About the Journal

Since 1991, Comparativ publishes innovative approaches in transnational, transregional, and global history that focus on the global condition and analyze longue durée processes of transregional interaction. The journal is a scholarly outlet for showcasing the efforts by various disciplines to historically investigate processes of globalization. Entanglements, connections, and intercultural transfers are presented, comparative research as well. The journal places emphasis on the significance and function of processes of respatialization by which social, cultural, political, economic, and legal orders are shaped. As the official journal of the European Network in Universal and Global History (ENIUGH), Comparativ facilitates dialogue between European historians and area studies specialists and their colleagues from other parts of the world in order to overcome the lasting effects of Eurocentric legacies on world history writing.

Comparativ publishes six thematic issues a year and accepts articles in English, French, and German. All research articles published in the journal undergo rigorous peer-review based on initial editorial screening by the editorial board, the editors of the thematic issues, and anonymous reviewers. The board reviews proposals for thematic issues.

In addition to empirical articles, Comparativ publishes review articles on current international publications in transnational, transregional, and global history, which critically reflect on developments in these fields.

Comparativ is an open-access journal with a moving wall of 36 months.


History of the Journal

Comparativ emerged as a response to – and a reflection on – the fundamental changes of 1989. With the growing international interest in global processes, a research team at Leipzig University established the journal as a symbolic continuation of the century-long tradition of world history writing in Leipzig that started with Karl Lamprecht in the very early twentieth century. He was followed by, among others, Walter Markov, who focused on comparative colonial history and Manfred Kossok, who investigated comparatively the history of modern revolutions. The journal’s thematic issues became an effective instrument for networking as the issues became a platform for assembling different perspectives from different disciplines and world regions around a common topic. Authors from more than 50 countries have, since its founding, contributed to the journal’s success and wide readership. This world-wide network of scholars integrated into the slowly emerging community of global historians. As a result, Comparativ became one of the leading journals in this field, and since 2002 has been the official journal of the European Network in Universal and Global History (ENIUGH), which has been a source of inspiration through its congresses for cooperation both within and beyond the continent. The Steering Committee of ENIUGH comprised of members from a wide range of European countries, serves as the international advisory board of the journal.

Though Comparativ was first published in the 1990s in paper form, today it is also available open-access and in print. All past issues have been digitized and are available online.

Global history has undergone a series of changes over the past three decades, which is reflected in the journal’s history. While at first conceptual questions and the construction of a historiographical legacy were at the forefront of scholars’ interest, new cohorts of younger scholars pursued research in many archives, often across regions, and brought these empirical transregional studies to the journal. Global history became more and more dependent on cooperation between specialists on various regions, epochs, or societal dimensions. Comparativ offers such specialists the space to present the results of their intellectual interaction and presents the reader with thematic issues that bring such expertise together.

Although global history seemed to be concerned in the beginning primarily with the deterritorializing effects of global flows, it has more recently developed an increasing interest in the – partly traditional, partly innovative – ways various actors exercise control over such flows. This focus on actors opened new avenues for fruitful research on the many variants of globalization, or more precisely, of projects meant to determine the shape and paths of globalization. As a consequence, Comparativ pays particular attention to such projects undertaken outside the classical West, for example, in the "Global South" or in the realm of “red globalization”.