Thematic Fields of Study

While the discipline of history has traditionally defined itself according to the temporal eras and geographic regions studied by its practitioners, increasingly important to historians’ self definitions are the intellectual themes, problematics, and questions they explore. Faculty at the University of Minnesota Department of History study a remarkable variety of subjects, topics, and themes. These reflect the often intricate ways that fields and subfields within the discipline have evolved, as methodological trends take shape and are applied to new terrains, and as the present moment offers up new intellectual perspectives and previously unavailable standpoints from which to construct accounts of the past.

American Indian and Indigenous History

Culture, Media, Technology, Ideas

Economy, Capitalism, Business, Labor, Class, Slavery

Empire, Colonialism, Postcolonial Studies

Family, Demography, Quantitative History

Food, Environment, Agrarian History

Legal History, Human Rights

Politics, Citizenship, National Identity

Public History, Historical Memory

Race, Ethnicity, Migration, Diasporas


Science and Technology Studies, Environment

Women, Gender, Sexuality, LGBTQ History