History is a way of understanding the whole of the human condition as it has unfolded in time. Without history, nothing makes sense, from the meaning of words to the formation of identities, to institutions, states, and societies. History straddles the boundary between the social sciences and humanities. Like the other social sciences, it has established methods of investigation and proof, but it differs from them in that it encompasses, potentially, every area of human culture from the beginning of recorded time. Like the other humanities, it uses ordinary language and established modes of telling its stories, but it is constrained by evidence left us from the past.

The History Department is home to a distinguished group of scholar-teachers whose work ranges from the medieval to the post-modern, from the Middle East to the Midwest, from gender and sexuality to science and economics, from micro-history to world history.  

Upcoming Events

  • Thursday, November 11 at 4:30 p.m. in Shanklin 107 (Kerr Lecture Hall):
    • Annual HIST 362 Distinguished Lecture with Professor Kenda Mutongi, MIT

Event Calendar

Oct 28

Is American Democracy Doomed?

04:35 pm

Outdoor Classroom/Event Tent Space Hogwarts Classroom Tent

William Johnston on Who Shaped the Story of Hiroshima and Nagasaki?

William Johnston on Compared to other ‘wartime presidents,' Trump’s record stands apart


Faculty News


  • Ying Jia Tan's new book Recharging China in War and Revolution, 1882-1955, published with Cornell University Press, was released on May 29, 2021. The open access e-book can be downloaded for free, and the print-on-demand paperback is also available for purchase.