2020-2021 Catalog 
    Jul 21, 2024  
2020-2021 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Historical Studies

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Professors K. Du Mez (history), C. Hanson (art history), D. Howard (history), W. Katerberg (history), K. Maag (history), D. Noe (classics), F. van Liere (history), K. van Liere (history; chair), W. Van Vugt (history)
Associate Professor E. Washington (history)
Assistant Professor: D. Rohl (William Spoelhof Teacher-Scholar in Residence; history)

The Department of Historical Studies offers a variety of majors and minors which prepare students for a wide range of pursuits. Graduates pursue careers in teaching, public service, graduate or professional school (e.g., law and medicine), media, ministry, museums, and business. Our courses offer rigorous training in writing, research, critical thinking, and public speaking, and promote engagement with a broad range of cultures and eras.

Students in Historical Studies programs have opportunities for practical learning, including a hands-on Digital Humanities lab course and internships in museums and cultural organizations.

History and Classics can readily be combined with a minor or second major, or with a pre-professional or professional track such as pre-law, pre-medicine, public health, or business.

Historical Studies also houses the interdisciplinary minors of African and African Diaspora Studies , Archaeology , and Medieval Studies .


We study the past to understand humanity’s place in the world, to remember those who came before us, and to help us live more wisely in our own time. Get your hands dirty leafing through manuscripts, handling treasures unearthed from ancient cities, and studying abroad, exploring the great sites of London or Budapest. We offer a robust History major that encourages students to select courses according to their interests while also ensuring they experience both depth and breadth of content.

Students pursuing certification for Secondary Education must earn either a double major in History and Social Studies, or a major in one of these two disciplines with a minor in a different discipline.


Homer, Sappho, Plato, Cicero, St. Augustine—these and many other men and women of the ancient world wrote works of enduring interest, with a long and complicated impact on Western society and world history. Greco-Roman antiquity is also the context in which Christianity was born and began to spread.

The department of Historical Studies offers a major in Classical Studies, which combines courses in the history, culture, and languages of ancient Graeco-Roman civilization. Students can also minor in Classical studies, ancient Greek, and Latin.

Art History

An art object—whether a painted altarpiece, a bronze sculpture, a pastel portrait, or a photograph of a performance piece—provides a material engagement with the past, serving in some sense as a ‘time machine’, not transporting us to the past but bringing into the present a physical trace of past ideals and aspirations, while also pushing us to ask important questions about our own values.

The Department of Historical Studies offers an array of Art History courses, including survey courses that range from paleolithic cave paintings to the contemporary art scene, along with more focused offerings from the seventeenth century to the present.


    MajorMinorGroup Major


      Art HistoryClassicsGreekHistory: Introductory Courses
      History: Intermediate Courses - World Regions
      History: Intermediate Courses - North AmericaHistory: Intermediate Courses - EuropeHistory: Intermediate Courses - Global HistoriesHistory: Intermediate Courses - Theory and Practice of HistoryHistory: Advanced Courses - World Regions

      Enrollment in all 300-level courses presupposes two courses in history or permission of the instructor.

      History: Advanced Courses - North AmericaHistory: Advanced Courses - EuropeHistory: Advanced Courses - Global HistoriesHistory: Advanced Courses - Theory and Practice of HistoryInterdisciplinary

      This section includes not only courses that are interdisciplinary (IDIS), but others also that do not fit logically into any single department or which are in disciplines not otherwise offered at Calvin.


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