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Europaeum - Historiography


Admission requirements

Course designed for students enrolled in the Europaeum program. If other students wish to follow this course, they should contact the instructor directly.


This course discusses major trends, paradigms, and debates in historiography through close readings of relevant texts. Our discussions will focus on three aspects: a) the most important moments in the history of history-writing; b) major current concepts in the philosophy of history; and c) methodological issues involved in the historical craft.
Our discussions will mainly focus on Western/European historiography.

Course objectives

  • The ability to analyze and evaluate literature and sources for the purpose of producing an original scholarly argument;

  • Insight into the social relevance of history;

  • Knowledge and comprehension of the theoretical, conceptual and methodological aspects of the Europaeum specialisation, more specifically: international comparison; archival research; the perspective of one of the three different traditions – Leiden, Sorbonne and Oxford.

Extra course objective for Res Ma students:

  • Knowledge and comprehension of the theoretical foundation of the discipline and of its position vis-à-vis other disciplines.


Timetable History

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

Students are expected to attend all classes and come prepared to take part in group discussions of the assigned reading materials.

Course Load

  • Total course load for the course = 140h

  • Hours spent on attending lectures and seminars = 14h

Assessment method

Assignments in this course should demonstrate the following skills:

  • The ability to give a clear written report on research results in English;

  • The ability to give a clear oral report on research results in English;

  • The ability to provide constructive academic feedback to colleagues;

  • The ability to engage with constructive academic feedback offered by colleagues and the instructor.

Written assignments

1st assignment – 25%

  • You will be asked to analyze a short excerpt from a historian’s work, from the perspective of its approach and methodology (approx. 1000 words)

  • Course objectives examined in this assignment: 1, 2

Final essay – 50%

  • You will be asked to discuss the best approach and methodology for the analysis of a primary source of your own choosing (approx. 2500 words)

  • The primary source & the approach are entirely your choice (but the selection should be done in consultation with me). I recommend you choose a source that has some connection to your research interests, and ideally with your M.A. thesis, if you already know what it is going to be.

Oral assessment

  • Attendance – 10%

  • Oral participation in class discussions or group communication outside class meetings via electronic or other means (questions, comments, reactions, sharing additional materials, etc.) – 10%

Short presentation of final essay topic (specify chosen source and approach) – 5%

Research MA students are required to write a longer final essay, in which they are expected to engage more deeply with the theoretical concepts they use in their approach and ideally offer an inter- or multi-disciplinary perspective (their word limit for the final essay is approx. 3500 words). They are also expected to demonstrate these skills in their oral participation.


Yes, but other forms of online communication/collaboration will also be used in this course (especially email and Dropbox). Students should give the instructor their preferred email address and they should check their inbox regularly for announcements.


Reading list

  • Students should buy Historiography: An Introductory Guide by Eileen Ka-May Cheng (2012), available in local and online bookstores.

  • Additional texts (articles, book chapters, and other types of reading materials) will be made available online at the beginning of the semester.

  • A course schedule will be emailed to students at least one week before the beginning of the course, containing the reading requirements for each week and other related details.

  • The reading requirement for the first week is chapter 1 from Cheng and a few excerpts from ancient and classical historians that will be posted online in due time. Students should read these texts before our first meeting and come prepared for discussion.


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mw. Dr. F.Roșu