Historical Research and Methodology
Linthicum Hall, Rm. 313
Instructor: Dr. Omar H. Ali
Office: Linthicum 119-K
Office Hours: Fridays 11:00-12:00/ by appt.
OBJECTIVE: Students will develop a research paper comparing the histories of black slave resistance and abolitionism in the Indian Ocean and the Atlantic worlds (e.g. Sri Lanka and Peru) centered on primary sources. Exact topics will be determined with the instructor from a list.
TEXT: Richard Marius, et al., A Short Guide to Writing About History, Seventh Edition (Pearson, 2010) and selected articles and book chapters provided by the instructor.
ASSIGNMENTS: Short paper on historical methods (5%)
Quiz #1 (5%)
Quiz #2 (5%)
Quiz #3 (5%)
Annotated Bibliography (10%)
Paper Outline (10%)
Presentation of Primary Sources (5%)
Presentation of Paper (5%)
Class Participation (10%)
Draft of Paper (5%)
Final Paper (35%)
Any assignments not presented or delivered when they are due (at the beginning of class as listed in the weekly schedule) will be marked down.
Grading Scale: A=94-100;
F (below 62)
Short paper on historical methods A three-page, double-spaced paper identifying and summarizing the primary theses of Marius, et al. (name at top left, paginated, and stapled)
Quiz #1, #2 and #3 These short quizzes will be based on lectures and readings.
Annotated Bibliography An annotated bibliography with at least a three-sentence description and commentary on each primary or secondary source used. Sources include books, scholarly journal articles and book chapters, letters, newspapers, images, and other material culture). Six books, six articles/book chapters, 4 written primary sources, and 4 additional sources (not necessarily all written) should be included in the annotated bibliography.
Paper Outline A detailed outline of the research paper’s theses and evidence, approximately three pages in length. The theses should be underlined in an introductory paragraph. The outline can be bullet-pointed beyond the first paragraph. At least six primary sources should be included, three in the Atlantic world and three in the Indian Ocean world.
Presentation of Primary Sources Five-minute presentation with notes, not to be read verbatim. Two typed-page, bullet-pointed summary of the presentation should be handed in at the beginning of the class. Be prepared to answer follow-up questions from students and the instructor.
Presentation of Paper Five-minute presentation with notes, not to be read verbatim. Two typed-page, bullet-pointed summary of the presentation should be handed in at the beginning of the class. Be prepared to answer follow-up questions from students and the instructor.
Final Paper This is a 15-page paper due at the beginning of class on May 10 (or before). FAILURE TO MEET THE DEADLINE WILL RESULT IN NO CREDIT FOR THE PAPER. NO EXCEPTIONS The 15 pages include footnotes and a bibliography. The paper must be stapled, paginated, with name, course title, and date at the top left-corner of the first page (there should not be a title page). The paper must have a clear thesis (underlined) in the opening paragraph. Quotes should be at least one sentence long, and should not exceed a single paragraph. A total of six examples drawn from primary sources (three in the Atlantic and three in the Indian Ocean worlds) should be given and numbered within the essay.
Participation Students are expected to actively participate in class (asking and responding to questions and volunteering to read in-class primary sources). Students are also required to check with the professor if they come after attendance is called (a single percentage point will be taken off each time a student is late beyond the first class of the semester; two percentage points will be taken off for each absence beyond the first class of the semester, except for documented medical emergencies (see end of document for details of university policy).
This course is in compliance with Towson University’s policies for students with disabilities. Accommodations can be made on exams and assignments for students with disabilities. Students with disabilities are encouraged to register with Disability Support Services (DSS), 7720 York Road, Suite 2132, 410-704-2638. Students who expect that they have a disability but do not have documentation are encouraged to contact DSS for advice on how to obtain appropriate evaluation. A memo from DDS authorizing your accommodation is required before any arrangements can be made. Any student found to be cheating will automatically receive an F in the course. This includes plagiarism, copying from another student’s paper or crib notes. Please refer to the University’s Student Academic Integrity Policy, Appendix F of the University Catalog, Part V. No student will be allowed to repeat this course without written permission from the instructor.
TOWSON UNIVERSITY POLICY: Students should not attend classes or other university events from the onset of flu-like symptoms until at least 24 hours after the fever subsides without the use of fever reducing medications. Such absences will be considered excused absences; however, students are responsible for the material covered during the period of their absence.
January 25 – Introduction; Read Chapters 1 & 2 of text, and “Abolitionism in the African
February 1 – Read Chapters 3 & 4
February 8 – Read Chapters 5 & 6
February 15 – SHORT PAPER DUE
February 22 – Library Session
March 1 – QUIZ #2
March 8 – ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY DUE
March 15 – SPRING BREAK
March 22 - PAPER OUTLINE DUE
March 29 – QUIZ #3
April 5 – PRESENTATION OF PRIMARY SOURCES
April 12 – Meetings with Instructor
April 19 – Meetings with Instructor
April 26 – DRAFT OF FINAL PAPER DUE
May 3 – PRESENTATION OF PAPER
May 10 – FINAL RESEARCH PAPER DUE
SECONDARY SOURCES TO GET YOU STARTED:
Eugene Genovese, From Rebellion to Revolution
James Brewer Stewart, Holy Warriors
Eric Foner, Reconstruction
Laurent Dubois, et al., Slave Revolution in the Caribbean
Joao Jose Reis, Slave Rebellion in Brazil
Omar Ali, In the Balance of Power
Sylvianne Diouf, Servants of Allah
Herbert Aptheker, American Negro Slave Revolts
Peter Blanchard, Slavery and Abolition in Early Republican Peru
Slavery and Abolition (journal)
Indian Ocean World
William Gervase Clarence-Smith, Islam and the Abolition of Slavery
Shihan de Silva Jayasuriya, African Identity in Asia
Alexandre Popovik, The Revolt of African Slave Revolt in Iraq
Patricia Romero, Lamu: History Society and Family in an East African Port City
Edward A. Alpers, et al., eds., Resisting Bondage in Indian Ocean Africa and Asia
Omar Ali, “Islam and the African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean World”
Gwyn Campbell, Abolition and Its Aftermath in the Indian Ocean, Africa and Asia
Richard Pankhurst and Jayaruriya, African Diaspora in the Indian Ocean
TO BEGIN SEARCHING FOR PRIMARY SOURCES
Available through the Albert S. Cook Library: http://cooklibrary.towson.edu/
JSTOR, America: History and Life (EBSCO), Historical Abstracts (EBSCO), and Social Sciences Abstracts (EBSCO)
Through “Subject Gateways””:
“African and African American Studies” and “History” (i.e. Black Studies Center and the Oxford African American Studies Center)
SELECT ONE FROM EACH AREA FOR YOUR RESEARCH PAPER
Atlantic World: Haiti
Indian Ocean World: Iraq