Our purpose is to facilitate worldwide discussion among world and global historians as well as exchanges with colleagues from other disciplines who historicize the global age we live in. International discussions on research and teaching issues anchor the field in national academic systems and in the international structures of the historical discipline. Such collaboration can also bring about a body knowledge explaining the current worldwide social transformations because it transcends the limited perspective of solely national histories. After all we can draw back on a century long experience of people interacting across space and borders. Humanity has been “constantly shifting about in an endless series of transcontinental migrations“ and „any partitioning of the world is nothing but a fiction“, as Lucien Febvre formulated back in 1949 when he wrote a draft of the UNESCO Scientific and Cultural History of Mankind, the first attempt of an international cooperation among historians interpreting the past in global terms.
The name of the organization expresses:
a) that there is no hierarchy intended among the member organizations: NETWORK
b) that alternative approaches are welcome and that there is no precondition to agree with any given conceptualization of historical aspects of globalization: GLOBAL AND WORLD HISTORY
c) that while the network focuses on historical explanations and narratives it is not an organization for historians only but will accept also members from other disciplines who accept historicization as a basic feature in their approaches: HISTORY
d) that (in order to guarantee a lean management of membership) there is no individual membership, but a chance for relatively small groups of academics to become members: ORGANIZATIONS
World and Global History in CISH
Recent attempts to affiliate world and global historians with the Comité International Sciences Historiques (CISH), the international organization of historians, lead back to the CISH congress at Oslo in 2000. Then Jerry Bentley on behalf of the US-based World History Association (WHA) initiated one of the main sessions (major themes) and discussed with the CISH secretariat the possibility of integrating the field in the international association of the historical profession. The session reflected well the increase of interest in the field of world history since the early 1990s and was welcomed by scholars from various parts of the world. At the time the response from CISH was not positive, mainly for formal reasons. The WHA was seen as an essentially North American based organization while CISH statutes require that affiliates not only allow access to scholars from all over the world but also achieve a certain real spread of membership.
With the founding of the European network (ENIUGH) in 2002 and the Asian Association of World Historians (AAWH) in 2008 the conditions for a successful relaunch of the initiative became much better. The three organizations were able to initiate further mobilization in other parts of the world as well and to create a truly global network, that serves as an umbrella for the existing and future regional as well as thematic units.
On July 2 2008 at a meeting in Dresden (Germany) representatives from the AAWH, ENIUGH and the WHA and world historians from Africa and Latin America founded NOGWHISTO.
Together with the African Network (ANGH/ RAHM), created in spring 2010, and an organizing committee for a Latin-American association a thoroughly institutionalization around the world has been achieved.
With the acceptance of NOGWHISTO as an international affiliate organization of the CISH in 2010 the goal in internationalizing and tying world and global history up with the discipline’s main international representation was reached so that from now on global and world history have a home at the CISH-congresses.