Digital Baldwin

Event date

Reception at 5:30

James Baldwin’s work has become a touchstone in our present cultural moment. Communities in Conversation will stoke a cross-city series of conversations under the rubric of Baldwin Now. Baldwin is an intellectual forebear of Ta-Nehisi Coates, Jesmyn Ward, and the #BlackLivesMatter movement, and a key reference for post-civil rights discussions of race in America. As such, Baldwin continues to be a cultural catalyst for American society.

Digital Baldwin will feature Zandria Robinson, Terrence Tucker, and Ernest Gibson. Each will introduce, screen, and discuss a video clip of Baldwin as a means to inform, to contextualize, and to highlight aspects of Baldwin’s work.

Communities in Conversation

A Message from the Chair

When I was an undergraduate, I wasn't sure what to major in, not because I didn't know what I wanted to do but because I wanted to do too much.  I loved history, but I also loved psychology, and literature, and philosophy, and art.  How could I put it all together?

For me, a History major was the best choice because everything has a history. I knew that I could study all the things I was passionate about by understanding the stories of how they came to be.  As I always tell my students, everything that humans have done is appropriate for the historian to study.

Liberty and Union: Prof. Timothy Huebner Lecture and Booksigning

Event date

Rhodes Professor of History Timothy Huebner will speak about his newly published book, Liberty and Union. Americans of the Civil War era exhibited a culture of constitutionalism, a deep belief in the achievements of the founding generation, which consistently animated the nation’s political debates. African Americans’ distinctive understanding of constitutional equality helped transform a war for Union into a war for emancipation and equal rights.

Reception and booksigning to follow.


What Is a Rhodes History Class Like? Information for Prospective Students

The history major (11 courses) is extremely flexible offering a wide range of topics from around the globe and fulfilling many of the college’s Foundation requirements, leaving time for minors, double majors, interdisciplinary majors, or graduate school prerequisites.   Beyond two required courses, (“The Historian’s Craft” and “Senior Seminar”), students can choose courses in African, Asian, United States, European, Latin American, and Middle Eastern history over several centuries.  Coursework taken abroad or at an accredited 4 year institution may be transferred into the major if pre-approved by the department chair.

How To Declare a History Major or Minor

Declaring a History Major:

  1. Who would you like to be your adviser?  Almost any faculty member in the department can take on new advisees each year.  If there is a professor with whom you have a good relationship and who knows you and your work, then approach him or her and ask whether he or she can serve as your adviser. 

    If you’re not sure who to ask, then feel free to ask the Department chairperson for suggestions.

Honors, Student Research, and Opportunities for Special Study

Students interested in engaging in in-depth archival and bibliographical research can apply to undertake an Honors Project during the senior year. Students interested in pursuing Honors Research in History are encouraged to enroll in Directed Inquiry during the second semester of the junior year. After the applicant’s research proposal is approved by the Department, the student works with a faculty committee to conduct primary research and craft a 50-60 page research paper. The student presents his/her work at a campus-wide colloquium in the spring and is listed as having completed Honors Research in the College’s commencement program. Honors research carries a maximum of 8 credits and is recommended for those interested in pursuing graduate study in history. 

Student Publications

Research is an act of discovery, and researching the past opens the minds of students to worlds previously unknown. By analyzing primary sources located in traditional or digital archives, history students at Rhodes conduct high-level research with nationally-recognized scholars. Rhodes history faculty have written or edited thirty-one books and published articles in some of the top academic journals in their fields. Those same faculty members train students in the historian’s craft by supervising research projects in 400-level seminars, directed inquiries, the Rhodes Institute for Regional Studies, and the College’s honors research program.