HIST.2980 Introduction to Historical Methods


Introduction to Historical Methods

Spring 2018, Monday/Wednesday 3:30-4:45
Instructor: Professor Elizabeth Williams


Dugan Hall 104

Office: Dugan 106Q

Office hours: Monday, 12:15-1:45 and Wednesday, 12:15-1:45

Tuesday and Thursday—by appointment


A 15th century painting from the Ottoman Empire
depicting Mehmed the Conqueror meeting Patriarch Gennadius II from Constantinople.



 Welcome to Professor Williams' course
 Introduction to Historical Methods.

This course provides an opportunity for students to explore and critically engage with the processes of studying and writing history. Among other questions, we will consider the following: What is history as a discipline? What can we learn from thinking historically? How do different approaches to writing history lead to divergent representations of historical actors and events? What are the stakes of producing history? We will also discuss the role of historical production in understanding and analyzing debates about current events.

Students must then reserve a spot at the Testing Center using the online form.

Required Texts

William K. Storey, Writing History: A Guide for Students (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015), 5th edition.

Jeremy D. Popkin, From Herodotus to H-Net: The Story of Historiography (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015).

Ihsan Salih Turjman, Salim Tamari (trans.), Year of the Locust: A Soldier’s Diary and the Erasure of Palestine’s Ottoman Past (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2011).