History Department

  • Academic Division: The College
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor of Arts
  • Academic Programs: Major
  • Course Offerings:

History examines the past through various lenses –– social, political and intellectual; textual and material –– enriching us as individuals and preparing us to engage the complexities and ambiguities of the contemporary world.  Join us!

Our department of a dozen faculty members offers a variety of courses and perspectives on the remote and recent histories of the United States, Europe, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and East Asia. It supports programs in Africana Studies, East Asian Studies, Environmental Studies, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Russian Area Studies, and Women and Gender Studies, and offers courses in the history of science. History courses emphasize careful reading and analysis of original sources in order to approach the past on its own terms. But we also stress that studying history is an interpretive process requiring attention to methods, theories, and scholarly debates. The training students receive in research skills, critical analysis, and expository writing prepares them to pursue careers in business, education, law, public service and a variety of other professions. The History major is compact enough that many students choose to double major, add a minor, or just sample broadly the rest of the W&L curriculum.

News

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Two 2014 Graduates Commissioned as U.S. Army Officers

Two Washington and Lee University graduates capped their Commencement day by being commissioned as second lieutenants in the U.S. Army. John Bruch of Baltimore, Md., and Christina Lowry of Lexington, ...

John L. Heilbron

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

W&L Conference to Debunk Scientific Myths

Two dozen historians of science from around the world will debunk 26 commonly-held myths of science at a conference at Washington and Lee University May 8 – 11. The keynote address by John L. Hei...

Bradburn

Monday, April 28, 2014

Founding Director of Mount Vernon Library to Speak at W&L

Douglas Bradburn, the founding director of the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon, will be the keynote speaker at the annual meeting of Washington and Le...

Isaac Webb

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Webb '13 Wins Carnegie Endowment

Isaac Webb '13 has been named a Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Junior Fellow for next year, in the Russia/Eurasia program.