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Theory of History

This Research Network (RNW) is dedicated to the Theory of History. It intends to stimulate the interest and knowledge on the theory of history, including historiography. It particularly seeks to provide a platform for intellectual exchange and a context in which (R)MA and PhD students can familiarize themselves with exciting new developments in the fields.

Goals of our Research Network
o to strengthen the field of theory of history at Dutch universities and institutes;
o to raise interest in theory of history among students and younger researchers;
o to stimulate intellectual exchange between senior and junior researchers, e.g. by discussing papers or articles on the theory of history;
o to provide a platform for reflection on the teaching of theory of history courses at Dutch universities;
o to exchange information about symposia and conferences on the theory of history;
o to organize inspiring lectures and workshops within the context of the Huizinga Institute;
o to strengthen the contacts with (inter)national networks, especially with the Dutch study group Philosophy led by Ch. van den Akker, J. Bos and R. Peters, the International Network for Theory of History (INTH) and the International Commission for the History and Theory of Historiography (ICHTH).

We will organize at least two meetings each year in Utrecht. Senior and junior researchers, including master and PhD students will be invited to join discussions in the meetings and / or to present papers. The working language will be Dutch or English, depending on the occasion.



18 October 2024: Meeting RNW Theory of History – Lecture Carlo Ierna (VU Amsterdam): ‘History of modern philosophy can only be understood backwards’

13 December 2024: Meeting RNW Theory of History – Lecture Marijke Huisman (UU): ‘Activism, Engagement & Professionalism in History’


8 March 2024: Meeting RNW Theory of History – Lecture Rik Peters: ‘Learning Histories: A Radical Form of Applied History’

8 December 2023: “Controversial Monuments and the Changing of Mnemonic Regimes” – Speakers: Maria Grever (EUR) and Ann Rigney (UU)

22 September 2023: “Ethische en professionele normen voor historisch onderzoek” – Sprekers: Prof. Henk te Velde (RUL/KNHG) en prof. Antoon de Baets (RUG)

24 March 2023: ‘History After the End of the World’ by Dr Zoltán Boldizsár Simon

14 October 2022: Paper by Berber Bevernage (UGent), 14 October 2022, Utrecht.

22 April 2022 – Kick-off and paper Chiel van den Akker (editor-in-chief of the Journal of the Philosophy of History)

Coordinating team RNW Theory of History
Prof.em.dr. Maria Grever (EUR / NL-Lab KNAW Humanities Cluster)
Prof.dr. Herman Paul (Leiden University)
Dr. Robbert-Jan Adriaansen (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
Dr. Pieter Huistra (Utrecht University)