Intellectual History & History of Ideas

Intellectual history is a genre of inquiry that focuses on the role that explicitly-articulated concepts and theories, whether legal, political, religious, artistic, philosophical, or scientific, play in the thinking and action of human beings. Inside the discipline of history, the focus of attention is most often on how these concepts and theories interacted with and influenced economic, social, cultural, and political developments.  Closely related to intellectual history is the interdisciplinary subgenre of the history of ideas.  The focus of attention there is most often on investigating the formation and structure of past concepts and theories with an eye both to understanding better the ideas themselves and to illuminating unresolved issues in the present connected with those ideas.

Many members of the Corcoran Department of History work in these interrelated fields in an effort to understand what was and is most often overlooked in everyday life, namely, the hidden roots of people’s most deeply adhered to ideas and practices.

Faculty

Associate Professor of German and History, Director, Center for German Studies, Director, European Studies Program
Nau 255
Office Hours: MW 11:00am-12:00pm, and by appointment
Themes: Cultural and Social History, Environmental History, Genocide & Violence, Intellectual History & History of Ideas, Jewish History, Political History, Race & Ethnicity, Transnational and Diplomatic History
Department Chair, Commonwealth Professor of History and Mathematics
Nau 456 and Kerchof 226
Office Hours: Tuesdays 3:30-5:00 (in Kerchof 226) & Wednesdays 10:00-11:30 (in Nau 456) or by appointment
Themes: Cultural and Social History, Intellectual History & History of Ideas, Science, Medicine, & Technology
Associate Professor of German
New Cabell Hall, Room 223
Office Hours: Wednesdays 3:15 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. and by appointment
Themes: Cultural and Social History, Intellectual History & History of Ideas
John B. Minor Professor of Law and Professor of History
361 Law
Office Hours: N/A
Themes: Intellectual History & History of Ideas, Legal History
White Burkett Miller Professor of History, and Wilson Newman Professor of Governance at the Miller Center of Public Affairs
Nau 421
Themes: Economic History & History of Capitalism, Empire & Colonialism, Genocide & Violence, Intellectual History & History of Ideas, Military & War History, Political History, Transnational and Diplomatic History

Graduate Student