United States History Survey from 1865

History 206

                                                                                          Professor Andrew Kersten

Summer 2010

MAC 105


Description: This course is a general survey of United States history from the end of the Civil War to present. In this class, we will cover both the content of this history and various themes that I wish to emphasize. Among these interpretative emphases are: labor, race, ethnic, and gender relations; immigration; wealth; and the role of the federal government in creating and influencing American history. This course is interdisciplinary. Technically it is an HS3 class, but it will meet informally many of the Social Sciences and Ethnic Studies learning outcomes as well. This course encourages students to improve as critical readers, critical writers, and critical thinkers. This focus will move some students from the normal comfort zone. However, everyone will benefit from your thoughts, engagement, and own personal view of history.


Course Information:

Contact times: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday, 9:00 am to 11:50 am [June 21-July 15]

Office Hours: 8:30-9, Monday-Thursday and by appointment

Instructor email: kerstena@uwgb.edu

Course email: C6100–su10@uwgb.edu

Internet: http://www.uwgb.edu/kerstena/index.html


Required Books:

Mark C. Carnes and John A. Garraty, American Destiny: Narrative of a Nation

Marilynn S. Johnson, Violence in the West: The Johnson County Range War and Ludlow Massacre

Nancy MacLean, American Womenšs Movement, 1945-2000


General Education Learning Outcomes (http://www.uwgb.edu/catalog/undrgrad/gened.htm):

HS3: Have a fundamental understanding of the humanities including:

ˇ      the significance and chronology of major events and movements in Western civilization,

ˇ      a range of literature, representative of different literary forms and historical contexts, and

ˇ      the role of the humanities in identifying and clarifying individual and social values in a culture and understanding the implications of decisions made on the basis of those values

ˇ      the role of Humanities in societal issues


Additional Intended Student Learning Outcomes:


Additional Rules:



ˇ      Attend class every day, and be respectful of others during class.

ˇ      Come to class on time and prepared for the day's work.

ˇ      Participate in class every day.

ˇ      Read and understand all materials.

ˇ      Work hard and honestly and professionally.



All written work must be at least 600 words, typed or printed in black ink. You must have your name on your paper, follow good writing etiquette, staple your pages together, and use page numbers for papers longer than two pages. Double-space everything. No cover pages or report covers. See my web site for a style guide.



Grades are not curved. Except in emergency situations, late work will lose one letter grade per weekday (Sunday through Saturday) without prior approval of the instructor.  Attendance will be taken and students are expected to attend class for the entire period and are expected to contribute to discussions.  Cheating constitutes a violation of University policy and students will be subject to University disciplinary actions.


Your grade will be based on your performance on the exams and papers. There will be three exams (all multiple choice). Additionally, you will have to turn in two (2) essays, each relating to the course books. Finally, I will award you full 10% participation grade if you speak consistently (that is twice a week). I will check your name each time you speak. Failure to speak will reduce your grade accordingly. So if you speak 80% of the expected amount, youšll receive 80% for class participation.


2 Multiple Choice Exams (20% each, 40% total)

1 Multiple Choice Final Exam (20%)

2 Essays (15% each; 30% total)

Class participation (10%)


Grading Scale:

100-93 A                  

92-90 A/B                 

89-85 B  

84-80 B/C                

79-70 C  

69-60 D

Student Conduct:

I expect all students to abide by the UW-Green Bay student conduct policies. See http://www.uwgb.edu/deanofstudents/policies_procedures/index.html and especially




Disability Notice:

Consistent with the federal law and the policies of the University of Wisconsin, it is the policy of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay to provide appropriate and necessary accommodations to students with documented physical and learning disabilities. If you anticipate requiring any auxiliary aids or services, you should contact the Coordinator of Services or me for Students with Disabilities at 465-2671 as soon as possible to discuss your needs and arrange for the provision of services.


Paper Turn In Checklist:

Have you remembered the little things?

¨  Have you put your name on the first page of the paper?

¨  Have you remember not to attach a cover page?

¨  Have you numbered your pages?

¨  Have you stapled your paper?

¨  Have you used black ink?

¨  Have you double-spaced your paper?




Have you remembered the big things?

¨  Have you clearly identified your thesis?

¨  Have you used proper paragraph form (with indents)?

¨  Have you used topic sentences?

¨  Have you used quotations to support your ideas?

¨  Have you used proper footnote and bibliographic formats?

¨  Have you revised your paper with several drafts?

Grading Rubric


As (90-100)

Bs (80-89)

Cs (70-79)

Ds (60-69)

F (59 and below)

Your essay is well constructed. It has paragraphs, topic sentences, and most importantly a clear thesis. Your essay demonstrates a command of the material. It uses quotes from the readings. You have an exceptional command of the English language. You avoid making many grammatical or stylistic errors.

Your essay is very good. It has paragraphs. You probably need to develop your thesis and/or topic sentences. You have a fair command of the reading materials but could have used more quotes or direct references. Your essay has some grammatical and stylistic problems.

Your essay is good. And yet, your essay needs work to improve its structure. You need to work on your thesis and/or topic sentences. You have a fair command of the reading materials. You could have used more quotes. You have serious grammatical and stylistic problems.

Your essay lacks coherence. You make errors in essay structure, style, and grammar. You lack a command of the reading materials. You make many stylistic and grammatical errors. This paper needs a lot of work.

You failed to complete the assignment.



Course Outline



Week One: [Reading: Carnes and Garraty, Chapters, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23; Read Johnson, write essay]

June 21 (M)—




June 22 (T)—

                  Second Industrial Revolution

Farmers in an Era of Change

                  Muckrakers and Gilded Age City


June 23 (W)—


Progressivism and World War I             

Tribal Twenties      

                  Discussion: Pick a source from Muckrakers and be able to discuss it.


June 24 (R)—

Jazz Age

Film: One Woman, One Vote

Discussion of Johnson

PAPER DUE            


Week Two [Reading: Carnes and Garraty, Chapters 25, 26, 27, 28]


June 28 (M)—

                  Great Depression and New Deal

World War II

Cold War


June 29 (T)—


Civil Rights

Film: A. Philip Randolph: For Jobs and Freedom


June 30 (W)—


Exam Number One


July 1 (R)—




Week Three: [Reading: Carnes and Garraty, Chapters 29, 30; Read MacLean and write paper]


July 5 (M)— No School


July 6 (T)—


"Malaise" and the 1970s

Film: Meltdown: Three Mile Island


July 7 (W)—

Film: Troublesome Creek

A New America? Reagan Years

Discussion: Pick a presidential speech and be prepared to discuss it.


July 8 (R)—


Exam Number Two


Week Four: [Reading: Carnes and Garraty, Chapters 31, 32]

July 12 (M)—


Bush and War on Terror



July 13 (T)—


Discussion of MacLean

Discussion: Read the Patriot Act and be prepared to discuss it.


July 14 (W)—

Film: Iraq War

                  Discussion: Pick a document about the War on Terror and be prepared to discuss it.


July 15 (R)—


                  Final Exam



Introduction to Lincoln Steffens's Shame of the Cities



Lincoln Steffens Exposes Corruption in St. Louis



Plunkitt Responds to Steffens



The Shame of America



The Murder of Postmaster Baker



Ida B. Wells Protests the Murder of a Black Postmaster



Senator Benjamin R. Tillman Justifies Violence Against Blacks



Presidential Speeches

Carter's "Malaise Speech"



John F. Kennedy's 1961 Inaugural



Ronald W. Reagan's 1981 Inaugural



Ronald W. Reagan's 1985 Inaugural



Barak Obamašs 2009 Inaugural



Text of the USA Patriot Act




War on Terror

Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US



Torture Documents





Sec. of State Powell at the UN, Feb. 2003



Weapons of Mass Destruction



President Obamašs National Security Speech, 21 May 2009



Former Vice President Dick Cheney's National Security Speech, 21 May 2009