This course will survey Asian, European, African and American civilizations from 500 C.E. to 2010 C.E.. Students will examine the development and global impact of growing central authority, the birth of the nation-state, the industrial revolution and the rise of capitalism; discover how political absolutism gave way to the rise of a democratic ideology forged by the social contract theories of the Enlightenment, tested in the English, American and French Revolutions; the impact of colonialism and its mixed consequences to Africa, Asia, and the Americas; and emphasis is also given to developments in the newly industrializing, post-colonial countries, plus the cost of the world wars and their impact on modern world society. Finally we will look at the impact of the Cold War and the contemporary world.