Migration and Empire in World History

Transregional Connections, Exchange, and the Politics of
MWF 9:30 to 10:20AM (UGLC 116)

Mr. Chantra Vanna Potts
Office Hours: T 11-1:00PM W 3:30-430PM
Course Description and Objectives:
In this introductory World History course, Students (~100) will develop an understanding
of the ways that different regions of the world interacted. From the coffee that many enjoy in the
morning to the pajamas they wear to bed, these products move around the world in order to make
it into homes throughout the globe. Students will gain an understanding of the historical roots of
trade networks that interconnect the world and the processes that drive this movement in World
History from the study of major empires, transregional networks, and facilitators of trade that
include the Classical Islamic World, Mongolian Empire, the Ottoman Empire, the Spanish
Empire, the Portuguese Empire, the Dutch East India Company, the British East India Company,
and their connection to contemporary globalization.
This course will emphasize cross-cultural interaction, trading networks, and empire,
particularly focusing on the exchange of resources and material culture. Students will be
introduced to primary and secondary source analysis, the skills needed for constructing an
argument based on supporting evidence, formatting of essays with citations and structure, and
historical thinking. Through this, students will gain an appreciation for the diversity of
experiences and improve critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Students will work in
small groups and as a larger class engaging in discussions of course readings. Course work will
include the writing of a primary source analysis paper, writing of two short argumentative essay
utilizing primary and secondary sources, and a final exam essay covering the main topics of the
Grading Scale:
↑90=A; 90-80=B; 80-70=C; 70-60=D; 60↓
Grade Breakdown:
Primary Source Analysis:
Mid-term Essay:
Primary Source Analysis:
On-line Discussion Board/Participation:
Final Exam:


Discussion Board: On weeks labeled (Discussion Board), students will answer one or more
questions posted on the on-line discussion board for the reading done that week. These post
should be 50-100 words in length.
Primary Source Analysis: These essays will each be 500 words in length, 12-point font, Times
New Roman, and single-spaced. Each one is worth 15% of the final grade. The goal of this
assignment entails familiarizing the student with analyzing primary sources utilized in
constructing historical narratives and interpreting the source’s viability. The primary sources for
the essay will be provided by the instructor.
Mid-term and Final Essays: These essays will each be 1200-1500 words in length, 12-point font,
Times New Roman, and double-spaced with Chicago Style citation. Each paper is worth 25% of
the final grade and analyze the major themes of the course, migration and empire. The essays
will analyze the epic travel narratives assigned in the course, describing and interpreting the
relationship between migration and empire in World History. Late papers will be accepted up to
the following class session or up to 24hrs in case of the final for a full letter grade reduction.
In-class work: In addition to the assessments noted above, students will periodically receive
work to be completed in class. These assessments are meant to walk students through the process
of historical analysis and inquiry and have the opportunity to work with their peers.
A note on course readings: In the course, students will read two semi-autobiographical accounts
of empire and transregional networks. Additionally, a historical textbook is provided to be
offered as a guide to understand the historical context of the two accounts in conjunction with
lecture and discussion material provided by the instructor.
Required Readings:
Burbank, Jane and Frederick Cooper. Empires in World History: Power and the Politics of
Difference. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2011.
(Online version through UTEP Library: http://0-quod.lib.umich.edu.lib.utep.edu/cgi/t/text/textidx?c=acls;idno=heb30977.0001.001)
Conrad, Joseph. Heart of Darkness. Meneola, NY: Dover Publications, 1990.
Multatuli. Max Havelaar: Or the Coffee Auctions of the Dutch Trading Company. Translated by
Roy Edwards. New York: Penguin Classics, 1995.
Student Conduct: Attendance is mandatory for this class. Please arrive to class on time
and have completed the required work for the day’s class session. Students should have a
notebook or laptop for taking notes on lecture. Electronic devices such as laptops, tablets/I-pads,
and mobiles should only be used for accessing relevant information to the course. Social media

and browser surfing should wait till after class. Please keep private conversations and
distractions to a minimum out of respect for other students.
Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism: According to sections 1.3.1 of the UT
Regents’ Rules and Regulations, “It is the official policy of the University that all suspected
cases or acts of alleged scholastic dishonesty must be referred to the Dean of Students for
investigation and appropriate disposition. It is contrary to University policy for a faculty member
to assign a disciplinary grade such as an “F” or a zero to an assignment, test, examination, or
other course work as a sanction for admitted or suspected scholastic dishonesty…” In short,
anyone caught cheating will be reported to the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict
Resolution. For more on cheating see UT Regents’ Rules and Regulations section Don’t
plagiarize, be original and always cite your sources (paraphrases and direct quotes).
Students with Disabilities: If you require accommodations or suspect that you have a
disability please contact The Center for Accommodations and Support Services (CASS) at 7475148 or at cass@utep.edu or visit Room 106 of the Union East Building. For more info visit

Academic Calendar, Spring 2016

Week 1

Jan 20
Jan 22

Week 2

Jan 25
Jan 27
Jan 29

(Discussion Board)

Week 3
(Discussion Board)

Feb 1
Feb 3
Feb 5

Week 4

Feb 8
Feb 10
Feb 12

Week 5

Feb 15
Feb 17

(Discussion Board)

Feb 19

Week 6

Feb 22
Feb 24
Feb 26

Week 7

Feb 29
Mar 2
Mar 4

Spring Break


(Discussion Board)

(Discussion Board)

Week 8
(Discussion Board)


Course Introductions: What is History? What is Empire and
Imagining Empire: Read “Imperial Trajectories” Burbank and
Cooper (B&C)
Imperial Foundations of Europe: read B&C pages 23-42 Rome
Imperial Foundations of East Asia: read B&C pages 42-54
Lux Mundi/Zhongguo: read B&C pages 54-59 Insiders and
Legacy of Rome: read B&C pages 61-70 Constantinople and
Legacy of Rome: read B&C pages 70-80 Islam in the
Clash of Empires: read B&C pages 80-92 Comparisons
Pax Mongolica: read B&C pages 93-104 Chinggis Khan, the
Great Khan
Pax Mongolica: read B&C pages 104-114 Mongol Peace
Eurasian Connections: read B&C pages 114-115 The Khanates
Mediterranean and Beyond: read B&C pages 117-128 The
House of Habsburg
Mediterranean and Beyond: read B&C pages 128-140 Ottoman
In-class assessment: Reading a primary source
In-class assessment: Interpreting a primary source
Empires of Difference: read B&C pages 140-148 Diversity and
Maritime Empires: read B&C pages 149-170 Lowlands and
Maritime Empires: read B&C pages 170-184 Britain and France
Primary Source Analysis Paper due
Empires of Commerce: read Multatuli, Max Havelaar chapters
Empires of Commerce: read Multatuli, Max Havelaar chapters
Empires of Commerce: read Multatuli, Max Havelaar chapters
Spring Break
Empires of Commerce: read Multatuli, Max Havelaar chapters
Empires of Commerce: read Multatuli, Max Havelaar chapters
Empires of Commerce: read Multatuli, Max Havelaar chapters

Week 9

Mar 21
Mar 23
Mar 25

Week 10

Mar 28
Mar 30
Apr 1

(Discussion Board)

Week 11
(Discussion Board)

Week 12
(Discussion Board)

Apr 4
Apr 6
Apr 8

Apr 11
Apr 13
Apr 15

Empires of Commerce: Joint-Stock Company and Empire, The
Peer review session for Mid-term Essay
Mid-term Essay Due: Please drop off essay at office during
class time
In Mongolia’s Shadow: read B&C pages 185-199, Romanov
In Mongolia’s Shadow: read B&C pages 199-213, Qing Dynasty
Beyond the Steppe: read B&C pages 213-218, Closing Space
of Empire
Imagining a Non-Empire: read B&C pages 219-235, France and
the Caribbean
Imagining a Non-Empire: read B&C pages 235-245, British and
the Americas
Imagining a Non-Empire: read B&C pages 245-250, Spain and
the Americas
Myths of Empire: read B&C pages 287-301, Imperial Avenues
of Exchange
Myths of Empire: read B&C pages 301-312, A New Kind of
Myths of Empire: read B&C pages 312-329, Scramble for Africa /
the U.S. Empire?

Week 13

Apr 18
Apr 20
Apr 22

Darkest Place on Earth: read Conrad, Heart of Darkness pages
Darkest Place on Earth: read Conrad, Heart of Darkness pages
Darkest Place on Earth: read Conrad, Heart of Darkness pages

Week 14

Apr 25
Apr 27
Apr 29

Darkest Place on Earth: read Conrad, Heart of Darkness pages
“the Dark Continent”: King Leopold and the Belgian Congo
Imperial Terrain, Nation-state: read B&C pages 413-429, A New
World Order
Imperial Terrain, Nation-state: read B&C pages 429-442, Old

(Discussion Board)

Week 15

Final Exam

May 2
May 4
May 6

May 11

Habits, New Order

Imperial Repertoires: read B&C pages 443-459, Nature(s) of
Imperial Repertoires: Empire and Migration
Primary Source Analysis Paper Due
Final Exam time 10:00 to 12:45PM
Please turn-in Final Essay to office at this time.