HIS 122: THE WORLD SINCE 1945


North Island College Fall 2021

Meeting Time: M-W: 2:30-3:50 pm

Meeting Place:  Village N

Instructor: Dan Hinman-Smith

Office:  Village G6

Office Hours:  Tuesday: 1:30-4:30 pm (or by appointment)

Office Phone: 250-334-5000, Extension 4024

Web- Site for Course:  http://www.misterdann.com/contentscontemporary.htm  

E-Mail: dan.hinmansmith@nic.bc.ca

North Island College is honoured to acknowledge the traditional territories of the combined 35 First Nations of the Nuu-chah-nulth, Kwakwaka'wakw and Coast Salish traditions, on whose traditional and unceded territories the college's campuses are situated.  The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's final report calls for 94 actions toward restoring a balanced relationship between indigenous peoples and settler communities in this country.


Course Description and Learning Outcomes

HIS 122 seeks to place contemporary international affairs within a broad historical and analytical perspective.  The course highlights a number of events, trends and themes that have shaped the history of both individual nations and the international system since the end of World War II in 1945.  Topics to be studied will include the history of the Cold War; decolonization and the struggle of developing nations to gain political and economic stability; the "rise" of Asia; the Arab-Israeli Conflict; the Islamic resurgence; the collapse of Soviet-style communism and the nature of conflict in the post-Cold War world; the development of the global economy since Bretton Woods; and the relationship between the history of international institutions and world issues since 1945.

By the end of the course, students should be able to do the following:

Demonstrate a basic familiarity with key events, trends and themes in world history since 1945.

Frame significant contemporary issues within an historical context.

Demonstrate  familiarity with the major media sources available for those who would follow current affairs and offer reasoned explanations for why they would highlight some outlets as of particular interest and merit.

Exhibit the ability to analyze primary and secondary historical sources and to offer their own interpretations based upon such analysis.

Outline the next steps they might take in their efforts to become fully engaged global citizens.


Texts

Robert F. Worth.  A Rage For Order: The Middle East In Turmoil, From Tahrir Square To ISIS.  New York: Basic, 2016.

Katherine Boo.  Behind The Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, And Hope In A Mumbai Undercity.  New York: Random House, 2014.

Ian Buruma.  Year Zero: A History Of 1945.  New York: Penguin, 2013.

***It is important that you acquire these books.  All three books are available for purchase through the NIC Bookstore at a total cost of $69. I have a number of extra copies of A Rage For Order that I am willing to sell at cost to any interested students for $10 apiece.  A couple copies of each book are also available on short-term reserve loan from the Comox Valley branch of the NIC Library.  I also have provided links to e-text editions above.


A Tentative Class Schedule

Week 1

Wednesday, September 8

a)  Introduction

b)  Cartoon Corner


Week 2

Monday, September 13

a) Discussion:  Arab Spring Ten Years Later

b)  Video: "Bitter Rivals: Iran And Saudi Arabia," Frontline, PBS (2018, 180 mins).

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Arab Spring Ten Years Later Discussion Topic


***Letter Of Introduction Due as Hard Copy or through Blackboard Learn (1%)


Wednesday, September 15

a)  Discussion: Current Events And HIS 122

b)  Finish Video: "Bitter Rivals: Iran And Saudi Arabia," Frontline, PBS (2018, 180 mins).

Listening Assignment:

Listen to one episode of PRI's The World ( PRI's The World Program Page ) and one episode of BBC World Service Global News Podcast.  Try to decide whether you would like to listen to more episodes of either programme, perhaps even on a regular basis, as you follow International Current Events throughout the semester.

Reading Assignment:

Browse in some of the different BBC World News pages:  BBC News World; BBC News Middle East; BBC News Africa; BBC News Asia; BBC News Europe; BBC News Latin America.  Find at least one news story of interest and be ready to briefly introduce that story during our Wednesday class.

Optional Extras:

Watch one episode of Deutsche Welle's The Day.  You are, of course, welcome to watch more episodes of this programme throughout the semester for the International Current Events component of the course.

Watch one episode of France 24's Latest International News.  You are, of course, welcome to watch more episodes of this programme throughout the semester for the International Current Events component of the course.


Week 3

Monday, September 20

a)  Lecture: God Returns -- Islam And The Middle East Since 1979 (Part I)

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Iranian Revolution At 40 Discussion Topic

Listening And Viewing:

Audio: "The Siege Of Mecca," Throughline, NPR, November 14, 2019 (44 mins.)

Wednesday, September 22

a)  Discussion: Understanding Egypt

b)  Lecture: God Returns -- Islam And The Middle East Since 1979 (Part II)

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Understanding Egypt Discussion Topic

Optional Extras:

Video: "Egypt In Crisis," Frontline, PBS, September 17, 2013 (53 mins.)

Video: "Bush's War," Frontline, PBS (2008) [270 mins.]


Week 4

Monday, September 27

a)  Discussion: Rage For Order

b)  Discussion: Black Wave

c)  Introduce African Country Studies Mini-Project

Reading Assignment:

Robert Worth, Rage For Order: The Middle East In Turmoil, From Tahrir Square To ISIS

Optional Extras:

Browse extensively in Black Wave: Saudi Arabia, Iran, And The Forty-Year Rivalry That Unraveled Culture, Religion, And Collective Memory In The Middle East Discussion Topic

Wednesday, September 29

a)  Discussion:  Understanding Syria

b)  Lecture:  "It's Your Turn, Doctor Bashar Al-Assad" -- The Syrian Civil War

Reading Assignment:

Zachary Lamb, "Syria's Civil War: The Descent Into Horror," Council On Foreign Relations (February 19, 2020).

Browse extensively in Understanding Syria Discussion Topic

Optional Extras:

Video: "For Sama," Frontline, PBS, November 19, 2019 (95 mins):  ***This is an excellent but very intense documentary.  It includes a number of violent and upsetting scenes.


Week 5

Monday, October 4

a)  Discussion: Israeli-Palestinian Documents -- Questions About The Israeli-Palestinian Documents

b)  Lecture: : God Returns -- Islam And The Middle East Since 1979 (Part III)

Reading Assignment:

Israeli Declaration Of Independence, 1948.

Palestinian National Charter, 1968.

Hamas Covenant, 1988.

Wednesday, October 6

a)  Discussion: Six-Day War At 50

b)  Lecture: Wounded Spirits In The Promised Land -- The Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1948-Present (Part I)

c)  Discussion: The Great War As World History

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Six-Day War At 50 Discussion Topic

Browse extensively in Great War As World History Discussion Topic


***Friday, October 8:  First Journal Installment Due through Blackboard Learn (Use either the Regular Journal [Option 1] or the Note-Taking/Journal Combo [Option 2] format)  [30%]


Week 6

Monday, October 11

NO CLASS:  THANKSGIVING

Wednesday, October 13

a)  Lecture: Wounded Spirits In The Promised Land -- The Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1948-Present (Part II)

b)  Discussion: Understanding South Africa

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Understanding South Africa Discussion Topic

Optional Extras:

Video:   "28 Up South Africa," Part One, Al Jazeera, 2013.

Video: "28 Up South Africa," Part Two, Al Jazeera, 2013.

Video: "28 Up South Africa," Part Three, Al Jazeera, 2013.


Week 7

Monday, October 18

a)  Video:  "A Thousand Cuts." Frontline, PBS (2020, 100 mins)

b)  African Country Studies Workshop Prep

Wednesday, October 20

a)  Introduce BBC Country Profile Worksheet

b)  African Country Studies Workshop

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in your nation for History And The Headlines: Africa Country Studies


***Class Participation Check-In


Week 8

Monday, October 25

a)  Lecture: "This Land With Fire In Itself" -- Modern South Africa

b)  Discussion: Jinnah And Malala

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Jinnah And Malala Discussion Topic

Browse in Understanding Pakistan Discussion Topic

Optional Extras:

Video: "Bangladesh -- Dawn Of Islamism," DW Documentary, April 17, 2018 (42 mins)

Wednesday, October 27

a)  Lecture: Pakistan -- A Hard Country

b)  Discussion: Understanding Pakistan

Country Profile Worksheet Materials:

Complete the BBC  Country Profile Worksheet using the BBC News Country Profile Web-Site (Due December 1)


Week 9

Monday, November 1

a)  Discussion: Understanding Kashmir

b)  Lecture: From Midnight to The New Millennium -- India Since Independence

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Understanding Kashmir Discussion Topic


Wednesday, November 3

a)  Video: "Tank Man" (Frontline, 2006, 90 mins.)

Reading Assignment:

Katherine Boo, Behind The Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, And Hope In A Mumbai Undercity


***Friday, November 5:  Second Journal Check-In (Use either the Regular Journal [Option 1] or the Note-Taking/Journal Combo [Option 2] format):  Although it is not important that you be all caught up through the end of Week 9, you should include all the work you have completed on your Second Half Journal to this point in the semester as a single file through Blackboard.  This is an ungraded but compulsory submission.  Those students who do not submit a journal installment at this time may incur an academic penalty. 


Week 10

Monday, November 8

a)  Discussion: Understanding India

b)  Discussion: Behind The Beautiful Forevers

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Understanding India Discussion Topic

Katherine Boo, Behind The Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, And Hope In A Mumbai Undercity

Wednesday, November 10

NO CLASS:  READING BREAK


Week 11  

Monday, November 15

a)  Introduce Latin American Country Studies Mini-Project

b)  China Rising: From Mao To Market

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Chinese Communist Party At 100 And Tiananmen Square At 30 Discussion Topic

Optional Extras:

Video: "China: Power And Prosperity," PBS Newshour, November 22, 2019 (104 mins.)

Video: "Part 2 -- The Mao Years, 1949-1976," China: A Century Of Revolution (95 mins.)

Audio: "Umbrellas Down," This American Life, July 10, 2020.

Browse in Understanding China Discussion Topic

Wednesday, November 17

a)  Discussion:  UN Charter and Declaration of Human Rights

b)  Lecture: "The Best Hope Of Mankind?": The Past, Present, And Future Of The United Nations

Reading Assignment:

UN Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, 1948:

United Nations Charter, 1945:

Listening And Viewing:

Audio: "Boundlessly Idealistic, Universal Declaration Of Human Rights Is Still Resisted," Morning Edition, NPR, December 10, 2018.


Week 12

Monday, November 22

a)  Discussion:  The CNN Cold War Series And BBC's Stories From The Big Freeze

b)  Video: "1989: People Power," People's Century (1999, 55 mins)

Optional Listening And Viewing:

Watch your assigned episode from the CNN Cold War Series (50 mins each) and come to class ready to briefly discuss

Listen to your assigned episode from the BBC's "Cold War: Stories From The Big Freeze" series (15 mins each) and come to class ready to briefly discuss

Optional Extras:

Video: "1945: Brave New World," People's Century, BBC Four (1996, 55 mins)

Video: "1947: Freedom Now," People's Century, BBC Four (1996, 55 mins)

Wednesday, November 24

a)  Discussion: Year Zero

b)  Latin American Countries Project Check-In

Reading Assignment:

Ian Buruma, Year Zero: A History Of 1945


Week 13

Monday, November 29

a)  Discussion: Understanding Ukraine

b)  Lecture:  History Of The European Union

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in Understanding Ukraine Discussion Topic

Optional Extras:

Video: "Generation Putin," DW Documentary, August 23, 2020 (42 mins).

Video:    "Putin, The New Tsar," BBC, 2018.

Video: "Rise And Fall Of The Russian Oligarchs," 2006.

Wednesday, December 1

a)  Latin America Country Studies Mini-Presentation And Discussion: Latin American Country Studies

Reading Assignment:

Browse extensively in your nation for History And The Headlines: Latin American Country Studies

Optional Extras:

Browse in Latin America Through Biography -- Che Guevara And Bob Marley As Case Studies Discussion Topic


***Wednesday, December 1:  BBC Country Profiles Worksheet Due (5%)

**Second Half Journal Due Sunday, December 5 (39%)


Evaluation

Letter Of Introduction 1%

First Half Journal

30%

Second Half Journal

39%

BBC Country Profiles Worksheet

5%

Class Participation

25%

a)  Letter Of Introduction(1%)

Write a short letter of introduction to me at the beginning of the semester.  This should be at least one hundred words in length and is designed to give me a beginning idea of who you are and how I might best serve you as a teacher, and to provide me with an opening snapshot of the class as a whole. You need not use the following questions as direct cues but they may be helpful.  Who are you?  Where are you from?  How might you begin to describe your community and what life is like there if you've come to NIC from far away?  What are your interests?  Why are you taking this course?  What are your thoughts and reflections as you begin this particular course?  Are there topics associated with the course that you know will be of potential interest? Do you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions?  This is an assignment I ask of students in each of my classes.  If you are enrolled in more than one class with me one semester, a single letter of introduction will suffice, but perhaps mention something about each of the courses.  If you have taken a class with me before, please update what you sent me before and send me a new letter of introduction.  You can send your Letter of Introduction to me by e-mail or hand it in to me during class.


b)  The Journal (69%) [30% + 39%]

The student Journal will be the main assignment in HIS 122.  It will represent your on-going engagement with the core class curriculum.  The focus of the Journal should be on analysis, interpretation, and commentary.  It should consist of a series of short writings of varying lengths about the course material.  I refer to these short writings as entries.  The purpose of the Journal is to provide you with the opportunity for frequent thoughtful and analytical commentary upon course-related material.

I have provided you with two different options for the Journal: (1) The Regular Journal; or (2) The Note-Taking/Journal Combo.  These are described in detail on the Assignment Page of my web-site.  You should familiarize yourself with these two models and make a clear choice between the options at the beginning of the course.

The Journal is designed to be coordinated with our weekly schedule.  You will be expected to demonstrate that you are doing your best to keep up with the syllabus and to assess, absorb, and interrogate the course material in a way which is meaningful for you.

It is expected that you work regularly on the Journal throughout the semester, writing in it on a weekly basis.  You will then need to hand in the Journal to me three times.

Your First Half Journal will be due at the end of Week 5 on Friday, October 8.  I want to check to ensure that you are off to a good start and that we share a mutual understanding as to the nature of the assignment.  This submission will be graded and will be worth 30% of your course grade.

The In-Progress Second Half Journal will be due at the end of Week 9 on Friday, November 5.  This check-in is ungraded but mandatory.  Although you do not necessarily need to be caught up through Week 9 at this time, I do expect to see that you have made substantial progress on your Journal since Week 5.  The Journal assignment includes the expectation that you work regularly upon it throughout the semester and this check-in will provide you with an opportunity to demonstrate that.  Those students who do not submit a Journal installment at this time may incur an academic penalty.

You will hand in your completed Second Half Journal at the end of the semester, on Friday, December 5.  This submission will be graded and will be worth 39% of your course grade.


c)  BBC Country Profiles Worksheet (5%)

There will be one large (5%) fact-based worksheet derived from the BBC News Country Profiles.


d)  Class Participation (25%)

The class participation grade will be based upon attendance; pre-class preparation; and the willingness to contribute thoughtfully to group discussion.

HIS 122 will combine lectures and documentaries with extensive discussion.  Sometimes we'll devote an entire class period to a particular text.  Other times, we will have a shorter but focused conversation about a particular topic.  Occasional ungraded and informal individual and group mini-presentations will also be folded into the course.  I would like to encourage a classroom environment in which all are eager to share their ideas and in which lectures are accompanied by thoughtful dialogue.  This will be dependent not just upon your willingness to speak, but your pre-class preparation and your willingness to listen.  The significant class participation component derives from my belief that the most engaging and successful courses are not ones in which knowledge is merely transferred from instructor to student but in which a genuine learning community exists in which all participants share their perspectives and insights.

 Although attendance is not required, I will take roll, and those who are not in class regularly will receive a poor grade for this part of the course.

I do appreciate that some students are shy or for other reasons may find it intimidating to speak in our group setting.  I do want these students to push themselves to try their best to engage with the class.  I will nonetheless be understanding of these students so long that they can clearly demonstrate to me by other means that not only do they come to class but that they do so well-prepared and are engaged with the material.


Time Commitment

Although the time it takes individual students to complete course responsibilities varies individually, I have set up the course with the expectation that you will probably need to devote at least five hours a week to this course on a regular basis right from the start of the semester.  It is important that you not fall behind on your assignments.  Please stay in close communication with me and let me know if you are experiencing challenges in keeping up with the curriculum.


Late Policy

The curriculum for this course is organized on a week-by-week basis, in which most assignments are cumulative and on-going.  Discussion amongst students is also dependent upon classmates keeping current with their studies.  Late assignments are also often an extra burden from an instructor standpoint.  Due dates should be noted and met.

However, I appreciate that there may be occasions where a very few extra days to polish an assignment in the midst of competing deadlines can be helpful, and thus I deliberately assume a good-faith effort on the part of students to meet the due dates and provide a small cushion of flexibility without any academic penalty.   That does not mean the due dates are unimportant or that extensions are automatically granted.  You must discuss possible extensions with me directly and I reserve the right to refuse to accept any late assignment if you do not check in with me before the due date.  As a general rule, no assignment will be accepted more than two weeks late and no end-of-the-semester assignment will be accepted more than one week late.


Writing Support And Peer Tutoring

Writing Support is available to all students at no additional cost.  Go to Writing Support for any or all of your assignments.  Every visit is a step toward becoming a better writer.  Use Writing Support as many times as you like, and at any point in your writing process.  The writing support faculty can help you understand the assignment, develop your ideas, outlines, thesis, and revision -- and anything else in-between.  Book your appointment through the library website, or visit the library desk to inquire about drop-ins.  There's also WriteAway, an online tutoring platform that allows you to upload your papers and assignments for detailed written feedback.  Both services may be found at https://library.nic.bc.ca/WritingSupport .


Student Technical Services

Our Student Technical Service team is available to help you with any technical issues that you may be experiencing as a student.  Please go to https://library.nic.bc.ca/studenttech for more information.


Learn Anywhere

NIC's Learn Anywhere website is geared to provide a collection of information that will help you be successful learning digitally by covering area such as: What is digital learning? How to be a digital learner while using NIC-supported technologies during your studies? A list of key skills and knowledge all students should have for successful learning in today's world, knowing your rights and responsibilities and Technology Readiness Checklists. More details at: https://learnanywhere.opened.ca/


Community Supports (24/7)

There are several supports available to help any student in distress. If you are in distress, please reach out for support.

Vancouver Island Crisis Line:  24/7 1-888-494-3888 (Available to students located on Vancouver Island only)

Crisis Suicide helpline:  24/7 1-800-784-2433 (Available to students located in Canada only)

BC 211:  Full list of community services available across BC.  Dial 2-1-1 on BC cellphone (Available to students located in BC only).

Here2Talk24/7 counselling support for post-secondary students: 1-877-857-3397 (Available to students located in Canada and offshore).


A Note On Plagiarism

Everything that you hand in should be your original work unless otherwise indicated.  Violations of this policy may result in being reported to the Academic Integrity Committee and in failing an assignment or the course in its entirety.  Please talk to me if you have any uncertainty about what is permitted here.  I want to help you to get as much out of this course as possible but, for this to happen, you need to put forth strong and honest effort.


Related Policy

Community Code of Academic, Personal and Professional Conduct (3-06)

Instructional Accommodation and Access Services for Students with Disabilities (3-17)

Student Appeals Policy (3-30)

Student Complaint Resolution Policy (3-31)

Evaluation of Student Performance Policy (3-33)

Sexual Violence and Misconduct Policy (3-34)

Course Outline Policy (3-35)

Academic Standing and Progression (3-37)

Grading System (4-14)


Welcome To The Course

 

 

 

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