Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Where Do You Skimp in Your United States Survey Course?

I spent about 7 minutes in today's lecture discussing the Louisiana Purchase
I wish I could say that every aspect of early American history gets equal coverage in my United States History survey course.  (I teach the first half of the survey). 

Today I covered the entire period between 1800 and 1812 in one lecture.  I usually devote two lectures to this period, but I was behind schedule.  This means that I discussed the Election of 1800, the Louisiana Purchase, Lewis and Clark, the Embargo Act of 1807, the War Hawks, the Madison presidency, Tecumseh and the Prophet, and the War of 1812 in 50 minutes.  

I spent three lectures on the 1790s (domestic and foreign affairs, including a showing of Laurel Thatcher Ulrich's A Midwife's Tale) and will follow today's Jefferson coverage with lectures on the Southern economy and the northern economy in the early republic.

I usually spend a couple of lectures on Jackson and about five or six lectures on the period between 1848 and 1865.

As someone who specializes in the colonial and revolutionary periods, I tend to spend a lot more time on the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries than I do on the nineteenth century.  

How about you.  Where do you skimp?