CORVALLIS - John Gillis, a professor of history at Rutgers University, will speak on Thursday, June 3, at Oregon State University about the overlooked historical role of islands and seas.

His lecture, "Taking History Offshore: Discovering Atlantic Oceania," will begin at 4 p.m. in OSU's Memorial Union Room 206. It is free and open to the public.

In his lecture, Gillis will argue that modern history has been written largely as a "history of continents," treating the sea as a void, empty of historical content. There have been periods of history, however, when islands were more important than continents to the development of the Atlantic world, Gillis points out.

From 1400 to 1800 they played a crucial political, economic and cultural role in what Gillis calls "Atlantic Oceania."

Gillis is the author of five books on German, British and European history. The recipient of a number of fellowships and visiting appointments, he was a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University from 1993-94.

The lecture is part of The Horning Lecture Series at OSU, sponsored by the Horning Endowment and the OSU College of Liberal Arts.

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Ginny Domka, 541-737-1275