Thinking globally about history
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VIDEO—Toynbee Coronavirus Series: Selçuk Esenbel on the pandemic and living with nature
Article | June 12, 2020

VIDEO—Toynbee Coronavirus Series: Selçuk Esenbel on the pandemic and living with nature

VIDEO—Toynbee Coronavirus Series—A Global Historical View of the Pandemic: Historians' Statements.

We spoke with Toynbee Prize Foundation Trustee Selçuk Esenbel, Professor of History at Boğaziçi University and the founding Director of the Asian Studies Center at the same institution. She earned her PhD in Japanese history at Columbia University, and her research interests center on Japan and the world of Islam, Japanese pan-Asianism, and modernization in Japan and Ottoman Turkey. Esenbel has received numerous awards, including the Order of the Rising Sun.

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The Philippine Revolution constructs ‘Asia’ and Civilization from the periphery
Article | June 12, 2020

The Philippine Revolution constructs ‘Asia’ and Civilization from the periphery

In tracing the intellectual genealogy of the Philippine nation, Nicole CuUnjieng Aboitiz excavated what turned out to be far more complex theoretical and historical bases to the construction not only of the Filipino, but also of Asia, race, and a concept of place that could challenge imperial claims of rightful sovereignty. Her book Asian Place, Filipino Nation: A Global Intellectual History of the Philippine Revolution, 1887-1912 investigates precisely what ground the Philippine nation built itself upon intellectually, excavating its neglected cosmopolitan and transnational Asian moorings in particular, in order to reconnect Philippine history to that of Southeast and East Asia. It also recovers the “periphery” of the discourse of Pan-Asianism, which was built on material aid and the fantasy and affect of transnational anti-colonial Asian solidarity. The book seeks to make that periphery legible to the center and to expand our discursive, East Asia-centric understanding of Pan-Asianism more generally.

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VIDEO—Toynbee Coronavirus Series: Priscilla Wald on structural inequality and contagion
Article | June 5, 2020

VIDEO—Toynbee Coronavirus Series: Priscilla Wald on structural inequality and contagion

VIDEO—Toynbee Coronavirus Series—A Global Historical View of the Pandemic: Historians' Statements. 

We sat down with Priscilla Wald, R. Florence Brinkley Distinguished Professor of English at Duke University. She teaches U.S. literature and culture from the mid-18th to mid-20th centuries. Her research centers on the narratives of medicine, science, science fiction, the environment, and law. Her most recent book, Contagious: Cultures, Carriers, and the Outbreak Narrative, examines the idea of contagion and its evolution, at the intersection of medicine and myth.

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Toynbee Coronavirus Series—Global Historians Analyze the Pandemic: Glenda Sluga, Jie-Hyun Lim, Lauren Benton, and Hsiung Ping-chen
Article | May 21, 2020

Toynbee Coronavirus Series—Global Historians Analyze the Pandemic: Glenda Sluga, Jie-Hyun Lim, Lauren Benton, and Hsiung Ping-chen

Toynbee Coronavirus Series—A Global Historical View of the Pandemic: Historians' Statements. 

Living through historically unprecedented times has strengthened the Toynbee Prize Foundation's commitment to thinking globally about history and to representing that perspective in the public sphere. In this multimedia series on the COVID-19 pandemic, we will be bringing global history to bear in thinking through the raging coronavirus and the range of social, intellectual, economic, political, and scientific crises triggered and aggravated by it.

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Archival Reflections—Transatlantic Material Culture Research in Spain and the Americas
Article | May 11, 2020

Archival Reflections—Transatlantic Material Culture Research in Spain and the Americas

Reflections from the archives: The colonization of the Americas created a level of diversity not seen before by European powers. Not only did Iberians intermix with native populations, but also with African slaves. As the viceroyalties became increasingly ethnically complex, authorities created a socio-racial hierarchy in an attempt to establish a sense of order. Given my professional background, I noticed the critical role that clothing—and the regulation of such items—played in the struggle to assert status in the public sphere. 

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OP-ED—Toynbee Coronavirus Series: At war with the virus, no battles to win, only a future to lose by Glenda Sluga and Madeleine Herren
Article | May 4, 2020

OP-ED—Toynbee Coronavirus Series: At war with the virus, no battles to win, only a future to lose by Glenda Sluga and Madeleine Herren

Toynbee Coronavirus Series: A Global Historical View of the Pandemic

If we are stuck with analogies of war, then these same histories warn us not only that we cannot wait for the pandemic to be “over”, but also that during each major war extensive political and social movements supported intertwined national and multilateral responses to the global dimensions of health and economic challenges. But where invocations of war, of battles against the virus enemy, might offer comfort precisely because they posit a moment of victory—a V-Day—the intersecting global challenges of pandemic, capitalism and planetary destruction we now face allow us no such complacency.

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Toynbee Trustee Jeremy Adelman on global morality and the American response to the coronavirus
The Blog | April 17, 2020

Toynbee Trustee Jeremy Adelman on global morality and the American response to the coronavirus

TOPSHOT - People coming from Venezuela with protective face masks as a precautionary measure to avoid contracting the new coronavirus, COVID-19, show hold their documents on the border at Simon Bolivar International Bridge, in Cucuta, Colombia, on March 12, 2020. - Colombia declared on March 12…
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Video: What is Global History? A Roundtable with Sebastian Conrad at the Institute for Advanced Study
The Blog | April 1, 2020

Video: What is Global History? A Roundtable with Sebastian Conrad at the Institute for Advanced Study

Since its publication in 2016, Sebastian Conrad’s What Is Global History? has been read and debated not only by historians of modern Europe but also by historians of different parts of the world and scholars in different disciplines. Who writes global history? How and for whom? And why now?

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