Undergraduate Fields of Specialization: Empires and Colonialsm
Empires and Colonialism
Empires have been the most prevalent mode of political governance in human history. Whether it is the Romans under Julius Caesar, the Mongols under Genghis Khan, the Ottomans under Mehmed the Conqueror, the Russians under Peter the Great, the French under Napoleon, or the British under Churchill, empires controlled vast territories and governed diverse peoples across lands and seas. They built cities, roads, and monuments and made possible rich cultural exchanges. They also left behind arbitrary borders and enduring conflicts. Colonial subjects experienced domination and repression, often fighting for their freedom in revolutionary liberation movements. The U. S., for example, emerged from one such revolution only to become a mighty empire in its own right. Students will have the opportunity to explore the successes, failures, and contested legacies of imperial formations from the storied dominions of the ancient world to the industrialized and nuclear-armed powerhouses of the modern era.