History | Globalizing the Past: History and the Global Turn
H699 | 15284 | Machado

A portion of the above class reserved for majors
Above class open to graduates only

The past two decades have witnessed growing interest in a developing
new field of historical research and teaching: global history.
Spurred in part by the political reorientations, geographical and
spatial re-imaginings following the collapse of the Soviet bloc and
the urgent realities of an emergent ‘hyper’ globalizing world, as
well as by the transnational turn to anti- and postcolonial
scholarship, global history scholarship has opened possibilities for
scholars to reframe spatial, temporal and discursive constructs in a
changing intellectual landscape. Echoing broader arguments against
universalism and Eurocentrism – but employing frameworks that set
them apart from world historians’ preoccupations with comparative
history – global historians seek to uncover the multipolar and
pluralistic connections that have brought different parts of the
world into relation with one another over the span of centuries.
The ‘entanglements’ of the past, whether they are conceptualized in
material, cultural, political, social or economic terms, have thus
become of central concern to the global history project. This course
will explore the theoretical underpinnings and methodological
approaches of global history as a way of understanding the
conceptual and intellectual possibilities of, and challenges for,
this rapidly expanding field. The goals are to encourage students to
consider research that can illuminate large-scale historical
processes, engage in global and ‘transnational’ histories, or
explore geographically dispersed phenomena such as mobility,
commodity flows and the history of aquatic regions.