History 1378 Syllabus

Spring 2021

History 1378

Prof. Buzzanco

This is an online, asynchronous class.  You’ll watch recorded lectures and get assignments and contact TAs and me through Blackboard.

The Lectures for this entire class are online at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWG57V486YhNK2TQspojAFA-B-2gByMgP  

There are 24 lectures, which cover the material from the Civil War to the Present. You are expected to watch these videos as well as do all the assigned reading.  During the lectures, I will have up an outline for the materials we are covering.  It’s also at https://afflictthecomfortable.org/2016/09/15/history-1378-outlines/

The lectures are on video, so you can watch them according to your own schedule, and you can pause and rewind if there’s something you want to hear again.  The “visual aids” for the class include the lectures, the outlines, the links to documents and images, and, most importantly, all the books. 

If you do the reading and watch the lectures, you should do well.  We will also make extra credit available from time to time, and it will be based on the readings in the Texts and Interpretations books (below).

Most questions can be answered by referring to the syllabus or to Blackboard.  If not, contact your TA or contact me.  But please check the syllabus or  Blackboard first.

I’ve also set up a Facebook page for the class where I can also put up information re the class itself or the materials we’re covering, which you can join–it’s voluntary, not required– at https://www.facebook.com/groups/953860084692994    

I know it’s a unique time, and this isn’t the typical way we do large survey courses, but if you watch all the videos, do all the reading, stay on top of things via Blackboard and the syllabus and outlines, you should all be fine.  I have heard and students say “you don’t have to go to class” or “you don’t have to read the books”…..  Actually, if you want to do well, the best thing you can do is attend (in this case, watch) the classes, and regularly do all the readings.  They connect to each other very closely and I often will cover materials in class briefly or quickly, and the book will give you a far better understanding and more detail.  So don’t ignore one or the other.  Lectures and readings are essential……both!

Required UH statement on Asynchronous courses:   Asynchronous Online Courses (or asynchronous exam in another course format): This course is taught asynchronously, which means there is no designated day or time assigned to the course (although optional synchronous sessions are possible, such as virtual office hours or discussion groups). Asynchronous instruction generally involves accessing content, such as recorded video lectures, readings, discussion prompts, assignments, and assessments during a flexible time frame, with due dates as specified. This course will have a final exam at the course conclusion. The exam will be asynchronous, and the date and time that it will be released and due will be announced during the course. Prior to the exam, descriptive information, such as the number and types of exam questions, resources and collaborations that are allowed and disallowed in the process of completing the exam, and procedures to follow if connectivity or other resource obstacles are encountered during the exam period, may be provided. 


Teaching Assistants:

Section 23137

Patrick Higgins   higginspat1804@gmail.com

Valerie Butler-Harris  vbutlerharris11@gmail.com

Section 22947

Kathryn McGranahan     kmcgrana@gmail.com

Claire Berry         crberry@cougarnet.uh.edu


Required Books

America: From 1865 to COVID-19 is a package from Nunn-McGinty publishers which consists of 3 books. You need only purchase the package–all 3 books are included in it.

Available at bookstore on online at https://www.nunnmcginty.com/  If you have an issues or questions about downloading or otherwise getting access to the books, contact    documents@nunnmcginty.com

It includes From Reconstruction to Rebellion (listed as RR below), and also two readers,  Texts and Speeches in U.S. History,  and   Interpretations of U.S. History (listed as Texts and Interpretations below).



Your grade in this course will be based on your scores on three exams [which may include essays and  IDs], two during the semester, at dates announced on Blackboard, worth 100 points each, and a final exam, worth 150 points. There will also be extra credit questions available based on the readers. Practice questions will be given out before the tests and review sessions with TAs can  be scheduled online.

Makeup Policy–read carefully. The typical makeup policy below isn’t relevant to an online class.  The tests will be given online at a date and time that the TAs and I will notify you about ahead of time.  You’ll have 1 1/2 hours online to do the test, which is more than you’d have in class.  Given the circumstances, there should be fewer reasons to miss the exam and ask for a makeup.  If something serious does occur, however, and you can’t take the test at the scheduled time, contact your TA as soon as possible to let her/him know and arrange another test. 

[In-class makeup policy, not relevant Spring 2021].   We do not want to get flooded with requests for makeups.  Do everything in your power to be here on test dates.  If you miss an exam due to verifiable emergency conditions, with proper documentation, there will be makeup tests given on a case-by-case basis, at the discretion of the professor/TAs. On the day of your scheduled make-up, you will be required to make up all missing tests.  The only excuses for missing that day will also be medical or other emergencies [not travel plans], for which you must provide written documentation. If you miss the makeup test, you will receive zeroes for those tests.  Additionally, it is your responsibility to notify your TA that you have missed an exam and to schedule a make-up as soon as possible.


Make sure you attend class regularly and keep up with the assigned readings. If at any time you are unsure of the material we are covering, please ask the T.A. or me.

For information on Incompletes or other UH policies and requirements, consult the UH Student Handbook.

Questioning a grade: If you have questions or other issues with the grade you received on a test, this is the procedure to follow. 


First, the TAs will not discuss your tests right after we turn them back to you (other than to correct a math error in the grading).  Please look at your exam and wait a day before contacting your TA.  Make an appointment with him/her and come to that meeting with specific questions and concerns and be prepared to specifically explain why you deserved a higher grade (do not simply say “I studied and thought I should have done better”).  If the TA and you do not reach an agreement, the TA will re-grade the entire test and the score be increased, decreased, or stay the same.


If at that point you still are not satisfied, make an appointment with me and bring  your specific concerns and questions and I will go over the exam and, as above, possibly re-grade it and give a new score accordingly.  At all times be respectful and courteous toward the TAs , and the same is expected of their interactions with you. At the end of the semester, please do not send me an email asking for your grade to be raised because you need extra points to maintain your GPA or to graduate or for other such reasons.  Again, any questioning of your grade must include specific questions or comments regarding the specific questions on the test


Topics and Reading Assignments

(Extra Credit opportunities will be posted on Blackboard throughout the semester)


The books will be listed as RR, Texts, and Interpretations 


Week 1

Background: Reconstruction, Capitalism, Labor Wars, Empire

 RR, chapter 1

Texts, chapter 1


Week 2

Imperialism, Markets, the Great War 

RR, chapter 2

Texts, chapter 2

Interpretations, chapter 1



Week 3

The Aftermath of War Abroad and at Home

 RR, chapter 2

Texts, chapter 3



Week 4

The 1920s

 RR, chapter 3


Week 5

 FDR and the New Deal

RR, chapter 4



Week 6

The Onset of War

RR, chapter 5

Interpretations, chapter 3


Week 7

 War, the Bomb, and Cold War 

RR, chapter 6

Interpretations, chapter 4

Podcast on Atomic Bomb:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tdLz16ljiM&t=1013s


Week 8

 The War at Home: Domestic Containment (Conformity and Counterculture)

RR, chapter 7

Texts, chapter 4


Week 9

 Taking the Third World, Origins of Vietnam

 Texts, chapter 5


Week 10

 The Modern Civil Rights Era 

RR, chapter 8

Texts, chapter 7

Interpretations, chapter 5



Week 11

 Questioning Authority: The 1960s

 Texts, chapter 6

Interpretations, chapter 6



Week 12

 Backlash and the Rise of the Conservatives

 RR, chapter 10

Interpretations, chapter 7


Week 13

 Globalization and Militarism from Reagan to Clinton 

Interpretations, chapter 8


Week 14

Economic Crash and Background to 9/11

 RR, chapter 11

Texts, chapter 8

Interpretations, chapter 9


Week 15

The U.S., Afghanistan, Iraq, and the Middle East

 RR, Conclusion


Final Exam


























About buzzanco

Historian, Agitator, Sicilian
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