“Latin America in a Global Context” (Conference, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, October 18-21, 2016)

For those followers of the Toynbee Prize Foundation interested in Latin American history – and those fancying a trip to Brazil this autumn – here’s a recent call for papers that looks of interest. On October 18-21, 2016, the Getulio Vargas Foundation in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil will be hosting a workshop titled “Latin America in a Global Context.” The call for papers explains more about the workshop’s ambit:

In the last decade, an important shift has taken place within Latin American Studies, advocating a global approach to writing history. As rewarding and innovative as these new approaches are, they provide specific challenges regarding both methodology as well as implementation. So far, global history has been dominated by Asian and African studies and Latin America has only played a marginal role, both as an object and subject of study. Despite its huge potential for Latin America as a research field, it remains unclear how historians of Latin America might contribute to it.

This workshop, hence, explores new ideas and debates on how to write Latin American history within a global framework and how to trace the links and diffusions of ideas. The workshop is aimed at early career researchers on the verge of embarking on long-term projects who stand to particularly benefit from such approaches. The event will take place at the Getulio Vargas Foundation in parallel with the 2nd “Coloquio Internacional – Latinoamérica y la Historia Global” of the Red Latinoamericana de Historia Global. Both events jointly aim to bring together a range of researchers from distinct countries and academic cultures with the explicit long-term goal of facilitating regional integration, co-operations and collaborations, particularly between senior researches from Latin America and early career researchers. The overall goal is to facilitate a productive and enriching forum for discussion.

We therefore invite papers that contribute to contemporary and historiographical debates grounded in empirical work. Possible topics and questions may include:

Discussion on new methodologies and new sources

How can we incorporate current debates into our research? What do we stand to profit and which obstacles do we face?

International, Global, and Transnational approaches

How do International, Global, and Transnational approaches shift historical perspectives and our spatial imagination? How does research on Latin America contribute to the above mentioned approaches?

Scale & space

How do International, Global and Transnational perspectives challenge or reinforce spatial categories? What are the consequences for the writing of National, Regional or Local History?

Interested in applying? Submissions for the workshop should include a 300-word abstract and a two-page CV. These should be submitted no later than May 9, 2016 to Alexandre Moreli (alexandre.moreli@fgv.br) and Stella Krepp (stella.krepp@hist.unibe.ch).

A limited amount of travel funding will be available. While hosted in Brazil, the conference is also sponsored by the University of Bern in Switzerland.



Das Campus Center der IUB beherbergt das Information Resource Center

University Lecturer in Contemporary History, Jacobs University (Bremen, Germany)

For those readers still on the job market, despair ye not – many positions continue to be advertised on the European market well into the spring. Here’s one such example, a three-year Lecturer position at Jacobs University, a private, state-accredited, English-language research university in Bremen, Germany with more than 1,300 students from over 100 nations studying on a residential campus. Here’s the call for applications:

University Lecturer (f/m) in Contemporary History
Job ID JU-16-21
(full-time, limited to three years)

The successful candidate will be responsible for supervising student projects, mentoring undergraduate and graduate students, and teaching 6 courses per academic year in the undergraduate and graduate programs focusing on international relations, history and politics. The successful candidate should be able to teach in the fields of:

  • Contemporary European History (since the late 18th century)
  • Economic and Social History/History of Globalization
  • Global/International History International Political History (since the 19th century)


  • PhD degree in History
  • Thorough skills and teaching experience in the above mentioned fields
  • Responsible, self-motivated, able to work independently as well as on a team
  • Fluent in English, the language of instruction and communication on campus
  • A regional specialization beyond Europe would also be of interest

The application should include a single PDF attachment containing a letter of motivation, copies of certificates and diplomas, curriculum vitae, a record of teaching, and the names and addresses of two referees. This attachment should be included in an e-mail addressed to Ms. Elisabeth Peper, at job-application@jacobs-university.de. “Please indicate Job ID JU-16-21 in your correspondence,” notes the call for applicants.

The position itself begins on September 1, 2016, and the review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Good luck!


Conference: “Ronald Reagan and the Transformation of Global Politics in the 1980s” (University of Texas, Austin, January 2017)

For scholars of American history in particular, but also for scholars from other fields interested in US history, here’s a recent call for papers for a terrific conference, “Ronald Reagan and the Transformation of Global Politics in the 1980s,” taking place this coming January 19-21, 2017 at the University of Texas at Austin.

The call for papers explains further:

The 1980s were transformative. The global economy regained its footing after the oil shocks and stagflation of the previous decade. The rise of the so-called ‘Asian Tigers’ shifted the center of economic gravity towards the Pacific, amidst a series of democratic transitions in the region. The revolution in U.S.-Soviet relations curbed the nuclear arms race and set the tone for the end of the Cold War. The Palestinian Liberation Organization recognized the state of Israel while mujahideen fought the Soviet Army in the mountains and deserts of Afghanistan with funds and weapons provided by the United States and Pakistan. Iran and Iraq fought a prolonged and bloody war. Brutal military dictatorships fell in Brazil and Argentina, and teetered in Chile. Economic reforms in the People’s Republic of China lifted hundreds of millions out of poverty. Most momentous of all, Eastern Europe cast off Soviet rule, bringing an end to the postwar divisions of Germany and Europe and ushering in what many have called a unipolar moment for the United States.

The end of the Cold War has understandably transfixed scholars of international history and international relations. But Reagan’s imprint on history extended beyond that grand drama. His handling of U.S. relations with Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East paved the way for the triumphs and travails of the past decades and merits sustained historical attention. Without losing sight of the centrality of the Cold War, this conference will assess how Reagan and his administration conducted the full spectrum of U.S. foreign policy and the various legacies his presidency left behind for world politics.

The conference’s organizers invite paper proposals based on original research that offer new accounts of U.S. foreign and national security policy from 1981 to 1989 (and welcome those that may also partly extend into the Jimmy Carter or George H. W. Bush presidencies). We define national security broadly and encourage topics that integrate domestic politics, cultural relations, transnational and non-state actors, technology, economics, international institutions, and law. Papers could address, inter alia:

  • The Middle East
  • Latin America
  • Africa
  • The Atlantic Community
  • South and East Asia
  • The Soviet Union and Eastern Europe
  • Global issues (e.g. human rights, cybernetics, finance, counterterrorism, etc.)
  • Reagan’s government and national security policy
  • Reagan and grand strategy

The conference promises to be a major event, featuring three days of panels, lectures, and conversations, among them an an introductory talk from H. W. Brands, the Jack S. Blanton Sr. Chair in History at the University of Texas and author of Reagan: The Life, and a keynote address by Melvyn P. Leffler, the Edward Stettinius Professor of History at the University of Virginia, co-editor of the Cambridge History of the Cold War, and author of For the Soul of Mankind: The United States, the Soviet Union, and the Cold War.

Interested in applying? You should move fast. Brief  brief proposals (350 words maximum) need to be sent to the organizers, accompanied by a CV, to reaganconference@gmail.com by April 30 2016.

Those selected will be informed by early June. Air travel, accommodations, and meals will be provided for participants who do not have their own travel funds.

Maris Pacifici

How Did Water Connect the World? An Interview with David Igler on Pacific and Environmental History

The Pacific is an area largely understudied by historians, yet it is “an ocean covering more than a third of the Earth’s surface” and has “over 25,000 islands”, to borrow the words of the late Australian historian Greg Dening.  In the past thirty years or so, a growing number of historians have shifted their attention to the Pacific.  This includes such well-known scholars as Greg Dening, Anne Salmond, Gregory T. Cushman and Toynbee Prize Foundation Trustee David Armitage.

Our most recent guest to the Global History Forum, Professor David Igler, numbers among the dozens of scholars who believe that the importance of Pacific Ocean and significance of environmental history.  David Bruce Igler is a historian of the American West , President of the Pacific Coast Branch of the American Historical Association, and Professor of History and currently Chair of History Department at the University of California, Irvine.

Professor Igler, a graduate of UC Berkeley, began his academic career as a U.S. historian specializing in the American West and environmental history.  After publishing his book Industrial Cowboys: Miller and Lux and the Transformation of the Far West, 1850-1920, he decided to explore the waterscape and regions west of the West, namely, the Pacific Ocean.  This research has consumed him for the past decade.  The product is, The Great Ocean: Pacific Worlds from Captain Cook to the Gold Rush, was published by Oxford University Press in 2013.

The prize-winning monograph draws on hundreds of documented voyages, some painstakingly recorded by participants, some only known by their archeological remains or indigenous memory.  This leads to a window into the commercial, cultural, and ecological upheavals following the initial contact period, in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.   Do industrial development and environmental transformation often happened in the same time?  What makes Professor Igler shift from American history to Pacific history?   Can humans have a dialogue with the Ocean? Professor Igler and Tiger Li, Editor-at-Large for the Toynbee Prize Foundation, discuss these questions in the following interview.

Professor David Igler, professor of history at UC Irvine and author of "The Great Ocean: Pacific Worlds from Captain Cook to the Gold Rush."
Professor David Igler, professor of history at UC Irvine and author of “The Great Ocean: Pacific Worlds from Captain Cook to the Gold Rush.”

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“South-South: Intellectual History across Middle East and South Asia, 1857- 1948″ (Workshop, Columbia University, October 20-21, 2016)

For those readers interested in either transnational history, the history of the Middle East and South Asia, or Islamic history, two graduate students at Columbia University and Rice University, Roy Bar-Sadeh and Esmat Elhalaby, have organized what looks to be a terrific workshop taking place at the former institution this October. According to a recent call for papers,

Despite historiographical overtures to the global, and spirited polemics decrying area studies’ analytical limits, something called South Asia and another thing called the Middle East persistently structure—and stricture—scholarly inquiry in the academy and beyond. Accounts of Indian or Arab intellectual production in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries often confine themselves to non-European confrontations with European epistemologies, capital, and guns. With the critiques of Orientalism, modernization theory, and Westernization having complicated triumphalist narratives of this encounter, serious attention to south-south intellectual histories remains rare. Early modernists are often the most cogent critics of the modernist scholars’ Eurocentrism, tracing connections between the Middle East, South Asia, and elsewhere that bypass Europe. Yet Europe’s hegemony in the modern world’s political economy and imagination did not preclude profound inter-connections between the non- European world. In fact, the conditions of global European capital made new engagements between the colonized and peripheral world necessary.

This workshop highlights the content and conditions of South Asian and Middle Eastern thought in tandem. Reading a European archive alongside one in languages like Hindi, Urdu, Arabic, Persian and Ottoman, cities like Beirut, Calcutta, Delhi, Mecca, Cairo, and Bombay and educational spaces like Aligarh Muslim University, Nadwat al-ʿUlama, Osmania University, Cairo University, the American University of Beirut and the Oxford Majlis, exposes new historical networks and challenge existing modes of analysis.

The workshop aims to raise a set of interdisciplinary historical, historiographical and theoretical questions: What kinds of significant geographies are produced, traversed and imagined in the nineteenth century and after between the Middle East and South Asia? Does the presence of a shared Islamicate past adequately explain Indian and Arab Muslim affiliations? How are the Jewish, Christian, Zoroastrian and Hindu intellectual communities part of this Islamicate? How is modernist thought or critiques of secularism or theories of anti-colonialism related in this unwritten history of Asian intellectual interaction? What role did political economy of colonialism play in restructuring the conditions of the early modern’s “connected histories”? What new networks of intellectual exchange and new patterns of racialization emerged? How do we historically recuperate these South-South histories without succumbing to the follies of the post-colonial states?

If this sounds of interest, then here’s how to apply:

The workshop will bring together early career scholars—graduate students and pre-Tenured faculty—across discipline to participate in this two day intensive workshop. We encourage applications from outside Europe and US.

We invite abstracts of 300 words and brief scholarly biography to southsouthworkshop@gmail.com no later than
15 July 2016. Acceptance notifications will be sent by 15 August 2016. We encourage faculty to seek funding from their institutions; limited travel subsidies and accommodation will be provided to graduate presenters. We will make all efforts to especially fund scholars from outside US and EU.

The workshop is sponsored by the Center for International History, and the Department of History.


“Eurasian Religions in Contact: Toward a Global History of Religions” (Summer School, Bochum, Germany, July 25-August 3)

If you’re interested in the global history of religion–one of the liveliest discussions within the field of global history today–here’s a recent call for applications that will surely be of interest. At the Center for Religious Studies (CERES) of the Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany, a summer school entitled “Eurasian Religions in Contact: Toward a Global History of Religions” will be taking place this summer. Here’s how the call for applications describes it:

Eurasian Religions in Contact Summer School (ERiC) provides a fruitful and well-established format for introducing and discussing cutting-edge research relating to the problems of studying inter-religious relations on a global scale.

This summer school is a one-and-a-half week course taking place from Monday 25 July until Wednesday 03 August 2016.

The summer school will examine such diverse topics as religion, gender, media, digital humanities and material culture. Aimed at doctoral and advanced masters’-level students, ERiC encourages students from around the world to consider religious studies from multiple political and cultural standpoints, giving them the opportunity to create an international network of like-minded junior scholars.

The approach of the ERiC Summer School is historically and culturally comparative: looking at religious interaction across time as well as geography. Christian-Muslim contacts in the past give hints at current issues; Buddhism’s role as a conduit through which many ideas shifted from India to Tibet and China looks at the ties that bind in Asian history; interreligious contacts in medieval and early medieval Ethiopia foreshadow contacts and conflicts in the contemporary Horn of Africa. All such regions and histories have been the subjects of past ERiC presentations and discussions.

The ERiC Summer School is a project of the Center for Religious Studies (CERES) at Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany.

Sounds interesting, right? It gets better, for as the organizers note, “accepted students will receive a round trip ticket from their home or university to Germany, accommodations, all lunches and two dinners. The summer school is free of charge.” If you are interested in applying, the call for applications continues,

please send a letter of interest including your expectation how you might benefit from the summer school, a research project proposal and a recent curriculum vitae, and the names and contact details of two referees to (preferably via email):

Ruhr-Universität Bochum
Prof Dr Adam Knobler
Universitätsstr. 90a
44789 Bochum

The deadline for applications is May 1, 2016. Good luck!


Symposium: “Global Histories of Taxation and State Finances Since the Late 19th Century,” Basel, December 1-3, 2016

If you’re a long-time follower of our interviews with global historians at the Global History Forum, you may recall one of our very first interviews with University of Pennsylvania historian Vanessa Ogle — then on her first book, The Global Transformation of Time, published with Harvard University Press in 2015. As we noted in our interview with Ogle, however, her current research agenda focuses on the history of the international financial regimes that gave birth to institutions like tax havens and offshore financial centers.

As part of that research agenda, Ogle – the winner of the 2015 International Research Award in Global History – has recently announced a call for papers for a conference on the global history of taxation since 1850. For those planning their calendars, it is scheduled to take place on December 1-3, 2016. “Taxation,” the call for papers explains,

has wide-ranging implications for global as well as domestic orders, ranging from budgets and public finances to inequality, the social fabric of societies, and worldwide competition for corporate profits. Since the global financial crisis of 2008 in particular, taxation and the reform of tax systems have become talking points in many parts of the North Atlantic world. Tax reform is often said to be required for fostering a more attractive business climate through reducing the tax burden and thus increasing tax competitiveness. Other voices focus on government revenues in times of empty coffers and instead call for higher tax rates especially for top earners. Thomas Piketty and his Capital in the Twenty-First Century as well as the Occupy movement in the United States have galvanized attention on the connections between taxes and inequality. Outrage at the rise of the “1 Percent” is accompanied by calls for shutting down tax havens available mostly to the super rich. Whether in the United States or Britain, however, multinationals such as Google and Apple successfully play the inversion game by splitting up into multiple units and reincorporating in lower-tax countries for the purpose of obtaining better tax conditions.

The current interest in taxation is welcome, but many of the issues raised more recently have long histories that deserve to be studied in their own right. This international symposium calls on historians and historically-minded sociologists and political scientists with different geographical specializations to engage with the topic of taxation from a wide variety of angles. Contributions on histories of taxes and state finances beyond Europe and North America are explicitly encouraged. Commentators and session chairs will be drawn from the universities of Basel, Heidelberg, and Sydney as well as from the United States, Britain, and Switzerland. Currently, Patricia Clavin (Oxford University), Marc Flandreau (Graduate Institute Geneva/University of Pennsylvania), Madeleine Herren-Oesch (University of Basel), Glenda Sluga (University of Sydney), Jacob Soll (University of Southern California), and Roland Wenzlhuemer (University of Heidelberg), have agreed to serve as chairs and commenters. While limited travel and accommodation support is available, interested presenters are encouraged to explore their own funding opportunities.

Possible contributions may address but are not limited to the following topics and questions:

  • Acceptance of and support for high taxation levels throughout the 20th century
  • Anti- or low-tax movements
  • Taxation and inequality
  • Transitions from colonial to post-colonial tax and revenue systems, from tariffs to income and other taxes
  • Tax evasion, tax avoidance, tax havens
  • “Tax density” and difficulties of collecting revenue and enforcing taxation
  • Taxes and “social contracts” in authoritarian and dictatorial regimes
  • Multilateral, bilateral, and other efforts to combat tax avoidance
  • Accounting standards and corporate/multinational tax avoidance
  • “Race to the bottom” dynamics of global competition for corporate tax profits
  • Historically different concepts for allocating business profits among tax jurisdictions: country-by-country reporting of taxes, worldwide income, etc.
  • “Tax missions” to the non-Western world as part of dollar diplomacy and financial missions
  • Restructuring fiscal systems in the third world as part of development and/or austerity politics, before and after the ‘Washington Consensus’
  • Taxes vs. austerity
  • Historically shifting attitudes towards deficits, taxation, and austerity: what are acceptable deficit levels, and how are deficits to be reduced?
  • Alternative sources of state finances: government loans and bond issues

That’s a wide range of topics, fitting for a global history conference. If you’re interested in attending, the call for papers explains more: “Scholars interested in presenting a paper at the symposium are invited to send a brief abstract of 300-500 words as well as a short biographical paragraph by May 31, 2016, to Vanessa Ogle at historiesoftaxation at gmail.com. For questions, please contact me at vogle at sas.upenn.edu.”


Giuliano Garavini, “OPEC: A History of Oil” (Lecture, NYU, April 12, 2016)

A quick note on a forthcoming lecture in New York by NYU Abu Dhabi Senior Research Fellow Giuliano Garavini, scholar of international history and author of After Empires: European Integration, Decolonization, and the Challenge From the Global South (Oxford: OUP, 2012).

From 6 PM to 7:30 PM on Tuesday, April 12, 2016, Garavini will deliver a lecture entitled “OPEC: A History of Oil” at 19 Washington Square North (also the hub for NYU Abu Dhabi’s operations in New York). The abstract explains more about what promises to be an exciting talk:

The history of oil has mainly been written from the point of view of international oil companies or from that of oil-consuming countries. This lecture aims to provide insight into the policies of oil-producing countries and how the international cooperation among them contributed to the global management of this crucial natural resource. 


History Instructor, History Department, Windward School (Los Angeles, California)

Here’s another attractive job opportunity for those working in global and world history, this time from the Windward School, a private secondary school located in Mar Vista, pleasantly near the ocean in Los Angeles, California. A recent call for applications explains that

Windward School, a grade 7-12 college-preparatory independent day school in vibrant West Los Angeles, seeks an experienced and innovative educator to join a forward thinking faculty.  Windward faculty and administrative leaders continually seek best practices and educational initiatives to help our students and faculty pursue their passions, engage in cutting edge work, and lead meaningful lives.

Windward’s mission, is to challenge each student to achieve academic excellence in a nurturing environment. Windward teachers, parents, and administrators work as a team to encourage each student to be responsible, caring, well, informed, ethical and prepared, thus promoting the fullest development of the individual. Windward School endeavors for excellence in a supportive and inclusive work environment.  

We welcome you to join Windward, one of only four independent schools chosen by the prestigious E.E. Ford Foundation to receive an education leadership grant endorsing our hands-on, active learning model in the classroom, developed in collaboration with several major universities.  Windward School endeavors for excellence in a supportive and inclusive work environment. 

Our History Department is looking for a dynamic innovative teacher to join their collaborative team. The successful candidate will have experience at both the Middle and Upper School levels. Academic or teaching experience in a non-western region, especially Latin America, Africa or the Middle East is desired.   

Sound interested? “Candidates,” the announcement explains, “should send a letter of interest to Dr. David Unger, Director of Recruitment” via dunger at windwardschool.org.  Preferred is an advanced degree, as well as at least three years of teaching experience at either the secondary or University level.


Ryan Irwin, “Denizens of the Center: Law as American Grand Strategy” (Yale U., March 31, 2016)

Readers of the Global History Forum may remember our interview with SUNY-Albany historian Ryan Irwin on his book Gordian Knot and his work more broadly in international history. If you liked that piece and are located in the Northeast, then mark your calendar. This March 31, Irwin will be giving a lecture at Yale University on his new project. “The talk,” explains a recent announcement,

will trace the evolution of liberal internationalism during the mid-twentieth century. Outlining a collective biography of Dean Acheson, Felix Frankfurter, Harold Laski, and Walter Lippmann, the narrative reveals the mechanisms by which these individuals redefined the meaning of sovereignty, rights, and world order.

For those interested, the talk will take place in Room 211 of the Hall of Graduate Studies (320 York Street) at Yale on Thursday, March 31, 2016 at 4:30 PM.