Tag Archives: on teaching

On Teaching – Food for Thought: Five Ways to Think About (and Teach) the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict

Food for Thought: Five Ways to Think About (and Teach) the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict

Steven A. Glazer is professor of History at Graceland University, in Lamoni, Iowa. The author would like to thank the reviewers and editors of THE MIDDLE GROUND for their helpful suggestions to improve an earlier draft. Portions of this first paper were originally presented at the Midwest World History Association conference at Wabash College, Crawfordsville, Indiana, in September 2015.

Since 2008, I have offered an upper-division course at Graceland University entitled, “History of the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict.” Graceland University is a small, liberal-arts institution, enrolling some 1000 students on the main campus in Lamoni, Iowa. The students who enroll are a mix of History majors and others curious to learn more about a topic they have heard about. A significant number of students are members of the church that sponsors Graceland University, the Community of Christ, and some of these students may bring certain religious presuppositions with them.

I describe the course in the syllabus as addressing “the relatively short, but nonetheless tragic and complex history of one of the world’s most intractable conflicts.” In doing so, I try to knock down, as quickly as possible, stereotypes and myths of an “ancient conflict,” “Biblical conflict” or the idea that “they have been fighting there for hundreds/thousands of years.” I am also trying to create an atmosphere in the class that will be respectful of all points of view, and recognize that no one side has a monopoly on truth or justice. The main text for the course, Charles D. Smith’s Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict: A History with Documents also reinforces these important assumptions.

As a way of making sense of a conflict that began when Zionist Jews began arriving in Ottoman-controlled Palestine in the late 19th century, five different models can be usefully applied as a way of understanding the events of the last approximately 135 years. These approaches are one, a model that sees the conflict as unique, two, a religious conflict model, three, a conflict between sovereign states, four, an ethnic or national conflict, and five, a settler-colonial conflict. Each of these models has some degree of usefulness, although, I would argue, some are more useful than others.

GlazerFiTeachingFall2017themiddlegroundjournal.org

Edited by Eileen Orzoff-Baranyk

(c) 2017 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 15, Fall, 2017. http://TheMiddleGroundJournal.org See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.

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On Teaching Column: What Is Informal Imperialism?

Column: What Is Informal Imperialism?

Abstract: This article aims to explain in a theoretical way, but with practical historical examples the complex notion of informal imperialism. First analyzing imperialism(s) and colonialism as a whole, it will then try to caracterize and categorize more specifically what is informal imperialism. Comparing imperialism with the our understanding of space, a grid of understanding is thus applied to imperialism as a whole, to then qualify and address the informality of the phenomenon, and give theoretical tools based on practical historical cases for the historian and the political scientist.

Keywords: informal imperialism, imperialism, empire, colonialism, colony

GottelandImpTeachingFall2017themiddlegroundjournal.org

(c) 2017 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 15, Fall, 2017. http://TheMiddleGroundJournal.org See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.

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Girmit Connections to Global Networks: South Asians and the Pacific Labor Trade

Girmit Connections to Global Networks: South Asians and the Pacific Labor Trade

Abstract: This article considers how the experiences of South Asian indentured laborers in Fiji links the Pacific labor migrations of the late 19th and early 20th century to larger global movements of workers. In doing so, it offers one avenue through which to incorporate the Pacific into the study of world history.

Keywords: South Asia, Indentured Labor, Fiji, Pacific Islanders, Plantations
Short Title: Girmit Connections to Global Networks

JohnsonGirmitTeachingFall2017themiddlegroundjournal.org

Edited by Jeanne E. Grant

(c) 2017 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 15, Fall, 2017. http://TheMiddleGroundJournal.org See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.

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Column: Partnership in the Japanese and American Imaginary: Gender and the Mediation of Difference in Hayao Miyazaki’s and Walt Disney Studio’s Animated Movies

Column: Partnership in the Japanese and American Imaginary: Gender and the Mediation of Difference in Hayao Miyazaki’s and Walt Disney Studio’s Animated Movies

Abstract

This paper compares two animated movies made by Hayao Miyazaki, Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (1984) and Princess Mononoke (1997) and two movies made by Disney Studios: Little Mermaid (1989) and Pocahontas (1995). The argument focuses on the mediating role played by female characters in these movies. They build the bridge between opposite worlds, creating models of partnerships. Miyazaki’s movies show the difficulties involved in creating partnership despite difference, whereas Disney’s movies idealize marriage as the ultimate model of a partnership that glosses over issues of differential power.

briciuanimeteachingfall2016themiddlegroundjournal-org

Edited by Karen Rosenflanz

(c) 2016 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 13, Fall, 2016. http://TheMiddleGroundJournal.org See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.

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Column: From Plato to Ebola?: Introducing World History in a First Year Seminars on Epidemics

Abstract: How can world historians take advantage of interdisciplinary general education requirements to introduce new students to the methods and uses of history? When survey courses are not institutionalized, specialized courses that draw on individual faculty members’ expertise and fit into general education curricular niches may be the best option. This essay describes my efforts in a First Year Seminar on Epidemics and Empires to teach a broader range of students to how world historical approaches and methods both introduce them to a bigger, more complicated world, and provide tools to understand it.

SummersPlatoTeachingSpring2016themiddlegroundjournal.org

(c) 2016 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 12, Spring, 2016. http://TheMiddleGroundJournal.org See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.

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The Ancient Asheville Project: Making Ancient and Medieval World History More Meaningful

The Ancient Asheville Project: Making Ancient and Medieval World History More Meaningful

Abstract: This essay introduces an assignment that leverages the local community and the interests of students to make learning about ancient and medieval world history more meaningful and engaging and helps students to better grasp the commonalities and differences between the ancient or medieval and the modern world.
Keywords: teaching, world history, ancient history, medieval history

DryAncientTeachingSpring2016themiddlegroundjournal.org

(c) 2016 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 12, Spring, 2016. http://TheMiddleGroundJournal.org See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.

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Teaching a World History Capstone Course on Globalization by Mark B. Tauger

Teaching a World History Capstone Course on Globalization by Mark B. Tauger

Certainly almost every reader has had the experience of producing a capstone project, as a student composing it or an instructor supervising it (or both). By now most colleges and universities require students in every major to demonstrate what they have learned by completing a substantial final project that is characteristic of work of professionals in that major field. Capstone courses round out the major and help students acquire a level of mastery of their subject that can lead to a job or a graduate or professional program.

For Full Article TaugerGlobalizationTeachingFall2015themiddlegroundjournal.org

As examples of the potential of globalization for student research, I have asked the editor to include with this article three excellent student papers from the capstone course I offered in Spring 2014.

Student paper, Brandon Brown TaugerBrownGlobalizationTeachingFall2015themiddlegroundjournal.org
Student paper, Bryan Truong TaugerTruongGlobalizationTeachingFall2015themiddlegroundjournal.org
Student paper, Christopher Pederson TaugerPedersonGlobalizationTeachingFall2015themiddlegroundjournal.org

(c) 2015 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 11, Fall, 2015. http://TheMiddleGroundJournal.org See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.

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