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Jordan Hall
Core Curriculum

Global & Historical Studies

Course Structure

Two courses taken in the second year, chosen from a list of three-hour courses.

Learning Objectives

  • To employ a conceptual framework for Global and Historical studies which appreciates cultures as dynamic, heterogeneous, and constantly in conversation with one another.
  • To draw on a variety of sources and disciplines - including the arts, the humanities and the social and natural sciences.
  • To recognize both the benefits and challenges of living in a culturally diverse and increasingly globalized world.
  • To continue development of skills of expository writing.

Learning Outcomes used for Assessment

  • Students will practice employing a conceptual framework for global and historical studies which appreciates cultures as dynamic, heterogeneous, and constantly in conversation with one another.
  • Students will approach the topic from a variety of sources and disciplines—including the arts, the humanities and the social and natural sciences.
  • Students will understand the benefits and challenges of living in a culturally diverse and increasingly globalized world.
  • Students will continue development of skills of expository writing.

Corresponding University Outcomes

  • Students will explore a variety of cultures (Cognitive—“Know”).
  • Students will appreciate diverse cultures, ethnicities, religions and sexual orientations (Affective—“Value”).
  • Students will make informed, rational and ethical choices (Psychomotor—“Do”).

Course Descriptions

GHS201—“South Asian Civilizations”

This course will provide an overview of South Asian civilizations in comparative perspective, and will focus on the subcontinent’s geography and history, its cultures and religions, its arts (i.e. music, dance, literature, and film), its notions of virtue and gender, its economic realities and role in the global marketplace, and its political development. Though covering the entire region, the course will pay particular attention to Pakistan and India, which, because of their religious demographics, provide an interesting contrast and a history of conflict. Nevertheless, the course will also draw attention to the ways in which religious, ethnic, communal, gender, and political lines have been blurred in South Asian history.

GHS202—“Postcolonial Studies: The Caribbean”

Ever since Toussaint-L’Ouverture led the first successful modern slave rebellion in Haiti in the late eighteenth century, defeating the armies of France, Britain, and Spain, the Caribbean has been a pivotal region in understanding the legacy of colonialism in the Americas. In this course, we will examine, from an interdisciplinary and comparative framework, the long history of interaction between the Caribbean and the West. Beginning with Christopher Columbus’s “discovery” of the New World, Europe’s development of the Atlantic slave trade, and the world-changing Haitian Revolution, we will follow the efforts of formerly colonized people of this region to forge new nations, cultures, and identities in the aftermath of European imperialism. Topics likely to receive particular emphasis this semester include Black Nationalism and Pan-Africanism, Rastafarianism and Obeah (Voodoo), Bob Marley and Jamaican popular music, international capitalism and the tourist industry, and the role of Caribbean women in the struggle for postcolonial identity and the development of a diasporic consciousness.

GHS203—“Modernizing and Contemporary Europe”

This course will study the early modern establishment of nation states, the Enlightenment advocacy of human rights and constitutional government and the revolutionary movements to realize those ideas, the World Wars and the Cold War, and the establishment and expansion of the European Union.

GHS204—“Frontiers in Latin America”

This interdisciplinary course explores the historical development of the notion of “frontiers” in Latin America though three units of study: 1) The Frontier as Contact Zone: The Amazon 2) The Promise of Modernization in the Southern Cone, and 3) Crossing Frontiers: Mexico and the United States. The themes of social and cultural identity, citizen participation, sustainable development and migration will be interwoven through the course.

GHS205—“East Asian Interactions”

This course explores the interactions among China, Korea, and Japan. It will examine how each of the three states has contributed to the evolution of a common tradition, how each of them has benefited from the interactions, and how some of the interactions have caused destruction in the regions.

GHS206—“Resistance and Reaction: Colonialism and Post-Colonialism in Africa”

This course intends to explore the more complex realities of African responses to the imposition of European military, cultural, and economic domination in the colonial era and the effects of such responses continuing into the postcolonial period up to the present.

GHS207—“Resistance and Rights: Global Women”

In this course, we will examine the means by which women around the globe work individually and collectively to gain basic human rights. Issues of culture, religion, tradition, beauty, tourism, health, war, immigration, and the media will be explored as we consider the possibilities for activism and resistance to oppression.

GHS208—“China and the Islamic Middle East”

This course examines the roots of the oldest continuing civilization today, China, and the origin and emergence of Islam as a major world culture and religion. It addresses the challenges of modernity for these two traditional cultures, particularly as they have responded to a world increasingly influenced by the West.

GHS209—“Revolutionary Europe and Nigeria”

The course examines the cultural traditions of Europe and Nigeria and their confrontations with modernity in the 19th and 20th centuries. The old order ends in violence, replaced by the beginnings of democracy, science, capitalism and imperialism.

Students cannot fulfill the 6-hour requirement with both GHS209 “Revolutionary Europe and Nigeria” and GHS203 “Modernizing and Contemporary Europe” due to an overlap in course material.

GHS210—"Freedom and Movement in the Transatlantic World"

What is freedom? What does it mean to be free? This course examines the changing meanings of freedom between the Age of Exploration and the present by exploring the transcontinental and transoceanic movements of people, ideas, and capital across Africa, the Americas, and Europe.

GHS211—"Modern Middle East and North Africa (MENA)"

This class explores the historical and transnational formation of the modern Middle East and North African region. The modern MENA is home to millions of people from diverse ethnic backgrounds. We will learn about their life stories and examine the political, cultural, economic, religious, and “poetic” everyday practices of the region.

 

Global & Historical Studies FAQ

How do I get into a closed GHS class?

Section enrollment and permission number distribution are based on class size and need, as determined by the GHS Director and Coordinator.  You may request permission into a closed section of GHS by submitting the GHS Permission Form

The GHS Coordinator makes every effort to accommodate student preference when determining permission number distribution, but students are not guaranteed a seat in their preferred section.

*If GHS cannot accommodate your preference, the coordinator will find a spot for all students awaiting a permission number in a class that 1) fits the student’s schedule, and 2) observes GHS enrollment guidelines.

I studied abroad. Do I have to take both semesters of Global and Historical Studies?

Students will automatically receive an exemption for one of their Global and Historical Studies courses (3 hours) after successful completion of 9 or more credit hours of coursework while studying abroad in a Butler-approved program.

What if my study abroad experience does not meet the BU-approved 9-credit hour criteria?

If you do not receive an automatic exemption for one of your Global and Historical Studies courses (3 hours), you are free to petition for an exemption if you have completed 6 or more credit hours of course work while studying abroad in a Butler-approved program. Simply complete the GHS Study Abroad Exemption Request Form and submit it to the GHS office (JH 209). After review by the GHS Director, you will be notified of request approval/denial based on course content, length of study, and/or other experiences consonant with GHS learning objectives. (In order to make the exemption approval process as fair and transparent as possible, students and programs are strongly encouraged to consult with the GHS Director in advance of actual study abroad.)

I’m an international student. Do I have to take both semesters of Global and Historical Studies?

International students will automatically receive an exemption for one their Global and Historical Studies courses (3 hours).  International students are defined as "non-immigrant" visitors who come to the United States temporarily to take classes.  A non-immigrant is someone who:

-Intends to stay in the US temporarily

-Does not have US citizenship or legal permanent resident status (a "green card")

-Applies for a visa to be allowed entry into the US

-Has an F-1 or J-1 student visa (currently, all international students at Butler have F-1 or J-1 status)

Can I fulfill the GHS requirement by taking GHS203 and GHS209?

Students cannot fulfill the 6-hour requirement by taking both GHS209 “Revolutionary Europe and Nigeria” and GHS203 “Contemporary Europe” due to an overlap in the material.

How can a faculty member apply to be a part of the GHS faculty development trip in May 2019?

The next GHS faculty development travel is going to Morocco and Spain in May 2019. The purpose of this trip is to bring together members of the Global and Historical Studies faculty on a research travel opportunity that would enhance their contribution to the program in teaching, in scholarship, and in service.

We will visit a number of locations in the North African country of Morocco before wrapping up our journey through the Andalusia region in Southern Spain. The program is planned for two weeks following the Spring commencement ceremonies: May 14 – May 28 (dates are subject to minor change based on airline restrictions). 

Faculty who plan to teach during the first session of summer classes cannot participate, for it would result in a conflict of schedule.

Applications are due by Saturday November 10th, 2018 before 9:00pm (EST) to Sholeh Shakrokhi.

While we anticipate a competitive process, all Butler University faculty members engaging with the Global and Historical Studies program are encouraged to apply by the deadline. Priorities will be given to commitment to teaching in the GHS. More detailed description of this program and its requirements are provided on the application. 

General questions should be sent to Jason Head in the GHS office.