Course Detail Information

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HIS 267 - Heroes, Villains and Just Plain Folks: A Biographical Perspective on American History

Course Description: Utilizing excerpts from acclaimed biographies of recent years, plus chapters from respected biographies which have stood the test of time, supplemented by a series of documentaries and an occasional docudrama, this course will explore the role of individuals in shaping the American nation. The motivation, preparation, accomplishments and misdeeds of figures, both illustrious and infamous, will be explored. In addition to political and military figures, e.g. Abigail Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Benedict Arnold, Aaron Burr, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Richard Nixon, the course will include figures involved in westward expansion, e.g. Sam Houston, Kit Carson, scientists, inventors, and entrepreneurs, e.g. Thomas Edison and Sarah Breedlove Walker, and individuals associated with the civil rights and other movements of the twentieth century, e.g. Martin Luther King. Throughout the course the instructor, whose book Silent Builder: Emily Warren Roebling and the Brooklyn Bridge has elicited comments and queries from the BBC and American film producers, will share personal insights on the intellectual and creative challenges associated with writing a biography.


3.000 OR 4.000 Credit hours
3.000 OR 4.000 Lecture hours

Levels: Undergraduate
Schedule Types: Lecture, Nactel, Tutorial

History Department

Course Attributes:
Area of Knowledge II, Inquiry and Exploration