My Teaching This Week

17 09 2010

I am teaching three courses this term. They are HIST 1406: Pre-Confederation Canadian History; HIST 3266: The History of the North American West/Canadian West; HIST 4135: British North America and the Road to Confederation.

Today was our first full week of classes.

HIST 1406: Pre-Confederation Canadian History

In my lecture on Tuesday, the subject was First Nations history before Contact.

Linguistic Map of North America

In Friday’s lecture, I spoke about the Norse voyages to North America. I used this user-created map on Google Maps to teach about the Norse voyages.

L'Anse Aux Meadows

HIST 3266: The History of the North American West

My lecture on Wednesday was about the life and times of George Vancouver. I used his life story to explore such themes as: the search for an accurate means of determining longitude; the legacy of James Cook;  the sea-otter pelt trade in the Pacific North West; imperial rivalries in on West coast of North America and the competing claims of Russia, Britain, Spain, and the United States; the Nootka Sound Crisis as an episode in Anglo-Spanish diplomacy; the importance of hydrography in the making of the modern world.

George Vancouver

HIST 4135: British North America and the Road to Confederation

Our readings this week were introductory works designed to set the stage for the more specialized sources we will be reading later in the year.  The readings were designed to ensure that all students in the class were familiar with the outlines of the political history of North America in the period from the Compromise of 1850 to the early 1870s.

R. Douglas Francis, Richard Jones, Donald B. Smith, Origins : Canadian History to Confederation, 6th edition, pages 240-378. [ON RESERVE] To learn the basics about Confederation.
W.L. Morton, “British North America and a Continent in Dissolution, 1861-71” History 47 (1962): 139-56. A great tri-national comparative overview of developments in BNA, US, Mexico in the 1860s.

Alan Brinkley, American History : a Survey, 13th edition. Chapter 12 to 15. [ON RESERVE] To learn about the Civil War’s causes, course, and important personalities.

F. M. Carroll, “The Perils of Mid-Nineteenth-Century Anglo- American Relations” International History Review
16(1994): 304-316. A review essay of five works that place the Civil War in an international context. Pretty useful for a class in which we will be thinking about the Civil War’s impact on British North America.



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