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World History

World History Workshop


'World history' refers to a variety of theoretical approaches, united only in their rejection of 'the nation' as a basic unit of historical analysis. Topics covered include all aspects of colonial and post-colonial history, as well as the histories of Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America c. 1750-2000. While the workshop continues to maintain a focus on histories of European expansion and imperialism, papers also engage with comparative approaches to world history, including topics such as migration and trade networks, science and technology, and colonial and post-colonial law.


The workshop convenors for 2019-20 are - Malika Zekhni, Martin Crevier, Thomas Bailey and Hana Sleiman


The workshop is happy to answer any enquiries sent to




In 2019-20 the World History Workshop will meet on alternate Thursdays at 2.30pm in Teaching Room 2, Old Divinity School, St John’s College. The conveners are proud to present in Michaelmas term 2019:



October 17th

Technocracy and Indigeneity: Contesting Colonial Environments


Harriet Mercer

Seeking Aboriginal Australians’ knowledge of the atmosphere in colonial Australia, c. 1790s to 1850s


Samuel Grinsell

Making colonial environments in the Anglo-Egyptian Nile Valley, 1880s-1920s



October 31st

Internationalist and Anti-Colonial Thought: Two Atlantic Perspectives


James Farquharson

‘To the benefit of Africa, the world, and ourselves’ Black Internationalism and the Nigerian Civil War, 1967-1970


Maria Reyes Baztán

Anti-colonial imagination and internationalism in Basque radical nationalism (1892-1939)



November 14

Roundtable: Working in Archives Overseas



November 28th

Global Modernities and Asian Nationalisms

Cancelled due to strike action


Nicole CuUnjieng Aboitiz

The idea of ‘Asia’ in turn-of-the-twentieth-century Philippine thought and Pan-Asian revolutionary organizing


Yiyun Ding

Making Modern Education in China: The History of China’s First Female University President Yang Yinyu (1884-1938)




The Cambridge World History Workshop is now inviting submissions to deliver papers during Lent Term 2020 (January–March).


The workshop welcomes contributions that give attention to global historical perspectives. We welcome, amongst others, presentations that focus on economic histories, histories of science, migration, race, gender, colonial and post-colonial studies, and comparative history. We encourage presenters to consider their research within the broad framework offered by world history to allow for a productive discussion across various academic sub-fields.


We invite submissions from individual graduate students and early-career researchers at all stages of their research (including work-in-progress), and also from prospective panels from Cambridge and beyond. Individual papers should be 20-30 minutes in length, and will be followed by 45 minutes of discussion. Panels should consist of three  papers, each 20 minutes in length, and will be followed by 30 minutes of discussion.


The workshop runs on Thursdays from 14:30 to 16:30 in Teaching Room 2, Cambridge. We are committed to providing a forum for diverse contributions and helpful feedback in an inclusive environment.


Please submit your abstract (200-300words), a short bio, and a note on your availability to the World History Workshops Convenors ( by Monday, 9th of December, 2019. We hope to announce decisions on all submissions by the 30th of December. Please contact us with any questions. We look forward to hearing from you!




                                                                                  Ruptures in World History


The Cambridge World History Workshop is excited announce a Call for Papers for our 2020 Graduate Conference, Ruptures in World History, which will take place in St John’s College, Cambridge on the 13th May 2020. Please see below for details.


In recent years, contiguous, long-term factors, as well as historical convergence, synchronicity and correspondence have dominated interpretations in world history. As a result, ‘ruptures,’ ‘disruptions,’ and ‘breaks’ have fallen out of fashion. The 2020 Cambridge World History Graduate Conference hopes to question this historiographical turn.


We invite papers that will assess the usefulness of ‘ruptures’ as analytical and conceptual tools for writing the history of the modern world. We particularly welcome papers that give attention to global historical perspectives and aim to transcend ‘the nation’ as a basic unit of historical analysis. We also welcome, amongst others, contributions that focus on African, Middle Eastern, Caribbean, Latin American, and Asian histories, as well as on economic histories, histories of science, race, migration, trade, colonial and post-colonial studies, resistance, and comparative history.


Speakers may also wish to challenge the idea of ruptures in world history and offer alternative approaches. Others might critique how the concept of rupture is itself teleological, assuming a linear rather than a cyclical concept of time; only useful for world historians if strictly delineated.


Applications are gladly received from various disciplines including and not limited to; literary theory, sociology, political science, anthropology and history.


Abstracts should be sent to no later than Friday10th January 2020.