History asks fundamental questions about the nature of change over time. History is our collective memory; studying the past reveals the enormous complexity of the human experience and highlights the contingency of our contemporary world. Because no contemporary political, cultural, or economic issue can be understood outside of its historical context, History offers an ideal foundation for students interested in law, medicine, international relations, public policy, and women’s studies, as well as an intellectual complement for students pursuing science and engineering. Indeed, the history major at CWRU, as nationally, is traditionally one of the preferred preparatory paths for admission to law school. Thinking historically means learning how to frame complex problems, sift through multifaceted evidence, and develop carefully argued writing. Our students carry these skills far beyond graduation, pursuing careers in the professions, business, government, as well as advanced doctoral study.

Our department has a long and prestigious tradition that stretches back to the origins of Western Reserve University in 1826. Today, our faculty specialize in a range of thematic and regional subjects. We have a strong tradition in the study of social, cultural, legal, policy, and political history, which together constitutes a major component of our graduate program. Our other focus of graduate study—the history of science, technology, the environment, and medicine (STEM)—has its roots in Case’s pioneering graduate program in the history of technology in the late 1950s (the first of its kind in the United States), as well as its role in founding the Society for the History of Technology. Our department also maintains a strong international focus with faculty who specialize in European, Asian, African, and Latin American history.

Peter Shulman

Peter Shulman featured in The New York Times

Peter Shulman, associate professor of history in the College of Arts and Sciences and the author of Coal and Empire, discussed how President Donald Trump was focused as much on coal as a convenient symbol as he was the fate of the industry. Read the full article here.

Case Western Reserve University announces fall Think Forum lecture featuring historian Martha S. Jones

Case Western Reserve University’s Think Forum lecture series will present a free virtual lecture this fall examining African American women’s pursuit of political power. For the Oct. 22 event, Think Forum is partnering with Case Western Reserve University History Associates and the Department of History to host renowned historian Martha...

Postdoctoral fellow Craig Lanier Allen receives ACLS Emerging Voices Fellowship

Craig Lanier Allen, the postdoctoral fellow in African American history in the Department of History, has received an inaugural Emerging Voices Fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS). Allen is a historian of the United States in the 20th century, focusing on foreign relations, comparative urban history...

Ted Steinberg on lawn manicuring during COVID-19 for CBS Sunday Morning

Ted Steinberg, the Adeline Barry Davee Distinguished Professor of History in the College of Arts and Sciences, spoke about the uptick in lawn manicuring during the pandemic. “You could argue that the perfect lawn is the perfect coping mechanism in a world that's been turned upside-down,” he said. Read...

Einav Rabinovitch-Fox

Einav Rabinovitch-Fox on Black women and the fight for suffrage

Einav Rabinovitch-Fox, a visiting assistant professor in the Department of History in the College of Arts and Sciences, discussed the suffrage movement in Cleveland, saying it was less segregated than in other locations around the country. "Black women fought for suffrage even if they were barred or not welcome...

Einav Rabinovitch-Fox

Einav Rabinovitch-Fox commemorates the centennial of women’s suffrage

Einav Rabinovitch-Fox discussed the importance of fashion in the women’s suffrage movement in an online presentation, hosted by the Northeast Ohio Suffrage Centennial Committee in partnership with the Trumbull County Historical Society and Ohio Humanities. Read more in The Youngstown Vindicator here.

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