History and Culture

  • Explores Varying Interpretations of Historic Events
  • Identifies Patterns and Trends
  • Provides Lively Discussion and Debate

To understand the present, we first must know the past. These courses focus on the origins of civilization, explore the causes and effects of world events, and debate conflicting interpretations of past events. From the world stage to New York City’s five boroughs, examine how history impacts our lives today.

This Summer, study from anywhere in the world in the safety and comfort of your home through online or remote instruction.

Aztec Culture and the Spanish Invasion of Mexico

In this course, we will explore the rich culture and history of Aztec civilization through the period of Spanish invasion and colonization. The...

2022 Summer
1 section

Symphonies in Stone: The Medieval Cathedrals of England and Scotland

Follow the path from England’s awe-inspiring Canterbury Cathedral to the dramatic ruins of St. Andrew’s, overlooking the North Sea...

2022 Summer
1 section

The Changing City: From Midtown to the Upper East and West Sides

In four illustrated lectures, see how New York City neighborhoods change with the times, and how the look of the City itself changes.

2022 Summer
1 section

The Nixon Presidency

Richard Nixon emerged victorious in the turbulent election of 1968 after serving as Vice-President throughout most of the 1950s and nearly...

2022 Summer
1 section

An Introduction to Intersectionality: Positioning and Situating Identities

Learn how our different identities relate to social norms and how we can become better allies for every member of our society.

2022 Summer
1 section

Becoming a Better Ally: How to Collaborate with Marginalized Groups

Learn to develop meaningful relationships with allies in order to be an effective...

2022 Summer
1 section

Understanding Race in a Global Context

Learn to understand and discuss race in a global context.

2022 Summer
1 section

Microaggressions and Racial Stress: Reducing Harmful Interactions

Learn to identify and reduce microaggressions and to communicate effectively with people of color.

2022 Summer
1 section

The US-Latin America Relationship: Past, Present, and Future

The United States’ relationship with Latin America has been and continues to be one of the most important and controversial relationships...

2022 Summer
1 section

Italian I

This course focuses on the pronunciation, vocabulary, useful expressions, and grammatical structures that allow for effective communication in...

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"Remember the Ladies": First Ladies and Power-Sharing in the Executive Mansion

Alexis de Tocqueville wrote in the 1840s: "to what the singular prosperity and growing strength of [the American ] people ought mainly to...

Changing City: From Greenwich Village to Grand Central

In four illustrated lectures, see how New York City neighborhoods change with the times, and how the look of the City itself changes.

Cold War in the Middle East: Saudi Arabia and Iran

This course will consider the rivalry between the two most powerful countries in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia and Iran, as a kind of...

People of the North

Learn about the Inuit and Yupik peoples, including the hunting culture, storytelling traditions, and other forms of literary and artistic expression.

The American Southwest: A New History for an Ancient Land

Explore the art, history, and cultures of the Southwest, from ancient Native American homeland to contemporary multicultural mosaic.

The Great Cathedrals of Medieval Europe: From France to Sicily

Take an exploratory journey from Paris to Sicily to uncover the breathtaking ingenuity of Europe’s medieval cathedrals. From the dramatic...

The Greatest of American Tragedies: The Civil War and Reconstruction

Explore the major events and fraught legacies of the American Civil War and Reconstruction.

The Immigration Act of 1924 (Almost) 100 Years Later

The Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Oscar Handlin famously wrote, “Once I thought to write a history of the immigrants in America. Then I...

The Italian Response to the Holocaust

A majority of Italy’s small Jewish population survived the Holocaust, a fact often attributed to a relative lack of anti-Semitism, as well...

The Italians: Shapers of Western Civilization

Explore Italians’ cultural heritage, which stretches from ancient Rome to present day and from science and architecture to art and writing.

The Nazi Regime: Tracing the Historical Path to Incomparable Horror

Trace the ascent and collapse of the Nazi regime, including the role of ordinary Germans in the atrocities perpetrated under Nazi rule.

The Politics of Containment: What It Was, and Why It Still Matters

Learn the about the US Cold War policy of containment and its ripple effects that can still be seen and felt today.

The Vanderbilts' America

Explore the Gilded Age through the lens of the rich and powerful Vanderbilt family

This Year at the Supreme Court

This one-session course will explore some of the major cases at the Supreme Court from this past year. Using excerpts from the Court's...

Johann Sebastian Bach and His Musical Sons: A Family Portrait in Sound

Explore Baroque and Classical music through the work of Johann Sebastian Bach and his four musical sons

A History of New York City

Gain an understanding of the history of New York City, including politics, finance, architecture, and arts, from its Native American roots to today.

America in the World: Considering the Future of Democracy

Explore how studying other democracies can shed light on the troubled present—and possible future—of American politics and government.

An Introduction to Islamic History

Explore Islamic history during the first six centuries of its existence.

Ancient Near East Culture and the Birth of Judeo-Christian Religious Traditions

Explore the history and culture of the ancient Near East, including its cultural legacy as birthplace of the Judeo-Christian religious traditions.

Behind the Scenes in New York: Preserving a City of Historic Neighborhoods

Gain a community-based view of how neighborhoods use the New York City Landmarks Law to determine the future of their communities.

Digital Identities: From Social Networks to Deepfakes

Explore how digital identities are created and manipulated.

International Relations

Gain an in-depth understanding of the post-Cold War world order and the Cold War’s impact on current geopolitical and economic landscapes.

Medieval Splendors: The Great Cathedrals of Northern Europe from Bruges to Scandinavia

Uncover the rich heritage of northern Europe’s medieval cathedrals, including the spectacular Belgian cathedrals at Ghent, Bruges (the...

Racial and Social Justice Offline and Online

Learn how to conduct successful social and racial justice campaigns.

The Battle Against Online Misinformation

Learn how to identify and combat fake news and misinformation campaigns on the internet

The Fight Against Black Voter Suppression

Understand how voter suppression works and learn ways that allies can advocate for communities of color and fight voter suppression.

A Holistic Look at Iran: Economics, Religion, Politics, and More

Take a holistic look at the various aspects of Iran: environment, ethnolinguistic composition, religious proclivities, economics, and politics.

Midway to the Midterms: Politics, Priorities, and Policy

Almost a year into the Biden administration and with the congressional midterm elections next year, the United States continues to face serious...

Spies at War: Fact vs. Fiction

World War II was a critical challenge for the intelligence services of the major powers, laying the groundwork for espionage during the Cold War...

Global Uncertainty: Money, Diplomacy, and Technological Change in the 21st Century World

What should we expect from the 21st century? A period of Great Power war, similar to the 20th century, or a long and commercial peace, similar...