Choose 3 of 4 questions below to write
on. Each essay will be worth 50 points. You may not use
notes, outlines, or any other aids during the examination. I will
supply the blue books for the examination.
One vision of historical change in premodern Northern Europe suggests
that societies are the frameworks within which cultures or culture
transforms. This approach emphasizes the creation of unitary
states that control their boundaries and, eventually, forge a strong
bond of identity between state institutions and inhabitants.
Another vision suggests that societies consist of many different
groups, each uniquely defined by the rights and privileges its members
had, their economic and political function(s), their place of origin,
and their ties to other groups. Making use of what you learned in
unit 1 (and the articles you read), argue for one or the other of these
Using the works we discussed in unit 2 argue for or against the
proposition: While historians have often viewed women’s history as the
stepchild of “real” history, not something a serious historian spends
time on, in point of fact, the incorporation of gender into history
offers historians fundamental insights that ought to shape the core
narratives with which they concern themselves.
In our unit on warfare and society we spent much of our time focusing
on the Thirty Years’ War, because it was arguably the pivotal political
and military conflict of early modern Northern Europe. Yet the
Thirty Years’ War was also illustrative of the broader trends that Jan
Glete discusses in his work on the fiscal-military state. Making
use of the volume edited by Tryntje Helfferich as your archive, write a
historiographically-driven essay in which you argue for which one of
the interpretations of state power that Glete discusses in his second
chapter best captures the developments of the Thirty Years’ War.
You may select no less than three and no more than four documents from
the Helfferich volume to
discuss in your essay.
Ben Kaplan argues that the historiography of confessional coexistence
and of the
Reformation ought to focus on the silent majority of the unchurched or
barely churched whose theological investments were basic. Magda
Teter argues that to explain the Church in Poland-Lithuania (and other
parts of Europe) we need to understand that the Church sought a control
over everyday life through the doctrine of the two swords that it could
never have. Write an essay in which you evaluate the strengths
and weaknesses of these interpretations, being careful to articulate
which one you think is more successful.