HIS logo HIS 400
Seminar on Railroad Industrialization in Africa

Spring 2011, Tue-Thu 4:15-5:30pm

What's New?

May 3: Final paper due on Tues. May 3, at 6pm in 401 Main Hall. Attendance is REQUIRED.
Apr. 29: Finals Week Office Hours: Tues. 5-6pm; Wed. 9-10AM; Thurs. 12:30-3:30pm.
Apr. 23: Added link for the April 26 reading assignment.
Apr. 7: Added the question for your outline/abstract and the final paper.

Instructor: Jim Jones
Email: jjones@wcupa.edu;
Telephone: 610-436-2168
Office: 519 Main Hall
Office hours: Tue. & Thu. 12:30-2pm, Wed. 1-3pm, and by appointment

OBJECTIVES: This course examines a complex topic -- industrialization -- as it was introduced in Africa during the colonial period. By the end of the course, students will produce a scholarly analytical paper using primary sources from France and West Africa, plus secondary sources from history, geography, economics and anthropology. Successful students will achieve positive learning outcomes for information literacy, general education, and knowledge of history by demonstrating skill in written and oral communication, critical thinking, and life-long learning.

* James A. Jones, Industrial Labor in the Colonial World: The African Workers of the Chemin de Fer Dakar-Niger (Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2002).
* Ousmane Sembene, God's Bits of Wood (Westport, CT: Heinemann, 1996).
* Other on-line readings at courses.wcupa.edu/jones/his311/archives.

RESPONSIBILITIES: The professor must deliver interesting and relevant introductions to the readings, facilitate meaningful classroom discussion, maintain regular office hours, write fair assignments and provide written feedback. Students must read assignments before coming to class, participate in class discussion, show respect for opinions that differ while exercising critical judgement of sources and logic, and complete all written and oral assignments.

ATTENDANCE: The University's attendance policy permits a maximum of six (6) unexcused absences before a penalty (lowering of final grade) is assessed. Attendance in a seminar is especially important because every class member contributes to the group's understanding of the assigned readings and discussions. An excused absence is one that occurs as the result of a documented medical condition, legal proceeding, university-sanctioned event or death of an immediate family member (i.e. parent, sibling or child). All other absences are unexcused. If you believe that you have an extraordinary circumstance that merits special consideration, make an appointment to speak to me during my office hours to discuss it before you are absent. Requests for special consideration made after an unexcused absence has occurred will not be considered.

Assignment Due Date Percent of final grade Description
1. In-class essay Jan. 27 10% Write an essay on a question about the Sembene book that will be provided at the beginning of class. [Details]
2. Document analysis * Feb. 22 20% Write an essay using notes on archival records. [Details]
3. Review essay * Mar. 3 20% Compare Lugard's ideas on the impact of industrialization with those in a JStor article of your own choosing. [Details]
4. Outline and abstract Apr. 19 10% Demonstrate how you plan to analyze the Apr. 7 question for your final paper. [Details]
5. Final paper * May 4-6 30% Write an analytical paper that answers the Apr. 7 question. (details on style and format). [Details]
6. Class participation Every class 10% Show consistent and thorough preparation for class discussion. [Details]
* This assignment must include footnotes and a bibliography. Assignments 2-5 are all due at the beginning of class.

CHEATING/PLAGIARISM: Cheating is any act that "defrauds, deceives or employs trickery" in order to obtain credit for work which has not been completed. Plagiarization is the act of "passing off the ideas of another as one's own work." Anyone who cheats or plagiarizes will receive a zero (i.e. a grade much lower than F) for that examination or assignment. Anyone who commits a second offense will receive an F for the course and be referred to the University's judicial system for additional sanctions.

DISABILITIES: We at West Chester University comply with the ADA of 1990 by making accommodations for persons with disabilities. Please make your needs known by contacting the professor and/or the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities at ext. 3217. Sufficient notice is needed in order to make the accommodations possible.

DISCRIMINATION: West Chester University prohibits discrimination, including sexual harassment, of any individual based on race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, age, religious creed, disability or veteran status. The University is committed to providing leadership in extending equal opportunities to all individuals and will continue to make every effort to provide these rights to all members of the University community, including students, staff, and administrators, as well as all applicants for admission or employment and all participants in University-sponsored activities. Any individual having suggestions, problems, complaints or grievances with regard to equal opportunity or affirmative action is encouraged to contact the Director of Social Equity at ext. 2433.

SUBSTANCE USE/ABUSE: West Chester University is committed to improving retention, graduation and time-to-degree rates by assisting students during key transitional periods in their academic careers. Because I believe that alcohol and drug issues can compromise student success, I have participated in a training program called "Partners in Prevention" designed to help faculty/staff recognize addiction and guide students to assistance. If you wish to discuss any of this with me -- in confidence -- please contact me outside of class.

Week Date Topic Reading Assignment
1 Jan. 18-20 Introduction, Railroads and Industrialization Start reading Sembene, (p1 to the end of `The Vatican')
Drop/Add period is January 18-23
2 Jan. 25-27 An African View of a European Railroad Finish reading Sembene; complete in-class essay in class on Thursday, Jan. 27
3 Feb. 1-3 Building the Railroad Read Jones (pp1-20) and archive notes
4 Feb. 8-10 Military Use of the Railroad Read C. W. Newbury and A. S. Kanya-Forstner, "French Policy and the Scramble for Africa" in Journal of African History, no. 10 (1969), pp253-276. [JStor link]
5 Feb. 15-17 Commercial use of the Railroad Read Jones (pp21-34); view spreadsheets showing comptoirs and businesses
6 Feb. 22-24 More on the commercial use of the Railroad document analysis due on Tuesday. Feb. 22
7 Mar. 1-3 The Colonial Economy 1918-1939 Read "Chapter XXIII, Transport" in Frederick Lugard, The Dual Mandate in British Tropical Africa (pp461-476); review essay due on Thursday, Mar. 3.     [Large PDF file containing Lugard's book]
  Mar. 8-10 SPRING BREAK Class does not meet.
8 Mar. 15-17 Professional railroad workers Read Jones (pp35-47) and Diombana
9 Mar. 22-24 Consequences of World War II Read Myron Echenberg, "Morts pour la France: the African Soldier in France during the Second World War" in Journal of African History, vol. 26 (1985), pp363-380. [JStor link]
Friday March 25 is the last day to withdraw from this class or change to Pass/Fail.
10 Mar. 29-31 The 1947 Strike Read Jones (pp48-64)
11 Apr. 5-7 Decolonization Read Guy Pfefferman, "Trade unions and politics in French West Africa during the Fourth Republic," African Affairs 66 (1967), pp213-230. [ JStor link]
Here is the question for assignments 4 and 5: French plans for the Dakar-Niger railroad changed over time, but always supported a colonial system whose mission was to civilize Africans. Compare and contrast the French goals for the railroad with its actual impact.
12 Apr. 12-14 Independence Read T.L.H., "Mali and her neighbors" in West Africa magazine (January 30, 1960), p125; and (February 6, 1960), p153. [ Click here.]
13 Apr. 19-21 Decline of the Railroad Read Jones (pp65-74); outline and abstract due on Tuesday, Apr. 19
14 Apr. 26-28 Impact of the Railroad Read Jones (pp75-78) and poem Hommage aux Cheminots du Mali
15 May 3 Final paper due by 6pm Details about the assignment

Visit Jim Jones' other course web sites at courses.wcupa.edu/jones .