Individual historical texts record only a fraction of what actually happens, and critical readers may recognize incomplete explanations. Depending on what they know about the author and their interests, omissions could appear to be systematic, negligent, malicious, inadvertent, flattering, or who knows what else. Asking about what an author didn't write may be counterfactual, but can be illuminating.

Is there any historiographical or textual analytic framework that supports the analysis of authors' omissions? Two topics related at arm's length are redaction criticism and reporting bias.

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    This seems to be requesting an analysis of all missing data over the entirety of human history; for all possible causes. Please narrow down to a more reasonable scope. – Pieter Geerkens Jan 23 '18 at 10:22
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    No, it seems to be asking what work might exist on mechanisms for that analysis, not for the analysis itself. – MickeyfAgain_BeforeExitOfSO Jan 23 '18 at 14:46
  • @PieterGeerkens did you even read the question before downvoting? – Aaron Brick Jan 26 '18 at 18:40
  • @AaronBrick: Did you even consider narrowing the scope of the question before pinging me? Did you consider that perhaps I am not a down-voter? – Pieter Geerkens Jan 26 '18 at 19:54
  • For starters, Q requests coverage that would include: 1) Handling of unreleased WW2 classified memos; 2) Destruction of ancient texts in the fire at Alexandria library; 3) Incompleteness of Sumerian clay cuneiform tablets; and possibly 4) Gaps in archaeological record of pre-literate Scandinavian & German tribes. – Pieter Geerkens Jan 26 '18 at 19:58

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