The Department of International History hosts numerous lectures, roundtables, debates and workshops by our academics, visiting academics and others. Members of the Department are also involved in a series of events at LSE and around the world. Below is a selection of these events by chronological order. Our events are usually free and open to all. We make video and audio recordings available on this page whenever possible.
3 October 2014, Friday, Shaw Library, London School of Economics
Trails of the Great War, 1914 to 2014
: Professor Craig Calhoun
,Dr John F Jungclaussen
, Professor David Stevenson
, Professor Robert Gerwarth
, Professor John Horne
, Professor Philip Bobbitt
, Professor Richard Sennett
, Lord Glasman
, Jesse Norman MP
, Professor Zygmunt Bauman
The centenary year of the outbreak of the Great War began with a serious debate over the war guilt question. Historians such as Christopher Clark, David Reynolds and Niall Ferguson engaged a wide public audience with their respective arguments. Since then, the focus has been very much on the nature of war itself. In the media, in theatres and concert halls, in stately homes and village halls, the British commemoration of the Great War is strikingly visceral. History, it seems, is less about rationalising past events than it is about accessing the emotional experience of those who lived in it.
Yet, 1914 marked the beginning of a conflict that was much more than a ‘national catastrophe’ for Britain. In the words of the American diplomat and historian George F Kennan this was ‘the great seminal catastrophe of the twentieth century’, the big bang that determined the course of history and continues to define the political reality in Britain, Europe and America to this day. The aim of this conference is to move beyond the parochial and broaden the view of the British debate.
Attendance is free and non-ticketed.
See Conference Programme
Professor Craig Calhoun is Director of the LSE and former Director of the Social Research Council; Dr John F Jungclaussen is UK Correspondent DIE ZEIT newspaper, historian and author; David Stevenson is Professor of International History at the LSE; Robert Gerwarth is Professor of Modern History, Director of the Centre for War Studies, University College Dublin; John Horne is Professor of Modern European History, Trinity College Dublin; Philip Bobbitt is Herbert Wechsler Professor of Jurisprudence at Columbia University. Director of Centre for National Security, Columbia University; Richard Sennett is Professor of Sociology at the LSE, Co-Chair of the New Urban Charter Programme for UN Habitat; Lord Glasman is Senior Lecturer in Political Theory, Director of the Faith and Citizenship Programme, London Metropolitan University; Jesse Norman is an MP; Zygmunt Bauman is Emeritus Professor of Sociology, University of Leeds.
9 October 2014, Thursday, 18:30-20:00, Wolfson Theatre, New Academic Building, LSE
Department of International History Public Lecture: "Siberia: a History of the People"
: Professor Janet Hartley
Siberia is a part of Russia but also a specific region with its own characteristics. Based on rich sources, many from local archives, Janet Hartley looks at the life of the people – who came to Siberia, how they lived, how were governed , how they related to the indigenous population – from the late sixteenth century, when “Sibir” became part of the Russian empire, to the present. This lecture marks the launch of Siberia: a History of the People published by Yale in July 2014.
Professor Janet Hartley is Professor of International History at the LSE and Head od Department. She is the author of six books and many articles and chapters on Russian history and Anglo-Russian relations in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
23 October 2014, Thursday, 18:30-20:00, Wolfson Theatre, New Academic Building, LSE
LSE Annual Gulf History Lecture: “A Matter of Life and Death for the Country”: The Iranian Intervention in Oman, 1972-1975
: Professor James Goode
This became one of the Shah’s most successful foreign initiatives. He entered at the request of Sultan Qabus to help quell a Marxist rebellion in Dhufar province. Acting for reasons wholly related to Iran’s regional security, he angered most of his Arab neighbors. His troops tipped the balance, helping to speed the end of the insurrection, for which Iran earned the lasting gratitude of the sultan.
Professor Goode teaches history at Grand Valley State University. He served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Iran, 1968-1971, and later taught for the University of Mashhad, 1971-1973. He has written widely on modern Iran, including Negotiating for the Past (2007), winner of the Robert H. Ferrell prize
28 October 2014, Tuesday, 19:00-20:30, New Theatre, East Building, LSE
Department of International History Annual Lecture: "The Vietnam Wars Reconsidered"
: Professor Fredrik Logevall
With the outpouring of scholarship on the Vietnam Wars in recent years, it's time to take stock and reconsider two core questions: why did the wars happen, and why did two Western powers, first France and then the United States, fail in their efforts? In this lecture historian Fredrik Logevall will offer his analysis, while also contemplating the meaning of the war for our own time.
Fredrik Logevall is the Stephen and Madeline Anbinder Professor of History at Cornell University. His most recent book is
Embers of War: The Fall of An Empire and the Making of America's Vietnam, which received the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for History.
7 November 2014, Friday, Lancaster House, London
Foreign and Commonwealth Office Historical Branch & International History Department, LSE: 'Sir Edward Grey and the Outbreak of the First World War'
: Roy Bridge, Christopher Clark
, Keith Hamilton, John Keiger
, Annika Mombauer
, Thomas Otte
, Keith Robbins, Richard Smith, Zara Steiner and Keith Wilson
This one-day conference focuses on reappraising Britain’s decision to enter the First World War and on the role played by the British Foreign Secretary, Sir Edward Grey. It will examine not only the July-August 1914 crisis but also the pre-war decade of relations between Britain and the Central Powers and between Britain and the Entente. It will consider how other Powers viewed British policy as well as how Britain viewed them. And although its focus will be on Grey’s personality and leadership, the Foreign Office and the diplomatic corps, attention will be given as necessary to other parts of Whitehall, to Westminster politics, and to British public opinion more broadly.
Attendance is free but numbers are limited. If you are interested in attending please RSVP, by 6 October, to email@example.com
to be added to the registration list.
See Conference Programme
10 September 2014, Wednesday, International Symposium, AHILA, Berlin
Latin America and Europe during the Cold War
The LSE sponsored a symposium at 2014’s AHILA conference
in Berlin on 10 September. Coordinated by Dr Tanya Harmer
, the symposium brought together 15 historians from around the world in 4 panels to examine the relations between Latin America, the Soviet bloc and Western Europe. The symposium focused on the formal relations between governments and political parties of Latin America and Europe. It aimed to investigate the transnational networks and contacts that emerged between both regions as a result of solidarity movements, youth groups, academic exchanges and travel. Beyond showcasing new research, the aim of the symposium was to lay the foundations of a new international network aimed at understanding, and disseminating sources on the relationship between Europe and Latin America during the Cold War.
Read the Conference Programme
27 May 2014, Tuesday, Council Room, King’s College London
ICBH Annual Conference: Monarchies at War
: Dr Antony Best
, Dr Jonathan Boff
, Dr Richard Dunley
, Professor Erik Goldstein
and Professor William Philpott
As part of King’s College London’s centenary commemoration of the Great War, the Institute of Contemporary British History was proud to be holding its annual conference on 'Monarchies at War'. The conference considered the role of monarchies from around the world in the First World War and in subsequent conflicts. It covered the diplomatic, political, military and social aspects of their roles, and considered perspectives from around the world.
Dr Antony Best is Associate Professor of International History at LSE, Dr Jonathan Boff is Lecturer in History at University of Birmingham, Dr Richard Dunley is a Contemporary Records Specialist at the National Archives, Professor Erik Goldstein is Professor of International Relations and History at Boston University and Professor William Philpott is Professor of the History of Warfare at KCL.
12 May 2014, Monday, 6.30-8pm, Room 9.04, Tower 2, Clement's Inn, LSE
US-Iran Détente: Past and Present
Speakers: Ambassador John Limbert, Dr Chris Emery, Dr Roham Alvandi
: Professor Toby Dodge
The historic September 2013 phone call between Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and U.S. President Barack Obama represented the highest-level contact between Iran and the United States since relations between the two countries were severed in April 1980, in the midst of the Tehran hostage crisis. As Iran and the P5+1 move ahead with drafting a comprehensive nuclear agreement, Tehran and Washington have carefully pursued a détente that could transform the political landscape of the Middle East. This roundtable will examine the troubled history of US-Iran relations, past failed efforts at détente, and the prospects for a breakthrough in US-Iran relations in 2014.
Ambassador John Limbert is Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern (Iranian) Affairs; Dr Chris Emery is Lecturer in International Relations at the University of Plymouth University of Plymouth; Dr Roham Alvandi is Assistant Professor of International History at the LSE.
8 May 2014, Thursday, 1pm, B13 at 32 Lincolns Inn Fields, LSE
Feeling Imperial: The Shaping of American Attitudes towards the Philippines
: Professor Andrew Rotter
: Professor Matthew Jones
American attitudes towards their empire in the Philippines were deeply shaped by notions of civilisation derived from sensory perceptions of themselves and others. The islands’ rough and tangled terrain, suffocating heat and humidity, and the allegedly dangerous bodily contact Americans had with the Philippine people all conspired to confirm suspicions that the islands were not sufficiently civilised for self-government. Only after the land could be smoothed, the air made less oppressive, and the people less rough-skinned and disease-prone, could the United States consider independence for the archipelago.
Professor Andrew Rotter is Charles A. Dana Professor of History at Colgate University, USA.
30 April 2014, Wednesday, 6.30-8.00pm, Wolfson Theatre, LSE
Department of International History Roundtable III: ‘Reappraising the First World War: the Legacy’
Speakers: Dr Bill Kissane
, Dr Svetozar Rajak
, Professor Max Schulze
, Professor Alan Sked
, Professor Sӧnke Neitzel
Chair: Professor David Stevenson
As part of the events connected with the First World War centenary, the Department of International History organized a series of roundtable discussions on the war. This event assessed the impact and the aftermath of the war on the British Isles and Continental Europe, as well as the links between the First and Second World Wars.
Bill Kissane is Associate Professor (Reader) in Politics at the Department of Government (LSE); Svetozar Rajak is Associate Professor at the Department of International History (LSE); Max Schulze is Professor of Economic History at the Department of Economic History (LSE); Alan Sked is Professor of International History at the Department of International History (LSE); Sӧnke Neitzel is Professor of International History at the Department of International History (LSE)
30 April 2014, Wednesday, 6:30-8:00pm, NAB 1.04, LSE
The Nazi-Soviet Pact in the Light of Transnational History: 'Persian Connections in German-Soviet Relations'
Speaker: Professor Jennifer Jenkins
Chair: Dr Roham Alvandi
The Nazi-Soviet Pact, a central topic in the scholarship on the Second World War, is generally studied in its political and European dimensions. It was the instrument for the coming together of two unlikely ideological allies in the destruction and acquisition of Poland. By contrast the economic aspects of the Pact are understudied, although they were fundamental to how it functioned. They also worked through transnational networks that stretched far beyond Europe. Professor Jennifer Jenkins took a new look at the Nazi-Soviet Pact by embedding it in German and Soviet economic policies toward the Near East, specifically with Iran, from the early Weimar period forward. She also explored the history of German-Soviet-Persian economic cooperation in the interwar period, Iran's importance as a zone of cooperation between Germany and the USSR, and its place in the making of the Pact.
Jennifer L. Jenkins is Associate Professor of German and European History at the University of Toronto
13 March 2014, Thursday, 11:00-1:00pm, NAB 2.13, LSE
Lent Term: World History Workshop
: Dr Kent Deng
The aim of this workshop was to provide a forum for an intellectual exchange of ideas between staff and postgraduate students across the LSE about new research, advances in the field of world history and recent historiographical debates. Topics of particular interest included histories of the extra-European world, empires, post-colonial societies, citizenship, trade networks, modernity and development, cultural exchanges, transnational lives, migration and exile. On 13 March, Dr Kent Deng from the Economic History Department presented a paper to the workshop entitled, "Absorbing pressure and generating growth: Demystifying China's Early Economic Revolution during the Northern Song Era, circa 960-1127."
Staff, post-doctoral fellows and graduate students from all departments at the LSE were welcome to attend.
Please email Dr Tanya Harmer
to receive a copy of Dr Deng's paper.
Dr Kent Deng is Associate Professor in Economic History at LSE.
11 March 2014, Tuesday, 6.30-8.00pm, Old Theatre, Old Building, LSE
The Origins of the Final Solution: Eastern Europe and the Holocaust
Speaker: Professor Timothy Snyder
Chair: Professor Michael Cox
The Nazi Final Solution was implemented in occupied Poland and the occupied Soviet Union, in the lands that after the end of the war quickly fell behind the Iron Curtain. The opening of borders and archives has permitted a much fuller acquaintance with the victims of the Holocaust, the vast majority of whom were east European Jews, as well as with the motivation and behaviours of the German perpetrators and the east Europeans who aided them in the murder. Must the national history of eastern Europe, with which we began, now collapse into nothing more than a prehistory of catastrophe? Or might instead a grounding in national history help us better discern the human causes of the Holocaust? Only an explanation that can unite Hitler's metaphysical anti-Semitism with the experience of German power in eastern Europe can be satisfactory.
Timothy Snyder is the Philippe Roman Chair in History and International Affairs for the 2013-2014 academic year.
10 March 2014, Monday, 5:30-7:00pm, Kings College London, Centre for Hellenic Studies, K0.31, Strand Campus
Real and Imagined: Philhellenic Travel in the Greek War of Independence
: Dr Paul Stock
This paper discussed philhellenic travellers' perceptions and experiences of Greece in the early nineteenth century, especially during the War of Independence in the 1820s. It argued that the philhellenes understood Greece as a ‘real-and-imagined’ space. Greece was an ‘imagined’ location in the sense that philhellenic conception of it is shaped by certain rhetorical assumptions and priorities. But, evidently, it was also a ‘real’ space, not simply in the obvious sense that the landscape has a tangible existence, but also in that those rhetorical constructions have concrete consequences and expressions. The paper discussed the significance of this real-and-imagined Greece as conceived by a number of prominent British philhellenes.
Dr Paul Stock is Lecturer in Early Modern International History 1500-1850 at LSE.
5 March 2014, Wednesday, 6.30-8.00pm, Wolfson Theatre, LSE
Department of International History Roundtable II: 'Reappraising the First World War: Global War'
: Dr Antony Best
, Dr Paul Mulvey
, Professor David Stevenson
As part of the events connected with the First World War centenary, the Department of International History has organized a series of roundtable discussions on the war. This was the second roundtable on the subject which assessed the First World War’s importance in global history, and as a turning point in Europe’s relations with the wider world.
Anthony Best is Senior Lecturer in international history at LSE; Paul Mulvey is a Graduate Teaching Assistant in international history at LSE; David Stevenson is Professor of international history at LSE.
26 February 2014, Wednesday, 7:00-8.30pm, Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building, LSE
LSE Literary Festival Discussion: Why Remember? Reflections on the First World War Centenary
Speakers: Professor Michael Cox
, Dr John Hutchinson
, Professor Margaret Macmillan
Chair: Professor David Stevenson
This multi-disciplinary panel discussion reflected on the consequences of the First World War and the value of remembrance, including the impact on international relations, the effect on nationalism and the home front, and what photography and narration of the war can tell us about our society.
Michael Cox is founding Co-Director of LSE IDEAS and Professor of international relations at LSE; John Hutchinson is Reader in nationalism in the Department of Government at LSE; Margaret Macmillan is the Warden of St Antony's College, Oxford; David Stevenson is Professor of international history at LSE.
14 November 2013, Thursday, 11am-1pm, Room TW2.3.03, LSE
Michaelmas Term: World History Workshop
: Dr Taylor Sherman
Building on the expertise and research interests of scholars at the LSE, the first termly informal World History workshop was held with the aim of providing a forum for an intellectual exchange of ideas between staff and postgraduate students about new research, advances in the field of world history and recent historiographical debates. At the introductory World History workshop on 14 November a general discussion of research interests, work in progress and research news was held before a pre-circulated chapter by Dr Taylor Sherman from her new book entitled "Moral Economies of Communal Violence in Secular India: Muslim Citizenship and Refugee Rehabilitation in Hyderabad" was discussed.
Staff, post-doctoral fellows and graduate students from all departments at the LSE are welcome to attend.
Please email Dr Tanya Harmer
to receive a copy of Dr Sherman's paper.
Dr Taylor Sherman is Associate Professor in international history at LSE.
Research Seminar Series: