History (HIST) 455

Canada and the Bomb: Canada and the World in the Cold War (Revision 4)

HIST 455 course cover

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Humanities

Prerequisite: None. HIST 225 is strongly recommended.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

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HIST 455 is not available for Challenge.

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This course examines Canada's response to the unleashing of the atom's destructive power and the intense divisions between the two superpowers with the greatest control over that power. Among issues discussed are the range of official and private citizen attitudes to nuclear and conventional warfare, Canada's role in the Korean and Vietnam wars, Canada's role in Latin America and Africa, and Canadian participation in NATO and NORAD.

Throughout the course, a key concern is the relationship of Canadian attitudes to nuclear and foreign-policy issues on the one hand, and Canadian views of the values informing our own society, on the other.


  • Unit 1: Contexts for the Cold War
  • Unit 2: Canada and the New World Order
  • Unit 3: Institutionalizing the Empire of Capital
  • Unit 4: Canada and the Third World
  • Unit 5: Foreign Policy Debates as Extensions of Domestic Debates


To receive credit for HIST 455, you must complete all of the assignments, achieve a minimum grade of 50 percent on the final examination, and obtain a course composite grade of at least D (50 percent). The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Activity Weighting
Assignment 1 20%
Assignment 2 20%
Assignment 3 20%
Final Exam 40%
Total 100%

The final examination for this course must be taken online with an AU-approved exam invigilator at an approved invigilation centre. It is your responsibility to ensure your chosen invigilation centre can accommodate online exams. For a list of invigilators who can accommodate online exams, visit the Exam Invigilation Network.

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Robert Teigrob, Warming Up to the Cold War: Canada and the United States' Coalition of the Willing, from Hiroshima to Korea (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2009).

Other materials

All other course readings will be available to students on-line via a link from the course website.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 4, March 19, 2013.

View previous syllabus