13176eHU Seminar

SoSe 19: Revisiting Microhistory in the Age of Global History

Nitin Varma


The course is designed to closely engage and discuss the methodological approaches in history writing labelled as microhistory. The implications of many of these approaches is also tied to long-standing concerns about scale in history writing. In an important intervention on the methodological challenges when conceiving the relationship between micro- and macro-scale analysis, early modern historian Francesa Trivalleto has argued that the current trend of global history, primarily based on secondary material, usually foregrounds a macro-scale. She proposes a renewed look at the achievements of Italian micro-history and particularly at the possibilities that emerge from reducing the scale of historical analysis, redirecting the gaze of historians towards the dense textures of everyday life, social relationships and human agency, while not shying away from the ‘big questions’ of history. A primary objective of the course is to then familiarize the participants with the themes and approaches employed in this methodology while paying attention to the broader intellectual and political contexts. The course would therefore involve a close reading of key texts of the genre and some recent writings under the label ‘global microhistory’. No specialized knowledge or familiarity with any specific region is required as the prescribed readings cover texts with a micro historical approach from Europe, Asia and Latin America and cover themes ranging from popular culture, labour, gender and histories of slavery. The participants are also further expected to to work with primary material while employing microhistorical approaches to develop their own papers/projects. close

Additional appointments

Fri, 2019-04-12 12:00 - 14:00

Nitin Varma

Subjects A - Z