History

historyclusterThe Universities of Leeds, Sheffield and York have a long and distinguished tradition of studying history. History was central to the creation of all three universities, beginning with Modern History as a foundation chair at Leeds in 1904.

Sheffield, York and Leeds each possess large departments of history, have enjoyed outstanding research and teaching ratings for many years, and possess national and international reputations to match. The three universities cover the full scope of historical study across the span of historical periods. This study is not confined to history departments alone. The history of science can be found in philosophy at Leeds, for instance, and there are distinguished historical schools in classics, film studies, modern languages and international politics. The historians work happily across disciplinary and administrative boundaries.

The departments of history carry out world-leading research in medieval, early modern, late modern and contemporary history. This research is heavily backed by the research councils: examples include, the St Stephen’s Chapel, Westminster project at York with a timespan covering the thirteenth century to the twentieth century, Building British History from the sixteenth to the nineteenth centuries at Sheffield, and Subjects to Citizens which encompasses Indian, Pakistani and British history at Leeds.

The geographical scope of the universities is equally impressive. Between them the White Rose universities cover the full range of British, European, American, international and global history. All have expanded both the size of the faculty and the span of its interest in recent years. The history offering at each of the universities is broad and deep in itself. The universities often collaborate to juxtapose disciplines, methods, periods and areas in exciting ways.

In recent years these collaborations have been fruitfully channelled through both White Rose and national research councils. Medieval historians are partners in the White Rose Making of Medieval History network. Imperial, Indian and Asian historians in each university are linked through an AHRC-funded White Rose East Asia Centre. There is a thriving Yorkshire African Studies Network and the Leverhulme Trust-funded international network, Comparative History of Political Engagement in Western and African Societies.

The history of science, technology and medicine has strong links to Medicine and other STEM subjects. In York the Institute of Railway Studies and Transport History works in collaboration with the National Railway Museum. The interdisciplinary Centre for Medical Humanities at Leeds is paralleled by Medical Humanities Sheffield and the Centre for Global Health Histories at York, which is supported by Wellcome Trust and the World Health Organization.

There are well-developed schemes of interdisciplinary co-supervision within the universities, especially in Medieval Studies at York and Leeds, and Early Modern Studies at Sheffield and York. The universities and White Rose take the study of non-anglophone history very seriously indeed. They encourage applications for the study of history in a range of modern languages, non-European and much as European and English.