HTY 398 (004): Historical Issues: The Immigrant Experience

[This course is in the process of being approved as HTY 365 The Immigrant Experience. General Education application will be determined at that time.]

Instructor:  Anne K. Knowles

Class Number:  78116

Days/Time:  Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 2:00 – 2:50 p.m.

Location:  Stevens 370

Description:  Calling the United States a nation of immigrants can seem to imply that newcomers all went through similar experiences. This course approaches immigrant experience as an open question. What did people think and feel when they left their home country? What drove them, or lured them, to leave? How did their lives change in America? Was the violent, forced migration of African slaves completely different from the experience of those who came voluntarily? Were there any commonalities between the immigration of 18th-century colonists and 19th-century European farmers and industrial workers, or between 20th-century immigrants from the Philippines and Latin America and refugees from Nazism or the Pol Pot regime in Cambodia?  How did age, sex, legal status, race, religion, occupation, and class affect people’s experiences, including their reception by established members of American society? We will examine these and other questions through the lens of immigration history, comparing scholarly interpretations of immigrant experience to first-person accounts in letters, memoirs, and other documents. This writing-intensive course will develop students’ writing skills through multiple drafts of two research papers and short response papers focused on class readings.

General Education Requirements: This course does not yet meet any of the General Education requirements.

Prerequisites: First-year students require permission.