CON-IH Conference (Harvard University, March 9-10, 2017)

Graduate students interested in global and international history, take heed – the call for applications has gone up for the seventeenth annual Harvard Graduate Student Conference on International History (Con-IH). As the announcement explains, this year’s theme is migration in international and global history: The organizing committee for the Harvard Graduate Student Conference on International History…

Staff Associate, Big Data Management / Program Coordination / Data Mining , Employment | AHA

For readers of the Global History Blog interested in a staff position on a project at the intersection of digital humanities and international history, consider this recent job posting at Columbia University: The Department of History at Columbia University invites applications for a Staff Associate position for a digital humanities project involving research using a database…

Tenure-Track Position in History, Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas (Mexico City, Mexico)

As we enter the season of job postings again, here’s one of the first offerings in the field of international history from the Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas (CIDE), an institute in Mexico-City. As with other positions outside of the North American market, note the early (late August) deadline. The History Department of the Centro…

Associate Professor of International History, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (Geneva, Switzerland)

With the academic year now over for many of our readers, we move quickly into … the season of more job postings. Here’s one of the first for this season–with an early application deadline–that should surely interest readers of the Global History Blog. “The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies,” announces a recent posting…

Jeffrey Byrne on “Mecca of Revolution: Algeria, Decolonization & The Third World Order”

We’re pleased to note that one of our forthcoming interviews for the Global History Forum will be with University of British Columbia   scholar Jeffrey James Byrne, whose book Mecca of Revolution: Algeria, Decolonization & The Third World Order appeared recently with one of our favorite Series for international and global history, namely that of Oxford University Press.…

De-Segregating International Relations: A Conversation with Robert Vitalis on “White World Order, Black Power Politics”

If you’ve been following the news about race-related campus protests this academic year, it can sometimes be hard to keep them straight. In the autumn, students at Yale’s Silliman College demanded the removal of a College Master following his wife’s e-mail to students encouraging students to use their own judgment when it came to potentially insensitive Halloween costumes, rather than following guidelines issued by Yale administrators. In the winter, students at Oberlin College, a liberal arts college in Ohio, issued a sweeping manifesto to the President demanding significant investment in African and African-American Studies as well as the appointment of more black faculty members. And this spring, students at Princeton University occupied the President’s office to demand the removal of former U.S. (and Princeton University) President Woodrow Wilson’s name from the university’s public policy school. Those demands led to the removal of a “celebratory” mural from the wall of a residential college also named after Wilson, but visitors to the New Jersey campus will still find themselves walking by the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

These debates about how American universities today deal with race – whether they should scrub buildings of the names of white supremacists, or invest more in programs in African-American Studies and professionalization programs for faculty of color – are unlikely to end anytime soon. However, as the work of our most recent guest to the Global History Forum, Robert Vitalis (University of Pennsylvania), suggests, the very structure of these debates may obscure an important history in the making of universities and the structure of academic knowledge today. While coming to terms with the racist legacy of individual Presidents or college donors may be a necessary task, as Vitalis shows in his new book, White World Order, Black Power Politics. In it, he shows that race was actually quite core to many disciplines, but especially international relations of the kind taught at the Wilson School and sister institutions in the United States long before African-American protest movements challenged existing structures of power.

Robert Vitalis "White World Order, Black Power Politics" (Cornell UP, 2015), the book at the center of our conversation with Professor Robert Vitalis

Robert Vitalis “White World Order, Black Power Politics” (Cornell UP, 2015), the book at the center of our conversation with Professor Robert Vitalis

To put Vitalis’ argument most provocatively, for many decades, the “international” in “international relations” was synonymous with “interracial.” And while many individual scholars of international relations, and other disciplines, held racist views, this obscures the larger point that the discipline of international relations itself was itself centrally concerned with race relations – meaning, how to manage the relationship of the supposedly superior white race around the world with “Negros” everywhere from the tropics of African to the alleys of Harlem. Textbooks on “international relations” discussed colonial policy in the same chapter as debates about mulattos and the anatomy of black prisoners. In other words, debates over whether or not to retain or remove the name of a Woodrow Wilson from a school of public policy barely begin to get at what a critique of academic disciplines informed by race would look like. Even if temples of learning named after Wilson and John Calhoun are eventually renamed, the curricula taught within them remains awaiting serious scrutiny of its racially entangled past.

It might sound like a big case to make–especially for those whose memories of International Relations 101 classes are marked more by moments of dozing off in between the Melian Dialogue of Thucydides and Kenneth Waltz’s Man, the State, and War. But by and large, Vitalis succeeds at his task. To find out why, the Executive Director of the Toynbee Prize Foundation, Dr. Timothy Nunan, recently sat down with Vitalis to discuss his road to writing the book, the book itself, and his journey as a political scientist into the worlds of intellectual history and African-American history.…

Call for Proposals: International History Research Seminar, London School of Economics

For those readers of the Global History Blog based in the United Kingdom or Europe more generally, here’s a recent call for proposals for LSE’s International History Research Seminar worth considering.  This is a terrific opportunity to present work in progress from scholars at various stages, from in-progress PhDs to post-doctoral fellows to junior faculty.…

“Empires after the First World War” (Conference, University of Trento, May 19-20, 2016)

For those TPF readers in the vicinity of northern Italy, here’s a reminder that the University of Trento will host the conference “Empires after the First World War – Ideas of Empire, Identity and Citizenship” from May 19-20 (i.e. Thursday and Friday of this week).

Organized by Gustavo Corni, Massimo Campanini, Paolo Carta, Sara Lorenzini, Marco Pertile, and Simone Bellezza, the conference will be hosted by the Department of Humanities in the School of International Studies, and will feature scholars whose work promises to treat the First World Warin an international context. All sessions will take place in Room 001, via Tommaso Gar, 14.

For the schedule with a listing of all sessions, click on “read more.”

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…

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…