Thesis

A master’s thesis is the capstone of the European History, Politics, and Society program. In researching and writing the thesis, students bring the knowledge and skills they have gained through their classes to bear on a topic of their choice. The thesis is both “broad,” in the sense that all of your studies are in the background, supporting your work, and “concentrated,” as an intensive, extended analysis of a single topic. You should start thinking about possible topics, and building relationships with potential faculty advisors, early in the program. The journey from your initial plans to a polished thesis is an important part of your studies.


Procedure

The thesis is based on original research and is supervised by a faculty advisor. Students begin identifying topics (and approaching potential advisors) through the MA colloquium. In the spring semester of the colloquium, students prepare a prospectus that sets out the thesis topic and argument and outlines a plan for research. Students usually conduct thesis research during the summer and write the thesis in the following fall semester.

The process, from identifying a topic to submitting the final version of the thesis, is explained in the Thesis Guidelines.

2017-2018 Deadlines

To submit the prospectus and Thesis Registration Form:

  • August 25, 2017 to register to write in the Fall 2017 term
  • January 12, 2018 to register to write in the Spring 2018 term
  • May 11, 2018 to register to write in the Summer 2018 term


For your advisor to submit the Thesis Evaluation Form and for you to deliver paper and electronic copies to the European Institute: 

  • September 22, 2017 for October 2017 graduation
  • January 26, 2018 for February 2018 graduation
  • May 11, 2018 for May 2018 graduation

Thesis Grants

The Institute provides competitive grants to students who want to conduct thesis research in Europe during either winter, spring, or summer breaks.

Please view the Thesis Grants page for more information.


    Recent European History, Society and Politics Theses

    Past theses are available to read at the European Institute office.

    Alvaro Miranda
    Thesis The Pan, the Bolshevik, and the International of Good People: Revolution and Identity in Isaac Babel’s Red Calvary
    Advisor Tsveta Petrova

    Holly M. Porino
    Thesis The Great Imperial Plants of Zola’s La Curee
    Advisor Elizabeth Leake

    Elizabeth Kim
    Thesis Trade for Good: The Impact of the EU-Egypt Free Trade Agreement on Egyptian Labor Rights, 2004-2011
    Advisor Tsveta Petrova

    Alexandro Pedraza
    Thesis Power, Violence, and Opportunity: The Recruitment of Indigenous Soldiers in 1920s Spanish Morocco
    Advisor Lisa Tiersten

    Renee Pappous
    Thesis “Learning to Obey The Rules for the Sake of Society”: Public Identity and Identity Formation at Constantinople Woman’s College, 1914 – 1950
    Advisor Dimitrious Antoniou

    Jackson Allison
    Thesis Rethinking the Labor Process in Britain: Deskilling and Managerial Control, 1930-1050
    Advisor Adam Tooze

    Farrah Madanay
    Thesis West German Physicians and the Legacy of Nazi Medicine, 1968-1989
    Advisor Deborah Coen

    Anne Schult
    Thesis A Sense of National Decline: Populist Pundits and the Immigration Debate in Germany and France
    Advisor Sheri Berman
    Click here to watch Anne discuss her project.

    John Barry Schuyler
    Thesis Spain and the United States during the initial years of the Spanish Transition to Democracy
    Advisor Tsveta Petrova

    Vinicius Bivar Marra Pereira
    Thesis German Influence in Brazil: between Vargas nationalism and Roosevelt’s Pan-Americanism
    Advisor Volker Berghan
    Click here to watch Vinicius discuss his project. 

    Erika Martinez
    Thesis The Rockefeller Foundation Through The Dawn of the Atomic Age
    Advisor Volker Berghan

    Leslie Ching
    Thesis The Evolution and Occlusion of Memory: A Historiography of the Events in Paris, October 17, 1961 as Depicted in Four Films
    Advisor Emmanuelle Saada

    Jarrett Moran
    Thesis The Fall and Rise of John Ruskin, Political Economist: 1860-1905
    Advisor Susan Pedersen

    Michael Peragine
    Thesis The Effect of Cultural Distance on Immigrant Labor Market Outcomes in Europe
    Advisors Christel Kesler and Victoria Phillips

    Manoj Thadhani
    Thesis Yugoslav Dream Team: The Rise and Fall of the National Basketball Team and Yugoslavia’s Collapse
    Advisor Aleksandar Boskovic

    Robert Ast
    Thesis Pretty, Vacant: Brummel, Jagger, and the Dandy Mystique
    Advisor Lisa Tiersten

    Erica Chanin
    Thesis Utilization of Economic Sanctions and Soft Power Leveraging by the European Union in the Yugoslav Dissolution and Its Impact on the War in Kosovo
    Advisors Kimberly Marten and Tanya Domi

    Youri Chung
    Thesis The Structural Limits of the EU Normative Foreign Policy: The Debate Over the 2008 Beijing Olympics Boycott
    Advisor Victoria de Grazia

    Toni Ciprian-Matthews
    Thesis Endogenous Shocks and Banking Unions: Lessons of the European Financial Crisis
    Advisor Seamus O’Cleireacain

    Halley Farrell
    Thesis Subverting Imagery of the Feminine Divine in Spanish Cinema: Religious and Cultural Critique in the Films of Luis Buñuel and Pedro Almodóvar, 1958-1999
    Advisor Lisa Tiersten

    Serena Israni
    Thesis The Self-Interested Trade Policies of the European Union and United States 
    Advisor Seamus O’Cleireacain

    Vanessa Johnston
    Thesis The Roaring Twenties, American Mass Culture, and the Weimar New Woman
    Advisor Volker Berghahn

    Whitney Jones
    Thesis Culture, Society and Politics in Post-Cold War Germany: The Role of the U.S. Military
    Advisor Volker Berghahn

    Nicole Krieg
    Thesis Neorealism Now: Fascism in Vittorio De Sica’s Late Work
    Advisor Elizabeth Leake

    Jixiu Li
    Thesis Articulation of Normative Power Through Foreign Policy: How Can the European Union Act as the Agenda-Setter in its Relations with China?
    Advisor Seamus O’Cleireacain

    Amelia Purtill
    Thesis 1968 Through the Years: Germany’s “Achtundsechtzigers” and the Struggle with the Nazi Past
    Advisor Volker Berghahn

    Richard Smith
    Thesis Defining Bosnia: Race, Identity, and Anthropology in Habsburg Occupied Bosnia, 1878-1908
    Advisor Deborah Coen

    Kelly Cocuzza
    Thesis Italian Particularism: How a Social Crisis Becomes a Cultural Trauma—Italy and Its Migrants
    Advisor Barbara Faedda

    Ilias Dourmousoglou
    Thesis The Greek Crises: A Social, Economic, Political and Cultural Study since 1967
    Advisor Stathis Gourgouris

    Cody Franchetti
    Thesis Nominalism and History
    Advisor Samuel Moyn

    Christopher Kreiler
    Thesis European Banks: Regulation and Reform 
    Advisor Irene Finel-Honigman

    Andrés Lyon Valdivieso
    Thesis Acedia: Dante’s Commedia and Beckett’s How It Is
    Advisors Teodolinda Barolini and Edward Mendelson

    Dafina Nedelcheva
    Thesis Crossing Imagined Borders: History and Memory of Aegean Refugees in Post World War II Bulgaria
    Advisor Volker Berghahn

    Linyao Tang
    Thesis Common Agricultural Policy Reforms: Legacies and Implications for the Future
    Advisor Seamus O’Cleireacain

    Boyd van Dijk
    Thesis Caught Between the Great Powers: The Birth of Human Rights and the Netherlands, 1940-1950
    Advisor Samuel Moyn

    Lycourgos Sophoulis
    Thesis Recurring Dilemmas and Romantic Digressions: Orthodoxy and Nationalism in the Early Neohellenic Kingdom
    Advisors Volker Berghahn and Christine Philliou

    Johan Warodell
    Thesis Joseph Conrad and Sense-Impressions
    Advisor Edward Mendelson

    Miriam Wray
    Thesis Ornament and Fashion in Hermann Broch’s The Sleepwalkers from an Aesthetic, Historical and Social Perspective
    Advisor Mark Anderson

    Darrell Dela Rosa
    Thesis Biofuel Bust: The Adverse Effects of European Energy Policies
    Advisor Glenn Sheriff

    Veronica Mayer
    Thesis Crisis of Nationalism: The Impact of Trafalgar on British and Spanish Self-Conceptions
    Advisor Monica Cohen

    Evan Saperstein
    Thesis How the Top Bottomed Out: The Turkish Government’s Unexpected Embrace of Grassroots Anti-Semitism 
    Advisor David Cuthell

    Lorna Schmidt
    Thesis The Evolution and Regulation of Consumer Credit in the United Kingdom, Italy, France and Germany, 1800s-2008
    Advisor Victoria de Grazia

    Marguerite Van Cook
    Thesis Wordsworth’s Cloak of “Duffil Grey,” or The Passions of Capitalism
    Advisors Marianne Giordani and Stathis Gourgouris

    Kenneth Alston
    Thesis Dirigisme: Through the Lens of Nicolas Sarkozy
    Advisor Irene Finel-Honigman

    Allison De Seve
    Thesis Non-Pacifists for Peace: The Peace Now Movement of 1943-1944
    Advisor Nancy Collins

    Virginia Howard
    Thesis Trafficked Women in the European Union: The Natashas and Victim-Centered Criminal Justice
    Advisor Michael Stanislawski

    Katherine Minette
    Thesis The German Question: Helmut Kohl and the Push for Unification
    Advisor Volker Berghahn

    Adee Braun
    Thesis Constructing the Hungarian Nation: British Travelers’ Perspectives of Hungarian National Identity Under the Dual Empire
    Advisor Volker Berghahn

    Ali Mortezai
    Thesis Concepts of Freedom in the Philosophy of Martin Heidegger: An Auseinandersetzung
    Advisor John Rajchman

    J. Armand Musey
    Thesis Underlying Causes of the Disparity Between the French and English Surrealist Movements
    Advisor Linn Cary Mehta

    Richard Seidlitz
    Thesis Russophilia in France, 1870-1910
    Advisor Samuel Moyn

    Wakako Suzuki
    Thesis The Narrative Techniques of Modern Literature
    Advisor Mark Anderson

    Kristin Wood
    Thesis The Cracked Cauldron: An Investigation of Madame Bovary’s Philosophical Realism
    Advisor Monica Cohen

    Heather Higgins
    Thesis The Search for Identity in the Works of Five East European Novelists
    Advisor Ivan Sanders

    Gabriela Maj
    Thesis “Las, Dąb i Róg” (The Forest, the Oak and the Deer’s Horn): The Role of the symbol of the Forest and Polish National Identity
    Advisor Zoë Crossland

    Kerry McElroy
    Thesis A Defensive Modernism: Popular Culture, Cinema, and the Absence of a British Avant-Garde
    Advisor Michael Golston

    Anthony Roman
    Thesis The Italian Marshall Plan Films: The Handmaiden of Recovery
    Advisor Victoria de Grazia

    Shalini Tripathi
    Thesis Ionesco’s Béringer Plays: The Evolution of an Everyman
    Advisor Shawn-Marie Garrett

    James Weidner
    Thesis Central European Literary Connections Between a Vacant Moral Center and the Rise of Nazism
    Advisor Ivan Sanders