Timeline – 1938 – A More Expansive History

Snip of UW Course Catalog, 1938-1939, pp. 180-181. Image shows Latin-American History and Economic and Social History added to catalog.
UW Course Catalog, 1938-1939, pp. 180-181.

Although Frederick Jackson Turner had emphasized economic and social factors in American history at the turn of the twentieth century, the History curriculum continued to be framed in geographic terms and limited to Europe and the U.S. Then in 1938-1939 a reorientation was introduced.

The 1938-1939 course catalog announced a new category of courses: “Economic and Social History.” This pulled together and reframed existing courses in European and U.S. history—e.g., American Economic Life, Life and Work in Ancient Rome, Economic Life in Europe.

In the same year, the first History course devoted to non-U.S./non-European history appeared in the catalog. Listed among American History courses, History 119 was entitled “Latin-American History.” It was taught by an “Instructor in History,” Fred Harvey Harrington, who served as UW President much later in his career.

Sources: UW Course Catalog, 1938-1939 (pdf), 181-182; “Fred Harvey Harrington (President: 1962-1970),” UW Archives and Records Management.