Current Series–2016-17

The Theory and Practice of History at Wesleyan University provides information about a seminar series, talks, and other local endeavors connected to the theory and philosophy of history as well as issues of historiography and its history, including the methodology, style, and form of historical research and writing. Its aim is to stimulate reflection on these subjects within the university and the region and to help to channel and accelerate wider discussion of these topics.

First, however, it is the home of the Wesleyan Seminar on the Theory and Practice of History, supported by Wesleyan’s Center for the Humanities and the Department of History.

The 2016-17 seminar series will meet on five Thursdays across the year and will feature an exciting international and interdisciplinary line up of scholars.

For further information or a copy of the papers once they become available, contact Gary Shaw at Here are the dates and current topics. Meetings will be at 45 Wyllys Avenue, (Boger Hall) room 113.

Starting time for all sessions is 4:30.


November 10: Carolyn Dean (Yale University), “The Making of the Secular Witness, 1921 to the Present”

December 8: Jaume Aurell (Universidad de Navarra), “The Historicity of Historical Genres”

February 23: Kathleen Davis (University of Rhode Island), “Periodization, History, and the Force of Law.”

March 9: Willibald Steinmetz (Bielefeld University), “Multiple Transformations: Temporal Frameworks for a European Conceptual History”

April 13: Beatrice Han-Pile (Sussex University), “Hope and Agency”