Spencer Crew – Spring Courses

HIST 499:001: Slavery, Abolition, and the Underground Railroad
Slavery and its abolition was one of the major issues in the United States leading up to the Civil War. Southerners saw slavery as a positive good for themselves and for the enslaved people they controlled. Abolitionists saw slavery as a blemish on the nation and were committed to bring it to an end. The participants of the Underground Railroad took direct action to undermine slavery by aiding enslaved people seeking freedom escape and start new lives. Reading the ideas and stories of the individuals who were a part of this interracial activist movement, investigating how the underground railroad worked on a day-to-day basis, and examining how historians have assessed this movement will provide the foundation for research class participants will do on the underground railroad and abolition. The Underground Railroad was a complex operation which over the years has had many myths connected to it. Sorting the myth from reality will enable students to better understand how historians assess research material and craft a thesis for their work. They will then apply these insights to the writing of their own research paper for the class.

(W 1:30-4:15 pm)

HIST 691:001: Museum Studies
This course is designed to introduce graduate students to the theory and practice of museums with an emphasis on history institutions.  We will examine the origins of museums and the leaders who helped shape the field.  History and memory, surviving controversy, the changing role of museums, museum learning, creating exhibitions, the future of museums, and museums and innovation are among the issues which will be covered.  In the process the class will gain an understanding of the numerous challenges facing museums as well as the process of proposing, researching, and executing an exhibition.

(T 7:20-10:00 pm)