LSTD 1153 – A History of the United States
Why is it cool?
We all know about the Salem Witch Trials, but what about the Salem tomato trial?
Once thought poisonous, the popular orange-red fruit was put on trial on Sept. 25, 1820, in Salem, N.J. A brave Robert Johnson stood before a crowd at the courthouse and consumed an entire basket of the fruit. He survived, proving everyone wrong, and the trial was promptly dismissed.
While the tomato trial may not be covered in A History of the United States, the course will reveal some equally important facts about America’s rich history and its goal of creating a government of the people, by the people and for the people. You will study the accomplishments of some extraordinary men and women, while also concentrating on the roles of many ordinary people.
A study of the entire history of the United States may seem daunting, even impossible. There’s so much to take in—the geographic diversity of the country, the 500 years of history that have shaped the nation, the intricacies of representative government, the peculiarities of American capitalism, and the broad mixture of races and cultures that make up the American population. This large and complex nation might be studied from any one of these perspectives. You might focus on the country’s geography and natural resources, trace the development of political theory, examine economic models or develop sociological paradigms. This class will lead you through a study of the United States by emphasizing the people of this country and the relationship of American citizens to the institutions they created.
After completing the class, you will more clearly understand the social, economic and political forces that have shaped America. You’ll understand periods of conflict and how they played out, and better understand the country’s role in the rest of the world. With this new-found perspective, you’ll be able to apply what you’ve learned to your everyday life and possibly find solutions to some of today’s problems.