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UCSB Hist 133 B, Winter 2007
History in the Public Realm: Collective Memory?
Mondays 2-4:50pm, HSSB 4201

Prof. Marcuse (homepage)
HSSB 4221, 893-2635
Office hours: Tue 12:30-2:30pm

History in the Public Realm: Collective Memory?
Course Syllabus
(pdf print version)

Course Description
Books to Purchase
Schedule of
Topics & Readings

Course Description (back to top; jump down to schedule of topics)

This graduate reading seminar explores how scholars have attempted to conceptualize how historical events affect the social and political behaviors of individuals, groups, and societies. Scholars often conceive of this process as an interaction between "the past," or at least an objectively fixable "history" as recorded in sources and interpreted by professional historians, and a more subjective and malleable "memory" that accrues in the minds of individuals and is shared among groups.

The course is designed both for students with a dissertation field in European history, and for students with an emphasis in public history. It should not only provide solid grounding in aspects of public history in Europe, but also prepare students in a general way for my subsequent 2-quarter research seminar in public history (Hist 217BC).

Each week we will all read several articles, chapters, or a monograph as "core readings." Two students will work with the professor to produce a thesis paper on those readings. Additionally, pairs of students will read supplementary selections and present their results to the class.

Your Contribution (Course Requirements) (back to top)

  1. Intensive preparation and active participation in seminar discussion--this goes without saying!
  2. Discussion leaders. Each week two students will work with the professor to prepare a thesis paper and an annotated bibliography on the core readings. They will present their findings and lead the discussion in the first part of the seminar.
  3. Weekly thesis papers and annotated bibliographies. The second part of each seminar will focus on the supplementary readings. Teams of 2-4 students will prepare thesis papers with annotated bibliographies relating their additional readings to the core readings.
    • All thesis papers and bibliographies are due Sunday evenings by 10pm (e-mailed to me as a .doc or .rtf attachment). I will format, print and duplicate these for everyone.
    • A ca. 15 page literature review on one of the course topics or subtopics, due Monday, March 19, at 2pm. Students continuing in 217BC may use this paper as general preparation for their research project, but it is not and should not be a prospectus.

Books for Purchase (back to top)

  • Course Reader, 198 pages, $17.25 at GrafikArt in Isla Vista (table of contents and some essays online)
  • James Wertsch, Voices of Collective Remembering (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2002), 202 p. UCSB: BF378.S65 W47 2002 ($25 on amazon)
  • Jan Gross, Neighbors: The Destruction of the Jewish Community in Jedwabne, Poland (Princeton, 2001), 260 pages
  • Colette Waddell, Through the Eyes of a Survivor (Carpinteria: Top Cat Press, 2007)

Schedule of Topics and Core Readings
(back to top)

Jan. 8


  • Discussion of core concepts, writing thesis papers and lit reviews, and of historical relativism

Jan. (15)

Individual vs. Collective Memory: Disciplinary Approaches

  • Core : Freud (1914-pdf), Halbwachs (1940/1980-pdf)
  • Supplementary : Funkenstein, Connerton, Crane, Hutton, Ricoer, Matsuda, Klein

Jan 22

Cognition and Memory (Psychological Approaches) :

  • Core : Pennebaker et al, Collective Memory (1996), ch. 1,2, 7, 8, 14
  • Supplementary : Irwin-Zarecka (1994), Fentress & Wickham (1992)

Jan. 29

"Sites" of Memory: Theory .

  • Core : Nora (1984 & 1992), Wood (1999)
  • Supplementary : Ho Tai (2001), Gedi/Elam (1996), Erinnerungsorte, Rousso, Bal et al

Feb. 5

"Sites" of Memory: Examples .

  • Core : Wertsch (2002)
  • Supplementary : none (start Gross for next week)

Feb. 12

Studies of National Memory : Any & All Media over Time

  • Core : Marcuse (2006), Gross (2001), Polonski/Michlic (2004): Intro
  • Subtopics : Germany, France, Israel, Poland, US, …

Feb. (19)

"Vectors" of Memory : The Means of Transmission (focus: film)

  • Core : Kaes (1990)
  • Supplementary : Rousso (1991); Schandler (2000); …

Feb. 26

Transmission of Memory: Generations :

  • Core : Mannheim (1928), Marcuse (2003)
  • Supplementary : Loewenberg (1971), Spitzer (1973), Hareven (1978/92)

Mar. 5

Biography, Autobiography, and Oral History

  • Core: Waddell (2007)
  • Supplementary: Brenner (2006)

Mar. 12

Teaching History
  • Core: Wineburg (2001)
  • Subtopics: Curricula, debates, …

Mar. 19

Final paper due: Monday, March 19, 2pm

Students with disabilities. If you are a student with a disability and would like to discuss special academic accommodations, please contact me via e-mail or during my office hours..

syllabus prepared for web by H. Marcuse on Feb. 9, 2007, updated: /07
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