United States

Americans tell many competing stories about the past. Historians have described the United States as a land of progress and of exploitation, of democracy and of capitalism, a melting pot and a site of racial conflict—sometimes all at the same time. In the U.S. regional track, students engage critically with these grand narratives while acquiring a deep knowledge of North American history. They also learn the research and writing skills to make unique and often pioneering contributions through major research projects. Some students choose to focus on early America, beginning before European contact and extending through the American Revolution and Civil War. Others focus on modern politics and social movements: the Cold War, the civil rights movement, gay and lesbian history, liberalism and conservatism, American cultural and military power. Still others engage U.S history through the lens of intellectual or religious history, or choose a grab-bag of courses allowing for the study of politics, war, race, sexuality, social change, the economy, labor, and much more across time. With as many as 40 courses offered each academic year, the U.S. regional track provides both breadth and depth to students of American history, while training them to write a new American history of their own.