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International History

Departmental Seminar

Organised by Prof Federico Romero and Prof Corinna Unger
Registration code: HEC-DS-INTL-17
Tuesdays, 15:10 - 17:00, Sala del Camino
Starts on 10 October 2017

Admin. Assistant: Serena Belligoli


Seminar description

This departmental seminar explores some of the most innovative as well as established themes of twentieth-century international history with the aim of familiarizing researchers with the field’s varieties of focus, methods, and analytical scope. We consider how advances in the related fields of transnational, global, and world history are influencing the ways in which international history is conceptualized and written. Empirical case studies rather than programmatic statements are studied along with non-Western and Western perspectives and texts. We concentrate on a few central, exemplary topical areas, whose interpretations and methodological approaches have redefined the discipline in recent times.

Preparation: Everyone is expected to thoroughly read the set texts each week. Thorough reading means attending to different dimensions of the texts:

  1. Identifying the author’s central arguments and how they relate to larger historical concerns and debates: how is the author responding to others in the field?
  2. Analyzing how the author constructs her/his argument.
  3. Attending to sources and evidence: how does the author correlate his/her argument to the sources? What claims do you think can be made with the adduced evidence?
  4. Asking yourself how the author is trying to change the way you think about the topic at hand.

Participation: Everyone is expected to contribute to the discussion each week by expressing a viewpoint about the texts and salient issues, especially in relation to points 1-4 above.

We will decide whether a participant (or two) makes a brief introductory presentation on the readings each week. Please note that there is reading for the first meeting.



Background Texts

  • Patricia Clavin, “Defining Transnationalism”, Contemporary European History 14.4 (2005): 421-439.
  • Kiran Klaus Patel, “An Emperor without Clothes? The Debate about Transnational History Twenty-five Years On”, [email protected] 26 (2015): www.histoire-politique.fr
  • Jessica Reinisch, “Introduction: Agents of Internationalism”, Contemporary European History 25.2 (2016): 195-205.
  • Federico Romero, “Cold War Historiography at the Crossroads,” Cold War History 14.4 (2014): 685-703.
  • Daniel Sargent, “The Cold War and the International Political Economy in the 1970s,” Cold War History 13.3 (2013): 393-425.

10 October: Colonialism and Imperialism in the Late 19th and Early 20th Centuries

  • David Arnold, “Globalization and Contingent Colonialism: Towards a transnational history of ‘British’ India,” Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History 16.2 (2015), https://muse-jhu-edu.ezproxy.eui.eu/article/587721, available at: https://muse-jhu-edu.ezproxy.eui.eu/article/587721
  • Miguel Bandeira Jerónimo, The “Civilizing Mission” of Portuguese Colonialism, 1870-1930 (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), chapters 1 and 3.
  • Volker Barth and Roland Cvetkovski, eds., Imperial Co-operation and Transfer, 1870-1930 (London: Bloomsbury, 2015), Introduction and chapter 1.

17 October: The Crisis of Empire after 1918

  • Robert Gerwarth and Erez Manela, “The Great War as a Global War: Imperial Conflict and the Reconfiguration of World Order, 1911-1923,” Diplomatic History 38.4 (2014): 786-800.
  • Susan Pedersen, “Empires, States, and the League of Nations,” in Glenda Sluga and Patricia Clavin (eds.), Internationalisms: A Twentieth-Century History (Cambridge University Press, 2017), 113-138.
  • Tracey Banivanua Mar, Decolonisation and the Pacific: Indigenous Globalisation and the Ends of Empire (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016), 82-113.

24 October: Internationalisms in the Interwar Period

  • Glenda Sluga and Patricia Clavin (eds.), Internationalisms: A Twentieth-Century History (Cambridge University Press, 2017), Introduction and chapter 4 by G. Sluga, “Women, Feminism and Twentieth Century Internationalism,” 61-84.
  • Marc Matera and Susan Kingsley Kent, The Global 1930s: The International Decade (London: Routledge, 2017), Introduction and chapter 3.

31 October: Global Order after 1945

  • Eric Helleiner, Forgotten Foundations of Bretton Woods: International Development and the Making of the Postwar Order (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2014), Introduction and Conclusion.
  • Charles S. Maier, “The World Economy and the Cold War in the Middle of the Twentieth Century,” in Cambridge History of the Cold War, 3 vols., ed. Melvin Leffler and Odd Arne Westad (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), vol. 1: 44-66. EBOOK
  • Melvin Leffler, “Emergence of an American Grand Strategy, 1945-1952,” in Cambridge History of the Cold War, 3 vols., ed. Melvin Leffler and Odd Arne Westad (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), vol. 1: 67-89. EBOOK

7 November: Decolonization

  • Emma Hunter, Political Thought and the Public Sphere in Tanzania: Freedom, Democracy and Citizenship in the Era of Decolonization (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), Introduction and chapter 2.
  • Frederick Cooper, “Development, Modernization and the Social Sciences in the Era of Decolonization: The Examples of British and French Africa,” in Miguel Bandeira Jerónimo and António Costa Pinto, eds., The Ends of Colonial European Empires: Cases and Comparisons (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), 15-50.
  • Crawford Young, “Imperial Endings and Small States,” in Miguel Bandeira Jerónimo and António Costa Pinto, eds., The Ends of Colonial European Empires: Cases and Comparisons (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), 101-125.

14 November: Global Cold War

  • Timothy Nunan, Humanitarian Invasion: Global Development in Cold War Afghanistan (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2016), chapter 5. EBOOK
  • Gregg Brazinsky, Winning the World: Sino-American Rivalry during the Cold War (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2017), Introduction, chapters 3 and 6. EBOOK
  • Ryan Irwin, “Sovereignty in the Congo Crisis,” in Leslie James and Elizabeth Leake, eds., Decolonization and the Cold War: Negotiating Independence (London: Bloomsbury, 2015), 203-218. EBOOK

21 November: Global Socialisms

  • Jeffrey James Byrne, “Beyond Continents, Colours, and the Cold War: Yugoslavia, Algeria, and the Struggle for Non-Alignment,” The International History Review 37.5 (2015): 912-932.
  • Johanna Bockmann,“Socialist Globalization against Capitalist Neocolonialism: The Economic Ideas behind the New International Economic Order”, Humanity 6.1 (2015): 109-128.
  • Andreas Hilger,“Communism, de-colonization, and the Third World,” in N. Naimark, S. Pons and S. Quinn-Judge (eds.), Cambridge History of Communism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017), vol. II.

28 November: Human Rights

  • Steven L. B. Jensen, The Making of International Human Rights: The 1960s, Decolonization, and the Reconstruction of Global Values (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2016), Introduction and chapter 3.
  • Marco Duranti, The Conservative Human Rights Revolution (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017), Introduction and Conclusion. EBOOK
  • Bradley R. Simpson, “Self-Determination, Human Rights, and the End of Empire in the 1970s,” Humanity 4.2 (2013): 239-260.

5 December: New International Orders

  • Daniel J. Whelan, “‘Under the Aegis of Man’: The Right to Development and the Origins of the New International Economic Order,” Humanity 6.1 (2015): 93-108.
  • Patrick A. Sharma, Robert McNamara’s Other War: The World Bank and International Development (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2017), chapter 7.
  • Giuliano Garavini, “Completing Decolonization: The 1973 ‘Oil Shock’ and the Struggle for Economic Rights,” International History Review 33.3 (2011): 473-487.

12 December: Economic Change in the 1970s and 1980s

  • Christopher R. W. Dietrich, “Oil Power and Economic Theologies: The United States and the Third World in the Wake of the Energy Crisis”, Diplomatic History 40.3 (2016): 500-529.
  • Rawi Abdelal, Capital Rules: The Construction of Global Finance (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2007), chapters 1, 2, and 8.

Page last updated on 26 September 2017