This course examines America’s place in the world from a transnational perspective. Rather than focus on the exceptional elements of U.S. history, we will explore international networks, identities, and processes that transcend the nation state and help place the United States in a global context. We investigate the emergence of the U.S. as a global power, overseas military interventions, the projection of corporate and commercial power, and American attempts to create and dominate a liberal, rule-based world order.
Field WorkCountry: Vietnam
Day: 1 - Ho Chi Minh City - 14 February
On February 14, students will join me in an all day tour of Ho Chi Minh City’s museums devoted to the Viet Nam War. We will visit the following: The Museum of Revolution at 65 Ly Tu Trong Street; the War Remnants Museum at 28 Vo Van Tan Street; ad Reunification Palace at 106 Nguyen Du Street. The museums are open only Tuesday-Sunday from 800am-1130 and from 1400-1630. During our lunch break, we will take an extended walking tour of Central Saigon to visit important sites from the war years. We will visit: the Continental Hotel, where Graham Greene wrote the Quiet American;, the Rex Hotel, where the Military Assistance Command-Vietnam (MACV) held their press briefings;, the roof of the Intercontinental Hotel, where American reporters watched the Tet Offensive unfold; the former grounds of the U.S. Embassy, where the American last helicopters infamously left Viet Nam; and Saigon’s central square, where so many Buddhists protests took place. Academic Objectives:
- Analyze how Vietnam’s official museums tell the story of the war.
- Discuss the place of the war in contemporary history and in modern Vietnam.
- Describe the impact of the war and its meaning on America’s place in the world.