayer, 142-143; Declaration; Federalist Papers

Feb. 25
The French Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 494-498, 510-515; Declaration

Feb. 27
The French Revolution
Greer and Lewis, 515-521; Robespierre

Mar. 8
Conservatism, Liberalism, and Nationalism
Greer and Lewis, 521-526, 539-550; Metternich; Mazzini

Mar. 10
The United States
Strayer, 144-147; South Carolina

Mar. 12
The United States
Lincoln; Lincoln

Mar. 15
Greer and Lewis, 551-567; Sadler Report

Mar. 17
Marxism 1
Greer and Lewis, 567-573; Marx and Engels 1

Mar. 19
Marxism 2
Marx and Engels 2

Mar. 22
Mature Industrial Society and Ideologies
Greer and Lewis, 573-576; Bernstein; Green; Spencer; Hearing

Mar. 24
Second Exam

Mar. 26
The United States in the Late 19th and Early 20th Centuries
Strayer, 147-149; Carnegie; Populist; Washington; Du Bois

Mar. 29
No Class

Mar. 31
World War I
Greer and Lewis, 611-624; WWI Poetry

Apr. 2
The Russian Revolution and Communism
Greer and Lewis, 624-634; Lenin

Apr. 5
The Russian Revolution and Communism
Stalin; Famine

Apr. 7
Greer and Lewis, 634-642; Mussolini

Apr. 9
No class

Apr. 12
The West and World War II
Greer and Lewis, 642-645; 652-658; Strayer, 150-152; Roosevelt; Himmler

Apr. 14
Post-War Society
Strayer, 154-156; Martin Luther King Jr.; The Black Panther Party Platform; The Port Huron Statement; NOW

Apr. 16
The Late 20th Century
Greer and Lewis, 693-705; Strayer, 156-158; Reagan

Apr. 20
Third Exam
Second Paper

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