Special Issue "History from Scratch – Voices across the Planet"

A special issue of Histories (ISSN 2409-9252).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Prof. emer Jon Mathieu
Guest Editor
Department of History, University of Lucerne, Lucerne 6002, Switzerland
Interests: Mountain History; Family and Kinship History; Agrarian History

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,


We would like to invite you to contribute to the Special Issue “History from Scratch – Voices Across the Planet“, published as one of the first issues of the newly launched open access journal Histories, published by MDPI (https://www.mdpi.com/journal/histories).



‘Rethinking’ was a great intellectual trend of the 1990s: History, and the humanities and social sciences in general, were expected to be self-reflective and distrustful of conventions, continually breaking new ground. In our field, in 1997, this debate resulted in the launching of the journal “Rethinking History”. The journal was assigned to a small group of historians in the United Kingdom and the United States. Ever since they have made an effort to produce a conventional (subscription) journal with non-conventional (postmodern) objectives.

The starting point is rather different with Histories, launched in 2020 by MDPI. The journal was born digital and open access, as our age has certainly become more global (as tragically shown by the coronavirus pandemic). A true effort can be made to go beyond the UK–US research communities. This Special Issue will collect voices from all continents except the Antarctic. In the meantime, postmodernity has dissolved and we are back to modernity (or heading towards post-post-modernity, as some say). There is no imperative of ‘rethinking’ history at every corner and end. Instead, we can—in this particular occasion with the launch of a journal—invent it from scratch, and imagine the field as we would wish it to be, or precisely not wish it to be. Therefore, as a contributor, you are invited to choose aspects and points of the historical field and profession that catch your attention and that you would highlight for a larger audience.


Possible aspects and points

  • Purpose of doing history: response to (particular) social, environmental or political concerns, creating historical consciousness for a group or in general, personal curiosity, or self-affirmation, etc.
  • Role of (particular) models, theories, philosophies, ideologies, or avant-garde provocations for historical practice; the importance of historical methods (source criticism, discourse analysis, data mining, etc.).
  • Role of academic conventions and restrictions of the historical field, usefulness or uselessness of interdisciplinary or transdisciplinary approaches.
  • Particular subjects, social groups, chronological periods, or geographical areas historically under-researched or over-researched.
  • Role of (various forms of) writing or presenting history: in journals, social media and internet platforms, museums, with reenactments, films and videos, video games, etc.
  • Professional situation and career prospects of historians, the position of the historical discipline in universities, academia, and/or the public sphere.
  • Particular wishes for the development of the new open access journal Histories.
  • Combination of mentioned points or other aspects not mentioned.

Prof. emer Jon Mathieu

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Histories is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). For published papers in this Special Issue, the APC will be fully subsidized by MDPI. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.



  • History
  • Historical methods
  • Historical consciousness
  • Social concerns
  • Environmental concerns
  • Political concerns
  • Chronological periods

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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