Questions tagged [historiography]

Tag for questions on the study of history itself, such as methodologies or techniques.

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67
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6answers
7k views

How accurate or supported is Jared Diamond's “Guns, Germs, and Steel”?

Jared Diamond wrote a fascinating book that purports to explain, in a very broad way, the development of civilization. It has several explanations for the development of Eurasian civilization rather ...
13
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3answers
2k views

Why do all my history books divide Chinese history after the Han dynasty?

I will be teaching middle school World History this year. I surveyed seven different textbooks from different publishers and notice, unlike all other histories of other regions in the world, Chinese ...
2
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1answer
261 views

Can world systems theory apply to empires?

World systems theory categorizes the economic relationships of countries by placing them in a core or a periphery. In this model, core countries exploit resources in the peripheral countries. This ...
5
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1answer
138 views

Can anyone render this passage from Lorenzo Valla's original Latin translation of Herodotus into modern text?

Can anyone render this passage from Lorenzo Valla's original Latin translation of Herodotus into modern text? I'm not looking for a translation, rather, I need to have the typographics normalized. ...
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1answer
55 views

Entry-level articles on USA slavery?

I am a first period history student in Brazil, and have been studying the formation of American colonial societies during the 16th and 17th centuries. We have only now started studying the formation ...
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4answers
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How do functionalists explain the fact that Holocaust continued until the very end of the war?

While I haven't read Goldhagen or scholars with a similar viewpoint directly, I frequently encounter the following argument that seems very Goldhagenite to me: "The Germans tried to murder Jews up ...
56
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15answers
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Are there any important biographies of nobodies?

Biographies usually cover interesting people who said and did notable things. I'm curious about lives notable just for their contexts: the stories of unremarkable people in historically remarkable ...
2
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2answers
315 views

What do we mean when we say history is a science?

When Mark the moderator says "history is a science", what does he mean? I know what someone means when they say "biology is a science". They mean "I can express my rationality in terms of the living ...
19
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4answers
2k views

What are some indicators that distinguish pseudo-history from actual history?

It is sometimes hard for a layman to separate well-researched history from the writings of kooks (or what Mark Twain called "inspired idiots"). For example: my local library carries "A Secret ...
39
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4answers
9k views

Is the photograph “England’s Revenge in India” real, staged, or fake?

Might have an interesting puzzle for you here… This picture, titled "England's Revenge in India", appeared in a Nazi propaganda book against Britain published in 1941: The propaganda book claims ...
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9answers
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Is there any evidence that the book of Isaiah was written before Cyrus?

The OT Prophet Isaiah lived in the 8th-century BC. Cyrus, the Emperor of Persia, lived well over one hundred years later: Cyrus (580-529 BC) was the first Achaemenid Emperor. Yet The Book of Isaiah in ...
7
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1answer
367 views

What was the English Civil War called during the Protectorate?

Between 1642 and 1651, Charles I and Parliamentary forces fought for control over England, Scotland, and Ireland. The Parliamentary forces won and established the Commonwealth of England. During this ...
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7answers
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Do historians agree that most wars are caused by religion?

I'm not a historian, but this is a very common claim that crops up in debates over God's existence and religious scripture. What is the opinion of the community of professional historians?
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0answers
393 views

Are there recommended practices for writing about oppressed peoples?

This question is about responsible historiography. History as written by winners tends to devalue and misrepresent the experiences of subordinate groups (see Textbooks: Zinn People’s History; Labour: ...
3
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1answer
107 views

Why did the recorded history of Poland start after the reign of Miezsko I?

Norman Davies says this in his book, God's Playground, Volume I regarding Miezsko I: He started the recorded history of the Poles which has continued without a break from that day to this. Even I ...
4
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3answers
235 views

Micromanagement before the modern era?

We read a lot about the problem of micromanagement today, particularly in examples of failed leadership. And Google Ngram Viewer shows the first occurrences of the word in the 1970s. Did ancient (...
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1answer
172 views

Which historians argue that WWII was caused by Fascism as a reaction to Communism?

It's been suggested that fascist movements of post-WW1 Europe emerged in reaction to the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia and against worker sympathies to similar internationalist socialist movements ...
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2answers
314 views

Is this movie “History of the World: Every Year” credible?

I love history and one thing, which was showed to me recently in a university course, helped very much to arrange things in my mind. I'm talking about a video of the map world year by year - History ...
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4answers
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What kind of evidence (if any) could be used to identify a large conquest in the time before writing?

From what I understand, writing wasn't completely developed during the Bronze Age. So, if there was an Alexander-the-Great-style conquest that united the known world for a short period of time, what ...
3
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3answers
551 views

Is there a consensus on when history began? [closed]

When did history begin, according to the most accepted view among Western historians'? (credible sources would be appreciated) I vaguely remember from my Marxist-oriented history courses in high ...
10
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6answers
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Early modern vs late modern vs post modern?

I frequently come across these three terms, but I haven't been able to find a source that explains the difference between all three of them precisely. Here's what I think I know now: The early ...
6
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3answers
708 views

What were the flaws in the U.S. Strategic Bombing Survey?

According to this source, "Some historians have identified flaws in the [U.S. Strategic Bombing] survey, based on contemporary evidence." I have unsuccessfully searched the internet for these ...
10
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3answers
741 views

Do historians support the existence of brothers to Jesus?

Jesus does not have a brother in some Christian traditions, his mother Mary is a perpetual virgin. For instance the Catholic church holds this theory as a theologoumenon, namely a theological ...
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1answer
212 views

What is the year of Ethelred the Unready's Laws of London?

I refer to De Institutis Lundonie (Laws of London) by Ethelred the Unready (or Æthelred II) (Google Books). According to Britannia and Jerome Arkenberg, it is of the year 978. According to this book,...
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0answers
125 views

How is Goswami's stand on nationalism distinct from Andersons'?

Benedict Anderson in his 'Imagined Communities' argued that nationalism is modular, that is transplanted to the third world without acknowledging the agency of the intellectual elite, by simply ...
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2answers
315 views

What limits historiographically valid hermeneutics of exegesis in relation to theories of action or agents?

Hermeneutics is the field of the problem of reading dubious documents and document sets; Figuring out what actually happened. Exegesis is the act of producing a reading in a non divinely inspired ...
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0answers
95 views

Why don’t historians tolerate eisegesis, when they continuously engage in it?

Historians disrespect excessively eisegetic readings when producing their works. Eisegesis is the production of meaning in reading texts through external inspiration. The inspiration could be divine, ...
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3answers
615 views

Is the position of women as portrayed in the Mad Men series historically accurate?

I found similar questions about a game (closed as off topic), a play (7 upvotes) and a movie (9 upvotes) so I am unsure if this is an acceptable question for this SE. In the Mad Men series, which ...
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1answer
131 views

May I know more about the theory of “long period” - with regard to the interpretation of historical events?

In another language than English, I read something about the distinction between the theory of periodization and the theory of "long period" (if I well translate it in English, as I don't know the ...
12
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2answers
840 views

How accurate did medieval historians think histories to be?

How accurate were histories thought to be by medieval historians? What constituted the historical record? Did folk lore and songs carry as much weight as the churches' histories or other written ...
4
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1answer
290 views

How objective are books like “Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind”? How are they “proven”?

How objective are books like "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind"? How are they "proven"? How can one assess the objectivity of historical literature? Why is it still not subjective, if not even ...
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4answers
1k views

What is “discovery” in the historical sense? How do historians today view and describe “discoveries”?

I was taught in grade school "Columbus discovered America", "Captain Cook discovered Hawaii" etc, and I imagine many of us were taught the same. Obviously the term "discovered" here is problematic: ...
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2answers
417 views

Will Hegelian or Dialectical historiography regain any relevance into the contemporary historical discourse? [closed]

Much of contemporary Western historiography and historical analysis is dominated by either the Post-Modern or Marxist approaches. Of course, Karl Marx was deeply influenced by George Hegel, however, ...
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8answers
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Emancipation Proclamation in a tweet

Today is the 155th anniversary of the signing (but not the release) of the Emancipation Proclamation. Critics remarked even at the time that it didn't free a single slave, since it only applied to ...
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3answers
217 views

Fact Checking and Referencing in Historical Studies

Hello I am new to this subject on a serious basis, and my first question, or set of questions, isn't actually a history question itself, but more of a question of the protocol for fact checking in the ...
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2answers
1k views

Should I trust a church history book that's more than 50 years old?

I found a history book (A History of the Christian Church, Revised Edition by Williston Walker) at my local used book store. It was copyrighted in 1959. Have there been any developments in research ...
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0answers
47 views

Any public database of all political entities throughout history?

Some possible candidates I found online: Wikipedia, grouped by century: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_political_entities_in_the_1st_century http://dataforhistory.org/? But unfortunately ...
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2answers
220 views

How do historians agree on what common evidence should be used in the writing of history?

I am not really sure about this as the historical method only provides information on what evidence should not be used (source criticism).
8
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1answer
164 views

Class-conscious, non-Marxist historiographies

Marxist historiography focuses on social class and economics forces, and assumes an inexorable trend towards socialist revolution. What kind of historiography shares the concern about class ...
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4answers
529 views

Can historiography be thought of as “fractal”?

In developing this answer, and others, it seems fairly typical that I start out broad and then add more and more detail as necessary to answer the question and respond to comments. Sometimes the act ...
20
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1answer
882 views

What was the Victorian opinion of the American Revolution?

BACKGROUND It's pretty remarkable to me, though perhaps it shouldn't be, how much British popular debate there was about the American Revolution. It was often condemned, but sometimes openly ...
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5answers
13k views

How is the discipline of History differentiated from other disciplines in social sciences or the humanities?

History is a discipline in the academy that is sometimes a social science and sometimes a humanity. However, there are many other social sciences (e.g., economics, political science) and many other ...
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3answers
1k views

How historically accurate is 'India: A History' by John Keay?

I have been looking for a book about Indian history. Recently I came across this answer, which suggested reading India: A History by John Keay. I wanted to know whether it is historical and accurate. ...
12
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1answer
324 views

Was every Roman citizen part of a curia?

In a book by German historian Klaus Bringmann, I read that during the regal period, the whole population was divided into three tribes. He furthermore states that each tribe was divided into 10 curiae ...
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5answers
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How is progress in history made?

As a concrete example, the Wikipedia article on the historicity of King Arthur quotes historian Thomas Charles-Edwards as saying that "at this stage of the enquiry, one can only say that there may ...
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0answers
79 views

John Glubb - importance and academic interest

Recently I had the displeasure of discussing with someone who argued that professional soldier and amateur historian John Glubb "demonstrated" that women in public offices entail the decadence of ...
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2answers
431 views

How does Upton Sinclair's The Jungle contribute to Historiography?

I know Upton Sinclair was not a Historian, however his work The Jungle has had a significant impact on how society views industry standards, regulations, government agency's, etcetera. There are broad ...
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1answer
227 views

Have historians offered interpretations on why the disciples claimed they saw a resurrected Jesus? [closed]

It is generally accepted by historians who studied the Bible that Jesus almost certainly existed and was crucified. We also know that his disciples claimed Jesus appeared to them after his death. ...
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10answers
4k views

How to rebut Holocaust denial argument?

I came across a Holocaust denier who claims that there is a plaque outside Auschwitz which says that the Nazis murdered 1.5 million people there (mostly Jewish). However, the plaque used to say 4 ...
4
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1answer
1k views

Have there been any major disagreements between historians over what sources should be used to interpret an event?

The sources of interest I have in mind are primary and secondary sources. The disagreement over sources should be due to disagreements over reliability of sources. Edit: made the question clearer