Class Highlight - U.S. History in World War II: Pacific Theater


Class Highlight - U.S. History in World War II: Pacific Theater

What class?

LSTD 4700 - U.S. History in World War II: Pacific Theater

Why is it cool?

It’s the year 1941. You’re strapped in an Aichi D3A dive bomber launching off the Empire Japanese Aircraft Carrier Hiryu, headed for the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor. You don’t know it yet, but your mission will destroy much of the United States Navy’s Pacific fleet, awakening the sleeping giant and thrusting the United States into the middle of World War II.

If you want to understand more about the United States’ involvement in World War II, then you’ll want to enroll in U.S. History in World War II: Pacific Theater, an eight-week course that examines the social, political, economic and military reasons for the War in the Pacific.

The class reconstructs the primary and secondary battles that changed the momentum of one major naval power to another, allowing students to see events from the perspectives of both Japanese and American soldiers. Covering the years 1931 to 1945, each week will focus on a specific period and what happened during that timeframe.

“In the eight units of the course, there are two units designed to look at the home front. One is about Japanese life under the Emperor during the war, and the second is looking at the U.S. home front,” said instructor John Boekenoogen. “Students always enjoy the experience of seeing the two different home fronts and seeing how similar they were. The discussions can be thought-provoking, as well. Did President Roosevelt know about the attack on Pearl Harbor? Should we have dropped the atomic bomb? After all of the losses on both sides, was the war worth it?”

Boekenoogen said the books required for the course offer unique insight, as they were both written by men who were in the war. They each had different backgrounds and entered the war at two different times, but they had very similar experiences.

The class will challenge students to think critically about the war, providing them with the necessary knowledge and references to understand the complexity of World War II.

Talk to your advisor to see if this class might be right for you, or see what else is offered by the OU Extended Campus College of Professional and Continuing Studies.

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Tami Althoff

Tami Althoff holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism. She is a reporter with more than 20 years’ experience working for newspapers, including The Oklahoman. She has covered everything from breaking news to local music and art. She loves sports, especially OU football and basketball games, where she often embarrasses her children by yelling too loudly.