What is European History? 1/29/2012 6:07:00 PM
Are continents good units to use?
Definition and limits of Europe (who is in, who is out?)
Unity v Diversity of Europe
The Myth of Continents
Are continents the best way to divide up human history?
Americas make sense, for American history. Others completely different e.g.
African History Egypt and Zimbabwe.
Human history has a relationship to natural geography.
Concept of continents has existed for long time, antiquity Greek.
Division between continents did exist.
Mediterranean unit more precise than the European one?
South Eastern Europe incredibly hard to define. No water barrier from Asia
Is Russia part of Europe? Georgia? Azerbaijan? Iceland? Greenland? (Spatial
Muslim states in Spain (8 -15 cent.)? (Cultural frontiers)
Western vs. Eastern Europe; peripheries (Regional Balance)
Western Europe might dictate what we think of as Europe because they have
a greater economy, also greater population.
Narratives and Models
The Grand narrative of Western Civilization, enlightenment to now.
Socrates, Martin Luther, French Revolution
Two problems with Western Civilization,
Western (doesnt really happen in the West, in middle east often and also
south eastern Europe.)
Civilization (18thcentury concept, not really used anymore, has too many
A story of civilization? You can tell the story of Europe in many different
A story of modernization?
A story of rights, freedom, democracy? Technological and economic
progress? A story of secularization? Or a story of global imperialism? Totalitarianism and genocide?
Stuart Woolf, Europe and its historians
The emergence of nation-states (dominant model in 19 th early 20thcentury)
Mid 20 century: crisis of values, after world war 1 and 2, values need to be
rethought as many did not understand how these wars could happen.
Decline of the West. Much more negative view on history.
Post 1945, European integration and international histories, deliberate EU
funded program to delve deeper into European History. Political funding
Post 1989? (Greater interest in Eastern Europe). Collapse of Berlin war and
iron curtain. Much more effort to try and understand Eastern Europe and
funding to review history and culture of Eastern Europe.
Does Europe Have A History? Jean-Frederic Schaub, p. 216
Does Europe have a history? If by history we mean a path traced out over
the ages which crystallizes in the EU, the answer is no. Europe is plural, no
matter how far common institutions develop. Doesnt have linguistic or
cultural unification unlike large new countries like USA or Brazil or large old
countries such as China.
Europe has changed it meaning since 1945, but so has history.
From political History (history of state), economic history, social history,
cultural history and intellectual History etc.
The New World creates the Old?
-From the USA and Latin America
-Europe as a colonial power that has to be rejected and transcended
What does European History mean in Canada? What does European-ness
-Fist Nations: Europeans as colonists -Quebec: British as colonists
-From bicultural to multicultural
-More diverse immigration: identity debates
European History if not given
Any unifying theme can be challenged, debated
Writing History chosen
From Prehistory to the Ancient (Mediterranean) World
Much longer than recorded history
(Mesolithic Period: - 40,000 years.)
Last glacial maximum: C. -15000 years.
Neolithic era begins: -9000-5000 years
Material evidence (archaeology): genograpics
Divisions of Europe
Mediterranean vs. Europe
Olive growing line
Limit of Roman Empire (5 thcentury)
-Latinate vs. Germanic (barbarian) Europe
Catholic / Protestant (16 thcentury)
Rural vs. Industrial (19 century) Academic Integrity, Library Resources and Writing 1/29/2012 6:07:00 PM
VPN on your computer (for JSTOR)
The Librarys Subject Guides:
The different catalogues
E-resources (DNB; OEB)
Bibliographic data bases
Cambridge Histories Online
Oxford Scholarships Online
OED; DNB etc.
Chapter 6 and 7
Try not to use long quotations, secondary source (essential quotes, less than
a sentence, sentence at most), primary source (more appropriate to have
beiger quotes so 2-3 lines, 3-4 max).
Chicago style citations.
Endnote (McGill site license: free download) - www.mcgill.ca/library/library-
How to make Notes
Focus on the coursepack readings
Skim through Hunt, and then come back to do further reading later on
Dont try to note down all the facts
Instead, look for key questions/debates
Look for telling examples (cases) to use in essays
Sample exam questions will be on WebCT
Further Reading Lists
Understand how to distinguish between sources: Good sources and bad
Types of sources (journal article, book, etc.)