Bethel University Department of History

Bethel University Department of History Offering undergraduate degrees in History, Social Studies Education, and Digital Humanities as part of a Christian liberal arts college.

The results of our best historical film tournament are in!
04/17/2020
And the Best Historical Movie Is…

The results of our best historical film tournament are in!

Congratulations to 12 Years a Slave, winner of our tournament to determine the best historical film! It’s just one more award for a film with a shelf full of them, including the Oscar, Golden…

Our newest podcast series is just one example of how our faculty are using history to help students and others understan...
04/17/2020
Pandemics and History

Our newest podcast series is just one example of how our faculty are using history to help students and others understand and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Check out the newest online project from our faculty! Hosted by Prof. Chris Gehrz, Pandemics and the Liberal Arts is a limited-run podcast series exploring the ways that academic disciplines in the…

Dear alumni and friends of the Bethel History Department: You already do much to support the work we do in and out of th...
04/16/2020
ROAR Day 2020

Dear alumni and friends of the Bethel History Department: You already do much to support the work we do in and out of the classroom, but if you can make a donation today, we'd appreciate it. Thank you!

Today is Bethel ROAR Day 2020! Join me in supporting Bethel students!

Another glimpse inside our Intro to History course... As students moved from a unit on historical evidence to one on his...
04/15/2020
Jill Lepore on History

Another glimpse inside our Intro to History course... As students moved from a unit on historical evidence to one on historical writing, Prof. Gehrz shared some wise words from of his favorite historians.

This week in Intro to History, we’re talking about history as a form of literature. Wanting to point students to some of my favorite writing historians, I started with Jill Lepore, the Harvar…

Are you a history buff with some extra time on your hands? You can help archivists digitize everything from sci-fi fanzi...
04/15/2020
Even More Ways to Help Librarians and Archivists From Home

Are you a history buff with some extra time on your hands? You can help archivists digitize everything from sci-fi fanzines to New England whaling logs!

As long as we're all cooped-up, here are six digital projects that could use your curiosity.

Check out some of the amazing work our Intro to Digital Humanities students have done this semester, using a 3D modeling...
04/15/2020
Modeling the Medieval Past with Sketchup

Check out some of the amazing work our Intro to Digital Humanities students have done this semester, using a 3D modeling tool to bring medieval structures like the York Minster to digital life.

Prof. Goldberg’s Intro to Digital Humanities students have been hard at work over the past few weeks creating digital 3D models of medieval cathedrals, basilicas, and castles. After spending …

As we continue to live through the COVID-19 pandemic, Prof. Gehrz looked to another chapter in the modern history of dis...
04/14/2020
Polio, Christians, and the Importance of Vaccination

As we continue to live through the COVID-19 pandemic, Prof. Gehrz looked to another chapter in the modern history of disease and medicine: how Christians responded to polio, and the vaccine that has virtually eradicated it.

Don't forget to cast your vote for the best historical film! Polls are open through the end of the day tomorrow (W 4/15)...
04/14/2020
What’s the Best Historical Film?

Don't forget to cast your vote for the best historical film! Polls are open through the end of the day tomorrow (W 4/15).

Our department’s gateway course, HIS290 Intro to History, is meant to introduce students to the academic discipline of history: how historians think about the past, ask questions of it, condu…

Tonight’s Fall 2020 course preview: Prof. Gehrz will use history, psychology, literature, economics, ethics, and other d...
04/13/2020
Course Previews: The Fog of War

Tonight’s Fall 2020 course preview: Prof. Gehrz will use history, psychology, literature, economics, ethics, and other disciplines to help students see through the “fog of war.”

Today’s Fall 2020 preview is a bit different: what’s below isn’t a History course, but Prof. Gehrz’s new section of an interdisciplinary gen ed course called Inquiry Seminar…

04/10/2020
Bethel University Alumni

Prof. Gehrz on why moving classes online isn't what any of us signed up for, but we're still trying to do what Bethel does best: make whole and holy persons by challenging and supporting our students as we seek truth through the liberal arts.

It's #FacultyFriday! Take a listen to how Professor of History Chris Gehrz is taking this time to be innovative in the classroom. He's even using his sports podcast, The 252, as a component of his course History and Politics of Sports.

🔊: podbean.com/eu/pb-h5gu5-d73b8a

Students, alumni, and friends: you're welcome to vote and comment in a little tournament Dr. Gehrz has been running with...
04/10/2020
What’s the Best Historical Film?

Students, alumni, and friends: you're welcome to vote and comment in a little tournament Dr. Gehrz has been running with our Intro to History class.

Our department’s gateway course, HIS290 Intro to History, is meant to introduce students to the academic discipline of history: how historians think about the past, ask questions of it, condu…

04/08/2020
Bethel Today - Chris Gehrz

Today's guest on the Bethel Today video series was our own Prof. Chris Gehrz.

This video is about Bethel Today - Chris Gehrz

One new course to preview for Fall 2020: Dr. Kooistra's class on U.S. Business History!
04/07/2020
Course Previews: U.S. Business History

One new course to preview for Fall 2020: Dr. Kooistra's class on U.S. Business History!

Our next Fall 2020 course preview features a brand new class from Dr. Kooistra, one that’s meant both to give our department’s students a different perspective on American history and t…

This week on Bookish, Prof. Kooistra and friends discuss one of the most famous documents from 19th century American his...
04/07/2020
Bookish @ Bethel - Episode 26: Alexis de Tocquevill’s Democracy in America

This week on Bookish, Prof. Kooistra and friends discuss one of the most famous documents from 19th century American history.

In this week's episode of Bookish @ Bethel, Philosophy Professor Carrie Peffley and History Professor AnneMarie Kooistra are joined by Bethel Literature Professor Marion Larson to discuss Alexis de Tocqueville’s Democracy in America,...

Next up in our series of Fall 2020 course previews: HIS/POS305G The Cold War.
04/06/2020
Course Previews: The Cold War

Next up in our series of Fall 2020 course previews: HIS/POS305G The Cold War.

Today we continue our new series of Fall 2020 course previews with the first class that Prof. Gehrz added to our curriculum when he started at Bethel… HIS/POS305G The Cold WarDays/Times: …

From the pages of history.  Harriet Jacobs lived in a cramped attic crawl space for 7 years in her effort to free hersel...
04/03/2020
"Coming Up For Air": A Fugitive Slave's Own Words | Scholastic

From the pages of history. Harriet Jacobs lived in a cramped attic crawl space for 7 years in her effort to free herself and her children from slavery. If you want to read her entire slave narrative, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, it is available for free at www.gutenberg.org.

For seven years, Harriet Jacobs hid out in an attic to escape slavery. Read an excerpt from her powerful autobiography, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl.

Students are only a couple weeks away from registering for Fall 2020 courses at Bethel University. So we're going to spe...
04/02/2020
Course Previews: Modern Middle East

Students are only a couple weeks away from registering for Fall 2020 courses at Bethel University. So we're going to spend some time before Easter previewing some of our fall courses, starting with one from Prof. Poppinga.

It’s hard to think too far ahead when we’re all still trying to figure out how to finish the spring semester online, but now that we’re into April it is time for our students to s…

03/31/2020
Bethel Today Ep 5 - Dr. Andy Bramsen

Our neighbor and colleague Andy Bramsen is featured in this new series from the Bethel University Office of Christian Formation and Church Relations

This video is about Bethel Today Ep 5 - Dr. Andy Bramsen

Looking for things to do with home-bound children who are interested in history? Prof. Gehrz curated some suggestions fo...
03/28/2020
Virtual Field Trips for Your Kids

Looking for things to do with home-bound children who are interested in history? Prof. Gehrz curated some suggestions for "virtual field trips" to historical museums and sites around the world.

Like the rest of Bethel, we’ll be moving our classes online for the rest of the semester. Here’s what one of our profs h...
03/20/2020
How I’m Planning to Teach Online (part 1)

Like the rest of Bethel, we’ll be moving our classes online for the rest of the semester. Here’s what one of our profs has in mind.

As longtime readers of this blog may recall, I’m not a huge fan of online education. While I’ve taught an online course every summer since 2013, plus a couple of hybrid courses a few ye…

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03/16/2020
World class gardener

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History professor Amy Poppinga brings interfaith dialogue from her view as a Christian historian of Islam at Bethel University. By Sierra Smith Amy Poppinga woke up at 7 a.m. that Tuesday morning …

Look what studying ancient history, philosophy, Latin, and Greek can prepare you to do.
03/13/2020
One More Reminder That Humanities Can Prepare You for Medical School

Look what studying ancient history, philosophy, Latin, and Greek can prepare you to do.

Most often, students interested in medical careers assume that they need to major in a science like biology or chemistry. While those are often good options — certainly the most popular ones — it&#…

As Americans debate responses to the novel coronavirus, Prof. Gehrz thought to look back to the history of the worst pan...
03/10/2020
What the 1918 Influenza Pandemic Meant for American Churches

As Americans debate responses to the novel coronavirus, Prof. Gehrz thought to look back to the history of the worst pandemic to hit the United States. Using a digital history project from the University of Michigan, he surveyed how Christians responded to the "Spanish flu," which closed many churches in the fall of 1918.

03/03/2020

Tomorrow evening in CC429: join our friends in the Political Science department as they host a Super Tuesday watch party, 7-10pm.

1914-1941: Arvid Hagstrom1941-1954: Henry Wingblade1954-1982: Carl Lundquist1982-2008: George Brushaber2008-2020: Jay Ba...
02/28/2020
Ross Allen Named Bethel University’s Sixth President-Elect

1914-1941: Arvid Hagstrom
1941-1954: Henry Wingblade
1954-1982: Carl Lundquist
1982-2008: George Brushaber
2008-2020: Jay Barnes
2020-: Ross Allen

With extensive experience in business, healthcare, and higher education, Allen is set to become the first alumnus to lead the university.

Concerts, a poetry reading, a fashion show, and other ways that Bethel is celebrating Black History Month.
02/21/2020
Black History Month Events at Bethel

Concerts, a poetry reading, a fashion show, and other ways that Bethel is celebrating Black History Month.

As February draws to a close, consider attending one of the many Black History events coming up on campus, starting with one later tonight: (unless otherwise noted, these events are free of charge)…

Check out Seeing Animals, the new podcast from Prof. Annie Berglund '13 that accompanies her course on animal ethics.
02/18/2020
Seeing Animals: The New Podcast from Prof. Berglund

Check out Seeing Animals, the new podcast from Prof. Annie Berglund '13 that accompanies her course on animal ethics.

Check out Seeing Animals, the new podcast from Prof. Annie Berglund ’13! Yesterday’s debut featured Annie’s interview with Jered Camp, co-founder of the Iowa Farm Sanctuary, and n…

Week 2 of the spring semester: our Intro to History students are interviewing our faculty, getting to know what drew the...
02/12/2020

Week 2 of the spring semester: our Intro to History students are interviewing our faculty, getting to know what drew them to history, what’s distinctive about their particular fields, and how their faith shapes their teaching and scholarship.

Currently featured in the newsletter of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities: Prof. Gehrz's letter to Chris...
01/24/2020
A Letter to Christian Parents about Christian Colleges

Currently featured in the newsletter of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities: Prof. Gehrz's letter to Christian parents on the purpose and value of a Christian liberal arts education.

If you're considering sending your children to a Christian college, Chris has some advice.

Just how much is a liberal arts degree worth? A recent study takes a shot at quantifying the (economic) value of the kin...
01/16/2020
The Long-Term Value of a Liberal Arts Degree

Just how much is a liberal arts degree worth? A recent study takes a shot at quantifying the (economic) value of the kind of education you can receive at a school like Bethel University.

Happy New Year to all! We’re in the middle of Bethel’s J-term, which is intensive enough that we won’t try to do a lot of blogging until the spring semester starts in February. Bu…

In this week's post for The Anxious Bench, Prof. Gehrz warms up for our new sports history class in spring 2020.
12/17/2019
The Religious History of the Premier League

In this week's post for The Anxious Bench, Prof. Gehrz warms up for our new sports history class in spring 2020.

Chris considers the history of the English Premier League, whose past and present supports two distinct approaches to studying the relationship between sports and religion.

Meet Alex Telford, one of our History/Social Studies Ed double-majors, who is not only combining two fields of study — b...
12/13/2019
Living a double life

Meet Alex Telford, one of our History/Social Studies Ed double-majors, who is not only combining two fields of study — but combining college with a commitment to the military.

Bethel University sophomore Alex Telford finds a way to set and accomplish goals in the Army and college.

Today we’re happy to host Prof. Ted Lewis, who talked with students and faculty about some of the biblical themes runnin...
12/05/2019

Today we’re happy to host Prof. Ted Lewis, who talked with students and faculty about some of the biblical themes running through his upcoming course on restorative justice.

Why several business observers think that technological change is going to make liberal arts degrees more attractive to ...
12/04/2019
One Trend for 2020: Hiring History Majors!

Why several business observers think that technological change is going to make liberal arts degrees more attractive to employers, even tech sector companies like Google.

Every year since 2013, business author Dan Schawbel has shared 10 workplace trends he expects to see in the coming year. One of his 2020 predictions should especially interest current and prospecti…

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3900 Bethel Drive
Saint Paul, MN
55112

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With an unexpected snow day, I made an interactive 3D map of Hannibal's route over the Alps in 218 BCE. Check out the link below to see the final product, or read about it on the History department blog: https://bethelhistory.wordpress.com/2019/02/20/mapping-hannibal-on-a-snow-day/
Tonight I attended Mounds View High School's "parent communication night." How delightful to meet my daughter's APUSH teacher, Alex Hinseth (C'11), a former student of mine!
Long ago history prof (1984-2003) Neil Lettinga face to face with one of the World War 1 artwork that we used to show every January: Otto Dix's Wounded Soldier.