HIS 306N • Ordeal of Total War
This course will examine the Second World War from a multitude of perspectives. The primary focus will be on the diplomatic and military events on the war. This will be supplemented by looking at how these high-level political and military events affected individuals, ranging from civilians to soldiers. While the conflict will put into a larger context of competing ideological systems, particular attention will be paid to the issues which distinguish the Second World War from other conflicts: the notion of "Total War;" the experiences of occupation; the Holocaust and its importance in German war aims; the German war of extermination against the Soviet Union; inter-Allied relations and the onset of the Cold War; the motivations of combat soldiers; the various instances of ethnic cleansing unleashed under the cover of the war; and the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
There will be one mid-term exam and one final exam, each worth 35% of the grade. There will be three quizzes (short-answer identifications) worth 10% of the final grade.
Williamson Murray and Allan Millet, A War to be Won: Fighting the Second World War Mark Mazower, Inside Hitler's Greece Geoffrey Megargee, War of Annihilation: Combat and Genocide on the Eastern Front 1941 E.B. Sledge, With the Old Breed: At Peleliu and Okinawa There will also be a course packet of supplemental readings and primary documents.