Summer 2020 - HIST 407 D100

Popular Culture in Great Britain and Europe (4)

Class Number: 5441

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jun 30 – Aug 10, 2020: Mon, Wed, 9:30 a.m.–1:20 p.m.

  • Instructor:

    John Craig
    1 778 782-8927
    Office: AQ 6242
  • Prerequisites:

    45 units including nine units of lower division history. Recommended: HIST 106.



This course will study culture in Great Britain and Europe since 1500. Themes may include the sixteenth century separation between popular and elite culture, Carnival, the witch craze, popular ballads, the institution of 'rational recreation' during the Industrial Revolution, the late Victorian Music Hall, the cultural emancipation of women, and the effects on working class culture of economic depression and world war.


Using the library’s subscription to Mass-Observation Online, this research seminar examines popular culture in the British Isles from 1938 to 1950. Mass-Observation was created in 1937 with the aim of documenting popular beliefs and activities.  Hundreds of volunteer observers were recruited and asked to provide written reports on their daily lives and to respond to specific questions. When the war broke out in 1939, these volunteer observers were asked to keep ‘war diaries’ and these form the heart of the Mass-Observation archive.  The focus of this seminar is on the social history of these years of fundamental change in the British Isles as recorded by individuals.  

This course is scheduled for the Summer Session (30 June – 10 August) and meets twice a week (Mondays and Wednesdays).  Our first seminar is on Monday 6 July 2020


  • Directive report (1200 words) 20%
  • Diary report (1500 words) 20%
  • Participation 20%
  • Research project (3000 words) 40%



All readings on Canvas or through Mass Observation Online

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University.


Please note that all teaching at SFU in summer term 2020 will be conducted through remote methods. Enrollment in this course acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning ( or 778-782-3112) as soon as possible to ensure that they are eligible and that approved accommodations and services are implemented in a timely fashion.