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Primer: Rewriting of Sub-Saharan African History


The history of Africa, and especially Sub-Saharan Africa, has often been presented from a Eurocentric point of view. This essay by scholar Mariana Gino traces the efforts by Black intellectuals around the globe to re-center Africans in the narrative of African history — an important primer for teachers of world history.

Map of the earth showing areas where lights can be seen from space at night

Primer: The History of Globalization


Globalization, defined here as the integration of an interdependent economy that simultaneously enhances cultural exchanges relying on the mobility of people, animals, plants, pathogens, objects, and ideas, is a useful concept for exploring connections across space and time. In this essay, scholar Diego Olstein traces the various ways the chronology of globalization has been understood by... Read More »

Title page of The Voyages and Adventures of Ferdinand Mendez Pinto

Primer: Transnational History


Transnational History encompasses all history that transcends the national level. As a field within the discipline of History, it arose out of dissatisfaction with what was called “methodological nationalism”: the assumption in most historical inquiry that the nation-state is the main building block of history. By contrast, advocates of Transnational History argue that even national questions... Read More »

Problems in Governing Egypt


Bonaparte’s young secretary was a firsthand, if uncritical, observer who took detailed notes and left his memoirs for posterity. He was clearly enthralled by the young general. Here he describes the difficulty of convincing the Egyptians of French superiority in science.

This source is a part of the ... Read More »

Provision for the Restatement of Names and Surnames


Images of 1989 tend to center on dramatic events in Berlin, in Beijing, in Bucharest, and in Johannesburg, just to name a few. Visions of mass demonstration and popular uprising predominate. Even in places like the former Czechoslovakia, where peaceful transition occurred in a "velvet" revolution, the perception is one of overthrow of state authority in the name of popular reform. Lost in... Read More »

Hand drawn map showing footpaths and a branching stream running through the town

Pueblo of Texupa


This is a copy of a relación geográfica. These relaciones were answers to a 1577 survey sent by King Philip II to his colonies, and each relación was composed of a map, usually drawn by an Indigenous artist, and a written text based on interviews of Indigenous informants by Spanish officials. In this map of the pueblo of Texúpa, located in present day Oaxaca, Mexico, there is evidence of both... Read More »

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Puerto Rican Labor Movement: Official Document, Sterilization


Thirty years after Mrs. Roosevelt visited the island of Puerto Rico, working women were still subject to exploitation in the industrial setting—in particular, to coerced sterilization. In this excerpt from a meeting between the Governor of Puerto Rico Luis Muñoz-Marín and his cabinet, one of his advisors informed him that in some companies sponsored by the government women were hired only if... Read More »

A Mohur-Akbar coil from the Mughal Empire

RBI Monetary Museum Galleries

The wide selection of currencies and time periods make this useful for classroom instruction and for generating discussion.
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Reception of the Envoys from Kandy in Colombo


This is a 1772 image by Carel Frederik Reimer depicting the reception of representatives of the King of Kandy at the Dutch East India Company’s (VOC) governor’s house in Colombo, Ceylon (modern-day Sri Lanka). The Kingdom of Kandy was an independent polity that controlled the central and some eastern portions of the island. The Kandyan and VOC officials are situated around a large table in the... Read More »

Remains of Christopher Colombus


In October of 1492, the Spanish monarchs sponsored a voyage led by Columbus and his crew, who intended to sail towards India. Instead, they set foot in the Americas for the first time. Over the next several years, Columbus made many trips back and forth between Spain and the Caribbean Islands. His efforts established the foundation for Spanish colonial rule, which ultimately endured for more... Read More »