History 11: Political & Social History of the United States
Syllabus & Fall Schedule: coming soon
We will be using 3 textbooks throughout the semester. You will need to read all 3, but they are all accessible online, so you need not purchase paper copies. To access online versions of the texts, click the following links. (These links should NOT be used to reproduce the texts for sale.)
- An Outline of U.S. History, by the U.S. Department of State (ISBN-13: 978-1482546781)
- A People's History of the United States, by Howard Zinn (ISBN 978-0-06-196558-6)
- A History of the American People, by Paul Johnson (ISBN 978-0-06-093034-9)
- Book #1 is a very brief book covering the basics of the history, and any material inside is fair game for test questions. You should study and learn this material. The link above will allow you to view it online or (probably better) download it as a pdf file (or kindle or epub if you use those files). We WILL be regularly discussing this book in class, so you'll want to either bring a tablet/laptop that lets you look at them, print out the sections we'll be going over, or buy a paper copy. The bookstore does NOT have copies of this book, but you may click HERE to purchase it from Amazon for about $15 if you want a paper copy. (Note: Amazon also sells an older version of this book; be sure to check the ISBN number.)
- Books 2 & 3 are perhaps not what you're used to thinking of as history textbooks. Most textbooks try to take a "just the facts" approach. These authors each have a point of view, a thesis, an idea about American history that they want to share. They will use "facts" to prove their points--LOTS of facts--but I will NOT expect you to memorize any or all of the facts from these books; instead, I will assign compare and contrast questions (for homework and on tests) asking you to summarize what the authors believe. You'll undoubtedly want to refer to some of the facts they mention in your essays, but which facts you believe show their ideas best will vary from student to student. We will talk about all this in class. Both of these books ARE available at the LAMC bookstore. Neither costs more than $25. You may also use the links above to download pdf versions of each book.
- If you send me an email, please make sure you tell me your section number and your full name in the "subject" field. Otherwise, it's difficult to answer your questions correctly.
- Click on the appropriate Homework Questions/Lecture Outlines link below and look at the top of that page to see the pages assigned. Then, before you read, look over the homework questions carefully. Only then read.
- DON’T read the way you've probably learned to read for prior history classes.
- DON'T think you need to remember all the stuff in the textbooks. You can't.
- The homework questions are a good guide to what you should learn.
- Beyond the homework, you should come to class with the major ideas from the Outline book fresh in your head; I'll ask people about these at random:
- Read the Outline assignment carefully, one section at a time. After each section, think: What is the main point this section is making? How does it enhance understanding of/impact the story of the big-picture history? Why did this it happen?
- Write down your answers. You don't need to write a lot, but you'll certainly need a few sentences so you can explain these things in class when I ask you.
- It's a VERY good idea to show up at class a few minutes early and review your notes.
- Email me your homework answers BEFORE the start of the class in which those topics are discussed. I will let you know what's coming due in each class. If you miss class, contact another student to see what's due.
- Turn things in on time. I don’t accept late assignments.
- Type (or cut & paste) the assignment into the body of the email. Don’t send it as an attachment.
- The homework questions are numbered; please number your answers the same way.
- Make the subject line read “section#, lastname, firstname, homework number
It should look like this: 0302, Garcia, Maria, 5"
- Not following these instructions will result in your receiving half-credit for the assignment.
Homework Questions/Lecture Outlines/Study Guides
Material for Test 1
HW 1: Exploration & Contact
HW 2: Early Colonies & Indians
HW 3: Indians, Africans, and Colonists
Material for Test 2
HW 4: The Road to Independence
Lecture: Road to Independence
HW 5: Revolution & Revolutionary Governments
HW 6: Establishing Government
HW 7: War of 1812 & Market Revolution
Material for Test 3
HW 8: North & South/Texan Revolution
HW 9: War with Mexico/The Road to Civil War I
HW 10: The Road to War II/Civil War I
HW 11: Civil War II/Reconstruction & Beyond