Following the campus guidelines for Coronavirus all UC Davis classes, lectures, seminars, labs and discussion sections will move to virtual instruction and remain virtual through the end of fall quarter 2020, including final exams. Given this, the department’s administrative functions have moved to remote work conditions. To contact staff members of the department via e-mail or phone, please go to our administrative staff contact page. 

Current Courses (Spring 2021)

The Department of History is offering these courses for graduate students during Spring 2021.

This list is subject to change. All courses are restricted to History graduate students during registration. If you are from outside the department and wish to register in a course, please contact  for further information.

HIS 201X

The Company: Business Organization, Managerial Practices, and Corporate Actors in Global History

Instructor: Perez-Melendez

4 units, CRN:63104

Schedule: R 3:10pm-6:00pm, Remote

Citizens United v. Federal Electoral Commission (2010) enshrined the notion that corporations possessed constitutionally protected freedom of speech rights. Opening the floodgates to a massive corporate participation in politics, this daring and questionable Supreme Court decision compels the historical imagination to reassess the role of corporate actors in history. What exactly is a corporation, or, more colloquially, a company? Why has this historical entity secured such lavish subsidies and even rights thereto reserved for the individual? How has the scope of its agency varied through time and across metropolitan and colonial contexts? This seminar takes a broad and global view to assess these and derivative questions. Taking the development of associationalism as a parting shot, the seminar will examine the myriad forms of commercial organization–family firms, partnerships, joint-stocks, transnationals–as well as the social and political function of corporate features such as incorporation, management structure, and shareholding. Among other phenomena, the seminar will survey early modern monopoly companies and their relation to the sovereign states that chartered them; management practices and logistics that transited from commercial firms into plantation life in, and the illegal slave trade to, the Americas; and finally the dynamics of corporate concessions to transnational companies in the 20th and 21st centuries. At the center of our inquiries, we will assess the relationship between imperialism and companies as powerful paragons of historical agency that accomplished more and lived longer than any single one of their members or principals. 

HIS 201Q

Gender, Poverty, and the Welfare State

Instructor: Tsu

4 units, CRN: 62282

Schedule: T 3:10pm-6:00pm, Remote

This seminar examines the central role of gender in shaping debates about the role of the state in addressing poverty. Through the critical lens of gender, we will survey historical case studies across geographic regions and time periods to understand how various states and societies have sought to alleviate poverty, defined who is entitled to public assistance, and developed welfare policy as part of a statebuilding agenda. Other questions include: What have been enduring myths and stereotypes about welfare? How did ideas about the “deserving” poor, single women, motherhood, sexuality and reproductive rights change over time, and how did those constructions intersect with the politics of race? How have poor women resisted government policies and sought to influence them? What is the relationship between economic development and domestic welfare policy? While we will devote the bulk of our attention to the modern era, this course will also reach back to medieval and early modern understandings of gender and poverty, as well as consider contemporary discourse and campaigns against global poverty. 

HIS 202H

Creole Identities in the Atlantic World

Instructor: Smolenski

4 units, CRN: 46729

Schedule:  W 3:10pm-6:00pm, Remote

This class will examine the ways in which the European colonization of the Americas reshaped conceptions of identity and community on four continents, paying particular attention to the creation of “creole” societies throughout the Atlantic rim. The term creole has had a long and contested history, referring at times to peoples of European or African descent and at other times to the mixed-race peoples and hybrid cultures born under colonial role. To many Europeans, creole-ness signified degeneracy, while many Americans embraced the term. During this course we will examine the development of these new identities in the British, Spanish, French, and Portuguese empires in the Americas. We will also examine the ways in which colonization reshaped “Old World” identities in Europe, particularly as Europeans learned about America, consumed American goods, and reshaped established legal and political institutions to accommodate new imperial subjects. This course can count for the world history minor.

HIS 203C

Research Seminar

Instructor: Stacy Fahrenthold

4 units, CRN: 62479

Schedule: F 3:10pm-6:00pm, Remote

Required course for second-year History graduate students.

HIS 389

Seminar for TA's

Instructor: Ian Campbell

1 unit, CRN: 46869

Room: Remote

Required course for first-year History graduate students.