Jul 18, 2024  
BC3 Academic Catalog: 2023-2024 
BC3 Academic Catalog: 2023-2024 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

HIST 123 - Western Civilization II

3 Credits: (3 lecture)

Course Description
This course introduces western civilization from the Renaissance to the rise of the modern world. Topics include the Reformation, Exploration, the Age of Reason, Imperialism, and the origins of the modern state. The focus will be on the process of modernization, the secularization of western society, and how war and revolution have served to create the modern world. This course meets the General Education competency of Values, Ethics, and Diverse Perspectives (VE).

Hunt, Lynn, et al. The Making of the West, Volume 2: To 1750: People and Cultures. 7th ed. MPS, 2022. 

The student will be able to: 


A. Assess the intellectual, cultural, and technological innovations of the Renaissance. 

B. Describe the role of the Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment in the reshaping of political, social, and religious beliefs.  

C. Identify the characteristics of the French Revolution and Napoleon including the impact on the European balance of power.  

D. Explain how industrialization and urbanization represented revolutionary change.  

E. Evaluate the rise of the nation state and describe how this impacted political, social, economic, cultural, and intellectual aspects of western civilization.  

F. Examine ethical problems from a variety of social and historical perspectives. (VE) 

G. Examine the complexity of global humanity diversity and the various historical forces that shape it. (VE) 

A. The Ages of the Renaissance and Reformation: the era of innovation and discontent 1450-1550 

B. The Age of Exploration: the emergence of the trans-Atlantic World 1500-1700 

C. The Evolution of the Monarchy: Absolutism vs. Constitutionalism 1600-1800 

D. The Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment  

E. The Age of Revolutions: France to the industrial upheaval of the 19th century 

Student Evaluation
A-G. Class discussion, essay and objective exam questions. 

Barzun, Jacques.  From Dawn to Decadence:  500 Years of Western Cultural Life 1500 to the Present. Harper Collins, 2000. 

Birnbaum, Pierre and Ira Katznelson.  Paths of Emancipation:  Jews, States, and Citizenship.  Princeton, 1995. 

Cantor, Norman F. In the Wake of the Plague: The Black Plague & the World It Made. Perennial, 2002. 

Crofton, Ian. The Kings and Queens of England. Quercus, 2006. 

Diamond, Jared. Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies. Norton, 1999. 

Graff, Harvey J.,ed. Literacy and Social Development in the West. Cambridge, 1981. 

Hunt, Lynn, Thomas R. Martin, Barbara Rosenwein, and Bonnie Smith. The Making of the West. Bedford/ St. Martin’s, 2013. 

 Hupchick, Dennis P. and R. William Weisberger.  Hungary’s Historical Legacies: Studies in Honor of Steven Bela Vardy. East European Monograph Series of Columbia, 2000.  

Merriman, John M. A History of Modern Europe: From the Renaissance to the Present. Norton, 1996. 

Peters, Edward. Europe and the Middle Ages. Pearson Prentice Hall, 2004. 

Seward, Desmond. Napoleon and Hitler: A Comparative Biography. Viking, 1989. 

Sobel, Dava. Galileo’s Daughter: A Historical Memoir of Science, Faith, and Love. Walker, 1999. 

Teems, David. Majestie: The King Behind the King James Bible. Thomas Nelson, 2010.