Instructor: Michael Chiarello

This course explores the history of Canada’s mostly peaceful, but often contentious relationship with the United States from the American Revolution to the present. In order to understand the complex structure of the relationship we will examine such major themes as 1) the tensions and compromises that led to the creation of the world’s longest undefended border; 2); partnership in war and participation in peacetime alliances after 1940; 3) the relationships between presidents and prime ministers; 4) the role of economic, cultural, and political forces in creating conflict and convergence between the two countries; 5) the complications of the past 25 years due to the end of the Cold War, the War on Terror, and the 2016 US presidential election and rise of “national populism”; and 6) an introduction into the wide ranging debates over how to characterize this relationship: is Canada a willing and equal partner to the United States, a subjugated “colony,” or a reluctant ally?

Assessment: Course evaluation will consist of a short midterm exam, a research paper in the form of a historical briefing note, and a final take home exam.