Honors Western Civilization

History and Science, Part II

Course Description and Schedule

HIST 122 Section 035 (Honors), Spring 2001
12:30-1:45 TTh, East Hall 213

Mr Lehmann
Office Hours: 11-12 TTh
East Hall 210, 677-5573, clehmann@usd.edu, [http://www.usd.edu/~clehmann]

This, the second of a two-part survey of Western Civilization, introduces the student to some of the leading figures, ideas, and events of the modern world. It also exposes the student to the concerns and methods of historical inquiry through the example of lectures, by analyzing and discussing selected texts, and by writing papers and preparing a group multimedia project. Finally, the theme of this year's course, history and science, prompts reflection upon the ways in which historical experience affects scientific attitudes, approaches, and discoveries, and how scientific change has varied greatly from time to time and place to place.

The instructor expects students to read all assignments, attend every lecture, take notes, participate in discussions, and secure all handouts, which contain chronological and geographical background to the lectures and readings. In addition, each student writes three papers and attends special discussion sessions three times during the semester. Material from the lectures may be incorporated into the papers and observations during discussions, but the main purpose of the papers is for the students to treat in detail certain themes that appear only generally in the lectures, all grouped around the theme of the individual in the community. Students will participate in group projects that treat the theme; these projects will appear on the Honors Web site as part of the ongoing project The House the West Built.


Evaluation is by written work and participation in class and discussion sessions. Students who expect to miss more than three meetings should meet with the instructor in the first week. The instructor may remove from enrollment or reduce the final grade of students who cannot meet these requirements.

Each student writes three papers and participates with three or four other students in a multimedia project (described below), submits regular summaries of course content by part, and creates and maintains a web page. The papers count 50 points each, divided into 30 points for content, 10 points for style, and 10 points for discussion. The multimedia project counts 50 points (each member of a group receives an equal number of these points). The summaries count an additional 50 points. From a total of 250 points possible,

250-225 = A
225-200 = B
200-175 = C
175-150 = D

Some of you may wish to consult Gerald W Schlabach's Top 10 Ways to Lower Your Grade in Humanities.

Required Books

*Most of these items are available on reserve at I D Weeks Library

Recommended Book


At the end of each part of the course (parts 7-11), students will submit short answers based on lectures and readings in the textbook to the respective study questions. Each summary should have about one generous paragraph to answer each question. E-mail these to the instructor by the first Friday following the completion of each part of the course, unless otherwise announced.  Alternately, students may take an open-note exam at the end of the semester (8 May).

christine.GIF (56007 bytes)Web Pages

Each student must have an internet account and a home page on the World Wide Web.  Students who join this course at semester break will have to create their home pages immediately. Go to "Creating a Home Page" and InTEC's guide to publishing on the Web to learn how to write a home page.

Discussions and Papers

The instructor has set three problems based on the books. Each student will write short papers (5-10 pp) addressing the problems, and join a small group (depending on the size of the class) to discuss the problem after completing each paper. The papers will conform to Chicago style and include title page and bibliography: see K L Turabian, A Manual for Writers of Term Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, 6th ed (Chicago: Univ of Chicago Press, 1993), or The Chicago Manual of Style, 14th ed (Chicago: Univ of Chicago Press, 1993). The title page will indicate the appropriate discussion session. Students should begin by defining a specific historical problem relevant to the assigned texts and proceed by solving that problem, arguing closely and carefully from the texts. Those students new to this course in particular should consult closely with the instructor as they develop their topics.

Outside of class students will examine the ways that their historical experience governs the ways that people think about their world, understand how it works, and develop tools to investigate and control it. The primary text is Kuhn's Structure of Scientific Revolution, with its seminal interpretation of scientific change. It will offer a starting point to the study of particular periods.

Papers are due in the History office (207 East Hall) by 4:00 PM on the scheduled days; discussions follow accordingly at the Honors Lounge in Old Main. Papers submitted on time may be rewritten for a higher grade. Papers submitted after the first discussion following the due date will be penalized by five points, and an additional five points every twenty-four hours thereafter.

Paper Assignments

  1. Science, Politics, and Religion.  Orff, Carmina Burana; Galileo, Discoveries and Opinions; Brecht, Life of Galileo
  2. Science, Individualism, and Religion.  Darwin, Origin of Species; Lawrence and Lee, Inherit the Wind
  3. Science, Utility, and Morality.  Gould, The Mismeasure of Man; Frayn, Copenhagen

Multimedia Assignment: The House the West Built

The instructor will divide the students into six to nine groups, each of which will produce an investigation of some aspect of science in Western history.  The results of each group's analysis will appear as a multimedia presentation on the World Wide Web and become part of the ongoing project, "The House the West Built."  

Have fun with this project; however its point is not to perform tricks but to develop a cogent and elegant description of the work you choose. Projects must be complete by 18 April.

Schedule of Lectures, Assignments, Workshops, and Performances

11 Jan Introduction: What is the Modern World?

Part 7: Absolutism and Enlightenment [Chodorow chs 19-21]

16 Jan Introduction and Chronology (bring chronology sheet)
18 Jan Absolutism in France and Germany
23 Jan The English Exception
25 Jan The Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment
26 Jan Summaries to Part 7 due

Part 8: The Age of Revolutions [Chodorow chs 22-24]

30 Jan Introduction and Chronology (bring chronology sheet)
1 Feb The French Revolution and Its Consequences
4 Feb Orff, Carmina Burana (Opera Omaha; consult the Caveman's FAQ)
6 Feb The Industrial Revolution and Its Consequences
8 Feb Spring Colloquium in the History of Music (Farber Hall 12:05-12:50)
9 Feb Paper on Problem 1 due
13 Feb Discussions on Problem 1
15 Feb Nineteenth Century EconomicsSlides: Early Modern Art and Architecture
16 Feb Summaries to Part 8 due

Part 9: A Century of Ideas [Chodorow chs 25-26]

20 Feb Introduction and Chronology (bring chronology sheet)
22 Feb Liberalism and Nationalism
27 Feb Socialism and Democracy; read Communist Manifesto
1 Mar New Directions in Thought and Science
12 Mar Paper on Problem 2 due
13 Mar Discussions on Problem 2
15 Mar Bismarck's Germany
20 Mar Imperialism

Part 10: Turn of the Century [Chodorow, chs 28-30]

22 Mar Introduction and Chronology (bring chronology sheet)
23 Mar Summaries to Part 9 due
27 Mar World War I
29 Mar The Russian Revolution
30 Mar Summaries to Part 10 due

Part 11: The Twentieth Century [Chodorow, chs 32-34]

3 Apr Introduction and Chronology (bring chronology sheet)
5 Apr No class; attend Student History Conference
10 Apr Totalitarianism
17 Apr World War II
18 Apr Project due: The House the West Built
19 Apr Discussion on The House the West Built
24 Apr Postwar Tensions: The Cold War
26 Apr The Third World
27 Apr Paper on Problem 3 due
1 May Discussions on Problem 3
3 May The Postmodern World; Slides
4 May Summaries to Part 11 due


8 May 12:30: Optional Final Examination