Dr. Melissa Klapper email@example.com x3982 This course is an introduction to historical writing and to historiography. It is designed to give students practical experience in the researching and writing of historical papers and to provide a survey of the discipline of history as practiced by a wide variety of historians. Students will undertake supervised research projects that will culminate in a clear and persuasive historical paper (10-12 pages) based on both primary and secondary sources. Course work will focus both on the mechanics of writing research papers and on exemplary historical literature focused on particular topics and/or methodologies. Progress reports on the research projects will be shared on a regular basis in class. We will structure the class as a writers’ workshop, regularly conducting peer reviews.
Typically, each class meeting will be divided into two parts. During the first part we will discuss the assigned readings for the day, focusing on the form and structure as well as the content of the readings. During the second part we will focus on the research projects, taking into account both process and product. Writing assignments throughout the semester are designed to integrate these programs of reading and writing, providing a literature-based program of historical methods. There will be reading and writing assignments for most class meetings. You are expected to complete each day’s reading before coming to class. In most cases the writing assignments are based on the reading. No written work will be accepted late.
Attendance is mandatory. Please contact me in advance if you must be absent. More than one unexcused absence will result in an automatic reduction of your final grade of one grade point per absence (e.g., from B+ to B). Participation in classroom discussions and in-class activities will form an important part of your grade.
Honesty and accountability in research are basic to the historian’s craft. Plagiarism of any kind constitutes grounds for immediate failure.
Carr, Edward Hallett. What is History?
Davis, Natalie Zemon. The Return of Martin Guerre.
Paludan, Philip Shaw. Victims: A True Story of the Civil War.
Rampolla, Mary Lynn. A Pocket Guide to Writing in History. 5th edition.
Streissguth, Thomas, ed. The Sinking of the Titanic.
In this section of Historical Methods, we will be focusing our research on the decade of the1930s in the United States. You may pick any specific topic you like (subject to approval), but it must address some aspect of American history during the 1930s, an exciting decade that will provide ample possibilities for exploration.
Your final grade will be calculated according to the following plan. Please note that no student who fails to hand in the research proposal, rough draft, or final research paper will pass the course.
Pick any argument Carr makes and defend or oppose it.
3 ideas for research topicsdue Thursday, September 18
Historical sources and historiography
Library research workshop
reading assignment: The Sinking of the Titanic
writing assignment: 5-paragraph essay
What have different historians and observers concluded about the sinking of the Titanic? What kinds of sources led them to draw this conclusion?
Preliminary bibliography of 10 items due. Include at least 4 primary sources, no more than 2 internet sources, and no more than 4 sources of the same kind(e.g., books, journal articles). This assignment will help you determine your final choice of research topics.
Thursday, September 25
Conventions of historical writing, use of quotations
reading assignment: Ellen Gruber Garvey, “Reframing the Bicycle: Magazines and Scorching Women,” Chapter 4 in The Adman in the Parlor: Magazines and the Gendering of Consumer Culture, 1880s to 1910s (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996).
writing assignment: thesis statement and outline
Thursday, November 13
Thesis statement and outline due Thursday, November 20
Film: The Return of Martin Guerre
Rough draft due
Thursday, November 27
no class–Thanksgiving Thursday, December 4
Peer review of rough drafts
reading assignment: Karin Calvert, “Childhood, Boyhood, and Youth,” Chapter 4 in Children in the House: The Material Culture of Early Childhood, 1600-1900 (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1992).
writing assignment: final papers
Thursday, December 11
History and material culture
Oral presentations of research topics
individual consultations to be scheduled
TUESDAY, December 16
Final papers due by 5 p.m.
Rowan University has a licensing agreement with Turnitin, an online service to help prevent student plagiarism. As part of this course, I will be using Turnitin at my discretion to determine the originality of your work. If your work is submitted to Turnitin, it will be stored in the Turnitin database. You have the right to refuse either to submit your work to Turnitin or have the university do so; availing yourself of this right will not negatively impact your success in the course. If you do not wish to use Turnitin, you must notify me by email within two weeks of today’s date. If you object to the use of Turnitin, I will use other procedures to assess originality.
You will need to first enroll in Turnitin, following the simple steps on the website, and then enroll in this class. Below is the information you need to enroll in our class. Please make sure you are enrolled by the time we have our second session of class on September 11.
Turnitin Class Name: Historical Methods 4:45