Adv. Topics in History (H): Modern Europe


“Europe is a miracle.” Many observers of the geographical concentration of cultural and linguistic diversity on this tiny continent have shared this sentiment from a 2019 interview with French President Emmanuel Macron. How can peoples who spent centuries at each other’s throats come together in the 21st century to iron out economic and political cooperation for mutual benefit? What is their responsibility today to the colonies they exploited for national gain in the past? Take this advanced class if you want to break it all down. The discipline of history demands patience for rigorous skill exercise in reading and evaluating sources, attending to the narrative details of 500 years of Europe’s history, conducting research and frequent analytical writing assignments. Although this class will go a long way in preparing a student for the AP European History exam, our priority is lively engagement in learning. This class will be time and effort well spent, as historian Carl Becker maintains: “the value of history is, indeed, not scientific but moral. It enables us to control, not society, but ourselves – a much more important thing; it prepares us to live more humanely in the present and to meet rather than to foretell the future.”

Prerequisites: A- or higher in US History or B+ or higher in US History (Honors). This class is open to juniors and seniors.