Thursday, 7:00-9:50pm; University Hall, Room 321

Important Information

  • Instructor: John Garrigus
  • Office number: University Hall 201b or UH 343
  • Telephone number in UH201b: 817-272-2869 [I prefer email]
  • Email address:
  • Faculty Profile:
  • Web page:
  • Zotero library:
  • Office hours: Wednesdays 1 to 3; Thursdays, 3 to 5

Course Description:

This colloquium surveys recent historical literature on the “Age of Atlantic Revolution”. Topics include political and social revolutions as well as economic transformations in England, British America, France, Haiti, and Argentina. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) will be an important tool in this course, which requires no prior GIS experience.

Learning Outcomes:

After successfully completing this class, students will be able to:

  1. describe and evaluate the concept of “The Age of Atlantic Revolutions”.
  2. describe and evaluate the central issues in the historiography of this field.
  3. produce critical appraisals of course readings, orally and in writing.
  4. produce an historical map in QGIS.
  5. contribute to a collaboratively written QGIS tutorial in GitHub.

Required Books

  1. Klooster, Wim. Revolutions in the Atlantic World: a Comparative History. New York: New York University Press, 2009. 9780814747889
  2. Linebaugh, Peter, and Marcus Rediker. The Many-Headed Hydra: Sailors, Slaves, Commoners, and the Hidden History of the Revolutionary Atlantic. Boston: Beacon Press, 2000. 9780807050064
  3. Pincus, Steven C. A. 1688: The First Modern Revolution. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009. 0300171439
  4. O’Shaughnessy, Andrew. An Empire Divided: The American Revolution and the British Caribbean. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2000.
  5. Donoghue, John. Fire Under the Ashes: An Atlantic History of the English Revolution. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2013.
  6. Dubois, Laurent. Avengers of the New World: The Story of the Haitian Revolution. Belknap Press, 2004. 0674013042
  7. Polasky, Janet L. Revolutions without Borders: The Call to Liberty in the Atlantic World (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2015).
  8. Johnson, Lyman L. Workshop of Revolution: Plebeian Buenos Aires and the Atlantic World, 1776-1810. (Durham: Duke University Press, 2011).

Required Articles and Chapters

  1. Palmer, Robert R. “The World Revolution of the West: 1763-1801,” Political Science Quarterly 69 (March 1954): 1-14.
  2. Cox, Marvin. “A Reassessment of R. R. Palmer’s The Age of Democratic Revolution,” The History Teacher 24, no. 3 (May 1, 1991): 343-52, doi:10.2307/494623.
  3. Inikori, Joseph E. Chapters 9 & 10 in Africans and the Industrial Revolution in England : A Study in International Trade and Economic Development. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2002.
  4. Inikori, Joseph. “Slavery and the Development of Industrial Capitalism in England,” The Journal of Interdisciplinary History. 17, no. 4 (April 1, 1987): 771-93.

Required Electronic Tools and Policies:

  1. You must have access to a computer that can run QGIS; ideally, this would be a laptop that you can bring to class. You can download this free, open-source software at
  2. You must have access to a computer that can run the GitHub Desktop, available free for Mac and Windows at
  3. I encourage you to use the bibliography manager Zotero [free from] to produce your footnotes and bibliography in this course.
  4. You won’t give me “papers” but will upload all assignments as Word documents to our BlackBoard page or as Markdown code to GitHub. I’ll return the work with written comments in the same way.
  5. I will post all grades to our class BlackBoard page.


At the end of the semester, students who have accumulated 900 or more points will receive a “A”; 800 to 899 is a “B”; 700 to 799 is a “C”; and 600 to 699 is “D”. Less than 600 points is a failing grade.

Assignment Points
Class participation 100
Class presentation 90
QGIS tutorials 100
GitHub collaboration 100
Final map 100
3 reaction papers of 500 words 210
Final essay of 3,000 words 300
TOTAL 1000

Major Assignments and Examinations:

Class Participation: every week

Attendance and participation in our class discussions are important parts of this collooquium. I take attendance and make notes on your participation at every class meeting. I’m not grading you on your brilliance but on your willingness to explore new ideas and offer feedback to your classmates.

Class Presentation: choose your week

At the meeting before we start a new book or article, one student will make a presentation of approximately 15 minutes about the upcoming author. This should be a kind of intellectual biography, which I will grade on your research and presentation skills. What articles and books has she published? When and where did he attend graduate school? Which scholars or ideas have most influenced her? What special tools or perspectives does he generally bring to his work? I’m happy to give you pointers if you have trouble finding material.

GIS assignments

We’ll do  3 kinds of GIS assignments: QGIS tutorials, collaborating via GitHub, and making a final map.

QGIS tutorials: due Week 4 <2016-09-15> and Week 5 <2016-09-22>

GIS is an important tool for historians and in this class you’ll develop some basic skills in QGIS, a free open-source GIS program, by completing a number of tutorials, in and outside of class. Those who have already completed these tutorials in an earlier class, will make their own versions, teaching the same QGIS skills with different geographic locations. Due:

GitHub collaboration: due Week 4 <2016-09-15> and Week 5 <2016-09-22>
  • GitHub is a website that allows collaborators to share files and keep track of the changes they make in those files. Programmers invented this technology, which is called “version control.” However it can be used by any team trying to create or improve a digital product, even if that product is a GIS tutorial or an historical dataset. In this class we’ll use GitHub to improve the GIS tutorials I’ve written for this class.
  • GitHub uses an easy-to-learn syntax called Markdown. [This syllabus was written in Markdown.] We’ll learn Markdown too.
  • Students who have completed my QGIS tutorials in an earlier semester, will make their own version of 2 of the tutorials. They will post them to GitHub, so other class members can improve them.
  • Students who have never worked with my QGIS tutorials will use GitHub to improve one of my tutorials, or one written by another class member. For example, they might clarify wording, insert a comments about an unclear instruction, add screenshots, and improve the formatting.
Final map: due Week 16 <2016-12-08>
  • You will make a map in QGIS and submit it at the end of the semester
  • Your map can be one of two things:
  • A map related to the Age of Revolutions, made with historical data that I supply. You will submit this as a QGIS file via GitHub.
  • A map related to your own historical interests, meeting criteria that you and I set together. You will submit this as an image file via Blackboard.

Three Reaction Papers: due Week 3 <2016-09-08 Thu>; Week 9 <2016-10-20 Thu>; Week 12 <2016-11-10 Thu>

  • Due via Blackboard upload before the following day at noon.
  • A reaction paper should be at least 500 words long. In it you describe the thesis of the book and, as specifically and thoughtfully as you can, how it affected your understanding of the Age of Revolution.

Final Essay: due Week 16 <2016-12-08>

At the end of this semester you’ll turn in an interpretive essay of about 3,000 words, roughly 10 pages, about the question — What is the Age of Revolution? Is it a useful concept? Why or why not? How would you define or describe that Age? When did it start? When did it end? What events would you include or exclude?

Important policies

Attendance: At The University of Texas at Arlington, taking attendance is not required but attendance is a critical indicator in student success. Each faculty member is free to develop his or her own methods of evaluating students’ academic performance, which includes establishing course-specific policies on attendance. As the instructor of this section, I take attendance every meeting and include this as part of the class participation grade. However, while UT Arlington does not require instructors to take attendance in their courses, the U.S. Department of Education requires that the University have a mechanism in place to mark when Federal Student Aid recipients “begin attendance in a course.” UT Arlington instructors will report when students begin attendance in a course as part of the final grading process. Specifically, when assigning a student a grade of F, faculty report the last date a student attended their class based on evidence such as a test, participation in a class project or presentation, or an engagement online via Blackboard. This date is reported to the Department of Education for federal financial aid recipients.

Drop Policy: Students may drop or swap (adding and dropping a class concurrently) classes through self-service in MyMav from the beginning of the registration period through the late registration period. After the late registration period, students must see their academic advisor to drop a class or withdraw. Undeclared students must see an advisor in the University Advising Center. Drops can continue through a point two-thirds of the way through the term or session. It is the student’s responsibility to officially withdraw if they do not plan to attend after registering. Students will not be automatically dropped for non-attendance. Repayment of certain types of financial aid administered through the University may be required as the result of dropping classes or withdrawing. For more information, contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships (

Disability Accommodations: UT Arlington is on record as being committed to both the spirit and letter of all federal equal opportunity legislation, including The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), The Americans with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAAA), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. All instructors at UT Arlington are required by law to provide “reasonable accommodations” to students with disabilities, so as not to discriminate on the basis of disability. Students are responsible for providing the instructor with official notification in the form of a letter certified by the Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD).  Only those students who have officially documented a need for an accommodation will have their request honored. Students experiencing a range of conditions (Physical, Learning, Chronic Health, Mental Health, and Sensory) that may cause diminished academic performance or other barriers to learning may seek services and/or accommodations by contacting:

The Office for Students with Disabilities, (OSD) or calling 817-272-3364. Information regarding diagnostic criteria and policies for obtaining disability-based academic accommodations can be found at

Counseling and Psychological Services, (CAPS) or calling 817-272-3671 is also available to all students to help increase their understanding of personal issues, address mental and behavioral health problems and make positive changes in their lives.

Electronic Communication: UT Arlington has adopted MavMail as its official means to communicate with students about important deadlines and events, as well as to transact university-related business regarding financial aid, tuition, grades, graduation, etc. All students are assigned a MavMail account and are responsible for checking the inbox regularly. There is no additional charge to students for using this account, which remains active even after graduation. Information about activating and using MavMail is available at

Campus Carry:  Effective August 1, 2016, the Campus Carry law  (Senate Bill 11) allows those licensed individuals to carry a concealed handgun in buildings on public university campuses, except in locations the University establishes as prohibited. Under the new law, openly carrying handguns is not allowed on college campuses. For more information, visit

Student Feedback Survey: At the end of each term, students enrolled in face-to-face and online classes categorized as “lecture,” “seminar,” or “laboratory” are directed to complete an online Student Feedback Survey (SFS). Instructions on how to access the SFS for this course will be sent directly to each student through MavMail approximately 10 days before the end of the term. Each student’s feedback via the SFS database is aggregated with that of other students enrolled in the course.  Students’ anonymity will be protected to the extent that the law allows. UT Arlington’s effort to solicit, gather, tabulate, and publish student feedback is required by state law and aggregate results are posted online. Data from SFS is also used for faculty and program evaluations. For more information, visit

Final Review Week: for semester-long courses, a period of five class days prior to the first day of final examinations in the long sessions shall be designated as Final Review Week. The purpose of this week is to allow students sufficient time to prepare for final examinations. During this week, there shall be no scheduled activities such as required field trips or performances; and no instructor shall assign any themes, research problems or exercises of similar scope that have a completion date during or following this week unless specified in the class syllabus. During Final Review Week, an instructor shall not give any examinations constituting 10% or more of the final grade, except makeup tests and laboratory examinations. In addition, no instructor shall give any portion of the final examination during Final Review Week. During this week, classes are held as scheduled. In addition, instructors are not required to limit content to topics that have been previously covered; they may introduce new concepts as appropriate.

Emergency Exit Procedures: [Required for face-to-face courses; should be omitted for online courses] Should we experience an emergency event that requires us to vacate the building, students should exit the room and move toward the nearest exit, which is located [insert a description of the nearest exit/emergency exit]. When exiting the building during an emergency, one should never take an elevator but should use the stairwells. Faculty members and instructional staff will assist students in selecting the safest route for evacuation and will make arrangements to assist individuals with disabilities.

Non-Discrimination Policy: The University of Texas at Arlington does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, disabilities, genetic information, and/or veteran status in its educational programs or activities it operates. For more information, visit

 Title IX Policy: The University of Texas at Arlington (“University”) is committed to maintaining a learning and working environment that is free from discrimination based on sex in accordance with Title IX of the Higher Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in educational programs or activities; Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), which prohibits sex discrimination in employment; and the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination Act (SaVE Act). Sexual misconduct is a form of sex discrimination and will not be tolerated. For information regarding Title IX, visit or contact Ms. Jean Hood, Vice President and Title IX Coordinator at (817) 272-7091 or

Academic Integrity: Students enrolled all UT Arlington courses are expected to adhere to the UT Arlington Honor Code:

I pledge, on my honor, to uphold UT Arlington’s tradition of academic integrity, a tradition that values hard work and honest effort in the pursuit of academic excellence.

I promise that I will submit only work that I personally create or contribute to group collaborations, and I will appropriately reference any work from other sources. I will follow the highest standards of integrity and uphold the spirit of the Honor Code.

UT Arlington faculty members may employ the Honor Code in their courses by having students acknowledge the honor code as part of an examination or requiring students to incorporate the honor code into any work submitted. Per UT System Regents’ Rule 50101, §2.2, suspected violations of university’s standards for academic integrity (including the Honor Code) will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct. Violators will be disciplined in accordance with University policy, which may result in the student’s suspension or expulsion from the University. Additional information is available at

Student Support Services: [Required for all undergraduate courses] UT Arlington provides a variety of resources and programs designed to help students develop academic skills, deal with personal situations, and better understand concepts and information related to their courses. Resources include tutoring, major-based learning centers, developmental education, advising and mentoring, personal counseling, and federally funded programs. For individualized referrals, students may visit the reception desk at University College (Ransom Hall), call the Maverick Resource Hotline at 817-272-6107, send a message to, or view the information at

Class Schedule

Week 1 <2016-08-25 Thu>

  • In class: Work through the 1st tutorial in the Mapping and GIS area of The Programming Historian, on Google Maps and Google Earth
  • Garrigus model presentation: Jeremy Popkin
  • For next week: Read Palmer, Cox, and Klooster

Week 2 <2016-09-01 Thu>

  • Presentation on Klooster
  • Presentation on Palmer
  • Discuss Klooster, Palmer and Cox
  • In class we will learn how to use Markdown
  • For next week, read Linebaugh and Rediker

Week 3 <2016-09-08 Thu>

  • Presentation on Linebaugh
  • Presentation on Rediker
  • Discuss Linebaugh and Rediker
  • In class we will
    • learn how to use GitHub Desktop and Markdown to collaborate
    • review how to install a recent version of QGIS on your laptop
  • Due by 11:59pm, reaction paper on Linebaugh and Rediker, The Many Headed Hydra
  • For next week, there’s no reading. Instead:

Week 4 <2016-09-15 Thu>

  • Presentation on Karl Marx’s model of revolution
  • In class, we will use this tutorial to:
    • Learn how to find and import various shapefiles constructing the map of a Caribbean island
    • Manipulate and categorize the attribute tables that underlie those shapefiles
    • Import a raster file containing a previously georeferenced historical map
    • We’ll also work with new geographic versions of this Caribbean island tutorial  on GitHub, branched by experienced students
  • We will also use this tutorial to:
    • Import two previously georeferenced maps of Louisiana
    • Create several new vector [data] layers based on data that you input from these two rasters, recording vanished towns, roads
    • We’ll also work with new geographic versions of this tutorial on GitHub, branched by experienced students
  • Again, there’s no reading for next week. Instead:
    • new-to-GIS students: complete the georeferencing tutorial in the Mapping and GIS area of The Programming Historian
    • new-to-GIS students: use GitHub to improve one of the tutorials created by experienced students
    • experienced students: pick the Garrigus QGIS Texas or census “table-join” tutorial on GitHub and make your own branch

Week 5 <2016-09-22 Thu>

  • Presentation on Tocqueville’s 1856 model of the French Revolution
  • In class we will
    • Use this tutorial to georeference historical maps of Texas
    • We’ll also work through the new geographic versions of this tutorial drafted by experienced students
    • Use this tutorial to learn how to import historical data into QGIS and connect it to spatial data
    • We’ll also work through the new geographic versions of this tutorial on GitHub, branched by experienced students
  • For next week: Back to our books! Read Donaghue

Week 6 <2016-09-29 Thu>

  • Presentation on Donaghue
  • Discuss Donaghue
  • Discuss possible map projects
  • For next week: Read Pincus, chaps 1-9

Week 7 <2016-10-06 Thu>

  • Presentation on Pincus
  • Discuss Pincus, chaps 1-9
  • For next week: read Pincus, chaps 10-15

Week 8 <2016-10-13 Thu>

  • Discuss Pincus, chaps 10-15
  • Presentation on O’Shaughnessy
  • For next week: read O’Shaughnessy

Week 9 <2016-10-20 Thu>

  • Discuss O’Shaughnessy
  • Due at 11:59pm: reaction paper on O’Shaughnessy, An Empire Divided
  • Presentation on Inikori
  • For next week: read Inikori

Week 10 <2016-10-27 Thu>

  • Discuss Inikori
  • Presentation on Polasky
  • For next week: read Polasky

Week 11 <2016-11-03 Thu>

  • Discuss Polasky
  • Presentation on Dubois
  • For next week: read Dubois

Week 12 <2016-11-10 Thu>

  • Discuss Dubois
  • Due at 11:59pm, reaction paper on Dubois, Avengers of the New World
  • Presentation on Johnson
  • For next week: work on final map
  • For two weeks: read Johnson

Week 13 <2016-11-17 Thu> No Meeting

  • Work on final map
  • Work on final paper

Week 14 <2016-11-24 Thu> No Meeting

  • Work on final map
  • Work on final paper
  • For next week: read Johnson

Week 15 <2016-12-01 Thu> Last class meeting

  • Discuss Johnson
  • Discuss maps and papers
  • Makeup presentations [TBD]

Final Project and Map Due <2016-12-08 Thu>

As the instructor for this course, I reserve the right to adjust this schedule in any way that serves the educational needs of the students. John Garrigus

Emergency Phone Numbers:  In case of an on-campus emergency, call the UT Arlington Police Department at 817-272-3003 (non-campus phone), 2-3003 (campus phone). You may also dial 911. Non-emergency number 817-272-3381