Fall 2022

US in Wld: 1756-1898

Listed in: History, as HIST-156


Andrew Bell (Sections 01, 01F and 02F)


[US/TE/TR] This course is an introduction to the major trends and developments in United States foreign relations from the nation’s rise from a loose coalition of colonies on the Atlantic seaboard to a continental and world power by the beginning of the twentieth century. This course will seek to understand the effect of expansion on the nation’s values, institutions, and history, and examine the methods used to extend the nation’s borders, trade, and influence. It engages “foreign relations” in broad terms to incorporate ideology, race, gender, technology, economics, geopolitics, and culture as important forces in shaping the United States’ understanding of and behavior toward the world. The country’s domestic character critically determined the ways in which the nation’s power took shape on the world stage, even as global interactions shaped nascent U.S. institutions and identities. This course will examine how economic and security needs shaped foreign policy goals, while social norms and domestic values informed the ways Americans interacted with other societies. Three class meetings per week.

Fall semester. Limited to 40 students. Fifteen spaces reserved for first-year students. Professor Bell.

How to handle overenrollment: Preference given to History majors, by seniority if necessary

Students who enroll in this course will likely encounter and be expected to engage in the following intellectual skills, modes of learning, and assessment: Close analysis of historical evidence, which may include written documents, images, music, films, or statistics from the historical period under study. Exploration of scholarly, methodological, and theoretical debates about historical topics. Extensive reading, varying forms of written work, and intensive in-class discussions.

HIST 156 - LEC

Section 01
M 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM CHAP 201
W 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM CHAP 201

HIST 156 - DIS

Section 01F
F 10:00 AM - 10:50 AM CHAP 203

Section 02F
F 11:00 AM - 11:50 AM CHAP 203

Section(s) ISBN Title Publisher Author(s) Comment Book Store Price
All From Colony to Superpower: U.S. Foreign Relations since 1776 Oxford University Press, 2011 George C. Herring Amherst Books TBD
All Diplomacy in Black and White: John Adams, Toussaint Louverture, and Their Atlantic World Alliance University of Georgia Press, 2014 Ronald Angelo Johnson Amherst Books TBD
All The Cause of All Nations: An International History of the American Civil War Basic Books, 2017 Don H. Doyle Amherst Books TBD
All Fighting for American Manhood: How Gender Politics Provoked the Spanish-American and Philippine-American Wars Yale University Press, 2000 Kristin L. Hoganson Amherst Books TBD

These books are available locally at Amherst Books.


2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2022, Fall 2023