Undergraduate Course: Race in the Atlantic World, 1450-1850 (HIST10363)
|School||School of History, Classics and Archaeology
||College||College of Humanities and Social Science
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Available to all students
|Summary||This course aims to introduce students to Atlantic history using one of its key themes: race. It seeks to provide an introduction not merely to broader frameworks of transnational history, but also to a range of methodological approaches in the study of social, cultural, political, and intellectual history. The course begins by looking at modern approaches to race and racism before charting ancient and medieval ideas. Moving to the Atlantic world, it focuses on the ways in which exotic peoples and lands were represented in European texts, and the social history of early settlement and colonial exploitation. Three sessions then follow on the history of racial ideas as they related to religion, science, and society. The course then turns to examine the twin crises of revolution and abolitionism and their role in the development of racial ideas and practices in Europe and the Americas. The final session explores the triumph of race throughout the Atlantic world before Darwin. A research-based approach to teaching and learning will be taken throughout, partly by drawing directly on the course leader's own research, and through a focus on the analysis of primary source material in each class.
1. Introduction: 'Race', 'racialism', 'racism'
2. Ancient and Medieval Thought (The Bible, ancient thought on race and slavery, medieval travels and ideas of monstrous races)
3. Voyages of Discovery: Africa, America, and the Pacific (Travel accounts from the C16 to the C18, particularly focusing on questions of the origins of exotic peoples)
4. Settlement, Slavery, and Ethnogenesis (Settler colonialism in America and the Caribbean, particularly involving case studies of Virginia and Jamaica focused on slavery and racial intermixture)
5. Racial Theology (Race within religious ideas: monogenism vs polygenism/pre-Adamism, the theological basis of ideas of human diversity throughout the period of study)
6. Racial Biology (The life sciences, particularly focused on questions concerning species, bodily features, physiognomy, the climate/environment)
7. The Enlightenment and Society (The social context of racial ideas in Europe, particularly regarding sex and reproduction; the sociological thought of the Enlightenment, especially stadial theories of progress and conjectural histories; the impact of Kant and the German Enlightenment)
8. The Revolutionary Challenge, 1780-1815 (The American, French, and Haitian revolutions)
9. Race and Abolition, 1772-1838 (Early legal challenges to slavery in Europe, revolution and abolitionism, the claims of people of mixed race, emancipationism)
10. Race Triumphant (Polygenism in the antebellum South, race in Britain, France, and Germany in the early C19)
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
|| Students MUST have passed:
||Other requirements|| A pass or passes in 40 credits of first level historical courses or equivalent and a pass or passes in 40 credits of second level historical courses or equivalent.
Before enrolling students on this course, Personal Tutors are asked to contact the History Honours Admission Secretary to ensure that a place is available (Tel: 503783).
Information for Visiting Students
|Pre-requisites||Visiting Students should usually have at least 3 History courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this) for entry to this course. We will only consider University/College level courses.
Course Delivery Information
|Not being delivered|
| Upon completion of this course students will: - have an understanding of the development of ideas relating to human diversity from the classical world to the mid-nineteenth century - recognise the influence of geographical, imperial, and social contexts on the shape of these ideas - be aware of the complex relationships between concepts of race and slavery and abolition, commerce, religion, science, and imperial expansion - be familiar with the sources and methods of intellectual, cultural, and Atlantic history - have produced a sound, properly referenced and analytical essay, in accordance with the common marking scale - be able to analyse primary texts, situating them in terms of context, genre, and argument - have demonstrated the above skills by way of essay, examination, and presentation
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
||Enhanced abilities in research, critical thinking, weighing up of arguments and evidence - production of an innovative research piece that adhere to bibliographical conventions - skills in presenting information and arguments to fellow students / lecturer in class
|Course organiser||Dr Brad Bow
Tel: (0131 6)50 9963
|Course secretary||Miss Clare Guymer
Tel: (0131 6)50 4030