Violence Smuggling and Vice Borderlands and the Gaps of Power (HIST 370.3)

Recent/Current Offerings

Syllabus / Public content Section Term Instructor
HIST 370 01 September 2019 Benjamin Hoy
HIST 370 01 September 2017


This course introduces students to the history of borderlands by analyzing what borderlands are, how they form, why they matter, and how they change our conceptions of history. We will study the historic formation of the borderlands of North America paying close attention to the efforts that Canada, Britain, the United States, and Mexico expended to demarcate their national boundaries and the slippages that occurred when nations have tried to force binary categories, such as nationalities, onto historically mobile and interconnected populations. In doing so, we will study inter-tribal borderlands, borderlands between Natives and newcomers, and the creation of borders between European powers. We will assess the impact and contributions that communities such as the Cree, Sioux, Nez Perce, Métis, Comanche, Iroquois and Coast Salish made to the demarcation, enforcement, and placement of European boundaries. Finally, we will compare the borderlands of North America to borderlands across the world, utilizing case studies from Europe, Thailand, Indonesia, India, Bangladesh, and Morocco. Throughout this process, we will focus on contentious issues such as violence, warfare, smuggling, prostitution, nation building, abductions, and racial exclusion.


3 credit units HIST at the 200-level.

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