HISTORY 230 - Humanities Topics in History
Section: 001 Nomads in the Modern World: Mobility and the Nation-State
Term: WN 2018
Subject: History (HISTORY)
Department: LSA History
Requirements & Distribution:
Waitlist Capacity:
With permission of instructor.
May be elected five times for credit.
Primary Instructor:

Pastoral nomads, those peoples who follow their animals in search of pasturage, appear on the margins of many historical narratives, spun off to the edges of the “civilized” world. They are opposed to the rest of us, the sedentary, and do not fit well within the parameters of the nation-state, where political boundaries cut through their grazing lands and migration routes. Yet nomadic and sedentary populations have historically been mutually interdependent and have existed on a spectrum of movement and stability. Nomads, moreover, have been essential players in the economic, environmental, cultural, and sometimes political histories of the regions they inhabit. This course will consider how we place nomads in 20th century history and how we understand their history as one of movement not just in space but also in time. Central questions for our investigation of nomads in the modern world will include: what has enabled some pastoral nomads to survive either in their traditional way of life or through adaption to the priorities of modern state formation; what the effects of modernization have been on the roles of women and men pastoralists; and whether nomads face obsolescence in the modern world and, if so, what of their way of life may still be worth defending. Given that in the last decades of the 20th century moving into the 21st, increasing numbers of people have become mobile populations, challenging the limits of the nation-state politically and socially, we will also consider how the mobile lives of pastoralists parallel and are distinct from those who are on migration to survive but not as a traditional way of life that must be fought for.

Course Requirements:

The course will be conducted as both a lecture and discussion. Readings will include studies of the nation-state as the dominant political form of the 20th century and case studies of nomadic peoples in the Middle East, Africa, and Europe in the last century. Travel accounts, memoirs, film documentaries, and musical recordings will supplement scholarly writings in history and anthropology and documentary sources. Grading will be based on class participation, quizzes, three papers (3-5 pages), and a final project.

Intended Audience:

All students are welcome.

HISTORY 230 - Humanities Topics in History
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
MW 8:30AM - 10:00AM
002 (LEC)
MW 1:00PM - 2:30PM
003 (LEC)
MW 11:30AM - 1:00PM
004 (DIS)
Tu 3:00PM - 4:00PM
005 (DIS)
Tu 9:00AM - 10:00AM
NOTE: Data maintained by department in Wolverine Access. If no textbooks are listed below, check with the department.

ISBN: 9780141442075
Arabian sands, Author: Wilfred Thesiger., Publisher: Penguin [New ed.] 2007
ISBN: 1571818448
Memoirs of a Mbororo : the life of Ndudi Umaru, Fulani nomad of Cameroon, Author: Henri Bocquene ; translated by Philip Burnham and Gordeen Gorder., Publisher: Berghahn Books 2002
ISBN: 9780811225946
Go, Went, Gone, Author: Jenny Erpenbeck, Publisher: New Directions
ISBN: 9780299292348
With the Lapps in the high mountains : a woman among the Sami, 1907-1908, Author: Demant Hatt, Emilie, 1873-1958.
Syllabi are available to current LSA students. IMPORTANT: These syllabi are provided to give students a general idea about the courses, as offered by LSA departments and programs in prior academic terms. The syllabi do not necessarily reflect the assignments, sequence of course materials, and/or course expectations that the faculty and departments/programs have for these same courses in the current and/or future terms.

Click the button below to view historical syllabi for HISTORY 230 (UM login required)

View Historical Syllabi
The CourseProfile (ART) system, supported by the U-M Provost’s 3rd Century Initiative through a grant to the Office of Academic Innovation, provides additional information about: course enrollments; academic terms and instructors; student academic profiles (school/college, majors), and previous, concurrent, and subsequent course enrollments.

CourseProfile (ART)