Without history, nothing makes sense.
Knowledge of History is a Powerful Tool in an Uncertain Age
In the History Design Lab, Oberlin students experiment with how to convey information about the past to audiences of today and tomorrow.
Hands-On Archival Research
Fluency with archival documents is central to the practice of History. At Oberlin, students work with faculty mentors to enrich our understanding of the past.
Ari observes and analyzes patterns of antiblack misogyny in digital spaces like TikTok and Twitter.
Miracles and Microscopes
By most accounts, the 16th century ushered in an age of reason that replaced an age of credulous belief in spells and miraculous transformations. This class evaluates such claims, positioning scientific methods and discoveries within the social, economic, cultural, and religious contexts in which they were produced. How did alchemy, magic, and witchcraft, as well as inductive reasoning and technologies of observation all play a part in the constitution of new disciplines and truths?
- Taught by
- Ellen Wurtzel
Existentialism in European History
This class examines the major themes of existentialism (authenticity vs. inauthenticity, meaninglessness, absurdity, freedom and anguish) through reading philosophers such as Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre. We will be looking at the development of existentialism as a philosophical trend as well as the ways existentialist philosophers anticipated, inspired and responded to political events including the rise of Nazism and the end of European Imperialism.
- Taught by
- Annemarie Sammartino
The British Empire and the Indian Ocean
From Singapore to the Swahili Coast, the Union Jack appeared across nineteenth-century Asia and Africa. Yet the largest empire the world had ever known first emerged and then remained rooted in India. This seminar offers a tour of Indian Ocean horizons in the age of empire, from Elizabethan seadogs to the dissolution of empire and indigenous anticolonialism. We will be especially interested in debating how aspects of today's international order originated in an imperial past.
- Taught by
- Rishad Choudhury ’07
Colloquium on Violence and Terror in Early America
This course is premised on the idea that violence functions as both a destructive and generative force in American life. From pre-Columbian times through the mid-nineteenth century, violence and fears thereof provided the context within which people understood themselves, related to one another, and charted their futures. Throughout the semester students will investigate the role of violence in both the demise and growth of early modern identities, attitudes, and institutions.
- Taught by
- Matthew Bahar
From Oberlin to the Biden Administration
Rosemary Boeglin ’14 went from a history major at Oberlin (with a focus on American and Russian history) to being a rapid response spokesperson for the incoming Biden administration.
The World of Consulting
Samir Husain ’18 was a history major and played tennis at Oberlin. He now works as an associate consultant at Maryville Consulting Group in St. Louis.
Fulbright Fellow in South Korea
Having worked on the history of nisei, or young Japanese Americans during WWII, Holly Hoang ’17 is now set to travel to South Korea as part of the Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship program.