A four-week institute for thirty school teachers to study new perspectives on the Gilded Age and Progressive Era.
Arguing that historians have recently reinvigorated debates about the Gilded Age and Progressive Era, project director Robert Johnston leads a new institute that introduces teachers to these historiographical debates and to the many conflicting currents of American society between 1877 and 1920. Framed by the sometimes-competing concepts of capitalism and democracy, the institute asks how the nation addressed the rapid changes that occurred in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Topics under consideration include the development of corporations; labor and class conflict; responses to immigration; women and progressive reforms; African-American migration and its impact; urban planning, architecture, and conservation; and the philosophy of the Progressive Era. Classroom discussions are enlivened by field experiences at sites significant to Chicago's labor history, Hull House Museum, the Newberry Library, the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Robie House, and the archives at the University of Illinois, Chicago. In leading institute sessions, University of Illinois, Chicago, historians Robert Johnston, Leon Fink, and Jeff Sklansky are joined by Daniel Greene (Newberry Library), Maureen Flanagan (Illinois Institute of Technology), Adriane Lentz-Smith (Duke University), Theo Anderson (independent scholar), and Jeff Helgeson (Texas State University), and by site curatorial staff. Readings include selections from Upton Sinclair's The Jungle and E. L. Doctorow's Ragtime and from the writings of Emma Lazarus, Jane Addams, W.E.B. Du Bois, and William James, as well as works by historians Rebecca Edwards, James Green, James Barrett, Alan Trachtenberg, and project scholars, among others.
Faculty: Theo Anderson, David Bagnall, James Barrett, Diane Dillon, Daniel Greene, Maureen Flangan, Leon Fink, Jeffrey Helgeson, Ben Johnson, Chris Lamberti, Adriane Lentz-Smith, Molly Myers, Jeffrey Sklansky, Charles Tocci