History Major

The History major at NYU Abu Dhabi is designed to rethink and revise conventional features of the discipline. The NYU Abu Dhabi History Program emphasizes world history and global connections and organizes its curriculum around four long-standing zones of human interaction and imagination:

  • the Atlantic World, 
  • the Asia-Pacific World, 
  • the Indian Ocean World, and 
  • the Mediterranean, Black, and Caspian Sea Worlds.
Students in class at NYU Abu Dhabi.

All history courses address topics and questions applicable to contemporary problems and concerns, from a variety of global perspectives, including: the origins of war and peace; the development of capitalism and its alternatives; the making and unmaking of socioeconomic, racial, and gender inequality; processes of environmental change and efforts at conservation and sustainability; changing understandings of the body and approaches to public health and medicine; the dynamism and complexity of cities; the innovation and spatial and temporal travel of novel ideas, designs, and artistic and literary forms; and more.

Students wishing to develop regional expertise with regard to the history of Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, and the Gulf will find ample opportunity to do so in History classes, many of which include experiential learning opportunities in the form of class trips.

History majors develop a foundation of knowledge that is both genuinely globally comparative and regionally grounded. They acquire the theoretical and methodological tools necessary to undertake their own historical research, using primary documents in ways that meet the highest intellectual standards. They learn to find, analyze, and interpret many different kinds of evidence; to organize it into a coherent whole; and to present it clearly in written or oral form. Having mastered historical methods of research and thinking, majors graduate well prepared for advanced study and teaching in history, and for the pursuit of many professions, including policymaking, law, public health, teaching, politics, diplomacy, and business.