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Maxwell / Department of History
  • Department of History

    Understanding history — the record of what people have thought, said, and done — is essential in understanding the world of today. Undergraduate and graduate students explore not only events of the past, but their meaning and implications for our own lives.

    For undergraduates, the department focuses on the broad relevance of history to a variety of careers — given the discipline’s emphasis on research, writing, and critical thinking. All students complete an original research project, either through the required senior research seminar or the BA with Distinction. Our active chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the history honor society, plans field trips and hosts graduate school and career workshops. Undergraduate majors have gone on to careers in law, politics, education, journalism, business, and medicine.

    Our graduate program is characterized by close intellectual and working relationships between students and faculty. Recent graduates have received appointments on college and university faculties, in libraries and archives, and in federal and state government agencies.

    The department includes 25 current and 11 emeritus faculty members, and many have received national and international recognition for their work. The faculty includes historians of the United States, Europe, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, South Asia, East Asia, and the Ancient World.  In addition to geographic and chronological focuses, our colleagues teach in fields such as political, social, military, and cultural history, with particular interest in political violence, empire, religion, law, women, gender and sexuality, labor, race and ethnicity, and intellectual history.

    The History Department is one of the oldest departments in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, having granted its first Ph.D. in 1883. 

  • History News

    Thompson discusses the possibility of Trump resigning with WPIX

    President Trump could resign shortly before his term ends on Jan. 20 at which point Vice President Mike Pence would assume office and could issue a pardon. "This would certainly be legal, if questionably ethical, especially if there were a prior agreement between Pence and Trump," says Margaret Susan Thompson, associate professor of history and political science. "You’ll recall that Ford pardoned Nixon under similar circumstances, though Ford denied throughout his life that there had been any agreement between him and Nixon." Read more in the WPIX-11 article, "Could President Trump resign?"

     

    Allport's book reviewed in WSJ, makes The Times best history book list

    Associate Professor of History Alan Allport's new book, "Britain at Bay: The Epic Story of the Second World War: 1938-1941," was recently reviewed in the Wall Street Journal. "Britain at Bay"...might be the single best examination of British politics, society and strategy in these four years that has ever been written," says Paul Kennedy. "I put my copy down with deep satisfaction. History writing, and historical scholarship, sometimes seems as fine as ever it was." Allport's book also made The Times' list of the best history books of 2020.

     

    McCormick quoted in Al Jazeera article on release of Gen. Cienfuegos

    "At the end of the day, arresting Cienfuegos jeopardized future collaboration between the two militaries because it meant that no one on the Mexican side was safe from possible prosecution, even after helping the Americans," Gladys McCormick, Jay and Debe Moskowitz Endowed Chair in Mexico-U.S. Relations, tells Al Jazeera. "All in all, freeing Cienfuegos without any charges or penalties showcases that his arrest was a complete debacle for both the DEA and DOJ [Department of Justice]," she says. Read more in "Mexico denies deal to nab cartel leader in return for Cienfuegos."

     
  • Fall 2020 Office Staffing

    The History department office is closed to visitors. 

    For questions regarding the Undergraduate History Program please contact: 

    Director of Undergraduate Studies:

    Professor Albrecht Diem

    Office Coordinator: 
    Christina Cleason 
    315-443-2210

    All Undergraduate Forms should be submitted electronically for review to Christina Cleason.  All office hours and meeting with students will be conducted remotely.