Welcome to History

Looking forward to the past since 1894

309 Gregory Hall, 810 S. Wright Street, Urbana, IL 61801
Office Hours: M - F, 8:00 AM - 12:00 and 1:00 PM - 5:00 PM


Letter from the Chair

Welcome to the History Department at Illinois!

Our goal for academic year 2015-2016, as always, is to foster critical understanding of our collective past and to instill our passion and curiosity in future generations.

Faculty in our department focus on a truly astounding array of questions. They study human interaction with the environment in pre-colonial America, early modern Japan and 20th century Bangladesh; they tell us about shifting notions of death, debt and darkness; and they investigate the emergence and evolution of racism, inequality, and imperialism in the United States and across the globe. (And that is just a small sample of the research conducted by our faculty and graduate students!)

Our undergraduate students have gone on to amazing careers, as educators, lawyers, entrepreneurs, scientists, activists, journalists, and a host of other occupations. Our Ph.D.’s are employed at institutions of higher learning around the country. All of our students gain impressive skills in locating and analyzing complex documents and in expressing their ideas with eloquence and conviction. They become the engaged and informed citizens so vital to our future.

We are delighted to welcome you to History at Illinois, whether for a one-time class, as a History major, Ph.D. student, lecture or workshop participant, friend of the Department, or in whatever form your engagement with the department takes. Follow us on Facebook for more information!

Clare H. Crowston
Professor and Chair

News & Announcements

BE SURE TO WATCH ESPN One Nacion on Wednesday, Oct. 14 to see an appearance by Professor Adrian Burgos . The focus will be Afro-Latinos and it airs live from Miami at 7 pm central time.

THE SMITHSONIAN NATIONAL MUSEUM of American History has invited Adrian Burgos as a panelist discussing Latinos and Baseball. The 2-day event is Thursday, October 15 and is the launch of a multiyear initiative.

PLEASE JOIN US in congratulating our very own History Department Chair, Clare Crowston, who was named a 2015 University Faculty Scholar. This is a very prestigous honor as only seven faculty members from across the Urbana campus were chosen. A reception in honor of the recipients was given by Interim Chancellor Wilson and awards were presented by VP for Academic Affairs Christophe Pierre. It was a wonderful night of honor and cheer. Since the program began in 1985 sixteen History faculty members have been awarded this distinguished honor proving, once again, how unparalleled our faculty are!

CAREERS NIGHT 2015 was full of inspiration and lively discussions! Four past History degree recipients shared their stories in what led them to their successful careers. Pictures from the evening.

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Only a short time left to register for our REACTING TO THE PAST WORKSHOP on October 16 ad 17. Details can be found here. If you are interested in registering, contact Clare Crowston.

We all have things we can't live without. Journalist Erik Moshe spoke with Historians from several major universities about the tools they require to complete their work. He posted the responses in this article from History News Network. "Things Historians Can't Live Without."

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The Daily Illini recently posted this thought- provoking article on the value of an LAS education. "Springboard your career with a liberal major" written by LAS freshman, Minju Park.

Don't miss this blog on "30 Reasons it's Smart to Hire a History Student".

Careers Nt flyer

Did you know...the University of Illinois is about to turn 150 years old? Plans are in the works to celebrate our Sesquicentennial! Our very own Professor Fred Hoxie is spearheading one of the hoxiemajor projects - a literary coffee style book with essays from past and present faces on campus. Be sure to share your own story as we enter into this exciting celebration!

Professer Sundiata Cha-Jua has been named a columnist for the News-Gazette! His first column ran on Sunday, September 13: "Real Talk: Katrina was African-Americans '9/11".

Cha Jua

Ever wondered what a degree in LAS will get you? There are two opportunities to find out coming up. The first being History Careers Night on Thursday, Sept 17th, and the next at LAS Discovery Day on Sept. 26th. Careers Night will feature four History graduates discussing how History degrees led them to their current jobs. The College of LAS is hosting the day-long event, LAS Discovery Day, to give you the opportunity to hear more about what an LAS education can do for you.

Professor Peter Fritzsche recently posted reviews entitled "Surviving the Nazis" for the NY Times Sunday Book Review.

Check out Rebeca Martinez', class of 2018, blog post in Reading Matters @IPRH regarding the age of the virtual book: What are you reading right now?


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Recent Faculty Publications


Keith Hitchins

Romania: storia e cultura


Anoinette Burton

The Trouble With Empire: Challenges to Modern British Imperialism


Jimena Canales (author)

The Physicist and the Philosopher: Einstein, Bergson, and the Debate that Changed our Understanding of Time


Robert Michael Morrissey (author)

Empire by Collaboration: Indians, Colonists, and Governments in Colonial Illinois Country


Kenneth M. Cuno (author)

Modernizing Marriage: Family, Ideology, and Law in the Ninteenth-and Early Twentieth-Century Egypt


Antoinette Burton (editor)

Ten Books That Shaped the British Empire. Creating an Imperial Commons


Maria Todorova (editor)

Remembering Communism: Private and Public Recollections of Lived Experience in Southeast Europe


Antoinette Burton (editor)

The First Anglo-Afghan Wars


Antoinette Burton and Tony Ballantine (authors)

Empires and the Reach of the Global 1870-1945


Clare Crowston and John McKay (authors)

A History of Western Society

View other publications from our Faculty