Questions tagged [social-history]

Social history is a methodological approach to history that focuses on examining what the 'ordinary' people in a given time and place were doing. It is strongly influenced by the mindset and techniques of sociology and often makes heavy use of quantitative methods to make statements about groups of people who left behind few written records.

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186 views

What did the Russian ambassador to Japan do during his trip to London?

The Nadezhda stopped September 28th, 1803 in Falmouth, Cornwall to obtain salt meat [Voyage Round the World in the Years 1803, 1804, 1805, & 1806, pp. 35]. Imperial ambassador to Japan Nikolai ...
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Did they have a word for psychopath in ancient Rome?

The word psychopath only dates back to the 19th Century. It is difficult to imagine, given the Romans' sophistication level in all kinds of matters, that they could not differentiate among various ...
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485 views

Intuitive misconceptions [closed]

Are there any ideas that one would have in History intuitively that would be disproven by analysis? On the other hand, are there any intuitive historical ideas that have been verified by historians? ...
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Why was the Scout movement so successful?

I find it amazing how fast the scout movement spread after its creation. What I got from Wikipedia: Robert Baden-Powell became famous (rightly or not) at home for his activity in the British Army. ...
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1answer
211 views

How could a prisoner get lessons to read, write and do mathematics in jail, while innocent people didn't get the basic knowledge in 18th-19th century?

I am currently reading Les Miserables manga version ( Which takes place in France, as I recall). In the picture below, the main character has just got his freedom from Toulon Jail. The officer said ...
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Has there ever been a society with impartial distribution of privilege and punishment where all members of the society have equal status.

It seems from my non-expert knowledge of history that most societies are characterized by a privileged elite class exploiting an oppressed class to some degree. Are there examples of societies where ...
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390 views

How many people died of hunger and malnutrition in the post WWII 20th century?

I'm looking for a global overview of hunger and malnourishment deaths in the half century following WWII. While Wikipedia helpfully provides a list of famines, this only lists famine events - ...
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5answers
8k views

How does one wash with sand?

Maimonides refers to washing with sand. He may wash his clothes in water, but not with soap or using sand. Does anyone know how this was done?
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1answer
107 views

What constituted citizenship in the year of Jesus birth?

As Paul's trial was in Rome, because he was a Roman citizen, I wonder why Jesus trial was in Jerusalem, considering his father was taxed by Rome, and was of Nazareth. As Paul was Saul of Tarsus, did ...
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How did life change for the average American as a result of the end of World War 1?

Every year, the Daughters of the American Revolution host an essay contest concerning American History. I'll disclose that I'm not a student seeking internet help with the essay, but rather just ...
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Were slaves allowed to use the Roman baths?

Or to quip: could slaves be patrons of baths?
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Whatever happened to Turing's friend Arnold Murray?

Whatever happened to Arnold Murray, Alan Turing's friend who was convicted for theft. I could not find any later information on Murray or any recorded interview of his reminiscence of Turing. Thanks.
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What is the name of the theory opposite to the Great Man theory?

The Great Man theory is a 19th-century idea according to which history can be largely explained by the impact of "great men", or heroes; highly influential individuals. In nearly every lecture on ...
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Did stock adventure groups ever exist in history?

If you are playing Role-playing games then you will know the stock adventure group by heart, but for all others here are the core concepts: The adventure group is tight and stable: some people may ...
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3answers
343 views

Was there a “literate class” outside the Shi in Zhou-dynasty China?

According to wikipedia, during Zhou dynasty China's ... distinct class system, which lacked an organized clergy but saw the Shang Zi-clan yeomen become masters of ritual and ceremony known as Shi (...
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1answer
102 views

Is there any resource to learn interiors of a house for particular classes in 17th Century in Bohemia?

I would like to learn details of the living places for particular classes and professions in Bohemia in 17th Century. (For example a burgher, or carpenter guild master etc.) I try some novels written ...
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403 views

How and why did limerence come to be idolized as it is in modern Western society? [closed]

Limerence - the involuntary, infatuated state that has been romanticized as love. Before you read in, the basics of my question have to do with the historical forces that have shaped the modern ...
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205 views

Women collaborators within China during the Second Sino-Japanese War?

There are several reports of women collaborators in Europe during the Nazi occupation. I am wondering if there is any reports of this occurring in China, and what possibly happened to these women ...
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0answers
604 views

When did the term “9-to-5” emerge? [closed]

I'm an American. I have heard many pop culture references to a full-time job as a "9-to-5". However, an ordinary full-time job is typically clocked as eight hours a day starting from 8:00 AM and ...
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3answers
190 views

Between which years did a trend of violence toward homosexuals begin and end in America?

I recently watched Brokeback Mountain which depicted the violence risked by anyone who came out as openly homosexual. It seems like a point I might like to make in discussion one day that "only x ...
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1answer
440 views

Why were cobblers so radical?

Peter Ackroyd writes on page 88 of his account of the English Civil War: Cobblers were well known for their radical Protestant sympathies. What was so special about cobblers?
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Did wages get paid in pubs?

I recall hearing that in the past in Britain and Ireland, some workers (perhaps miners?) got their weekly wages paid out in the pub, much to the dismay of their wives. I don't remember where I heard ...
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10answers
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Is there a historical precedent to the vaccine scare?

Today many people believe that vaccines cause autism. Is there a historical equivalent to this conspiracy theory, in that people believe something to be harmful when it has been proven benign by ...
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1answer
645 views

How did the sale of rum affect the demographics of Africa?

A history book I'm reading says "The sale of rum had a great impact on Africa's demographics", but doesn't go into details -- so I'm curious as to what this could mean.
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How did lecturers magnify their voice in the days before amplification?

I am going to be portraying Mark Twain on the lecture circuit circa 1896. I want to make the performance as realistic as possible, so that the sufferers (audience) can adopt a "willing suspension of ...
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3answers
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When was the silk route active?

I searched for it but didn't find a particular answer. I didn't want the time when it was found. I know Silk route is dated to as old as 2 BC (from what I read) but when was it the most active ? ...
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When did disabilities begin to become recognized? [closed]

I know that even to this day disabled individuals are often discriminated against and are treated unfairly. At what point in time, were disabilities first understood at a broad societal level? What ...
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1answer
506 views

Most advanced nonliterate society

I got to thinking some more recently about the interrelation of societal advancement and information availability. That got me wondering about the limits. In short, what is the most advanced society ...
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862 views

How did physical exercise (stretching) originate in the Western world?

This is a list of mentions I found with my short googling: The yoga exercise technics were well-known in Asia as a both physical and mental health cure for a long time. According to Wikipedia, ...
5
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2answers
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Why did Germany have so many important scientists and thinkers around the turn of the 20th century?

I got an impression that Germany at the turn of the 20th century had a lot of very important thinkers and scientists, who created foundation for lots of modern theories and philosophical concept. ...
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106 views

What day and year was the first public & general confession held in the Church of England?

Was it proscribed in the act of supremacy of 1532?
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How wide-spread was antisemitism in the USA during WWII?

Richard Feynman writes in Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman, chapter Who stole the door, that: At MIT the different fraternities all had "smokers" where they tried to get the new freshmen to be ...
13
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2answers
605 views

Has being a single mother been always stigmatized?

Being a single mother was obviously a big economic disadvantage. And in the times when the Christian church morality dominated every day life, being a single mother was obviously a proof of a sin. But ...
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Did Peter the Great promote rights for women? If so, how?

I read somewhere that Peter the Great wanted that women participated more actively in the society. But I can not find a reliable source to confirm this, nor why or how he did this. I think this is ...
13
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2answers
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What were the effects of Bushido on Japan after the Meiji Restoration?

As part of the Meiji Restoration, the samurai class was abolished and their members enrolled as shizoku under the new regime. While their ancient privileges were lost, the former samurai continued to ...
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Evidence for appealing to the divine as a means of influencing behavior [closed]

Appealing to the divine is a convenient way of making the subjective, objective. For example: Person A: You should never commit adultery. Person B: But adultery is perfectly acceptable to me. ...
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Can you help me find a online resource for gendered handwriting styles, like “ladies' epistolary” and “Mercantile running hand”? [closed]

Can you help me find a online resource for gendered handwriting styles, like "ladies' epistolary" and "Mercantile running hand"? Preferably with pictures, as I want an easy reference for their ...
12
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2answers
809 views

What's the correlation between an excessive unmarried male population and a big war breaking out?

I recently heard a commentator talking about the effects of the one-child policy in China. It went basically like this: For various economic and cultural reasons, it's considered better to have a ...
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3answers
2k views

What led Brahmins to migrate to Kerala?

I am intrigued by the practices and beliefs of a community native to Kerala - India, the Kerala Iyers not Namboodris, they are Tamil Brahmin communities residing in Kerala, who migrated centuries ago ...
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2answers
210 views

The role of science in enabling the survival of civilisations [closed]

The Claim asapScience has a video about the role of science in the society. In their video, they claim: When we look to history we see that ignoring science has led to the crumbling of societies. ...
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1answer
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How was Martin Luther King Jr. viewed by white Americans at the time? [closed]

In today's United States, MLK Jr. is universally regarded as a hero and patriot (...or as universally regarded as one can be in this nation). By that, I mean all races, all political parties—everyone ...
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1answer
258 views

What was the range of people's social lives like, before the technology for long distance communications developed?

We know a lot about some famous people from letters they have written and received. It seems that a lot more communication with people who were important in their lives was written instead of face-to-...
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2answers
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What were birthdays like in Medieval times?

I considered putting this question on Worldbuilding SE, but decided it would be better suited here, as it is about history. I am doing some research for a fantasy medieval novel, and I was wondering ...
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1answer
769 views

Was classical Alexandria really this brutal and class-segregated?

"The Perniciously Persistent Myths of Hypatia and the Great Library" by David Bentley Hart in the journal First Things claims that while Hypatia was indeed murdered by a mob of angry Christians, this ...
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2answers
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What sort(s) of identification were used before driver's licenses were issued in the US?

In the United States, before driver's licenses became a nearly universal means of identification (i.e., before autos), what form of identification was routinely used? For example if one was arrested, ...
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500 views

How widespread was dueling in the United States from its formation to 1860?

I saw a different question that sparked my interest in this subject. Several important people in American history have died dueling, so my question is how widespread was duelling in the U.S until 1860?...
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1answer
99 views

Are there documented shifts in how history, time, and accuracy were regarded in society? [closed]

I recall an interview where Reza Aslan described that History, in its present form, didn't always exist that way. That is the rigor, validation, and peer review wasn't present. Instead, it was a ...
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2answers
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What was the average size of French families during the Middle Ages?

My question takes place in at the beginning of the middle-ages in France. Let's focus on small villages and ordinary people (peasants, craftsmen, etc.). I would like to know how many people used to ...
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3answers
5k views

At what age did samurai children start going into battles in the Sengoku era?

Exactly as the title says, from what age did a child of a samurai start to join his father in battles? I suspect it is when the child was considered an adult, but what age was considered an adult ...
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3answers
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When did monogamy become the norm in Ancient Greece?

This article says The case for an automatic association between Christianity and monogamy is weakened further by the fact that socially imposed monogamy was first established in ancient Greece ...