Course selection time

It seems that I have until June 1 to sort myself out in this regard before the online bun-fight begins. Let’s hope all 30-plus of my fellow gradual students in history aren’t dead-set on taking the following courses:

Modern Cultural History — I have high hopes for this one. It seems like something that the inimitable Prof. Geoff Smith from Queen’s would love. (Geoff was kind enough to write me references for gradual school. Thanks Geoff. I still owe you that pint.) Here’s the course outline, if anyone is keen.

I need to take another year-long course, and was so hoping to dive into Modern European Cultural History: War & Peace in the 20th Century, but sadly, it isn’t offered next year. It would have been perfect background for my thesis (something to do with Canadian war correspondents). Oh well. I opted for this instead: Europe: 1815 – 1945. I’m glad I recently read Stephan Talty’s  The Illustrious Dead, a grim and fascinating take on what took down Napolean’s army on its ill-fated traipse through Russia. My favourite bit — a detail about how survivors stacked their comrades’ bodies like cordwood to stop the winter wind from blowing in.

Two half courses plus my thesis will fill out my course work. For something completely different, I’m going with Low Law and Petty Justice. I do hope to learn all about when the British obsession with property rights  began (death by hanging for theft of a loaf of bread and all that lovely stuff). That’s in the fall term. In winter, I thought I’d round out my Canadian content with State and Society in Canada: 1945 – present.

Now I just have to get the okay from the university, pay up, and register for the courses. Oh, and read. A lot. Right now I’m burning through The Damned by Nathan Greenfield, about the Canadians at the Battle of Hong Kong and as POWs. Chilling stuff.


Tell me what you really think.