The study of the Civil War has developed a bad reputation as the domain of nostalgic war nerds. But anybody who wants to understand the United States – and therefore anyone who truly wants to understand diversity – must grapple with it. It is the central event in our history, and it is impossible to make sense of race, racism (or anti-racism) in America without learning about it. In fact, any education that claims to teach about race in America without doing so is fraudulent. This course is about the Civil War Era, that thirty-year period between 1846 and 1876 during which the question of slavery and its legacy was the absolutely overriding, central issue in American life. We begin the course with the abolitionists and the argument about slavery; we end it with the failure of reconstruction. In between we look at the complex story of emancipation – and don’t worry, we talk about soldiers, battles and courage too. No one should claim to understand American society without understanding the content of this course.
Dates: May 20 - June 28, 2019
Online Course (View Campus Map)