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Making of the Modern World: Light to the Nations II, Part Two (Catholic Textbook Project)

Join us for Part Two of this course to learn how modern ideas, institutions, and culture developed from the high centuries of Christian culture. We will study the history of the modern era in story form, with emphasis on dates, central characters, and key concepts.

Total classes: 14

Prerequisite: None

Suggested grade level: 8th to 11th grade. Other interested students welcomed.

Suggested credit: One full semester World History or Renaissance to Modern History


This course examines how the Modern World — our world — came to be. It looks at the revolutionary ideas that created, first in Europe and then the entire world, an understanding of man and his relationship to God, the Church, and the state that was in many respects radically different from the understanding of these things that prevailed in the Middle Ages. Ideas influence deeds, and thus the course examines historical events, showing how they flowed from the struggle between those who held to traditional conceptions and those who embraced the new ideas. Events influence ideas, and thus we study how the events of history helped modify and develop both the new ideas and the traditional vision of the world.


Year of Revolutions
Industrial Revolution
Socialism and Marxism
Social Darwinism / Vatican I
German Unification
Catholic Social Teaching
Midterm Review
Heading into war
The Great War Begins
End of WWI and Preludes to WWII
The Cold War
Final Review

Materials and Homework

Course materials: Light to the Nations II: The Making of the Modern World, ISBN: 9781935644286, https://shop.catholictextbookproject.com/collections/history-textbooks/products/light-nations-part-ii-making-modern-world-textbook (same as Part One)

Homework: Students will read assigned portions of the text. Lectures will focus on events and ideas that are key to understanding the historical periods taught. The instructor will evaluate students with essay tests given after Week III, Week V, and Week VII. Thereafter, the evaluation will be based on student’s responses to questions in class. Students may expect to spend approximately two to four hours a week on homework.

Important Dates

Class dates: Mondays, January 8th to April 22, 2024. No class February 12 and April 1.

Starting time: 4:00 PM Eastern (3:00 Central; 2:00 Mountain; 1:00 Pacific)

Duration per class: 55 minutes

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