Welcome to the Department!  

I am pleased to welcome you to the USC History Department and our website.  We are an ambitious department at an ambitious research university, and it is a pleasure to offer this brief guide to our work and our community.  Our faculty is a diverse group of talented scholars whose research and teaching explores countless facets of human history over millennia.  Our strengths as a faculty speak especially to European, Asian, American, and Latin American history, and our periods of study range from ancient to medieval history, and the early modern to the modern eras.  These fields constitute the major features of our graduate training as well; the department offers only the Ph.D degree, and we recruit and train students from all over the world.  Through a number of research and teaching institutes, we have established on-going and important collaborations with institutions such as The Huntington Library.  Our department offers a wide array of undergraduate courses ranging from small, in-depth seminars to large lecture courses and surveys. Our Honors program immerses history majors in primary research, and each year our Honors graduates produce excellent essays on the focus of their research.

Please consult the website’s faculty and graduate student pages for more information about our programs of study at undergraduate and graduate levels and for further introduction to our community of scholars.  Please feel welcome to contact me if you have questions about the department. You may make an appointment, or feel free to come by the department if you would like to meet in person.

William Deverell, Chair
History Department

"How Woody Guthrie was radicalized by his time in LA -- when he wasn't drawing cartoons"

Woody Guthrie is best known for his work as a Dust Bowl balladeer and protest singer.  But like many Oklahomans of the time, the singer and songwriter felt the pull of the West in the 1930's.

To read the entire article in the Los Angeles Times' about 'Woody Guthrie L.A. 1937-1941" co-authored by Darryl Holter and our chair, William Deverell, please click here.

"Scholars gain insight from the geographical movement of artifacts."

USC Dornsife historian co-edits a special issue of the academic journal Art History exploring ‘Objects in Motion in the Early Modern World’

To read the entire USC News article about Daniela Bleichmar's special issue of the scholarly journal Art History, click here.

"Gaming the Past"

Brett Sheehan of history leads first-year USC students throught 200 years of Chinese economic and social history with a new course that incorporates an online role-playing game. 

To read the entire article and watch an excellent video about Brett Sheehan's class featured on USC Dornsife News, please click here.



The Department Welcomes Peter Sachs Collopy!

Peter Sachs Collopy is a historian of American science, technology, and media who received his Ph.D. in History and Sociology of Science from the University of Pennsylvania. His current book project concerns how artists, scientists, and political activists used the new technology of videotape in the 1960s and 1970s, interpreting it as both a political weapon and a medium of collective human consciousness.

Please click here to learn about our newest Mellon Postdoc!

"American Identity at Sea"

A new book by Nathan Perl-Rosenthal of history and spatial sciences explores how the efforts of American sailors to establish their nationality created the first racially inclusive model of United States citizenship.

To read the entire article on USC Dornsife News about Nathan's new book, please click here.

"American Identity at Sea"

Welcome Adam Goodman!

The Department Welcomes Adam Goodman!

Adam Goodman is a scholar of migration interested in the interconnected histories of people throughout the Americas.  He received his Ph.D. in History from the University of Pennsylvania. Goodman's current book project explores the rise of the deportation regime and the expulsion of Mexicans from the United States since the 1940s.

Please click here to read more about our newest Provost's Postdoc!

"Between Coercion and Resistance"

Doctoral student Sari Siegel has been awarded a leading fellowship for her pioneering research into the largely unexplored history of Jewish prisoner-physicians in Nazi camps during World War II. Sari earned a prestigious 2015-16 Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies Fellowship to further her ground-breaking studies of Jewish prisoner-physicians in Nazi Germany.

To read the entire article about our PhD student Sari Siegel featured on USC Dornsife News, please click here.

Congratulation Sari!

"Ghost Stories"

Philip J. Ethington of history and political science stirs up more than spirits with his ambitious multimedia history Ghost Metropolis — he seeks to raise and answer complex questions about how Los Angeles came to be.

To read the entire article featured on USC Dornsife News, please click here.

"California is Not About to Wither Away" 

The West has survived droughts before. With some imagination, it can do so again.  The talk these days about western water—or lack thereof—tends to line up on one of two sides of the discussion, on this or that side of the river, as it were.

To read the entire article by William Deverell featured in "Politico Magazine", click here.


USC Again Amongst Top Producers of Fulbright Fellows

The Department of History is proud to have three students with a history major or minor to receive this prestigious honor!  They are Fan Fan, Bijou Nguyen, and Vivian Yan!

To read the full article higlighting their wonderful achievments on USC News, please click here. 

Winners of the Second-Annual USC Libraries Research Award

The Department of History is proud to have two majors, Jack Merritt and Leslie Chang to win the USC Libraries Research Award! 

Please click here to read the full article featured on the USC Libraries' homepage. 

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Who We Are

One of the largest departments in the Humanities Division of USC's Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences, the Department of History is a dynamic community of undergraduates, graduates, post-doctoral scholars, and faculty, with a wide variety of interests and specializations, united by our shared passion for understanding all facets of the human past.

What We Do

The faculty in the Department of History conducts research spanning the entire course of human history across every part of the globe.  Our scholars produce pathbreaking research on the cultures of the past, contribute to innovative academic collaborations, and are contributing members to the wider discipline of history.  We take this passion for new research and engagement into the classroom in a series of award-winning undergraduate programs.  Our department also trains the next generation of historical scholars in our Ph.D program.  As a teaching and research department, we also contribute to the growth of new scholarship by hosting several post-doctoral fellows every year.  As a part of our dedication to wider university and public engagement, the Department of History also hosts lectures and events for scholars and the public throughout the academic year. 

Study History!

  • Department of History
  • 3502 Trousdale Parkway
  • Social Sciences Building (SOS) 153
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • 90089-0034