Transnational History

Transnational approaches to historical research

Historians in the United States and in Europe have begun to question the national focus of historical research. They have broadened the analytical frame of their research beyond national borders and look for more complex explanations of historical processes. The core assumption of transnational history is that the history of a nation “must be studied in a framework larger than itself” (Thomas Bender). This means that in order to fully understand the history of the United States, for example, one has to look beyond its land borders, across the Atlantic, and into the Pacific World.

Some approaches to the transnationalization of history focus on so-called transmigrants and on specific transnational communities, which exist outside the framework of nation states altogether. Transatlantic Perspectives contributes to efforts in transnational history by looking at the exchanges facilitated by transmigrants and the impact they had on historical developments in Europe and the United States.

This topic lists references and documents that we draw upon in this context.