Author: Christine Farr


The final project for this course is the creation of a research paper. The focal point of HIS 117 is the interaction among cultures, or, as the textbook calls it, “encounters.” The research paper assignment for this course asks students to select one case study of cultural interaction and evaluate it critically. Sample topics can be found within this document.
The project is divided into two milestones, which will be submitted at various points throughout the course to scaffold learning and ensure quality final submissions. These milestones will be submitted in Modules Three and Five. The final submission is in Module Seven.
Choose one of the topic choices below for your research paper:
Topic ChoicesThe most important part of the topic selection is that students find personal interest in the topic. Try to choose something that will keep you involved with theresearch. Ten potential topics are listed in this section, but you are also free to choose a topic of your own, provided that it falls within the scope of the class. Harappa and Aryans in India, c. 1500 BCE Persian Empire and Mesopotamian states (e.g., Babylon), c. 500 BCE Alexander the Great and Egypt, c. 300 BCE Roman Empire in Britain, c. 100 CE China and India on the Silk Road, c. 200 CE Buddhism and Japan, c. 500 CE Islamic Empire and Spain, c. 750 CE Byzantine Empire and Slavic peoples, c. 850 CE Mongols and China, c. 1250 CE European explorers and Africa, c. 1450 CE
Answer the following prompt for your selected topic:Every significant historical interaction among different societies involves a tradeoff in terms of economy, politics, and culture. What did each party in yourselected interaction gain and lose as a result? Do you see a power dynamic at play in your interaction, or did both sides benefit and lose in equal measure?

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