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Geoffrey Howard Eley (born 4 May 1949) is a British-born historian of Germany. He studied History at the Balliol College of Oxford University and received his D.Phil from the University of Sussex in 1974. He has taught at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor since 1979 as professor of History and, since 1997, of German Studies. He now serves as the Karl Pohrt Distinguished University Professor at that institution.
Eley's early work focused on the radical nationalism in Imperial Germany, but has since grown to include theoretical and methodological reflections on historiography and the history of the political left in Europe.
Eley is particularly well known for his early study, The Peculiarities of German History (first published in German as Mythen deutscher Geschichtsschreibung in 1984), co-authored with David Blackbourn (a fellow Briton, who now teaches at Vanderbilt University), which challenged the new orthodoxy in German social history known as the Sonderweg thesis. However, his most successful book is Forging Democracy: The History of the Left in Europe, 1850-2000, which has been translated into Spanish, Portuguese, Serbian, Korean, Turkish and Greek.
(This list does not include edited volumes.)
- A Crooked Line: From Cultural History to the History of Society. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2005. ISBN 0472069047
- Forging Democracy: The History of the Left in Europe, 1850-2000. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002. ISBN 0195044797
- Reshaping the German Right: Radical Nationalism and Political Change after Bismarck. London and New Haven: Yale University Press, 1980; new ed. 1991. ISBN 0472081322
- Wilhelminismus, Nationalismus, Faschismus: Zur historischen Kontinuität in Deutschland. Münster: Verlag Westfälisches Dampfboot, 1991. ISBN 3924550476
- Review article: "Labor History, Social History, Alltagsgeschichte: Experience, Culture, and the Politics of the Everyday--a New Direction for German Social History?" The Journal of Modern History Vol. 61, No. 2, June 1989
- From Unification to Nazism: Reinterpreting the German Past. London: Routledge, 1986. ISBN 0415084881
- The Peculiarities of German History (with David Blackbourn). Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1984. ISBN 0198730578