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The Research Unit “Social History since 1750” places social change at the centre of its analyses and relates history to contemporary society. Social history calls for a pre-eminently integrated approach that aims to interconnect circumstances, structures and processes with human agency and experiences, discourse and perception, ideas and practices. Social history transcends history in compartments -  economy, politics,  culture  - and aims at historical synthesis and interdisciplinarity.

Our research unit studies the nineteenth and twentieth century. How did the long nineteenth century result in the ‘age of catastrophe’, despite of its optimism over progress and characteristic emancipatory movements? The impact of both World Wars is assessed against the double question of how people deal with dramatic social change and how the (painful) past affects the present.

In geographical terms, the research unit “Social History since 1750” focuses mainly, but not exclusively on European history, going beyond the framework of the nation state through a transnational perspective. Our research unit’s members study a broad variety of topics, structured along four research lines. They use and combine different methodologies, including discourse analysis, oral history, field research, network analysis, comparative research and entangled history. Meta-history and empirical research cross-fertilize each other.     

Research programmes

  • Movements, protest and contention
  • War, crisis and society
  • Meta history and public history

News en events

05/02/16 Julie Devlieghere wint Scriptieprijs 100 Jaar Groote Oorlog
14/01/16 Longlist van de scriptieprijs 14-18 bekend
14/01/16 Lezing Philipp Blom - 4 februari 14u30
20/04/15 Laura Nys wint de Johanna Naber-scriptieprijs
12/11/14 Eerste Hulp Bij Oorlogserfgoed en -geschiedenis
08/09/14 Historical Network Research Conference 2014 - Ghent, 15-19 September
05/05/14 Gita Deneckere ontvangt de Prix Jean Stengers 2014
15/04/14 Fabian Van Wesemael wint de Johanna-Naber-prijs
24/03/14 Call for papers: Historical Network Research Conference (15-19 September 2014)
26/02/14 Giselle Nath wint de Emile Zolaprijs 2014 (Dutch)
06/02/14 Lezingenreeks: verwikkeling, vertwijfeling en verwondering (Tom Popkewitz)
16/12/13 Geschiedenisstudent UGent in de prijzen  (Dutch)
11/12/13 Undoing privilege and power: anti-sexist men and guilty politics. Lecture on 16/12 by Lucy Delap
06/12/13 Three BRAIN.BE-projects for the research group Social History since 1750
28/11/13 First annual Jan Dhondt Lecture by prof.dr. Johannes Paulmann (University of Mainz)
28/11/13 New project: vacancies for PhD-candidates and scientific collaborator
12/11/13 Nocturne en tentoonstelling: 100 jaar Vooruit (Dutch)
04/10/13 Boekpresentatie: 'Brood willen wij hebben!' (Dutch)
30/09/13 Studiedag: gebouwen met een sociaal geheugen (18/10) (Dutch)
27/05/13 Gita Deneckere en Leopold I op Arte (Dutch)
05/05/13 Platform www.Gent2013Virtueel.be - 100ste verjaardag wereldtentoonstelling (Dutch)
18/03/13 Gita Deneckere wint Henriëtte de Beaufort-prijs (Dutch)

More news


There are currently no vacancies.