National University of “Kyiv-Mohyla academy”

The Department of History

Center for Polish and European Studies

Student Scholarly Society for humanities “Potluck”

Transformational processes that began in historiography at the beginning of the XX century under the influence of sociology, laid the foundations for a radical shift of emphasis in the understanding of the past. Departing from the history "from above" with its interest in "great" people in "great" states, scholars for the first time drew their attention to the "silent" majority. Methodological revolution, associated with the names of Jakob Burkhardt, Johan Huizinga, Lucien Febure and Marc Bloch, suggested looking at history through the optics, which put society at the very heart of the past. This turn guided the development of historical studies in a new stream, which soon became a methodological fairway and generated many classical studies.

Until the 1970s within the frameworks of social history many "dead-end" approaches were replaced with "more progressive" under the squalls of destructing criticism. On the one hand, this progress was associated with methodological shifts within the School of Annals, whose approaches were repeatedly criticized by each successive generation. On the other hand, (re)conceptualization of the research apparatus of historians took place in the context of the "(re)turn to the person", actualized by social and later by cultural anthropology of Claude Levy-Strauss and Clifford Geertz. Even though in the 1990s the interest towards to the history of ideas and identities increased steadily, scholarly interest towards to social history did not disappear and even overgrew with new research areas.

The Department of History, Center for Polish and European studies of Jerzy Wladyslaw Giedroyc and Student scholarly society of humanities “Potluck” are glad to invite students, postgraduates and postdocs to participate in the International Scholarly Conference for Young Researchers "Exploring the Past: New Social History at the Crossroads of Methodological Trends", which will take place on March 22-23, 2018 at the National University of "Kyiv-Mohyla academy". This conference is the next from the series of annual international seminars "Exploring the Past..." launched this year and positioning itself as an academic forum for discussion on the methodology of historical research. The purpose of the conference is to create an intellectual environment in which the younger generation of professionals will be able to discuss different approaches to studying social history and their use in the study of various source material.

Papers should engage with one or more of the following themes (the topic section of the sections will be further specified):

  • “Ad fontes”: source base for the study of social history;
  • Historical demography: distinct numbers or social dynamics?
  • Microhistory: whether the mosaic of the "past" is composed of small stories?
  • Historical Anthropology, or What is the Place of Human in the "theater" of history;
  • Historical Urbanism:What cities can tell and what they are silent about?
  • Gender Studies;
  • Church history and anthropology of religion;
  • History of education and history of erudition;
  • Alltagsgeschichte (The History of everyday life);
  • Oral History: (biased) witness of the past;

Within the frameworks of the conference, the participants will be able to attend public lectures by famous Ukrainian historians, participate in workshops with professors of the NaUKMA History Department, as well as attend public discussions on the general issues of the conference.

For pre-registration (required), please fill in the electronic form . Abstracts (up to 500 words – please, no more !!!), which should outline the issues of your research, sources and historiography (briefly) and preliminary conclusions (required), please send to by December 1, 2017 inclusive. The selection of participants is held on a competitive basis. Confirmation of participation will be sent by January 15, 2018. For more information about the conference and participants you can find on the official site of the Department of History of and also on our Facebook page .

Working languages: Ukrainian, English, Polish.

The organizers are looking for funds to provide accommodation and meals for conference participants.

Contact Info:

Stepan Blinder

MA student of the Department of History

Contact E-mail: