Welcome to the Department of History!
History as a university discipline takes a deep and multifaceted approach to the study of the past. We study the complex and often unpredictable interplay of factors, people and contexts that explain why and how change happens, and why it takes the forms it does. Anyone with an interest in the problem of how the past influences the present and future will benefit from studying history.
Another reason to study the past is to gain a better understanding of earlier economic, social and political systems both in the abstract and on these societies’ own terms. The past, it has been said, is a foreign country, but the student of history learns to be a far better-informed time-traveler. She or he gains a greater appreciation of the diversity of human societies in the past and the present, as well as a new understanding of the common features that tie many human societies together. Our programs especially emphasize careful analysis of sources (texts, images, architecture, material objects) and learning the art of examining the evidence and turning it into a credible explanation of events. These skills not only provide a better understanding of history but are useful in many other areas of daily and professional life.
To be a citizen of the world is to understand something both of one’s own history and that of other people and places. At the Department of History one can study the past both in relation to Swedish and Scandinavian history, and internationally and we encourage both.