Why did British imperialism take the form it did in India? How did this change the lives of colonial servants in India? Why did individual Britons go to India? What did they expect to find there? What common experiences did they have?
Who identified as “American” during the Revolution? To what extent did the American Revolution serve the interests of all inhabitants of the emerging nation?
Why did France’s empire expand to so many parts of the world in the early modern period? How did its expansion shape the history of the United States, Canada, Haiti, and other modern-day countries?
How did Cervantes’ Don Quixote respond to the social conditions and literary traditions of early modern Spain?
How do maps tell the early history of Chicago and the Midwest? How have maps been used by different empires and nations to secure control of the region?
What can maps tell us about how people from different times, places, and cultures make sense of their world? How did maps and mapmaking influence the development of colonial North America?
Subject to Citizen, Kingdom to Nation: Changing Notions of Identity in the Age of the French Revolution
How did French people bring about—or resist—the transition from monarchy to republic during the Revolution? What did it mean to become a citizen of the new nation?
How did people interpret the events of the American Revolution in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries? How did the meaning of the Revolution change over time? In what ways has the Revolution meant different things to different people at any given time?
What arguments did eighteenth-century writers make about the slave trade? How are these arguments based in understandings of African civilization? How does Olaudah Equiano contribute to these debates?
What is the context for Shakespeare’s Roman plays? What were his sources? Why did classical Rome capture the interest of people in Renaissance England?
What reasons do writers and politicians give for protesting the authority of the federal government? Why do they perceive the State as a threat? How has anti-statist thought changed over time?
What is the historical and literary context for Shakespeare’s representation of Prospero’s island and its inhabitants? How did Renaissance writers and artists portray the European exploration of the Americas? How did that exploration inspire their visions of an ideal society?