Department of History

The study, practice and use of history at Mount Holyoke offers an exciting and challenging contribution to the liberal art's curriculum

As a community of faculty, staff and students, we invite you to learn more about our department and to visit us at our home in Skinner Hall.

History is a critical and analytical method of inquiry into our collective past based on our cumulative experience, informed understanding, and careful judgment. It teaches us to look beyond appearance, to evaluate something with clarity and disinterest, to discover and investigate all the causes of an event and evaluate their relative importance. 

Using evidence from the past, historians investigate the relationship between cause and effect and between agency and responsibility to understand better how things change over time. These general habits of sorting through the past allow us to appreciate the profound differences between ourselves and others and to imagine (and to some degree experience) the world as men and women have in times now lost and in places we shall never see.