European History


MSU’s program in European history conceives of Europe as itself a time-bound and shifting object of study. We do not assume any fixed definition of Europe’s internal divisions – between Eastern and Western or Northern and Southern Europe – or of the continent’s external boundaries – at the Ural Mountains, the Mediterranean Sea, or the Atlantic Ocean. Rather, we investigate the diverse people and processes that have constituted European spaces as such, and we attend to the wide variety of interactions and exchanges that have linked this region to others across the globe.

Our faculty has research and teaching strengths in the early modern, modern, and contemporary periods, with a concentration of scholars who work on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Recent publications focus on migration and statecraft, consumption and material culture, nationalism and identity, childhood and education, medicine and public health, culture and science, religion and empire, protest and democracy, transitional justice and genocide, and social and political imaginaries.

Graduate students can choose primary fields in modern European, Russian, or Ottoman and Turkish history, or they can construct a field that bridges traditional geographic or chronological divisions. The program draws on the Department’s strengths in migration, gender, and world history and in the history of science, and it encourages linkages with other regional foci, including the Atlantic World, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and East Asia. In addition, the European History Colloquium offers a forum for graduate students to present their work and to join faculty in discussing current developments in the field.

Faculty in the field include: Rich Bellon, Liam BrockeyEmine Evered, Sean Forner, Karrin Hanshew, Matthew PaulyLewis Siegelbaum, Amy SimonRonen Steinberg, Emily Tabuteau, Jane Vieth, Mark Waddell, and John Waller.

Europeanists work closely with several interdisciplinary programs and centers and have close ties to scholars of Europe in other colleges and departments.