Conference Report: Global History Student Conference (Istanbul Sehir University, June 22-24, 2018)

Academic trends can encourage collaboration among scholars from different parts of the world. A good example of this was the student conference on global history held in Istanbul last month, attended by students from 21 different universities. The fact the conference took place in Istanbul seemed particularly appropriate in the context of global history. Indeed, the city of Istanbul has long been a multicultural, multiethnic and multireligious place, especially during the long periods when it was the capital of empires. The conference was organized by undergraduate students from Istanbul Sehir University on behalf of the History Department: Fatma Aladağ, Beria Kafalı, Muhammet Mazı, Elif Can, Aişegül Akkoyun, Büşranur Bekman, Halime Karayel, Feyza İkiz, Elif Altın, Fatmanur Özdemir, Hande Tuzlakoğlu, Müberra Kapusuz, Hande Betül Ünal, and Neyyire Erdoğan.

Conference Report: Russia’s Global Legal Trajectories: International Law in Eurasia’s Past and Present (University College London, 16-17 February 2018).

On the 16th and 17th of February 2018, the School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES) at University College London (UCL) hosted an international workshop on “Russia’s Global Legal Trajectories: International Law in Eurasia’s Past and Present”. Organized by Dr. Philippa Hetherington (UCL) with the generous support of the British Academy for Arts and Sciences and Pushkin House, the workshop was dedicated to the history of legal issues in Russia from the Russian Empire, Soviet Union and Russian Federation. The workshop lasted for two days and consisted of 6 panels and a total of 14 speakers. It united historians with legal scholars, which provided a rich basis for discussions of issues of legality at various points in Russian history.

Conference Report: Fifth Congress of the European Network in Universal and Global History, August 31-Sept 3, 2017

Written by Stefan Huebner (National University of Singapore)

Click here for a copy of the programme.

2017 is a European Network in Universal and Global History (ENIUGH) year. The ancient Olympic Games took place every fourth year and lasted for more than a millennium. The triennial ENIUGH congress is younger, but already a very well-established event that has an important impact on the travel schedules of academics interested in global, world, and transnational history. When ENIUGH 5 concluded, about 600-650 scholars had presented their research in more than 150 panels, which was slightly less than the 700-750 participants in Paris (2014), but more than in London (2011). Not a record, but a very substantial demonstration of academic interest in the event.

2017 is also the year that marks the centennial of the Russian Revolution. Considering the long-lasting global implications of that event, it was no surprise that the organizers chose the theme of “Ruptures, Empires and Revolutions” for this year’s ENIUGH. While this theme left panel organizers sufficient space to find their own ways of reflecting on such phenomena, the plenary events corresponded to the organizers’ intention of including more scholars from or working on Central/Eastern Europe and the Middle East. The keynote address, given by Tamás Krausz (Budapest), reflected on Lenin and global history, while the first plenary roundtable, organized by Attila Melegh (Budapest), addressed the connections between socialism and global history. The second plenary roundtable on “Revolution and Religion”, prepared by Nadia Al-Bagdadi (Budapest), was the event that most obviously involved the study of the Middle East. Such thematic and geographical accentuations need to be seen in light of the fact that plenary events at the last Congress (Paris 2014) featured mostly French and African academics. It is without question desirable to use ENIUGH’s venue rotation system and shifting regional foci in plenary events to communicate to academics from Europe and all over the world that they are welcome. Long term impacts are difficult to measure, but in the case of French academia, which can be very skeptical of English language events, paging through the program (admittedly a problematic quantitative method) showed that scholars from a variety of French institutions were again present – not as many as in Paris, but there seems to have been a positive impact.

Conference Report: Global History Student Conference (Freie Universität Berlin)

In recent years, global history has undoubtedly become part of our life as a dynamic historical perspective. Writing history without borders and addressing events with all their actors in an effort to maintain a view of the biggest picture possible, global history enjoys a distinct place among other historical disciplines. Reading the world through an…

Conference Report: “Development and Underdevelopment in Postwar Europe” (Columbia University)

It’s no secret that one of the most booming sub-disciplines in international and global history today is the history of development–the interaction of the rich world with the poor world before (but especially after) empire, in the hopes that poor societies could be “developed” into something better. Works like Michael Latham’s Modernization as Ideology, Nick Cullather’s The Hungry World, and Matthew Connelley’s Fatal Misconception have explored aspects of this story from the lens of U.S. foreign policy, food aid, and population control, respectively, and works on development from non-American perspectives (the Soviet Union or Yugoslavia) or new themes, like smallpox control, seem to be sprouting up every day.

A recent conference hosted by the Heyman Center for the Humanities at Columbia University and organized by Professors Michele Alacevich (Loyola), Sandrine Kott (Geneva), and Mark Mazower (Columbia) sought to shake up the conversation surrounding development. Here follows a short round-up of the conference–summaries of the eight or so papers presented, plus the keynote address delivered by historian Adam Tooze, soon to be a guest himself on the Global History Forum.