Course descriptions

Module 1 - Introduction to Cultural History

Introduction to the past, present and future practices of cultural history

Through a series of lectures, an introduction is given on the history and practice of cultural history. What is culture - how did historians define and research culture through the ages? What is cultural history? The lectures give an overview of the foundations of the disicpline of cultural history, from the 18th century up to now, while paying attention the formation of various 'schools' (from Classic Cultural History, via Historical Anthropology, to New Cultural History), and to the many debates and 'turns' in the discipline. The lectures will be given by a series of specialists from different disciplines, in order to provide insight in the many disciplines that converge within cultural history. The lectures will also give room for class discussion about canonical cultural historical texts. The course ends with an exam.

  • Text book: P. Burke, What is Cultural History? (Cambridge 2008) plus a selection of classical cultural historical texts
  • Coordinators: prof. dr. Inger Leemans & dr. E. Jorink (Huygens Institute/ING)
  • Period 1 and 2
  • 9 ects
  • Teachers: I. Leemans, P. van den Akker, H. de Waardt, H. Roodenburg, K. Steenbergh, F. Schmidt, J. Koppenol, E. Jorink.

Module 2: Analyzing Sources

In Analyzing Sources, students are introduced to the huge variety of sources employed in cultural historical research, including the research history of such sources (what kind of research can be conducted by means of these sources?) and the problems of analysis connected to them. Sources to be treated: ego documents, oral sources, pamphlets, sermons, bibles, engravings, satires, objects, architecture, legal archival documents, catalogues, maps, manuscripts, portraits, journals, etc.

  • Coordinators: prof. dr. Inger Leemans & dr. E. Jorink (Huygens Institute/ING)
  • Period 1 and 2
  • 9 ects
  • Teachers: N. Moser, A. Kets-Vree, A. den Hollander, F. van Lieburg, H. de Waardt, H. Roodenburg, K. Steenbergh, F. Schmidt, T. van Strien, I. Leemans, I. Vermeulen, E. Jorink

Module 3: Digital Humanities

Through a series of guest lectures and excursions, students get acquainted with digital humanities projects: with the software used, the analytic problems, the (im)possibilities of digital and computational humanities and also with the organizations and research groups conducting these projects (among others Huygens Instituut, Meertens Instituut, VU Bibliotheek, Prentenkabinet Amsterdam, DBNL, Instituut voor Nederlandse Geschiedenis, Teylers Museum). In this way, the students can also find out about possible internships. During the series, students set up a lab to experiment with one of the introduced forms of digital analysis. Some of the projects to be treated: Database of Gestures, Dutch Songs Online, Digitizing scientific collections, Ecartico (Economic and Artistic Competition in the Amsterdam Market) Circulation of Knowledge and Learned Practices in the 17th-Century, ICT in Edition Science, Biography Portal, Reading Experience Database (RED), historical atlas.

  • Coordinators: prof. dr. Inger Leemans & dr. E. Jorink (Huygens Institute/ING)
  • Period: 1
  • ECTS: 6
  • Teachers: I. Vermeulen, N. Moser, A. Kets-Vree, A. den Hollander, H. Roodenburg, guest lecturers

Module 4: The history of emotions

The history of emotions is one of the most challenging and dynamic research field in contemporary cultural history. In this research field, insights from diverging disciplines are combined: both historical, philosophical and medical disciplines now concern themselves with the problem of what part should be ascribed to emotions and emotive behavior in political, social and cultural processes. This is a research class, which will be concluded with a paper. Students can research various topics, such as early modern  medical and philosophical emotionology, emotions on stage, weeping in the pulpit, pathos in political speeches, sentimental novels or empathy as revolutionary concept.

  • Coordinator: prof. dr. Inger Leemans
  • Period: 2 & 3
  • ECTS: 6
  • Teachers: I. Leemans, H. Roodenburg, K. Steenbergh, J. Koppenol
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