Browse Methods
Investigate world history approaches to analyzing different kinds of primary sources.
Gold sculpture of a bird with it's head turned backwards

Primer: Technology

Technology, broadly defined, denotes not only transformative innovations but the whole spectrum of tools, skills and artifacts with which human societies construct their worlds. The impact of technology is symbolic and social as well as material: artifacts have meaning; ways of making and doing embody beliefs and values, identities and relationships.

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Map of the earth showing areas where lights can be seen from space at night

Primer: The History of Globalization

Globalization, defined here as the integration of an interdependent economy that simultaneously enhances cultural exchanges relying on the mobility of people, animals, plants, pathogens, objects, and ideas, is a useful concept for exploring connections across space and time.

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Posada Broadsheet

Analyzing Newspapers

A newspaper is a publication intended for a broad audience that appears regularly, often daily, and claims to contain factual accounts of recent events. Usually newspapers are published with the intention of making a profit. Frequently, their factual content is accompanied by advertisements and nonfactual material intended as entertainment.

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Thumbnail of Mau Mau scouts

Primer: Rewriting of Sub-Saharan African History

The history of Africa, and especially Sub-Saharan Africa, has often been presented from a Eurocentric point of view. This essay by scholar Mariana Gino traces the efforts by Black intellectuals around the globe to re-center Africans in the narrative of African history — an important primer for teachers of world history.

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Analyzing Music

Everywhere you go, there it is.

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Map of the world with colors indicating the level of judicial independence in each state's constitution.

Primer: Comparative History

Comparison is used in many different ways in world history, both implicitly and explicitly.

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Geologic clock with events and time periods noting the formation of earth and development of life.

Primer: Big History

Big History is an approach to world history that takes as its subject the story of the whole of the Universe, from its creation, 13.8 billion years ago, in the Big Bang. It describes the creation of stars, the forging of new types of matter in dying stars, the formation of the first planets and moons, and the emergence of life on at least one planet, the Earth.

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image of gender roles being portrayed

Primer: Gender in World History

Gender history developed in the 1980s out of women’s history, when historians familiar with studying women increasingly began to discuss the ways in which systems of sexual differentiation affected both women and men.

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Stellar diagram features a drawing of a ship surrounded by Chinese characters

Primer: Oceans

Oceans, which cover approximately 70 percent of the earth’s surface, have played a crucial role in shaping human history. Using oceans and seas as a unit for analysis is, however, a relatively new framework for historical analysis. The traditional units of historical analysis include civilizations, continents and especially nation-states.

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Close-up image of an early modern Islami Carpet

Primer: Transcultural History

Broadly, transcultural histories include those historical contexts and processes brought about by circulation of people, objects, and knowledge through travel, trade, migration, or globalization.

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