Phone: (845) 257-3545
Location: Jacobson Faculty Tower Room 814

The History Department offers courses that vary in scope from broad to specialized, that vary in teaching method from lecture to discussion, and that are offered at both undergraduate and graduate levels. Students who wish to major in history may develop considerable concentration in an area listed below. The department offers courses with a global or regional perspective. With the aid of advisors, students are encouraged to design curricula that are suitable to their own needs and interests in history and in complementary fields such as other social sciences, philosophy, literature, and art.




HIS151. American Heroes . 3 Credits.

Will consider the place of heroes in United States history. In doing so, will contrive definitions of 'heroism' and seek to understand how and why Americans have historically defined 'their heroes.' .

HIS161. Youth Culture in Europe. 3 Credits.

Examines the changing role of youth in European society over time, the gendering of youth as male until the 20th century, and the shifting culture of this group from arbiters of social control to revolutionaries.

HIS193. History Selected Topic. 3-12 Credits.


HIS199. Modular Course. 0 Credits.


HIS200. Ancient World . 4 Credits.

Analysis of the major cultures of the ancient Mediterranean world, ancient Asia, and pre-contact America. Each culture is considered first in its own context, and then with reference to how, when, and with what consequences ancient cultures and/or states affected one another.

HIS202. History of the Ancient Near East . 3 Credits.

A review of the Paleolithic and Neolithic eras followed by a study in depth of the civilizations of ancient Mesopotamia, Egypt, the Holy Land, Persia, and the rest of the Near East.

HIS203. History of Ancient Greece . 3 Credits.

History of ancient Greece to the end of the Hellenistic period.

HIS207. Medieval Europe . 4 Credits.

Rise of Christianity to the invention of the printing press. The synthesis of Roman and Germanic cultures, social organization, and interaction between Christianity and non-Christian cultures.

HIS214. Mod Europe 1500-Present . 4 Credits.

The political, economic, and social evolution of Europe from the Renaissance to the present.

HIS215. China to 1800. 3 Credits.

Chinese history and culture from earliest times through the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), including aspects of politics, economics, social structure, religion, philosophy, folk culture, and literature.

HIS216. Modern China . 4 Credits.

Chinese history and culture from the late Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) to contemporary times.

HIS221. US History to 1865 . 4 Credits.

Beginning with colonial roots, traces the growth of the American Republic from its birth in the War for Independence to its testing under forces of sectionalism in the Civil War.

HIS222. US History Since 1865 . 4 Credits.

Continuation of HIS221. Analysis of the forces that shaped the modern industrial nation after the Civil War and resulted in the emergence of the United States as a world power.

HIS243. Middle East to 1798. 4 Credits.

The history of the Middle East to the invasion of Egypt by Napoleon in 1798, concentrating on the emergence of Islam and the development of Muslim culture and societies.

HIS244. Middle East Since 1798. 4 Credits.

The history of the Middle East from the invasion of Egypt by Napoleon in 1798 to the present, concentrating on the effects of increased interaction between Middle Eastern countries and the West.

HIS277. LTN AM History to 1825. 4 Credits.

Development of Latin America by the Spaniards and Portuguese to the end of the movement for independence (1830). Political, economic, and cultural phases of colonial development.

HIS278. Ltn AM History Since1825 . 4 Credits.

Development of Latin America from the end of the struggle for independence to the present. Political, social, economic, and diplomatic aspects. Case studies of specific problems of the nations.

HIS285. American Civilization . 3 Credits.

Examines the history of American Studies as an interdisciplinary approach to studying American culture. Presents a wide variety of scholarly methods for investigating the many pasts of the United States.

HIS293. History Selected Topic. 3-12 Credits.


HIS295. Indep Study History. 1-12 Credits.


HIS299. Modular Course. 0 Credits.


HIS300. Historian's Craft. 4 Credits.

An introduction to the techniques, conventions, practices, and methodologies of history as an academic discipline. Students will learn how historians create meaning from the past and gain an understanding of how to conduct historical research.

HIS302. American Immigration . 3 Credits.

Examines the numerous immigrant groups in American society from the seventeenth century through the present and focuses on adaptation to American values, and the changing culture of the United States.

HIS303. The Empire State . 3 Credits.

Surveys New York State's growth from beginning to present emphasizing the changing character of its people, society, economy and government.

HIS305. Women in Early Modern Europe . 3 Credits.

Women in European history from the Middle Ages to the present, concentrating on women and work, love and sexuality, courtship and marriage, legal issues, women and reform, and the growth of feminist consciousness.

HIS306. Progressive Era . 3 Credits.

Study of selected social, cultural, and political themes in American history during the Progressive Era (c. 1890-1932) and their conflicting interpretations.

HIS307. History of Women from 1880 to Present. 3 Credits.

A survey of the history of women from 1880 to the present, examining changes in women's private and public lives with attention to the differences among women of varying regional, racial and economic backgrounds.

HIS308. Indians of New York State . 3 Credits.

A history of the Native Americans of New York state from contact to the present. Special attention will be given to the Iroquois, Delaware, Mohican and Long Island Indian experiences.

HIS309. Indians of the United States . 3 Credits.

History of American Indians from initial European contact to the present: Cherokee, Iroquois Confederacy, the Navajo, and the Sioux; development and impact of governmental policies in the United States; rise of native American militancy and protest.

HIS310. Indians of the Eastern Woodlands . 3 Credits.

A history of the Native Americans east of the Mississippi from contact to the present. Special attention will be given to the Cherokee, Choctaw, Huron, Iroquois Confederacy, Lumbee, Shawnee, Stockbridge and Wampanoag experiences.

HIS311. Modern Germany . 3 Credits.

Evolution of Germany since the French Revolution, the establishment of the German empire, the Weimar Republic, the Nazi regime, and the post-World War II division of Germany.

HIS312. Alexander the Great & the Hellenistic World. 3 Credits.

Survey of the life and career of Alexander the Great, as well as the unique Hellenistic world that came about as a result of his conquests; also cover scholarly debates about Alexander.

HIS313. Religion and Power in the Ancient Near East. 3 Credits.

An exploration of the world of Mesopotamia and its environs through the lens of religion and power structures. Covers the Bronze and Iron ages (appx. 3000-350 BCE), including Akkadians, Hittites, Assyrians, Babylonians, Jews and Persians.

HIS314. Roman Empire. 3 Credits.

A study of the formation, maintenance, and operation of the Roman Empire, with a particular focus on the end of the late Republic to the reign of Constantine (c. 70 BCE-325 CE).

HIS315. History of China to 1800. 3 Credits.

Chinese history and culture from earliest times through the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), including aspects of politics, economics, social structure, religion, philosophy, folk culture, and literature.

HIS316. Gender and Sexuality in Classical Antiquity. 3 Credits.

Explores the social, religious, and political function of gender and sex in ancient Greece and Rome by examining the roles of men, women, and sex through daily life, art, and literature.

HIS317. World War II . 3 Credits.

Survey of military, political, social and cultural history of World War II from the viewpoint of world history.

HIS318. Europe Since 1945. 3 Credits.

An exploration of contemporary European history from the end of World War II to the beginning of the twenty-first century. Themes include: the reconstruction of Europe, the Cold War, decolonization, European unification, and the fall of Communism.

HIS319. Americanization of Europe. 3 Credits.

An exploration of the world-wide phenomenon of "Americanization" as it manifested itself in Europe throughout the twentieth century. Topic considered include: democratization, the development of consumer societies, popular culture, and America's influence on national and other collective identities.

HIS321. Colonial America . 3 Credits.

Social, political, and cultural development of early American communities (1607-1763).

HIS322. The American Revolution . 3 Credits.

Treats the Revolution as a bridge between the colonial inheritance and an independent republic. Focuses on the causes of the Revolution, the war, and the nation's character under the 1787 Constitution.

HIS323. Jacksonian America . 3 Credits.

Examines American history during Andrew Jackson's lifetime; topics include the birth of new political parties, the death of Davy Crockett at the Alamo, the dawn of a new nation, and the fall of national unity.

HIS324. American Civil War . 3 Credits.

Social, economic, cultural and political context within which Civil War came about. Analysis of slavery, racial attitudes, capitalism, ideology, nationalism and power, violence and change.

HIS325. History of New York City. 3 Credits.

A narrative history of New York City from contact between Native Americans and European explorers through the present. Political and economic history will provide the background for New York's social and cultural history.

HIS326. US South to 1897. 3 Credits.

Investigates the historical development of the region which came to be the United States South through the rise and demise of Populism. Other topics include what it has meant to be 'Southern' slavery 'Indian' removal.

HIS327. American Social and Cultural History to 1876 . 3 Credits.

Inquiry into the character of American society and culture. Focus on cultural interaction; gender relations; developments in religion, slavery, industrialization, and descriptions of the growing United States.

HIS328. American Social and Cultural History: 1877 to Present . 3 Credits.

American values as expressed in institutions, politics, literature and social behavior. Impact of industrialization, urbanization, and immigration on the American people.

HIS329. Postwar America. 3 Credits.

Domestic and international developments resulting from the rise of the United States to global power. Emphasis on the origins and development of the Cold War, McCarthyism, and Vietnam. Analyzes the effects of American affluence on occupational and class structure, education, religion, political and social behavior. The emergence in the 1960's of the Civil Rights Movement, the New Left, and the counterculture and recent developments placed in historical perspective.

HIS330. Staging China. 3 Credits.

Examines the development of ideas about national culture and identity in modern China through the history of changing forms and practices in theater, entertainment, and politics.

HIS332. U.S. Since Watergate. 3 Credits.

Cultural, political, economic, and social changes in the U.S. since 1974, including electoral and grassroots politics, the cultural and economic impact of globalization, the role of the U.S. in world affairs, and the everyday lives of Americans.

HIS333. Soviet Union . 3 Credits.

Development of the Soviet Union from an agrarian country to an industrial state. Methods and achievements of the Bolshevik leaders and the Communist Party; factors making the Soviet Union a leading world power and leading to its demise.

HIS334. Gandhi. 3 Credits.

Political, economic, and cultural history of South Asia in 1857-1947; focusing on the life and thought of M.K. Gandhi, and influential and controversial social reformer/politician in British India.

HIS335. Modern Japan . 3 Credits.

Chronological account of Japanese history and culture from the seventeenth century to modern times, including geography, language, religion, social structure, government, politics, economy, trade, foreign policy, and defense.

HIS336. Religions of Asia. 3 Credits.

A comparative study of the histories of Buddhism and other religions of eastern and southern Asia. Topics include religious beliefs and their impact on the societies and cultures of, especially, China, India, and Japan.

HIS337. Ancient India. 3 Credits.

Provide a comprehensive survey of the history of the Indian subcontinent until 1200 CR with particular focus on historical continuity/disjuncture in the history of religious practices and ideas and the emergence of political forms in pre-colonial India.

HIS338. British India. 3 Credits.

Explores political, economic, and cultural history of South Asia between ca. 1500-1947 with special focus on the British colonization of India and the movement to the Independence.

HIS339. Indian Ocean World. 3 Credits.

Explore the economic and cultural history of the Indian Ocean Worlds (Arabia, Gulf India, S.E. Asis and S. China) from the prehistoric period to ca. 1850 CE by examining textual, epigraphic and archaeological sources.

HIS340. Iran. 3 Credits.

Investigates the historical development of Iran from the rise of the Persian Empire to the present. Topics include state formation, empire building, state-society relations, foreign invasions, Islam, the impact of modern imperialism, modernism v. traditionalism, patriarchal institutions, and women's rights.

HIS342. Arab Mid East 2 . 3 Credits.

Surveys the history of the Arab Middle East from the formation of the Islamic Empire; topics include the life of Arab Muslim societies, the Ottoman Age, impact of European Empires, legacy of colonialism, politics of nationalism, oil, and the challenge of political Islam.

HIS343. History of Islam and the Middle East 570-1918. 3 Credits.

An introduction to the history of the Middle East from the time of Muhammad to the end of the Ottoman Empire, concentrating on the Muslim religion, and the emergence and development of Muslim culture and societies.

HIS344. The Middle East in the 20th Century . 3 Credits.

An introduction to the diverse history, societies and peoples of the Middle East since World War I, and the impact of imperialism and nationalism on Muslim societies and culture.

HIS346. The Black Death . 3 Credits.

The initial fourteenth-century outbreak of the bubonic plague killed one third of the European population. Its reappearance kept the population low and had a profound impact on economic, social, cultural, and religious development.

HIS348. Medieval Society . 3 Credits.

Changes in the social organization of Medieval Europe. How peasants, nobles, townspeople, and monks and nuns lived and died.

HIS349. Renaissance and Reformation . 3 Credits.

The Renaissance, its relation to the Reformation, and causes and effects of both movements.

HIS350. Early Modern Europe . 3 Credits.

Examination of pre-industrial, agrarian European society, family structures, demography, towns, rise of national bureaucracies, and the European overseas expansion of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

HIS351. The Enlightenment. 3 Credits.

Students will seek to understand the European Enlightenment through intensive writing assignments focusing on the ideas and methods of the eighteenth century intellectual movement.

HIS352. Science, Magic, and Religion in the 17th c.. 3 Credits.

Seventeenth-century Europeans relied on three interconnected but competing ways of thinking to understand nature, man and society: Science, Magic, and Religion. The tumultuous 1600’s in Europe saw conflict and cooperation between the three epistemologies through major events like the scientific revolution, witch hunts, and the late Reformation.

HIS353. Twentieth-Century Europe . 3 Credits.

Study of Europe since 1890: imperialism, the world wars, fascism, communism, genocide, the European Economic Community, and the communist regimes in eastern Europe.

HIS354. Early Modern Cities. 3 Credits.

The economic, religious, and political origins of cities in Europe, the development of court and trade centers, and the social and cultural history of cities as they grew through the early modern era.

HIS355. Medieval Towns. 3 Credits.

The medieval foundations of modern urban dynamics. Topics include: Rome's legacy; Post year-1000 markets, governmental structures, regulation, universities; Physical space, cathedral building and other structures; High medieval maturation, guilds, and urban vendettas; late medieval morphology.

HIS357. Hst England Fr 1485-1815 . 3 Credits.

The History of England from 1485 to 1815. The rise of the Tudor monarchy, the Anglican revolt, the struggle for constitutional government, the first overseas empire, and the economic evolution of England to the end of the Napoleonic Wars.

HIS358. Modern Britain . 3 Credits.

Examines the history of Britain from the reign of George III (1760-1820) to the dissolution of the second British Empire at the end of World War II, focusing on the century between the defeat of Napoleon and the beginning of the "Great War' in 1914.

HIS360. Modern Spain. 3 Credits.

Social, political, cultural history of Spain since the Napoleonic invasion. Topics include the Second Spanish Republic, the Civil War, the Franco era, the transition to democracy, and Spain's place in contemporary Europe.

HIS362. Medieval Spain. 3 Credits.

Explore the complexities of life in medieval lberia: Romans and Visigoths; Muslim, Christian, and Jewish encounters; castle-building and vengeance-taking;Ferdinand, Isabella, and Columbus; a nation state emerging from disparate kingdoms and counties.

HIS363. Inquisition. 3 Credits.

Belief; practice; enemies;circumstance - which makes a "depraved heretic"? Black Legend; withcraft; killer-inquisitors - which it real and which fantasy? What do inquisitions tell us about our present? (think Abu Ghraib, but much else.)

HIS365. Jihad and Crusades. 3 Credits.

Were the medieval crusades an exemplary Christian project or a series of conquest failures? We investigate religious zeal (jihad and holy war) and the political ambition that activated both Muslim and Christian sides of the fighting.

HIS367. Business and Society . 3 Credits.

Study of the formation of American business institutions emphasizing social and political values from the merchant capitalists to the multinational corporation.

HIS369. Ancient Israel . 3 Credits.

Ancient Israel from the Patriarchal period (ca. 1900 B.C.E.) to the Hellenistic period (ca. 160 B.C.E.). Selected archaeological sites, readings in the Bible, and analysis of evidence from contemporary extra-Biblical sources.

HIS370. Bible: Myth and History . 3 Credits.

What is the Bible and how did it come to be written? May it be used as a source for history? What is the relationship between mythology and history? We will analyze a number of early biblical stories with these questions in mind.

HIS371. Jews in the Middle Ages . 3 Credits.

The Jews from the Roman Period to the Renaissance, including life under Christianity and Islam, the continuing diaspora of the medieval Jewish community, and the beginnings of modern Jewish life.

HIS373. The Holocaust . 3 Credits.

Brief survey of the status and condition of European Jewry before World War II and analysis of the antisemitic movements with particular attention to the theory and practice of the Nazis. Detailed study of the stages in the destruction of European Jewry with comparisons of the course of the Holocaust in various countries and the different reactions of different Jewish and non-Jewish communities.

HIS377. History of Mexico. 3 Credits.

Introduction to the history of the nation of Mexico from its Native American origins through European contact and the introduction of African peoples and cultures through the present day. The narrative will be chronological with concentration on themes, institution, and people which have been the most significant in the making of the story.

HIS378. Latinos(as) in the United States. 3 Credits.

Introduction of emigrant groups from Latin America (Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America) and the impact of each group of U.S. culture and institutions, as well as the U.S. impact on their cultures.

HIS379. US Foreign Policy Since 1898. 3 Credits.

The impact and consequences of changing ideologies and practices of US foreign policy from the Spanish American War to the present.

HIS380. US Military History. 3 Credits.

Describes and analyzes the history of American military policy since the colonial period to the present, including the role military affairs in national security strategy, the conduct of war in a democracy, the evolution of military professionalism, and the influence of American society upon the armed forces as social institutions.

HIS381. Prisons and Prisoners in the US. 3 Credits.

History of prisons as institutions of reform and repression from the early 19th century onward, with major shifts coinciding with and responding to structural shifts in the meanings of race and racism, changes in the national and global economy, and other factors.

HIS383. Religion in the United States . 3 Credits.

A historical survey of the role of religion in American life and thought, with emphasis upon the quest for liberty of conscience and worship, utopianism, and the relation between religion and modern secular culture.

HIS384. American Nationalisms. 3 Credits.

Examines the ways different peoples from outside the white Anglo-Saxon Protestant stereotype imagined themselves as Americans in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in order to understand the development of American identity then and now.

HIS385. The Gilded Age. 3 Credits.

This course examines momentous cultural and social changes in the U.S. from 1865 to 1900. Topics include the "new woman," the rise of the corporation, debates over the nature of Americal national and racial identity.

HIS386. U.S. South Since 1877. 3 Credits.

Explores the U.S. South since the Civil War both as a unique regional society and as the "region" of American culture most concerned with racial and national identity. Emphasizes music, film, and the uses of history.

HIS393. History Selected Topic. 3-12 Credits.


HIS399. Modular Course. 0 Credits.


HIS407. Intellectual History of 19th-Century Europe . 3 Credits.

Examines the work and careers of key writers of the period, such as Marx, Nietzsche, Hegel, Mill, and Darwin, and the impact of their thinking.

HIS408. Intellectual History of 20th-Century Europe. 3 Credits.

An exploration of modern European intellectual thought, from modernism at the end of nineteenth century to postmodernism at the end of the twentieth century. Possible readings include: Kafka, Eliot, Freud, Woolf, Sartre, and Foucault.

HIS413. The American West . 3 Credits.

Selected topics in the history of the trans-Mississippi West. The American West as symbol and myth. The significance of continental expansion of American nationality, political, economic, and social development.

HIS461. Hudson Valley Culture . 3 Credits.

Introduction to the Hudson Valley as a cultural milieu in the colonial, revolutionary, and early national periods of American history. An examination of the lives, thought, and works of Hudson Valley figures and their contributions to American thought and culture.

HIS467. The United States in Vietnam . 3 Credits.

The origins, nature and consequences of America's involvement in Vietnam.

HIS470. Age of "Discovery" 1415-1780 . 3 Credits.

This course tracks the "discovery" by Europeans of other parts of the globe, 1415-1780. Intellectual, economic, social, and political consequences of the increasingly intense interaction between Europeans, particularly the English and the Spanish, and peoples of other regions. The course concentrates on the Atlantic World, but includes the eastern hemisphere.

HIS480. Women in China . 3 Credits.

Analyzing the meaning of "woman" in China from late Ming to the present, this course sharpens critical skills in thinking about gender differences and deepens understanding of modern China's culture and society.

HIS491. Community, Memory, and Historical Practice: Internship Seminar. 1 Credit.

This seminar-style course considers the practice of public history and questions of how public historical sites, museums, etc. present the past to the general community. Must be taken with HIS494.

HIS492. Seminar in History . 4 Credits.

Training in historical research methods through the critical reading of historical materials, primary research on selected topics, and the presentation of reports. Repeatable.

HIS493. History Selected Topic. 1-12 Credits.


HIS494. Fieldwork in History. 1-12 Credits.

Students will hold an internship at a local historical site or organization and will work on individual projects, in consultation with the course instructor and the site supervisor. Can register for 2-3 credits; must also be registered for HIS491.

HIS495. Indep Study History. 1-12 Credits.


HIS496. History Honors Thesis I. 3 Credits.

Independent study and writing of a thesis under the supervision of faculty. Successful completion of HIS 496 and HIS 497 with a minimum grade of B+ in each semester enables students to graduate with Honors in History, a distinction that appears on the College transcript.

HIS497. History Honors Thesis II. 3 Credits.

Independent study and writing of a thesis under the supervision of faculty. Successful completion of HIS 496 and HIS 497 with a minimum grade of B+ in each semester enables students to graduate with Honors in History, a distinction that appears on the College transcript.