This Roots course charts the emergence of modern states in Europe from the late medieval period to present, an unprecedented era in human history defined by radical transformations in politics, culture, and technology. We will discuss the implications of the modern state not just from a broader historical context but also from the experiences and perspectives of everyday people. More broadly the course will introduce students to the methods and means by which history is practiced, in addition to improving critical thinking and writing skills. Special emphasis will be placed on the analysis of primary source documents.