1 The Progressive Era in America 16A:166 Fall, 2004 Mondays, 6:00 – 8:30 Shelton Stromquist 40 Schaeffer Hall 162 Schaeffer Hall 335-2301 firstname.lastname@example.org Office Hours: M 3:30-5 pm, T 12:30-2 pm Required books (all are available for purchase at Prairie Lights Bookstore, 15 S. Dubuque, 337-2681) Jane Addams, Twenty Years at Hull House David Brody, Steelworkers in America: the Nonunion Era W.E.B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk Glenda Gilmore, ed., Who were the Progressives? Hutchins Hapgood, The Spirit of Labor Upton Sinclair, The Jungle Robert Zieger, America’s Great War: World War I and the American Experience Course Overview and Goals This course seeks to provide students with an intimate knowledge of a volatile historical period (roughly 1890 to 1920) in which Americans in varied ways came to grips with the social and political consequences of industrial transformation. However imperfectly, ―progressives‖ lay the foundations for twentieth-century liberalism. Having witnessed the massive labor and class conflict of the late nineteenth century and the political mobilization of aggrieved farmers and workers in the 1890s, a generation of reformers and political activists skeptical of the political partisanship of the old party system turned their attention to rebuilding cities, modernizing state governance, and using government at the federal level to regulate the unbridled power of large corporations. But the period also brought other challenges in the form of racial polarization and the stirrings of a new, assertive rights-oriented African American movement; it witnessed unprecedented immigration and the massive influx of so-called ―new immigrants‖ from southern and eastern Europe that stirred nativist and racial exclusionist sentiment, even among would- be reformers; and class war reared its head again in the form of massive strikes in the West and in mass production centers of the East. These strikes provided powerful evidence that America had not yet solved its ―class problem.‖ World War I brought reformist impulses into collision with national, patriotic imperatives that revealed both the best and worst in American society. By the war’s end women stood on the verge of achieving suffrage; African Americans in unprecedented numbers had broken free of the constraints of the Jim Crow South to establish themselves in large urban centers of the 2 North, ready to begin a new era of community building and cultural self-definition. But in other respects the achievements of reform seemed substantially less than the ambitious programs ―the progressive movement’ had promised. Nonetheless, ―progressivism‖ had defined the outlines of twentieth-century liberalism in ways that profoundly shaped public policy and reform for the rest of the twentieth century. Students will have an opportunity to work on critical thinking and analytical skills, as well as writing clear and persuasive prose that draws on specific documentation to support historical arguments. Course Requirements Undergraduates 1) Attendance and participation. Regular attendance and participation in class discussions is required. Because this class meets only once a week, students missing more than two class sessions without prior permission will get no credit for this portion of the final grade. (A class sign-in list will be circulated each week.) Beyond attendance, students’ participation grade will be based on in-class discussion, preparation of a written (1-2 pp) response to one discussion question, a quiz (9/13) and contributions to the discussion page on the course web site. (15% of final grade.) 2) First paper. Students will write a short (5-6 pp) essay on either Jane Addams’ autobiography (Twenty Years at Hull House) or Anton Johannson’s biography (The Spirit of Labor). I will distribute a paper assignment with specific instructions on 9/13. The paper is due 9/27 in class. (15% of final grade.) 3) Term Paper. This paper (8-10 pp) will require use of web-based document collections and some secondary sources beyond those required for the course. You will select a topic based on one of a number of document collections at web sites to which I will introduce you. You must provide a brief description of your paper topic and the sources you intend to use by 10/26 (1-2 pp). Failure to do so will make final paper unacceptable. The paper itself will be due the last class, 12/6. (25% of final grade.) 4) Exams. A midterm exam (15%) is scheduled for the first hour of class on Monday, 10/11. The final exam (30%) will be held at our regularly scheduled class meeting time and place (6:00 pm, 12/13 in 40 SH.) Graduate Students 1) A 6-8 page paper comparing Jane Addams’ autobiography with that of another settlement house worker. Due 9/27. (15% of final grade.) 2) An 8-10 page historiographical paper on progressivism. Due 10/26. (20% of final grade. 3 3) A final paper (12-15 pp) on a topic to be chosen with approval of instructor. Due 12/6. (35% of final grade.) 4) Take home final. Question available 12/10; exam due 12/13. (30% of final grade.) Organizational and Procedural Matters Class meetings are organized around lectures, discussions and presentation of other material (films, photographs, etc.) The success of discussions in a class of this size will depend on whether students have read the required material and thought in advance about the discussion questions. I expect all students to keep up with the reading assignments and to come to class prepared to discuss them. Regular class attendance and close attention to the required readings, lectures and films, as well as participation in class discussions, will have a direct bearing on how well students do in this course. Since the lectures do not duplicate material covered in the readings, I assume that all students will have complete and detailed notes for all class sessions. For each assignment you will be given a letter and a percentage grade: A 92- 100%, A- 90-91%, B+ 88-89%, B 82-87%, B- 80-81%, C+ 78-79%, C 72-77%, C- 70- 71%, D+ 68-69%, D 62-67%, D- 60-61%, F below 60%. Students with disabilities should make an appointment to see me at the beginning of the semester to discuss whatever accommodations may be needed. If you must miss class because of illness or family emergency, you must inform me in advance. Email is fine: email@example.com Be certain to keep copies of all work submitted and all graded work received at least until final grades for the course have been awarded. THIS IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY. You should feel free to raise any concerns about the conduct of this class with me or with the chair of the History Department, 280 SH: Linda K. Kerber, 335-2302 (linda- firstname.lastname@example.org) Plagiarism will be strictly punished. If you have questions about how to use and appropriately cite material from other sources, see me or consult the ―Tools‖ page of the course web site for references to proper citation methods. For further information about the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences procedures for student complaints and plagiarism see the CLAS Student Academic Handbook, Course Web Site This course has a web site: http://www.uiowa.edu/~c16a166 consisting of several features, some of which will require a password (your Hawkid and password will get you into these pages, if you are registered for the course.) If you require instruction about 4 how to access the web site or require need assistance, please contact me. The web site consists of: Syllabus page. This provides a readily available copy of the syllabus and other handouts regarding assignments, exams, etc. Lecture outlines. I will post outlines for all lectures. Readings page. This page is password protected and will include a few short readings or documents not otherwise available. Tools page. Here you will find a guide with links to a variety of bibliographical and web-based library tools. Resources page. On this page you will find links to a wide variety of web sites and documentary sources for use on the final paper. Announcements page. This is a password protected place to find announcements pertaining to the course, assignments, deadlines or related events. Be certain to check regularly. Discussion page. This password protected page offers the opportunity to carry on discussion of questions or issues raised in class. This is not an alternative to in-class participation but another means of participation. The password protected pages can be accessed through the ―blackboard‖ portal on the web site. Class Schedule and Reading Assignments 8/23 Introduction and Organization The Problem of Progressivism 8/30 Looking Backward—Gilded Age Society and the Origins of Reform Reading: Addams, Twenty Years at Hull House, chpts. 1-6 Gilmore, Who were the Progressives? Introduction Discussion question: What was the ―subjective necessity‖ of settlements, according to Jane Addams? 9/6 LABOR DAY (no class) Reading: Hutchins Hapgood, The Spirit of Labor 5 9/13 The Crises of the 1890s—Labor conflict, populism and political realignment Quiz (20 minute essay question) Reading: Addams, chpts. 7-11 Discussion question: In what ways was Anton Johannson’s life typical or exceptional compared to other workers of his generation? 9/20 The Problem of the Trusts—Management, Workers, and the Public Reading: Sinclair, The Jungle (begin) Brody, The Steelworkers, 1-95 Film: Charlie Chaplin, ―Modern Times‖ 9/27 The ―new‖ immigrants and their communities Reading: Sinclair, The Jungle (continue) Brody, The Steelworkers, 96-124 Film: Charlie Chaplin, ―The Italian‖ Undergrads & Grads: 1st Paper Due 10/4 Wobblies, Socialists and the revolt of the laborers Reading: Sinclair, The Jungle (finish) Brody, The Steelworkers, 125-179 Hapgood, Spirit of Labor (review) Document: Howe, ―The Socialist Victory in Milwaukee‖ [see web site] Discussion question: Was the U.S. a ―class‖ society in the Progressive Era? Is it today? 6 10/11 Undergraduate MIDTERM EXAM (first hour of class) 2nd Hour: A ―Splendid Little War‖ and the new American Empire Reading: Howard Gillette, Jr., ―The Military Occupation of Cuba, 1899-1902: Workshop for American Progressivism,‖[see web site] Discussion question: Was ―empire‖ a ―progressive‖ project? 10/18 Boundaries of Difference—Progressivism and Race Reading: W.E.B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk Film: ―W.E.B. Du Bois: A Biography in Four Voices‖ Discussion question: To whom was Souls addressed and what was its message? 10/26 A Progressive movement—urban life and the reform impulse Grad Historiographical paper due Reading: Gilmore, Who were the Progressives? (Hofstadter, Sanders, Wiebe and McCormick), 25-139 Film: ―America and Lewis Hine‖ 11/1 The politics of municipal reform, the fight for suffrage, and the ―laboratory of the states‖ Reading: Gilmore, (Stromquist, Connolly, Flanagan and Gilmore essays) Addams, chpts. 13,14 Discussion: What variety of forms did municipal progressivism take? 11/8 Republican progressivism—TR, Taft and regulated capitalism Reading: Review Wiebe and McCormick in Gilmore, Who were the Progressives? Discussion question: How did TR’s policies reflect his particular notion of ―regulated capitalism‖? 7 11/15 1st hour: Election of 1912 and Wilson’s ―New Freedom‖ Document: The Platform of the Progressive Party [see web site] Discussion question: In what ways did the Progressive Party represent an ideological break with Republicans and Democrats? 2nd hour: World at War Reading: Zieger, America’s Great War, 1-84 Film: ―The Killing Floor‖ (excerpts) Discussion question: Why did some progressives (and socialists) believe that war was an opportunity to further their goals? 11/22 THANKSGIVING BREAK 11/29 War and American Society Reading, Zieger, 85-185 Brody, 180-213 Film: Killing Floor (more excerpts) Discussion question: Did war make American society more progressive? In what ways? 12/6 Postwar and the eclipse of progressivism? Reading: Zieger, 187-237 Brody, 214-278 Undergrad and Grad final papers due 12/13 Undergrad Final Exam, 6 – 8 pm, 40 SH.
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