Re-thinking History

Re-thinking History

by KeithJenkins (Author)

Synopsis

This text is addressed to students faced with exploring the question what is history'? It is both an introduction to the various debates surrounding the question and a polemic, which makes a case against a skills-based, certaintist approach to history, in favour of a methodological one. Chapter One addresses the question of what history is, and how it can be opened up to wider perspectives. In Chapter Two Keith Jenkins applies his own definition of history - in terms of both theory and practice - to the recurrent range of problems which inevitably arise when students first consider the nature of history: Can we discover what really happened in the past? What are historical facts? What is a bias, and can it be avoided? Is history an art or a science? In the last chapter he contextualizes, in a reflective way, the arguments running throughout the book. Drawing widely on developments in philosophy, literary and critical theory and politics, he argues that history must abandon the search for objective truth about the past, and come to terms with its own processes of production. Brief, provocative and well-argued, the book aims to develop in its readers a historicist, sceptical and critical intelligence that will open up fresh understanding of what history is and can be, in the post-modern world.

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More Information

Format: Paperback
Pages: 96
Publisher: Routledge
Published: 31 Oct 1991

ISBN 10: 0415067782
ISBN 13: 9780415067782

Media Reviews
'Far and away the best introduction to the state of the question currently available.' - Hayden White, University of California at Santa Cruz, USA