Konrad Hamilton, chair
Faculty and professional interests
An historical perspective on contemporary society is a cornerstone of a liberal education. This historical perspective must include a familiarity with our society's origins and antecedents, an appreciation of the variety of historical experiences worldwide, and especially a comprehension of the background to key problems confronting humanity today.
For the student with a major interest in history, the department’s program provides a strong grounding in the discipline of historical method, a familiarity with diverse epochs and national histories, and an introduction to the experience of original research.
For students interested in American history, the research facilities of Seymour Library are an abundant source of original materials, especially the Finley Collection of books pertaining to the Old Northwest Territory in the upper Mississippi River Valley and the Ray Smith Collection on the Civil War.
Students interested in history should study widely in related disciplines, which can deepen their understanding of historical studies with the theoretical perspectives and empirical tools of the social sciences, or the more profound appreciation of human culture through the study of literature, art, music or theater. Any student should obtain a sound working knowledge of at least one foreign language. Further competency in one or more foreign languages is recommended for students who intend to do graduate work in history. Students intending to do graduate work in history also are encouraged to consider honors work in the department.
The departmental curriculum contributes to the College's Key Competency Requirements as follows:
Departmental Learning Goals
Students completing a major in History will be able to: