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History 183, Summer 2013 Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday, 9:00–12:45 Marsh Life Science Building, room 107 Professor: Andy Buchanan Email: Andrew.Buchanan@uvm.edu Office: Wheeler 303, phone: 656-5850 Office hours: Wednesdays 2:30–3:30, and by appointment
Objectives and Assigned Reading
The course will review the place of war in the development of America from the early 17th century to the end of the Vietnam War. In particular we will examine the relationship between war and decisive developments in American history, from the earliest European settlement of the New World, through the Revolutionary and Civil Wars and the emergence of the United States as a world power at the end of the nineteenth century, to the consolidation of American hegemony following World War Two. We will also discuss the evolving relationship between the armed forces and American society as a whole. While we will study battles and campaigns, this study will be situated in the context of the broader social, political, economic, and diplomatic aspects of American history. The course will also provide an outline of some of the main aspects of military theory, including the work of Carl von Clausewitz and Alfred Thayer Mahan. Course reading will involve the study and discussion of both primary and secondary sources, and will include recent scholarly articles as well as the required texts listed below. Articles will be posted on the Blackboard academic website. Classroom work will include class discussion based on assigned readings as well as lectures, and participation in discussion will contribute to your overall grade. Reading the assigned texts before class will be critical to your ability to participate fully in class discussion. The following books are required reading: • • John Whiteclay Chambers and G. Kurt Piehler (eds), Major Problems in American Military History, Houghton Mifflin, 1999, ISBN-10: 0-669-33538-X Russell Weigley, The American Way of War, Indiana University Press, 1977, ISBN-10: 0-253-28029-X
Organization of the Course and Grading
Over the course of the term, you will write one 2,500-word term paper. You can choose either to answer one of the questions on the list below or to write on any topic pertaining to American Military History and agreed between you and the instructor. This essay will account for 60% of your final grade. The course is organized to encourage classroom discussion, and your participation in these discussions, based on demonstrating familiarity with the assigned reading, will account for 40% of your final grade. Your overall course grade will consist of the following elements: Attendance: Essay Participation in class discussion: See policy below 60% 40%
Attendance and Academic Policy:
Students are required to attend all scheduled classes. Students may be excused absence from class for medical, athletic, or religious reasons, and, if possible, should discuss this with me beforehand. Students have the right to practice the religion of their choice, and should give me a schedule of religious holidays that they will be observing by the end of the second full week of term. Unexcused absences will result in your final grade being lowered by one point for each absence. In all your written work, you should use proper citations (footnotes) whenever you quote directly from another author or use statistics or other supporting material. We will review how to make citations in class. The university considers plagiarism—copying someone else’s words without attributing them—to be a serious breach of academic integrity. University policy regarding academic discipline and academic honesty can be found in the Cat’s Tale Student Handbook.
Tuesday May 21 Introductions and Overview of Course. Critical Approaches to American Military History Break Wars of Dispossession Against Native America Reading: Wayne E. Lee, “Peace Chiefs and Blood Revenge: Patterns of Restraint in Native American Warfare, 1500–1800,” The Journal of Military History, Vol. 71 No. 3, July 2007, available on Blackboard Major Problems, Chapter 2, documents 1-5, pages 39–46 Wednesday May 22 The Wars for Empire in North America and the Origins of the American Revolution, 1662–1775 Break Strategies of Attrition and Partisan War: How the Revolutionary War was Won Reading: American Way of War: Chapters 1 and 2 Major Problems, Document 3, page 68 Thursday May 23 The Face of Battle—the Saratoga Campaign, 1777 Break Federalists, Democratic Republicans, and the War of 1812 Reading: David Nolan, “Legacy of Controversy: Gates, Schuyler, and Arnold at Saratoga,” Military Affairs, Vol. 37, No. 2, (Apr. 1973). Posted on Blackboard American Way of War: Chapter 3 Major Problems: Chapter 4, pp. 95–106
Tuesday May 28
Professionalism, Mexico, and Bleeding Kansas—the Military and Society on the Road to the Civil War Break From Limited War to Preserve the Union to a Revolutionary War Against Slavery—Why the Union Won the Civil War. Reading: American Way of War: Chapters 6 and 7 Recommended Reading: American Way of War: Chapters 4 and 5
Wednesday May 29
The Face of Battle—The Antietam Campaign, 1862 Break Class Debate: Was the American Civil War a Modern Total War? Reading: Articles by Lance Janda “Shutting the Gates of Mercy: The American Origins of Total War, 1860–1880,” The Journal Of Military History, Vol. 59, No. 1, available on Blackboard, and Mark E. Neely, “The Generalship of Grant and Sherman: Was the Civil War a Modern “Total” War? A Dissenting View” in Major Problems, pages 178–185
Thursday May 30
Reconstruction, Indian Wars, and Army Reform—the United States Military from the Civil War to 1898 Break Alfred Thayer Mahan, Theodore Roosevelt, and the Preparation of Empire. Reading: American Way of War: Chapter 9 Major Problems, Chapter 8, pages 225–226
Tuesday June 4
The Spanish American War, the Occupation of the Philippines and the “Boxer” Rebellion—America Steps Onto the World Stage Break The United States and World War One—America Becomes a European Power Reading: Major Problems: Chapter 9, pages 248–276 Recommended Reading: American Way of War: Chapter 10
Wednesday June 5
The United States and World War Two: The War in Europe Break The United States and World War Two: The War in Asia and the Pacific Reading: American Way of War: Chapters 13 and 14
Thursday June 6
Class Discussion: The Good War? Break The “American Century,” Containment, and the Korean War. Reading: Article by Neil A. Wynn, “‘The ‘Good War’: The Second World War and Postwar American Society,” Journal of Contemporary History, Vol. 31, No. 3, (July 1996), available on Blackboard Recommended Reading: American Way of War: Chapter 16
Tuesday June 11
The Cold War from Korea, Cuba, and Vietnam to the Fall of the Berlin Wall Break Class Discussion: The Vietnam War Reading: Major Problems: Essays by Richard Buzzanco and H.R. McMaster, pages 413–443 Recommended Reading: American Way of War: Chapters 17 and 18
Wednesday June 12
The American Way of War Today Break Presentation and Discussion of Term Papers
Thursday June 13
Presentation and Discussion of Term Papers Break Wrap-Up and Evaluation
HST 183Z: United States Military History Term Paper Papers must be turned in by 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday June12 Double-spaced hard copies only, please!
Write a 2,000–2,500 word essay answering one of the following questions.
You are encouraged to quote from the primary documents and articles in Major Problems in American Military History in support your answer. The assigned texts contain sufficient material to provide full answers to all the questions, but you are welcome to draw on other primary and secondary sources. All direct quotations must be properly cited.
1. “All the major turning points in American History have been marked by war.” Discuss.
2. Is there an “American Way of War” and, if so, how would you define it?
3. Compare and contrast America’s experience of coalition warfare in the First and Second World Wars.
4. What role did naval power play in the rise and consolidation of American global hegemony?
5. Discuss the relationship between contingency and determinism in shaping the outcome of either the Civil War or the war in the Pacific, 1941–1945.
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