Custom Sourcebook: World History II 1500 - present

Our World History II sourcebook can include any number of primary sources and textbook articles from our collection and can be divided into custom units/chapters as you see fit. To help you visualize the possibilities, we’ve created a standard version that includes 15 units that span from the pre-modern world to issues of globalization in the present. Create a review account to examine the complete contents and customize it to suit your own course.

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Read the Spring 2019 update by Eric Cunningham

Table of Contents

Unit 1: A Survey of the Premodern Worlds

Popol Vuh (ca. 250-925)
Qur’an (Koran) (ca. 610-632)
The Secret History of the Mongols (ca. 1250)
Mongol Conquest of Northern Rus (ca. 1265)
Mongol Capture of Kiev (ca. 1265)
Ala-ad-Din Ata-Malik Juvaini: The Capture of Bokhara (ca. 1265)
Thomas Aquinas: Summa Theologiae (1266-1273)
Marco Polo: Description of Hangzhou (1298)
Ibn Battuta: Travels in Asia and Africa (1325-1354)


Unit 2: Crisis and Recovery in Eurasia

Pope Boniface VIII: Clericis Laicos and Unam Sanctam (1296 and 1302)
Giovanni Boccaccio: The Decameron (ca. 1350-1353)
Jean Froissart: The Chronicles of Froissart (ca. 1357-1400)
Zheng He: Inscription to the Goddess the Celestial Spouse (1431)
Martin Luther: Ninety-five Theses (1517)
John Calvin: Institutes of the Christian Religion (1536)
Saint Ignatius of Loyola: The Spiritual Exercises (1548)
Canons and Decrees of the Council of Trent (1564)
‘Abd-al-Qadir Bada’uni: Chronicles (ca. 1595)


Unit 3: Contact and Conquest

Christopher Columbus: Letter to Raphael Sanxis on the Discovery of America (1493)
A Journal of the First Voyage of Vasco da Gama (1497-1498)
Nzinga Mbemba: Appeal to the King of Portugal (1526)
Rig Veda Americanus (ca. 1540-1585)
Garcilaso de la Vega: Royal Commentaries of the Incas (1609)


Unit 4: Worlds Entangled

The Journey of Álvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca (1542)
Saint Francis Xavier: Letter to the Society of Jesus in Europe (1552)
Bartolomé de las Casas: A Brief Account of the Destruction of the Indies (1552)
Bernal Díaz: The True History of the Conquest of New Spain (ca. 1576)
Dutch Declaration of Independence (1581)
Matteo Ricci: “Religious Sects among the Chinese” (1615)
Charter of the Dutch West India Company (1621)


Unit 5: Empires of Splendor and Might

Bakhtáwar Khán: Mirát-i-’A’lam (1078)
Japanese Laws Governing Military Households (1615)
Japan's Closed Country Edict (1635)


Unit 6: The Birth of Modern Knowledge

Henricus Institoris and Jacobus Sprenger: Malleus maleficarum (1486)
Paracelsus: Concerning the Nature of Things (1537)
Nicolaus Copernicus: On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres (1543)
Galileo Galilei: Starry Messenger (1610)
Fama Fraternitatis (ca. 1610)
Letter of Cardinal Bellarmine to Paolo Antonio Foscarini concerning Galileo’s Theories (1615)
René Descartes: Discourse on the Method of Rightly Conducting the Reason (ca. 1637)
John Locke: Second Treatise on Civil Government (1690)
Jean-Jacques Rousseau: The Social Contract (1762)
Immanuel Kant: “What Is Enlightenment?” (1784)


Unit 7: Reordering the World

Thomas Paine: Common Sense (1776)
Declaration of Independence (1776)
Emmanuel-Joseph Sieyès: What Is the Third Estate? (1789)
Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen (1789)
Bill of Rights (1791)
Olympe de Gouges: Declaration of the Rights of Woman and of the Female Citizen (1791)
Constitution of Haiti (1801)
Napoleonic Code (1804)
Imperial Catechism (1806)
Johann Gottlieb Fichte: Addresses to the German Nation (1808)
Simón Bolívar: Cartagena Manifesto (1812)
Henry Clay: Speech on South American Independence (1820)
Giuseppe Mazzini: An Essay on the Duties of Man: Addressed to Workingmen (1860)


Unit 8: Non-European Appropriations of Modernity

Qianlong: Letter to George III (1793)
Lin Zexu: “Moral Advice to Queen Victoria” (1839)
Treaty of Nanjing (1842)
Ottoman Constitution (1876)
Yukichi Fukuzawa: “Good-bye Asia” (1885)
Meiji Constitution of Japan (1889)
Proclamation of the Young Turks (1908)


Unit 9: Industrialism and Its After-effects

Adam Smith: The Wealth of Nations (1776)
Leeds Woolen Workers Petition (1786)
Louis Blanc: The Organization of Labor (1839)
Eighth Annual Report of the Poor Law Commissioners (1842)
Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels: Communist Manifesto (1848)
Michael Faraday: Letter to the Editor of the [London] Times (1856)
William Acton: Prostitution Considered in Its Moral, Social, and Sanitary Aspects (1857)


Unit 10: Nations and Empires in the Americas

James Madison: Federalist 10 (1787)
George Washington: Farewell Address (1796)
Marbury v. Madison (1803)
Tecumseh: Speech to Governor William Henry Harrison at Fort Vincennes (1810)
James Madison: “Advice to My Country” (1834)
John Ross: Address to the Cherokee Nation (1838)
John C. Calhoun: "On His Resolutions in Reference to the War with Mexico" (1848)
Panama Canal Treaty (1903)
Francisco García Calderón: Latin America: Its Rise and Progress (1913)


Unit 11: Triumph of the Bourgeoisie

Edmund Burke: Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790)
Johann Gottlieb Fichte: Addresses to the German Nation (1808)
Holy Alliance (1815)
Percy Bysshe Shelley: “A Defense of Poetry” (1821)
Giuseppe Mazzini: General Instructions for the Members of Young Italy (1831)
Alexis de Tocqueville: Democracy in America (1835)
Henry David Thoreau: “On the Duty of Civil Disobedience” (1849)
John Stuart Mill: On Liberty (1859)
Pope Pius IX: Syllabus of Errors (1864)
Charles Darwin: The Descent of Man (1871)
Jane Addams: "The Subjective Necessity for Social Settlements" (1892)
Friedrich Nietzsche: The Will to Power (1901)


Unit 12: New Imperialism

Cecil Rhodes: Confession of Faith (1877)
Bernhard von Bülow on Germany's “Place in the Sun” (1897)
Joseph Conrad: Heart of Darkness (1899)
Rudyard Kipling: “The White Man's Burden” (1899)
Karl Pearson: National Life from the Standpoint of Science (1901)
Roosevelt Corollary to the Monroe Doctrine (1904)
George Orwell: Burmese Days (1934)


Unit 13: Competing Visions of Modernity

Vladimir Lenin: What Is to Be Done? (1902)
Rudolf Steiner: Theosophy (1904)
Adolf Hitler: Mein Kampf (1926)
José Ortega y Gasset: The Revolt of the Masses (1930)
Sigmund Freud: Civilization and Its Discontents (1930)
Benito Mussolini: “The Doctrine of Fascism” (1932)
Joseph Stalin: “Results of the First Five-year Plan” (1933)
Reinhard Heydrich: Memorandum concerning Kristallnacht (1938)


Unit 14: A Divided Postwar World

Balfour Declaration (1917)
United Nations Charter (1945)
Winston Churchill: Iron Curtain Speech (1946)
Harry S. Truman: Truman Doctrine (1947)
Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948)
Fidel Castro: History Will Absolve Me (1953)
Warsaw Security Pact (1955)
Nikita Khrushchev: Secret Speech (1956)
John Foster Dulles: Address on U.S. Policy toward Communist China (1957)
Camp David Accords (1978)
Óscar Romero: Last Sermon (1980)


Unit 15: Globalization

Deng Xiaoping: “Emancipate the Mind” (1978)
Alexander Solzhenitsyn: “A World Split Apart” (1978)
Jean-François Lyotard: The Postmodern Condition: A Report on Knowledge (1979)
Benjamin R. Barber: “Jihad vs. McWorld” (1992)
Osama bin Laden: Declaration of Jihad against Americans (1996)
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change: Fourth Assessment Report on Climate Change (2007)
M. Jay Wells: “Why the Mortgage Crisis Happened” (2008)