CfP: Annual Workshop of BISA Historical Sociology and IR Working Group



Historical Sociology, International Relations, and the Study of History

The BISA Historical Sociology and International Relations (HSIR) working group will hold its annual workshop on December 7, 2018, at Sussex University.

This year’s workshop will examine the role of history as a discipline and set of methods in work on HSIR. Historical sociology and world history are distinct academic fields with a shared concern for large-scale historical processes of social transformation. Historical sociology has focused on providing historically sensitive but also generally applicable accounts of the emergence of capitalist modernity. World history, especially since its rebirth in the late twentieth century, has in turn sought to supply the intellectual grounds for a historical context subtending the integrated and interdependent nature of the modern world. Moreover, both frameworks partly emerged as a reaction to the nationalist and comparative methodologies of their home-disciplines of sociology and comparative history from which they have self-differentiated. Yet, despite the similarity of historical sociology’s and world history’s intellectual genesis and the significant overlap between their basic analytical concerns there has been relatively little dialogue and explicit intellectual exchange between the two fields.

Against this background the advent of ‘global history’ has especially been of interest to HSIR scholars, culminating in important work on ‘Global Historical Sociology’. This workshop would examine the intellectual roots of the mutual neglect between HSIR and world history and global history and the ways in which HSIR can learn from historical study, how to incorporate historiographical methods, and what HSIR might offer to ‘global history’ and ‘world history’.

Some indicative topics are:

  • De-nationalising HSIR
  • Historical Sociology and World History
  • International Relations, Global Historical Sociology
  • Historical Sociology and Eurocentrism
  • International Social History
  • Decolonising World History
  • Role of Cultural and Civilizational Encounters in World/Global History

The working group will cover UK travel costs and one night accommodation of the presenters.

To apply for the workshop, please submit a paper title and abstract to Bryan Mabee ( and Kamran Matin (

The application deadline is October 22, 2018.