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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of History, Classics and Archaeology : History

Undergraduate Course: The Peculiar Institution: Slavery in the U.S. South, 1789-1860 (HIST10333)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of History, Classics and Archaeology CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course examines the history of slavery in the U.S. South between the American Revolution and the Civil War.
Course description This course aims to provide students with a broad understanding of U.S slavery in its final decades. We will explore slavery on a number of levels: as an economic system that allowed slaveholders to exploit land and forced labour; as a mechanism of racial control; and as an institution that purportedly exercised absolute control over slaves' lives and labour. Reflecting the thrust of the last generation of slavery studies, our major focus will be on the lives of slaves themselves, exploring their work patterns, personal relationships, social and religious lives, and gender roles and identities.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations 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 Administrator to ensure that a place is available (Tel: 50 3780).
Additional Costs 0
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students must have 3 History courses at grade B or above. We will only consider University/College level courses. Enrolments for this course are managed by the CAHSS Visiting Student Office, in line with the quotas allocated by the department. All enquiries to enrol must be made through the CAHSS Visiting Student Office. It is not appropriate for students to contact the department directly to request additional spaces.
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, command of the body of knowledge considered in the course;
  2. Demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to read, analyse and reflect critically upon relevant scholarship;
  3. Demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, an ability to understand, evaluate and utilise a variety of primary source material;
  4. Demonstrate, by way of coursework and examination as required, the ability to develop and sustain scholarly arguments in oral and written form, by formulating appropriate questions and utilising relevant evidence;
  5. Demonstrate independence of mind and initiative; intellectual integrity and maturity; an ability to evaluate the work of others, including peers.
Reading List
Peter Kolchin, American Slavery, 1619-1877

John Blassingame, "Using the Testimony of Ex-Slaves: Approaches and Problems,"
Journal of Southern History 41 (1975): 473-92.

Carl N. Degler, 'Why Historians Change their Minds,' Pacific Historical Review 45
(1976): 167-184.

Walter Johnson, 'On Agency,' Journal of Social History 37:1 (2003): 113-126.

Norman Yetman, 'Ex-Slave Interviews and the Historiography of Slavery,' American
Quarterly 36 (1984): 181-210.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsPeculiar Institution
Course organiserDr David Silkenat
Tel: (0131 6)50 4614
Course secretaryMiss Annabel Stobie
Tel: (0131 6)50 3783
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