History of the Modern Family (HIST*2800) | College of Arts

History of the Modern Family (HIST*2800)

Code and section: HIST*2800*01

Term: Winter 2017

Instructor: Erin Schuurs


Course Synopsis:

This course is an examination of the family since 1500 with particular emphasis on the English-speaking world. The goal is to critically explore historical representations of family life. To do so, “Family” is taken in its broadest terms, to include and investigate the many unconventional families that have existed due to adoption, divorce, remarriage, and sexuality. Beginning with medieval childhood and families, lectures will be thematic, using different historical periods to examine the progression and change of childhood and family life. Topics covered include: the development of a middle-class ideology of childhood, Residential schools, Women’s Suffrage, child labour, constructions of father and mother-hood, the nuclear family, and the socialist sixties.

Methods of Evaluation and Weights:

Online Group Discussion - 15%
Book Review - 20%
Historiographic Film Review - 20%
Memoir as Primary Document Analysis - 20%
Final “Take-Home” Exam - 25%

Required Texts:

1. Hugh Cunningham, Children and Childhood in Western Society Since 1500, 2nd Edition, 2005
2. Anne F. Hyde, Empires, Nations, and Families: A New History of the North American West, 1800-1860, 2012
3. Frank McCourt, Angela’s Ashes, 1996

*Please note:  This is a preliminary web course description only.  The department reserves the right to change without notice any information in this description.  The final, binding course outline will be distributed in the first class of the semester.