|Challenges to International History|
|It is a significant challenge to develop pluralistic forms of international history, which are acceptable to different communities and societies. Up until the present day the debates on global history and world history still tend to be locally confined, and especially Western scholarship does usually not consider new approaches in other parts of the world. The paper argues that internationally convincing perspectives can only be gained if the trans-regional landscapes of historiography become more decentered and dialogical in nature.
As a first step towards more trans-cultural ways of researching international history, dialogues and comparisons between different communities of historians need to be expanded. Such comparisons of local approaches to international history cannot be convincing without problematizing the global sociology of knowledge, i.e. the international structures, flows and hierarchies that still characterize the field. Within this context the paper compares some facets of current Chinese (including Hong Kong and Taiwan), German and American approaches to world history. In these cases debates on new forms of world history or global history have intensified in recent years, and they were accompanied by a surge of methodological innovations. In its comparison the paper touches upon factors ranging from academic structures, traditions of historiographical thinking, sociopolitical factors and the overall intellectual climate.