World Civilizations from 1600 - 1st year

Concentrates on the processes and results of encounters between peoples of different civilizations or cultural regions from approximately AD 1600 to the present. These encounters involved the establishment of economic and trading relationships, the imposition of colonial regimes, the struggles for hegemony between peoples of different civilizations, and the massive process of de-colonization in the 20th Century.


By the end of this course, students will be able to:

1. Distinguish the characteristics of the world’s major civilizations in their geographical settings;

2. Trace the development of traditional civilizations and recognize their enduring influences;

3. Describe significant global processes, such as: emergence and growth of civilization, agricultural and urban revolutions, human migration, effects of disease and ecological forces,; imperialism, decolonization, and industrialization;

4. Describe the interactive roles which social, religious, political, economic, scientific and technological forces have played among the civilizations of the world;

5. Discuss the historical dimensions of contemporary world affairs and issues;

6. Compare and contrast the responses of the world’s peoples as a result of intercultural contacts and the diffusion of ideas, institutions, and inventions;

7. Draw upon one’s knowledge of the varieties of human experiences and sympathetic understanding of cultures other than one’s own, to define one’s role as a global citizen of the contemporary world.


Course topics will include the following:

1. Absolutism and Power in Europe, 1648-1763

2. Social Change in Europe, 1714-1774

3. The European Dream of Enlightenment: Science, Art and Philosophy in the Eighteenth Century

4. Revolution in the Western World

5. The European Shadow over Africa and Asia, 1650-1815

6. Industrialization and European Global Hegemony, 1825-1914

7. European Politics, 1825-1914

8. Asia, Africa and the Middle East, 1800-1914

9. World War and Tragic Peace

10. International Economic and Political Climate, 1920-1945

11. The Cold War, Russia and Eastern Europe, 1945-1995

12. The Developed World: Economic Challenges and Political Evolution

13. The Developing World: The Struggle for Survival

Method of Instruction:

1. Lectures

2. Class Discussions

3. Small-Group Work

4. Student Presentations

5. Use of Library for Research Projects

6. Use of Audio-Visual Media Resources (Videos; Films; Slides; Transparencies)

Types of Assignments:

1. Chapter-length assignments in required textbooks and selected supplemental readers.

2. Additional appropriate assignments may include library research in preparation for short papers, book reports, term papers or individual reports.

3. Note-taking from reading and lecture materials.

4. Well-organized essays and/or reports reasonably free of major errors in grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

Sample Text:

1. Traditions and Encounters. Vol. 1. Jerry Bentley, Herbert Ziegler; McGraw Hill 2000.

2. Atlas: Harper-Collins World History Atlas (Rand-McNally, 1994)