Urban Studies

Historians have always studied cities, and from the early modern period forward the transition to urban society has been one of the metanarratives of modernity. At the University of Chicago historians engage cities around the world from multiple perspectives: themes recently examined by our faculty and students include migration, social and cultural geographies, urban planning, ports and commerce, city politics, social movements, urban literature, material culture, cultural production, the development of urban economies, the evolution of social networks, urban slavery, race and ethnicity, public health, policing, informality, corruption, and violence. Students in our program should expect to stretch their urban perspective beyond narrow geographies and time periods and to take advantage of the rich opportunities for interdisciplinary work across a university where urban studies have long been vital.