The Department of History

News Spotlight

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Turning from the 2015 Lecture Series’ focus on the First World War, the 2016 History Lecture Series looked to the University’s immediate environs: Seattle. Drs. John Findlay, Quintard Taylor, Linda Nash, and James Gregory examined Seattle’s history through the lens of political, environmental, demographic, and radical history. Ranging from an introduction to the origins of Seattle’s founders to an examination of Seattle’s incredible growth, from its relatively homogenous early years to its increasingly diverse modern makeup, “Excavating Seattle’s Histories: People, Politics, Place” offered new perspectives on Seattle’s history. The Series challenged assumptions on what makes Seattle the city it is today and pointed to the many different possible futures. To watch videos of this year’s lectures, follow the link: History Lecture Series 2016.

Featured Story

If asked the question “what can you do with a Bachelor’s Degree in History?” history majors will provide many different answers. Recent graduate Josie Rollins’ response to this question was to go to graduate school. A former recipient of the Department of History’s Sleizer Scholarship and the Magna Carta Society Prize, Josie has decided to take what she learned at the UW and pursue an advanced degree. Now at Cambridge University in England, Josie is pursuing first an M.Phil, the British equivalent of an M.A., and then a Ph.D. While at the UW, Josie took as many history classes as she could, but found herself increasingly drawn to medieval history. Her favorite courses at the UW were Professor Charity Urbanski’s Medieval England class and Professor Robin Stacey’s Reacting to the Past. When asked why these classes were her favorites, Josie said “they challenged me to examine my assumptions about medieval history and see how many gaps there are in our knowledge about the period.

Faculty Book Corner

Though best known for aircraft and aerospace technology, Boeing has invested significant time and money in the construction and promotion of its corporate culture. Boeing’s leaders, in keeping with the standard of traditional American social norms, began to promote a workplace culture of a white, heterosexual family model in the 1930s in an attempt to provide a sense of stability for their labor force during a series of enormous political, social, and economic disruptions. For both managers and workers, the construction of a masculine culture solved problems that technological innovation and profit could not. For managers it offered a way to govern employees and check the power of unions. For male employees, it offered a sense of stability that higher wages and the uncertainties of the airline market could not.