Established in 1891, the discipline of History at the University of Sydney is the oldest and largest in Australia. In recent years we’ve recruited a large number of exceptional lecturers trained at some of the world’s greatest universities. They complement a group of established scholars of international distinction.
We write and teach on a wide variety of eras and national or regional contexts, from medieval Spain to Renaissance Europe, to modern China, contemporary USA and Australia. Some of our people study culture and some politics; many of us work in the areas of international and transnational history that have energised and transformed the study of the past in recent times.
What unites us is a curiosity about ideas in action – that is, how ideas and ideals were developed, challenged and lived within particular historical contexts. How were concepts of freedom tested in practice by African-Americans in nineteenth-century U.S. cities? By diplomats and international lawyers? By Indigenous people navigating the judicial system? By artists? By hackers?
These examples are from courses we have taught in recent years. We offer a diverse array of courses each year and constantly review, renew, and expand our curriculum.
Many of our staff have won awards for their teaching as well as their research. We are committed to giving our students a worldclass education and a gateway to life beyond university.
The study of history equips you to understand change, to look at things from different perspectives, and to assess diverse kinds of information. It offers a variety of topics, from war to politics, culture and sexuality, the history of ideas and the history of food; and it spans the Middle Ages to the present, from Australia to China, the United States and Europe.
International and Global Studies gives you a rigorous understanding of the paradoxes and complex interconnections of globalisation. This degree will equip you with the ability to work in global society.
The History discipline, one of the largest and most dynamic in Australia, has developed long-standing expertise in teaching and research across a wide range of geographical areas, including Australia and the Pacific, Asia, Europe and the United States. The discipline also possesses a number of research strengths across burgeoning thematic and comparative fields such as global and Indigenous history, the history of race, science, medicine and public health and the history of ideas, as well as social, cultural, political, economic, labour and urban history. With over 50 postgraduate students currently enrolled and a large number of external grants awarded to members of the discipline, History is a research powerhouse.
The Discipline of History is home to a number of lively seminar series. Details of our seminars can be found on the School of Humanities link on the University's What's On calendar.