The Twentieth Century World

African American children with dolls sitting on a stoop.

Girls with Barbies, East Harlem / Camilo Jose Vergara, Library of Congress

Scholars and students working in this field combine deep knowledge of the history of one world region or nation within the broader context of the world in the twentieth century. Through international, comparative, and transnational historical approaches, we explore the spread of technologies, ideas, and practices across political borders. This field also grapples with the issues that marked the century, such as warfare and diplomacy, migration, trade and economic relations, gender and sexuality, race and the environment.

Sub-fields

History of Gender and Sexuality

The study of gender and sexuality is embedded within all areas of historical inquiry. Our faculty explore the myriad ways that ideas about of manhood and womanhood and sexual relationships and identities have shaped, and been shaped by, societies.

Faculty

Rosie the Riveter.

Alfred Palmer, "Rosie the Riveter"
Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

History of Sports

Our faculty are pioneers in the history of sports, helping to make sense of the many issues of race, gender and sexuality that influence athletics.

Faculty

Canadian tennis players, 1920.

Canadian tennis players, 1920.
Public Domain Wikimedia Commons

History of Drugs and Alcohol

The history of drugs and alcohol is more than tracing the development or consumption of mind-altering substances, but the story of how society and culture has shaped, and been shaped by, the use, misuse, and control of such substances.

Faculty

People's Drug Store located at 8th and H Streets, NE in Washington, D.C.

People's Drug Store located at 8th and H Streets, NE in Washington, D.C.
Public Domain Wikimedia Commons

Twentieth Century Authoritarian Regimes

The history of fascism goes well beyond the rise of Adolf Hitler, encompassing the history of a political thought in modern Europe. Our department is a leading force in understanding the transnational and international forces at work during this tumultuous period.

Faculty

Parade of Nazi Troops, 1935, Nuremberg.

Parade of Nazi Troops, 1935, Nuremberg.
Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons.

History of Discipline

Our faculty's research makes critical connections between the discipline, punishment, and perceptions of deviance, a field that highlights the interplay between forces such as gender, sexuality, disability, and race.

Faculty

The Indiana Reformatory.

The Indiana Reformatory
Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

History of Disability

The Department of History is at the forefront of the burgeoning field of disability history. This field explores the history of how societies and cultures have understood disability as well as the lived experiences of disabled people.

Faculty

Patients at a sanitorium in Indiana, 1926.

Patients at a sanitorium in Indiana, 1926
Wellcome Collection

Urban History

Our faculty are instrumental in innovating the field of urban history, exploring the growth and development of cities and the lives of the people who lived in them.

Faculty

New York City skyline, 1975.

New York City skyline, 1975.
Library of Congress.

Environmental History

Environmental history is the study of the ways that people have experienced their lived environment, as well as they ways that people and their environs shape one another.

Faculty

Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir in Yosemite National Park, 1906.

Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir in Yosemite National Park, 1906
Public Domain Wikimedia Commons

History of Public Policy

Part urban history, part political history, this field explores how governments have served their citizens, and the ways that social and cultural forces influence public decision making.

Faculty

Cabrini Green Housing Project, Chicago.

Cabrini Green Housing Project, Chicago.
Public Domain Wikimedia Commons

Faculty