Pre-university History reading list Watch

patronus7
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Does anyone studying History at university (of any time-bracket), or planning to, have any idea on books that I could read in preparation for the course?
Perhaps:
- Something you wish you'd read
- An introduction to the course
- A book that sparked your passion for it
- A book that is necessary for the study of history

Many thanks!
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ageshallnot
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(Original post by patronus7)
Does anyone studying History at university (of any time-bracket), or planning to, have any idea on books that I could read in preparation for the course?
Perhaps:
- Something you wish you'd read
- An introduction to the course
- A book that sparked your passion for it
- A book that is necessary for the study of history

Many thanks!
Studying History by Black and Macraild

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WokSz
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(Original post by ageshallnot)
Studying History by Black and Macraild

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Fantastic suggestion!
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(Original post by WokSz)
Fantastic suggestion!
That book confirmed that studying history was the best thing ever to do.
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holly_1994
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Almost all History courses have an introductory module about the meaning of history. At my university (QMUL) we have 'History in Practice', and you can Amazon books with that title. I didn't read anything for that course other than the weekly material, so I wouldn't stress yourself about preparatory reading for any form of introductory module.If you did want to read for it, there is no specific book that you need, really, and any 'introduction to history' book would do. Don't worry about reading too much before you begin university, but it might relieve a bit of stress to read a few texts before you start.

I'll list below any books that I studied last year (my first year) and their topic area, based on what I can remember. I might miss a few out, but it should give you some idea.

Medieval/Renaissance:
Peter Abelard: 'Sic et Non' and 'Historia Calamitatum'
Otto of Freising: 'The Deeds of Frederick Barbarossa'
J. Richards: 'Sex, Dissidence and Damnation. Minority Groups in the Middle Ages'
G. Brucker: 'Establishment of a Magistracy to Extirpate Sodomy' in 'The Society of Renaissance Italy. A Documentary Study'
James G. Clark: 'The Religious Orders in Pre-Reformation England'

Early-Modern:
Merry E. Weisner-Hanks: 'Early-Modern Europe,1450-1789'
Beat Kumin: 'The European World, 1500-1800'
Both of the above are amazing. If you were only to buy just one of these, you would sail through an early-modern module.
Euan Cameron: 'The European Reformation'
L. Roper: 'Oedipus and the Devil: Witchcraft, Sexuality and Religion in Early-Modern Europe'
Henrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger's 'Malleus Maleficarum' of 1487.

You might also want to look at John Merriman's lectures on YouTube, as they are pretty good for most things early-modern.

Modern (mainly British)
Eric J. Evans: 'The Shaping of Modern Britain'
Martin Pugh: 'State and Society'
Malcolm Chase: 'Chartism, A New History'
Charles Darwin: 'On the Origin of Species' (for biopolitics and social changes in 19th century)

Intellectual History
Machiavelli: 'The Prince' and 'Discourses'
Wollstonecraft: 'A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (not women as people seem to think)'
Rousseau: 'Emile'
Hobbes: 'De Cive'
More: 'Utopia'

Global History
Jessica Coope: 'Religious and Cultural Conversion to Islam in Ninth-Century Ummayad Cordoba'
Ross E. Dunn: 'The Adventures of Ibn Battuta'
Greg Dening: 'Mr Bligh's Bad Language: Passion, Power, and Theatre on the Bounty'
Daniel K. Richter: 'Facing East from Indian Country: A Native History of Early America'
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WokSz
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(Original post by holly_1994)
Almost all History courses have an introductory module about the meaning of history. At my university (QMUL) we have 'History in Practice', and you can Amazon books with that title. I didn't read anything for that course other than the weekly material, so I wouldn't stress yourself about preparatory reading for any form of introductory module.If you did want to read for it, there is no specific book that you need, really, and any 'introduction to history' book would do. Don't worry about reading too much before you begin university, but it might relieve a bit of stress to read a few texts before you start.

I'll list below any books that I studied last year (my first year) and their topic area, based on what I can remember. I might miss a few out, but it should give you some idea.

Medieval/Renaissance:
Peter Abelard: 'Sic et Non' and 'Historia Calamitatum'
Otto of Freising: 'The Deeds of Frederick Barbarossa'
J. Richards: 'Sex, Dissidence and Damnation. Minority Groups in the Middle Ages'
G. Brucker: 'Establishment of a Magistracy to Extirpate Sodomy' in 'The Society of Renaissance Italy. A Documentary Study'
James G. Clark: 'The Religious Orders in Pre-Reformation England'

Early-Modern:
Merry E. Weisner-Hanks: 'Early-Modern Europe,1450-1789'
Beat Kumin: 'The European World, 1500-1800'
Both of the above are amazing. If you were only to buy just one of these, you would sail through an early-modern module.
Euan Cameron: 'The European Reformation'
L. Roper: 'Oedipus and the Devil: Witchcraft, Sexuality and Religion in Early-Modern Europe'
Henrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger's 'Malleus Maleficarum' of 1487.

You might also want to look at John Merriman's lectures on YouTube, as they are pretty good for most things early-modern.

Modern (mainly British)
Eric J. Evans: 'The Shaping of Modern Britain'
Martin Pugh: 'State and Society'
Malcolm Chase: 'Chartism, A New History'
Charles Darwin: 'On the Origin of Species' (for biopolitics and social changes in 19th century)

Intellectual History
Machiavelli: 'The Prince' and 'Discourses'
Wollstonecraft: 'A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (not women as people seem to think)'
Rousseau: 'Emile'
Hobbes: 'De Cive'
Moore: 'Utopia'

Global History
Jessica Coope: 'Religious and Cultural Conversion to Islam in Ninth-Century Ummayad Cordoba'
Ross E. Dunn: 'The Adventures of Ibn Battuta'
Greg Dening: 'Mr Bligh's Bad Language: Passion, Power, and Theatre on the Bounty'
Daniel K. Richter: 'Facing East from Indian Country: A Native History of Early America'
Fantastic list!
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Since I hope to specialise in Irish history, I read a lot of Irish history non fiction, but I have just branched out to read about the Dowager Empress Cixi of China.
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holly_1994
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(Original post by WokSz)
Fantastic list!
Enough to give a solid grounding in each time period
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colourtheory
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(Original post by patronus7)
Does anyone studying History at university (of any time-bracket), or planning to, have any idea on books that I could read in preparation for the course?
Perhaps:
- Something you wish you'd read
- An introduction to the course
- A book that sparked your passion for it
- A book that is necessary for the study of history

Many thanks!
Perhaps challenge yourself by looking at an original work of history, instead of reading a historiographical summary. Augustine's City of God vs E. H. Carr's What is History? Such reading of primary material really impresses admissions tutors.

At Oxford we cover the following as part of the historiography module:
1 - Augustine's City of God
2 - Machiavelli's Discourses and The Prince
3 - Gibbon's Decline and Fall of Rome
4 - Weber's Protestant Ethic and Science as a Vocation.

You could also read Tacitus, Herodotus, and Ranke.
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