Department of History

It is a pleasure to welcome you to the Department of History at the University of Sydney. Established in 1891, the department is the oldest in Australia, but it is a young place too. We teach, and learn from, outstanding students as they begin to make their way in the world. And in recent years we have been lucky enough to recruit a large number of exceptional new lecturers trained at some of the world's greatest universities. They complement a group of established scholars of distinction, including two Australian Research Council Laureate Fellows.

We write and teach on a wide variety of time periods and national or regional settings, with particular strengths in American, Australian, European, and Chinese history. Some of us study culture and some politics; many of us work in the areas of international and transnational history that have energized and transformed the study of the past in recent times. One unifying thread is a curiosity about ideas in action – that is, how ideas and ideals were developed, challenged, lived with in particular situations. How were concepts of freedom tested in practice by African Americans in nineteenth-century U.S. cities? By diplomats and international lawyers? By indigenous people navigating the judicial system? By artists? By hackers? (To cite examples from courses we’ve taught in the past few years.)

Each year we offer a rich array of courses, and we continually review and renew our curriculum. Many of our staff have won awards for their teaching as well as their research. We are committed to giving our students a world-class education and a gateway to life beyond university.

You'll find answers to many of your questions on our website, but often it's better to get in touch with a staff member directly. We're always keen to talk to you.

Professor Chris Hilliard
Chair, Department of History

Latest News

  • Dr. Anne Rees, JRF, Laureate Research Program in International History, wins prestigious “Inaugural David Myers Research Fellowship” at La Trobe University.

    Dr. Anne Rees, JRF, Laureate Research Program in International History, wins prestigious inaugural David Myers Research Fellowship at La Trobe University. Dr Rees will use this three-year fellowship to convert her PhD into a book entitled Travelling to Tomorrow: Australian Women, Transpacific Mobility and Australian-US Relations, 1910-1960. She will also develop a new project on United States immigration restriction and the British World during the 1920s and 30s.

  • International Research Award in Global History 2017

    The Universities of Heidelberg, Basel and Sydney are proud to announce the Third International Research Award in Global History. The successful applicant will receive up to €10,000 towards the organization of an international symposium in Suzhou, China on a topic of significance to this year’s global history themes:

    The History of Global Governance
    Transnational Law and Global History

  • 2016 'Cities’ Workshops

    Announcing the 2016 series of 'Cities' workshops to be held in Kevin Lee Room, Level 6, Lobby H, Quadrangle 5-7pm

Latest Events