Attendance at each class is mandatory. One unexcused absence is allowed per semester, after which any absences will require documentation or else they will impact your final grade. All absences (excused and unexcused) must be made-up with a 500-word response to the day’s readings that selects two of the major themes to analyze/critique/elaborate on, due within one week of the absence. Being on time is part of attendance – every two unexcused late arrivals will count as an absence. Please see me with any questions about this policy.


Assignments are due to me electronically via email (cameron.blevins@rutgers.edu). Assignments are due by 4:00PM (unless otherwise noted), after which they will be considered one day late. Papers will be penalized by one half letter grade for each day they are late (an A paper becomes an A-, an A- to B+, etc.). When grading papers I will use a writing rubric. My feedback will consist of broad comments, some minimal notes in the margins, and a rubric-based breakdown of scores for each category of evaluation totaling a possible 50 points.


Please bring a laptop and power cord to class. If you do not own a laptop or your computer is not working, you can check one out from Alexander Library for the duration of the class: http://www.libraries.rutgers.edu/how_do_i/check_out_a_laptop. Please note that I will be keeping track of how actively you engage with and listen to your peers – if you make more eye contact with your laptop screen than your classmates, your participation grade will suffer.

Office Hours

Office hours will be held on Wednesdays from 1:30pm-3:00pm and by appointment, and my office is located in Room 205 of the Rutgers Center for Historical Analysis (88 College Ave.). Take advantage of office hours as an opportunity to talk about any aspect of the class: the week’s reading, ideas and strategies your paper or project, feedback on your writing, or difficult themes and concepts. Please meet with me during office hours at least once during the first three weeks of the quarter, by Friday, February 5th. If listed office hours conflict with your schedule, please contact me to schedule a different time to meet. I look forward to getting to know each of you!

Course Content Note

This course involves several historical topics that may be disturbing: slavery, racism, war, incarceration, and violence. I have included these topics because they are foundational to understanding the history of the United States. If you have concerns about reading and discussing particular topics, please come talk to me at the beginning of the semester. I will work with you to find alternative readings or ways for you to participate on the days in which we discuss those particular topics.

Students with Disabilities

Rutgers University welcomes students with disabilities into all of the University’s educational programs. In order to receive consideration for reasonable accommodations, a student with a disability must contact the appropriate disability services office at the campus where you are officially enrolled, participate in an intake interview, and provide documentation: https://ods.rutgers.edu/students/documentation-guidelines. If the documentation supports your request for reasonable accommodations, your campus’s disability services office will provide you with a Letter of Accommodations. Please share this letter with your instructors and discuss the accommodations with them as early in your courses as possible. To begin this process, please complete the Registration form on the ODS web site at: https://ods.rutgers.edu/students/registration-form.

Honor Code

All students are responsible for understanding and complying with the Rutgers University Code of Student Conduct. This applies to not only individual work but also conducting and submitting work within a collaborative framework. Each member of a group project is expected and required to complete their fair share of the work. For details, see http://studentconduct.rutgers.edu/university-code-of-student-conduct/