The United States and the Contemporary Mediterranean World

Discipline: History
Instructor: Jacobs
Credits: 3
Day: C
Start: 1520
End: 1635
Field Work: Day 1 - Livorno - Sunday, 21 July | Italy
Prerequisites: I recommend, but do not require, that students have taken at least one history class at the college or university level before enrolling in this course. Download Syllabus

We will explore the complex Mediterranean world, and U.S. relations with it, by examining the
historical development of a range of current issues and U.S. policies regarding them. Topics
will include U.S. relations with North Africa and the Middle East after 9/11, the Arab Spring
in North Africa and the Middle East, the Arab-Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Turkey’s position at
the crossroads between Europe and the Middle East and “zero problems” approach to foreign
relations, and the financial crisis in Mediterranean Europe.

Field Work

Country: Italy
Day: 1 - Livorno - Sunday, 21 July

July 21 (Livorno, Italy) This field lab will have three components: some instruction during transport to and from the cemetery (about 75 minutes each way), touring the American military cemetery outside of Florence, and a guest lecture on democratization and the Eurozone crisis in southern Europe. Students will also read a short article on the construction of the American Cemetery at Omaha Beach, Normandy, France, and will be required to write a short paper on memorializing conflict. Academic Objectives:

  1. To cover some basic content about U.S. involvement in Italy and Mediterranean Europe more broadly during World War II.
  2. To ask students to contemplate historical memory and the question of how one memorializes conflict.
  3. To help students understand the dramatic economic and political transformations that have taken place across Mediterranean Europe in the last four decades.