Ongoing Forum: Book Reviews and the Teaching of World History


The Middle Ground Journal Ongoing Forum: Book Reviews and the Teaching of World History
Editors: Dr. Birgit Schneider and Dr. Hong-Ming Liang

This forum has two goals. It seeks, in general, to establish a platform for discussing different approaches to teaching world history, including different class formats, different course structures and content, etc. In addition, it strives to evaluate the use of book reviews as a tool for teaching and assessment. The forum is based on my teaching of HIST3029, “Transnational History: A New Approach to the Past” at the University of Hong Kong in the spring semester of 2014. My own class shall merely serve as a starting point; I would like to encourage contributors to share their experiences or ideas about these two (and other related) aspects of teaching. This can include (and is not limited to) different contents, methodologies, and formats of teaching in the broad context of world history. The forum is intended as a space in which the gap between teaching and research is bridged through reflection on teaching per se, and especially teaching as it relates to research and the academic discipline.

Submissions to the forum should be in one of the following formats:
– Case studies outlining specific courses and their approach to relevant topics of this forum (3000-4000 words)
– Discussions of methodology, assignments, or other teaching or assessment tools (500-1000 words)
– Comments discussing existing case studies (up to 500 words)

Case studies and longer discussions will be peer reviewed, while comments will only undergo review by the editor and be posted as is (unless irrelevant or inappropriate).
The Middle Ground Journal is an open-access, refereed journal of world history and global studies housed at The College of St. Scholastica and published by the Midwest World History Association (MWWHA). We do not charge fees any type to our authors, readers and reviewers. Additional information on the journal is available at:  and at:

General inquiries on the journal should be sent to Professor Hong-Ming Liang, Chief Editor, HLIANG@CSS.EDU

Forum Introduction – Professor Birgit Schneider, Ph.D. Schneider
Book Review: Fatal Misconception: The Struggle to Control World Population – Matthew Connelly
Book Review: Melancholy Order – Joo Hun Han
Book Review: Salt: a world history – Hu Ke
Book Review: The Europeanization of the World – William Edward Wilson
First Reflective Essay – Class Schneider First
Second Reflective Essay – Class

(c) 2015 The Middle Ground Journal, Number 10, Spring, 2015. See Submission Guidelines page for the journal’s not-for-profit educational open-access policy.