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.  


On February 23, 2022 Russian forces invaded the Ukraine 

See recent articles regarding the Ukraine-Russia crisis written by Victoria Smolkin, Associate Professor of History:


History Events

Strong Bodies for the Revolution: Pursuing Health and Power in the People's Republic of China

CEAS Gallery Exhibition 

February 16 - May 13, 2022

Strong Bodies for the Revolution: Pursuing Health and Power in the People's Republic of China opened February 16 at the College of East Asian Studies Gallery at Mansfield Freeman Center.

Regular gallery hours during the exhibition are Tuesday through Friday, Noon-4pm.

For more information click here to see the History Events Webpage.

Save The Date - May 4, 2022 - Christian Nationalism Talk with Sam Perry

Visiting Professor Joe Slaughter is organizing an event on campus on Wednesday, May 4 with noted sociologist of religion, Sam Perry (U of Oklahoma). There will be a talk at noon for faculty and students on Christian Nationalism and additional informal gatherings with majors that day. Sam's book with Andrew Whitehead garnered a great deal of attention nationally, and his next book with Philip Gorski comes out in April.




Faculty News

Laura Ann Twagira gave a talk entitled "Engineering the Daily Meal: Women, Food, and Techno-Politics in Rural Mali" for Stanford's African Studies Center in February, 2022. For more information and to see the video, click here.

Ethan Kleinberg's new book, Emmanuel Levinas’s Talmudic Turn: Philosophy and Jewish Thought, will be published October, 2021 in the Cultural Memory in the Present Series from Stanford University Press.

Check out Laura Ann Twagira's new book: Embodied Engineering: Gendered Labor, Food Security, and Taste in Twentieth-Century Mali (Athens: Ohio University Press, 2021). Laura Ann Twagira also edited a special issue of Technology and Culture (special issue Africanizing the History of Technology) 61 no. 2 Supplement, April 2020.

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.