Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Masterclass with Quentin Skinner:

Global intellectual history? A contextualist perspective

In recent years intellectual history has re-established itself as a distinct and vital field of scholarship which focusses on the social and cultural contexts of thought as well as to language, rhetoric, and meaning. This is to no small extent thanks to Quentin Skinner, who has propagated the so-called ‘contextualist method’ as the gold standard of intellectual history. At the same time, however, contextualism has also been contested from various perspectives. In particular, contextualism has been criticised by scholars embracing ‘big’ or even ‘global’ intellectual history.

Postgraduate students participating in the Masterclass will have the unique opportunity to discuss these issues with Quentin Skinner himself. The actual practice of contextualism and the main conceptual challenges to its value as a tool for the practice of intellectual history will be discussed, as well as the desirability and feasibility of writing ‘big’ or ‘global’ intellectual history.

Date & time: 25 May 2017, 14.00 hrs. – 17.00 hrs.
Location: Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Registration: open for postgraduate students in history or a related field.
Students participating in the Masterclass will also come together on Friday 19 May, 16.00 hrs. at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam to discuss Skinner’s work on historical method.

Please contact Thijs Bogers in order to register:

This event is organised together with the Jonge Historici and is co-funded by the Amsterdam Centre for Globalisation Studies.