History and Art History
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

HIST 387: Topics in Global History

HIST 387-DL1: History of the Mafia in Italy and the United States
(Spring 2017)

Online

Section Information for Spring 2017

This course begins with the roots of the Italian mafia as mediators of codes of honor and traditional family values in the resolution of conflicts.  Historically there is evidence of the mafia in the Middle Ages. Then we discuss the Unification of Italy and the migration of Sicilians to the United States in the 19th century. We’ll continue the course with parallel discussions of the mafia and the fascist state in Italy, and the decline of organized crime under fascism, followed by the resurfacing of the mafia during the Second World War, and subsequently the rise of the Cosa Nostra and drug trafficking from Sicily to the United States. The course will end with a discussion of organized crime families and syndicates in a global context, in particular, the United States. This online course includes readings of two survey texts, articles, and fiction about the mafia; some short youtubes and films. Yes, we'll watch excerpts from The Leopard, The Godfather and Goodfellas, but others as well.

Satisfies the general education requirement in global understanding.

Non-Western Culture

HIST 387 DL1 is a distance education section.

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Course Information from the University Catalog

Credits: 3-6

Study of historical topics or periods of special interest in global, Latin American, African, Asian, or Middle Eastern history. Notes: Topics announced in advance. May be repeated for credit when topic is different. May be repeated within the term.
Mason Core: Global Understanding
Specialized Designation: Non-Western Culture
Schedule Type: Lecture

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