The Department of History of the University of Ottawa is committed to research excellence and innovation. Our research clusters provide valuable platforms for collaboration and the exchange of ideas among our researchers, both within and across disciplinary boundaries.

Canadian History

The study of Canada is one of our foremost areas of expertise. Employing new approaches, our researchers seek to better understand the historical forces that have shaped modern Canada and have contributed to the debates that inform our society. To foster citizen engagement, they focus particularly on the study of l’Amérique française and on Indigenous history. Our affiliated researchers work in a variety of areas, including social and cultural history, intellectual history, immigration history, military history, labour history, and the history of international relations, from the Middle Ages to today.

Expo 67 in Montréal
Expo 67 in Montréal (1967)

European History

Europe in its geographical and conceptual permutations has long been a central focus of historical scholarship and historiographical trends. Our researchers bring new methodologies, questions, perspectives, and approaches to bear on this rich tradition. One stream is linked to postcolonialism's critique of Eurocentrism and its place in world/global history. Other streams include rethinking Europe from its peripheries, examining European histories through the body, gender, law, identities, state formation, border theory, migration and mobility, environment, regional integration, and globalization.

European History
L'Europa geografico-politica (Bologna, 1749)

Gender, Sexuality, and the Body

Our researchers use gender not only as a tool of analysis but also as an innovative approach to study human relations, behaviors, and identities. The fields of history of sexuality and history of the body have developed their own set of conceptual devices to further our understanding of what it means to be human. With topics covering areas such as the legal control of procreation, the involvement of women in decolonization movements, women in sports, businesswomen and economic interactions, psychiatric care, human trafficking and family relations, our collective effort is pushing the boundaries of knowledge.

Gender, Sexuality, and the Body
The Women’s Strike for Equality in New York (August 26, 1970)

Ideas, Culture, and Society

Intellectual, cultural, and social history allows for the exploration of different dimensions of everyday life. Social history is often aligned with the political imperatives of labour history, gender history, and activism. It draws from economics, demography, and sociology, among other areas. Cultural history encompasses, in addition to cultural formations, different forms of sensibilities or collective dispositions. It is primarily concerned with representations and discourses. Intellectual history, in turn, is about the study of ideas, whether expressed by professional intellectuals and philosophers or construed in voices of ordinary people.

Ideas, Culture, and Society
J. S. Pughe, The Greatest Department Store on Earth - And Every Day a Bargain Day (Puck, 1899)

Colonialism & Postcolonialism

Questions linked to imperialism, colonialism, and their legacies cut across temporal and geographic boundaries. They tie together histories of imperial powers with those of the territories they colonized. Researchers in this cluster cover a wide variety of topics, such as environmental change, identity formation, struggles for human and political rights, migrations and diaspora, imperial expansion and conquest, decolonization, sovereignty and indigeneity. Cluster researchers draw on methods from cultural, legal, gender, intellectual, comparative, environmental, political, and social history.

Empire, Colonialism, and Postcolonialism
Prime Minister Julius Nyrere celebrates decolonization in Tanganyika (later Tanzania), 1961

War and Society

Our department is rich in expertise in the broad-based field of conflict studies, which examine the impact of war on nations, regions, communities, families, and individuals. Covering Europe, Africa, North America, Asia, the Middle East, and focusing mainly, though not exclusively, on the last three centuries, our Faculty and graduate students explore conflicts and their consequences in shaping global and local histories through the lenses of ethnicity, class, gender, religion, economics, politics, diplomacy, anti-colonialism, nationalism, technology, biography, culture, memory, identity, and genocide.

War and Society
Jan Rose Kasmir confronts the American National Guard outside the Pentagon during the anti-Vietnam march in Washington (October 21, 1967)

Law and Society

Law and legal systems cast light on ideologies, political processes, and cultural interactions. Our researchers consider the social significance, traditions, processes and historical changes in law, legal institutions, legal culture and jurisprudence. They recognize law as a malleable language invoked by historical actors from the Middle Ages to the present. Legal historians analyze the ways individuals, organizations, communities, and states used and experienced the law. They study how people and societies engage the law to regulate, mediate, control, and contest, and consider legal pluralisms and legal incompatibilities that emerged with the entanglement of systems of law.

Law and Society
The Pillory (Les Coutumes de Toulouse, 1295-1297)

Research Chairs

Chair in Slovak History & Culture

The chair seeks to create a vibrant academic and research environment for Faculty members, guest researchers, undergraduate and graduate students working on Slovak history and culture both in Europe and North America. It promotes and disseminates research on Slovak history and culture to a wider audience and foster ongoing dialogue between the academia, the media and the wider public and strengthens academic and non-academic links between Slovakia and North America.

Chair in Slovak History and Culture
First universal suffrage in the legislative elections in Czechoslovakia (1920)
Roman Krakovsky

Chairholder

Roman Krakovsky is Assistant Professor in the Department of History. He holds a PhD from the Sorbonne University (2012). His research focuses on modernization strategies in Slovakia and Central and Eastern Europe in modern times. These include economic modernization, democratization and political representation of various groups including women and minorities, as well as authoritarianism and populism. Throughout his academic career, Roman has published three single authored book, one textbook, two edited volumes, and several articles in peer reviewed journals.

Theses and Memoirs

Graduate students contribute greatly to the Department’s research. If you wish to consult a MA Memoir or a PhD Thesis, please make an appointment with the Faculty of Arts academic assistant for Graduate programs (for a MA Memoir) or contact the Morisset Library Archives and Special Collections (for a PhD Thesis).

Student's Journals

The Department of History hosts two student journals:

  • Clio is uOttawa’s Undergraduate History Journal. It is issued once a year and is run entirely by uOttawa students. Clio publishes between 10-12 research papers written in upper year (3rd and 4th year) history classes, which are then edited and approved by a team of undergraduate editors (chosen from all years).
  • Strata is uOttawa's Graduate History Journal. It provides a forum for open debate among graduate-level historians that fosters the development of professional skills through the publishing process. Strata is a student-run initiative and, with the support of the University of Ottawa Department of History, it provides a peer-focused experience with opportunities to learn, publish, and develop as scholars. To contact us, please send an email to [email protected]

Pierre Savard Conference

The Pierre Savard Conference is organised annually by the History Graduate Students Association. It offers graduate students the opportunity to share the results of their research with their colleagues while familiarizing themselves with academic communication. The Pierre Savard Conference is open to all historical subject matter, regardless of discipline.

Pierre Savard Conference

Contact us

Department of History

Desmarais Building
55 Laurier Avenue East, 9th Floor
Ottawa ON Canada K1N 6N5
Map

Tel.: 613-562-5735
Fax: 613-562-5995
[email protected]

 

Office Hours

Monday to Friday
From 8:45 a.m. to 12 p.m.
From 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
(June to August: closes at 3:30 p.m.)