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History is the discovery, collection, organization, and presentation of information about past events. History can also mean the period of time after writing was invented. Scholars who write about history are called historian
Historian
A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is regarded as an authority on it. Historians are concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the study of all history in time. If the individual is...

s. It is a field of research which uses a narrative
Narrative
A narrative is a constructive format that describes a sequence of non-fictional or fictional events. The word derives from the Latin verb narrare, "to recount", and is related to the adjective gnarus, "knowing" or "skilled"...

 to examine and analyse the sequence of events, and it sometimes attempts to investigate objectively the patterns of cause and effect that determine events. Historians debate the nature of history and its usefulness. This includes discussing the study of the discipline as an end in itself and as a way of providing "perspective" on the problems of the present. The stories common to a particular culture, but not supported by external sources (such as the legends surrounding King Arthur
King Arthur
King Arthur is a legendary British leader of the late 5th and early 6th centuries, who, according to Medieval histories and romances, led the defence of Britain against Saxon invaders in the early 6th century. The details of Arthur's story are mainly composed of folklore and literary invention, and...

) are usually classified as cultural heritage
Cultural heritage
Cultural heritage is the legacy of physical artifacts and intangible attributes of a group or society that are inherited from past generations, maintained in the present and bestowed for the benefit of future generations...

 rather than the "disinterested investigation" needed by the discipline of history. Events of the past prior to written record are considered prehistory
Prehistory
Prehistory is the span of time before recorded history. Prehistory can refer to the period of human existence before the availability of those written records with which recorded history begins. More broadly, it refers to all the time preceding human existence and the invention of writing...

.

Amongst scholars, the fifth century BC Greek historian Herodotus
Herodotus
Herodotus was an ancient Greek historian who was born in Halicarnassus, Caria and lived in the 5th century BC . He has been called the "Father of History", and was the first historian known to collect his materials systematically, test their accuracy to a certain extent and arrange them in a...

 is considered to be the "father of history", and, along with his contemporary Thucydides
Thucydides
Thucydides was a Greek historian and author from Alimos. His History of the Peloponnesian War recounts the 5th century BC war between Sparta and Athens to the year 411 BC...

, forms the foundations for the modern study of history. Their influence, along with other historical traditions in other parts of their world, have spawned many different interpretations of the nature of history which has evolved over the centuries and are continuing to change. The modern study of history has many different fields including those that focus on certain regions and those which focus on certain topical or thematical elements of historical investigation. Often history is taught as part of primary and secondary education, and the academic study of history is a major discipline in University studies.

Etymology



The word history comes from the root
Proto-Indo-European root
The roots of the reconstructed Proto-Indo-European language are basic parts of words that carry a lexical meaning, so-called morphemes. PIE roots always have verbal meaning like "to eat" or "to run", as opposed to nouns , adjectives , or other parts of speech. Roots never occur alone in the language...

 *weid- "know" or "see".

Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek is the stage of the Greek language in the periods spanning the times c. 9th–6th centuries BC, , c. 5th–4th centuries BC , and the c. 3rd century BC – 6th century AD of ancient Greece and the ancient world; being predated in the 2nd millennium BC by Mycenaean Greek...

  means "inquiry" or "knowledge from inquiry", from (hístōr) "judge" (from the Proto-Indo-European agent noun
Agent noun
In linguistics, an agent noun is a word that is derived from another word denoting an action, and that identifies an entity that does that action. For example, "driver" is an agent noun formed from the verb "drive". The endings "-er", "-or", and "-ist" are commonly used in English to form agent...

 *wid-tor: "one who knows"). It was in that sense that Aristotle
Aristotle
Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and polymath, a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. His writings cover many subjects, including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, linguistics, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology...

 used the word in his (Perì Tà Zôa Ηistoríai "Inquiries about Animals"). The ancestor word is attested early on in Homeric Hymns
Homeric Hymns
The Homeric Hymns are a collection of thirty-three anonymous Ancient Greek hymns celebrating individual gods. The hymns are "Homeric" in the sense that they employ the same epic meter—dactylic hexameter—as the Iliad and Odyssey, use many similar formulas and are couched in the same dialect...

, Heraclitus
Heraclitus
Heraclitus of Ephesus was a pre-Socratic Greek philosopher, a native of the Greek city Ephesus, Ionia, on the coast of Asia Minor. He was of distinguished parentage. Little is known about his early life and education, but he regarded himself as self-taught and a pioneer of wisdom...

, the Athenian
Athens
Athens , is the capital and largest city of Greece. Athens dominates the Attica region and is one of the world's oldest cities, as its recorded history spans around 3,400 years. Classical Athens was a powerful city-state...

 ephebe
Ephebos
Ephebos , also anglicised as ephebe or archaically ephebus , is a Greek word for an adolescent age group or a social status reserved for that age in Antiquity....

s' oath, and in Boiotic
Boeotia
Boeotia, also spelled Beotia and Bœotia , is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of Central Greece. It was also a region of ancient Greece. Its capital is Livadeia, the second largest city being Thebes.-Geography:...

 inscriptions (in a legal sense, either "judge" or "witness", or similar).

It was still in the Greek sense that Francis Bacon
Francis Bacon
Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount St Albans, KC was an English philosopher, statesman, scientist, lawyer, jurist, author and pioneer of the scientific method. He served both as Attorney General and Lord Chancellor of England...

 used the term in the late 16th century, when he wrote about "Natural History
Natural history
Natural history is the scientific research of plants or animals, leaning more towards observational rather than experimental methods of study, and encompasses more research published in magazines than in academic journals. Grouped among the natural sciences, natural history is the systematic study...

". For him, historia was "the knowledge of objects determined by space and time", that sort of knowledge provided by memory
Memory
In psychology, memory is an organism's ability to store, retain, and recall information and experiences. Traditional studies of memory began in the fields of philosophy, including techniques of artificially enhancing memory....

 (while science
Science
Science is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in the form of testable explanations and predictions about the universe...

 was provided by reason
Reason
Reason is a term that refers to the capacity human beings have to make sense of things, to establish and verify facts, and to change or justify practices, institutions, and beliefs. It is closely associated with such characteristically human activities as philosophy, science, language, ...

, and poetry
Poetry
Poetry is a form of literary art in which language is used for its aesthetic and evocative qualities in addition to, or in lieu of, its apparent meaning...

 was provided by fantasy
Fantasy
Fantasy is a genre of fiction that commonly uses magic and other supernatural phenomena as a primary element of plot, theme, or setting. Many works within the genre take place in imaginary worlds where magic is common...

).

The word entered the English language
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 in 1390 with the meaning of "relation of incidents, story". In Middle English
Middle English
Middle English is the stage in the history of the English language during the High and Late Middle Ages, or roughly during the four centuries between the late 11th and the late 15th century....

, the meaning was "story" in general. The restriction to the meaning "record of past events" arises in the late 15th century. In German, French, and most Germanic and Romance languages, the same word is still used to mean both "history" and "story". The adjective historical is attested from 1661, and historic from 1669.

Historian in the sense of a "researcher of history" is attested from 1531. In all European languages, the substantive "history" is still used to mean both "what happened with men", and "the scholarly study of the happened", the latter sense sometimes distinguished with a capital letter, "History", or the word historiography
Historiography
Historiography refers either to the study of the history and methodology of history as a discipline, or to a body of historical work on a specialized topic...

.

Description



Historians write in the context of their own time, and with due regard to the current dominant ideas of how to interpret the past, and sometimes write to provide lessons for their own society. In the words of Benedetto Croce
Benedetto Croce
Benedetto Croce was an Italian idealist philosopher, and occasionally also politician. He wrote on numerous topics, including philosophy, history, methodology of history writing and aesthetics, and was a prominent liberal, although he opposed laissez-faire free trade...

, "All history is contemporary history". History is facilitated by the formation of a 'true discourse of past' through the production of narrative and analysis of past events relating to the human race. The modern discipline of history is dedicated to the institutional production of this discourse.

All events that are remembered and preserved in some authentic form constitute the historical record. The task of historical discourse is to identify the sources which can most usefully contribute to the production of accurate accounts of past. Therefore, the constitution of the historian's archive is a result of circumscribing a more general archive by invalidating the usage of certain texts and documents (by falsifying their claims to represent the 'true past').

The study of history has sometimes been classified as part of the humanities
Humanities
The humanities are academic disciplines that study the human condition, using methods that are primarily analytical, critical, or speculative, as distinguished from the mainly empirical approaches of the natural sciences....

 and other times as part of the social sciences
Social sciences
Social science is the field of study concerned with society. "Social science" is commonly used as an umbrella term to refer to a plurality of fields outside of the natural sciences usually exclusive of the administrative or managerial sciences...

. It can also be seen as a bridge between those two broad areas, incorporating methodologies from both. Some individual historians strongly support one or the other classification. In the 20th century, French historian
Historian
A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is regarded as an authority on it. Historians are concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the study of all history in time. If the individual is...

 Fernand Braudel
Fernand Braudel
Fernand Braudel was a French historian and a leader of the Annales School. His scholarship focused on three main projects, each representing several decades of intense study: The Mediterranean , Civilization and Capitalism , and the unfinished Identity of France...

 revolutionized the study of history, by using such outside disciplines as economics
Economics
Economics is the social science that analyzes the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services. The term economics comes from the Ancient Greek from + , hence "rules of the house"...

, anthropology
Anthropology
Anthropology is the study of humanity. It has origins in the humanities, the natural sciences, and the social sciences. The term "anthropology" is from the Greek anthrōpos , "man", understood to mean mankind or humanity, and -logia , "discourse" or "study", and was first used in 1501 by German...

, and geography
Geography
Geography is the science that studies the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of Earth. A literal translation would be "to describe or write about the Earth". The first person to use the word "geography" was Eratosthenes...

 in the study of global history.

Traditionally, historians have recorded events of the past, either in writing or by passing on an oral tradition
Oral tradition
Oral tradition and oral lore is cultural material and traditions transmitted orally from one generation to another. The messages or testimony are verbally transmitted in speech or song and may take the form, for example, of folktales, sayings, ballads, songs, or chants...

, and have attempted to answer historical questions through the study of written documents and oral accounts. For the beginning, historians have also used such sources as monuments, inscriptions, and pictures. In general, the sources of historical knowledge can be separated into three categories: what is written, what is said, and what is physically preserved, and historians often consult all three. But writing is the marker that separates history from what comes before.

Archaeology
Archaeology
Archaeology, or archeology , is the study of human society, primarily through the recovery and analysis of the material culture and environmental data that they have left behind, which includes artifacts, architecture, biofacts and cultural landscapes...

 is a discipline that is especially helpful in dealing with buried sites and objects, which, once unearthed, contribute to the study of history. But archaeology rarely stands alone. It uses narrative sources to complement its discoveries. However, archaeology is constituted by a range of methodologies and approaches which are independent from history; that is to say, archaeology does not "fill the gaps" within textual sources. Indeed, Historical Archaeology is a specific branch of archaeology, often contrasting its conclusions against those of contemporary textual sources. For example, Mark Leone, the excavator and interpreter of historical Annapolis, Maryland, USA has sought to understand the contradiction between textual documents and the material record, demonstrating the possession of slaves and the inequalities of wealth apparent via the study of the total historical environment, despite the ideology of "liberty" inherent in written documents at this time.

There are varieties of ways in which history can be organized, including chronologically, culturally
Culture
Culture is a term that has many different inter-related meanings. For example, in 1952, Alfred Kroeber and Clyde Kluckhohn compiled a list of 164 definitions of "culture" in Culture: A Critical Review of Concepts and Definitions...

, territorially, and thematically. These divisions are not mutually exclusive, and significant overlaps are often present, as in "The International Women's Movement in an Age of Transition, 1830–1975." It is possible for historians to concern themselves with both the very specific and the very general, although the modern trend has been toward specialization. The area called Big History
Big History
Big History is a field of historical study that examines history on large scales across long time frames through a multidisciplinary approach, focusing on both the history of the non-human world and on major adaptations and alterations in the human experience...

 resists this specialization, and searches for universal patterns or trends. History has often been studied with some practical or theoretical
Theory
The English word theory was derived from a technical term in Ancient Greek philosophy. The word theoria, , meant "a looking at, viewing, beholding", and referring to contemplation or speculation, as opposed to action...

 aim, but also may be studied out of simple intellectual curiosity.

History and prehistory


The history of the world
History of the world
The history of the world or human history is the history of humanity from the earliest times to the present, in all places on Earth, beginning with the Paleolithic Era. It excludes non-human natural history and geological history, except insofar as the natural world substantially affects human lives...

 is the memory of the past experience
Experience
Experience as a general concept comprises knowledge of or skill in or observation of some thing or some event gained through involvement in or exposure to that thing or event....

 of Homo sapiens sapiens around the world, as that experience has been preserved, largely in written records. By "prehistory", historians mean the recovery of knowledge of the past in an area where no written records exist, or where the writing of a culture is not understood. Human history is marked both by a gradual accretion of discoveries and inventions, as well as by quantum leap
Quantum leap
In physics and chemistry, an atomic electron transition is a change of an electron from one quantum state to another within an atom...

s — paradigm shift
Paradigm shift
A Paradigm shift is, according to Thomas Kuhn in his influential book The Structure of Scientific Revolutions , a change in the basic assumptions, or paradigms, within the ruling theory of science...

s, revolution
Revolution
A revolution is a fundamental change in power or organizational structures that takes place in a relatively short period of time.Aristotle described two types of political revolution:...

s — that comprise epochs in the material and spiritual evolution of humankind. By studying painting, drawings, carvings, and other artifacts, some information can be recovered even in the absence of a written record. Since the 20th century, the study of prehistory is considered essential to avoid history's implicit exclusion of certain civilizations, such as those of Sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa as a geographical term refers to the area of the African continent which lies south of the Sahara. A political definition of Sub-Saharan Africa, instead, covers all African countries which are fully or partially located south of the Sahara...

 and pre-Columbian
Pre-Columbian
The pre-Columbian era incorporates all period subdivisions in the history and prehistory of the Americas before the appearance of significant European influences on the American continents, spanning the time of the original settlement in the Upper Paleolithic period to European colonization during...

 America. Historians in the West have been criticized for focusing disproportionately on the Western world
Western world
The Western world, also known as the West and the Occident , is a term referring to the countries of Western Europe , the countries of the Americas, as well all countries of Northern and Central Europe, Australia and New Zealand...

. In 1961, British historian E. H. Carr wrote:

This definition includes within the scope of history the strong interests of peoples, such as Australian Aboriginals and New Zealand Māori in the past, and the oral records maintained and transmitted to succeeding generations, even before their contact with European civilization.

Historiography



Historiography has a number of related meanings. Firstly, it can refer to how history has been produced: the story of the development of methodology
Historical method
Historical method comprises the techniques and guidelines by which historians use primary sources and other evidence to research and then to write histories in the form of accounts of the past. The question of the nature, and even the possibility, of a sound historical method is raised in the...

 and practices (for example, the move from short-term biographical narrative towards long-term thematic analysis). Secondly, it can refer to what has been produced: a specific body of historical writing (for example, "medieval historiography during the 1960s" means "Works of medieval history written during the 1960s"). Thirdly, it may refer to why history is produced: the Philosophy of history
Philosophy of history
The term philosophy of history refers to the theoretical aspect of history, in two senses. It is customary to distinguish critical philosophy of history from speculative philosophy of history...

. As a meta-level analysis of descriptions of the past, this third conception can relate to the first two in that the analysis usually focuses on the narratives, interpretations, worldview, use of evidence
Evidence
Evidence in its broadest sense includes everything that is used to determine or demonstrate the truth of an assertion. Giving or procuring evidence is the process of using those things that are either presumed to be true, or were themselves proven via evidence, to demonstrate an assertion's truth...

, or method of presentation of other historian
Historian
A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is regarded as an authority on it. Historians are concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the study of all history in time. If the individual is...

s. Professional historians also debate the question of whether history can be taught as a single coherent narrative or a series of competing narratives.

Philosophy of history

  • What is the proper unit for the study of the human past — the individual? The polis? The civilization? The culture? Or the nation state?
  • Are there broad patterns and progress? Are there cycles? Is human history random and devoid of any meaning?

Philosophy of history is a branch of philosophy concerning the eventual significance, if any, of human history. Furthermore, it speculates as to a possible teleological end to its development—that is, it asks if there is a design, purpose, directive principle, or finality in the processes of human history. Philosophy of history should not be confused with historiography, which is the study of history as an academic discipline, and thus concerns its methods and practices, and its development as a discipline over time. Nor should philosophy of history be confused with the history of philosophy
History of philosophy
The history of philosophy is the study of philosophical ideas and concepts through time. Issues specifically related to history of philosophy might include : How can changes in philosophy be accounted for historically? What drives the development of thought in its historical context? To what...

, which is the study of the development of philosophical ideas through time.

Historical methods




The following questions are used by historians in modern work.
  1. When was the source, written or unwritten, produced (date
    Calendar date
    A date in a calendar is a reference to a particular day represented within a calendar system. The calendar date allows the specific day to be identified. The number of days between two dates may be calculated. For example, "24 " is ten days after "14 " in the Gregorian calendar. The date of a...

    )?
  2. Where was it produced (localization
    Internationalization and localization
    In computing, internationalization and localization are means of adapting computer software to different languages, regional differences and technical requirements of a target market...

    )?
  3. By whom was it produced (authorship)?
  4. From what pre-existing material was it produced (analysis)?
  5. In what original form was it produced (integrity
    Integrity
    Integrity is a concept of consistency of actions, values, methods, measures, principles, expectations, and outcomes. In ethics, integrity is regarded as the honesty and truthfulness or accuracy of one's actions...

    )?
  6. What is the evidential value of its contents (credibility
    Credibility
    Credibility refers to the objective and subjective components of the believability of a source or message.Traditionally, modern, credibility has two key components: trustworthiness and expertise, which both have objective and subjective components. Trustworthiness is based more on subjective...

    )?

The first four are known as higher criticism; the fifth, lower criticism; and, together, external criticism. The sixth and final inquiry about a source is called internal criticism.


The historical method comprises the techniques and guidelines by which historian
Historian
A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is regarded as an authority on it. Historians are concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the study of all history in time. If the individual is...

s use primary source
Primary source
Primary source is a term used in a number of disciplines to describe source material that is closest to the person, information, period, or idea being studied....

s and other evidence to research and then to write history
Historiography
Historiography refers either to the study of the history and methodology of history as a discipline, or to a body of historical work on a specialized topic...

.

Herodotus
Herodotus
Herodotus was an ancient Greek historian who was born in Halicarnassus, Caria and lived in the 5th century BC . He has been called the "Father of History", and was the first historian known to collect his materials systematically, test their accuracy to a certain extent and arrange them in a...

 of Halicarnassus
Halicarnassus
Halicarnassus was an ancient Greek city at the site of modern Bodrum in Turkey. It was located in southwest Caria on a picturesque, advantageous site on the Ceramic Gulf. The city was famous for the tomb of Mausolus, the origin of the word mausoleum, built between 353 BC and 350 BC, and...

 (484 BC – ca.425 BC) has generally been acclaimed as the "father of history". However, his contemporary Thucydides
Thucydides
Thucydides was a Greek historian and author from Alimos. His History of the Peloponnesian War recounts the 5th century BC war between Sparta and Athens to the year 411 BC...

 (ca. 460 BC – ca. 400 BC) is credited with having first approached history with a well-developed historical method in his work the History of the Peloponnesian War
History of the Peloponnesian War
The History of the Peloponnesian War is an account of the Peloponnesian War in Ancient Greece, fought between the Peloponnesian League and the Delian League . It was written by Thucydides, an Athenian general who served in the war. It is widely considered a classic and regarded as one of the...

. Thucydides, unlike Herodotus, regarded history as being the product of the choices and actions of human beings, and looked at cause and effect, rather than as the result of divine intervention. In his historical method, Thucydides emphasized chronology, a neutral point of view, and that the human world was the result of the actions of human beings. Greek historians also viewed history as cyclical
Historic recurrence
Historic recurrence is the repetition of similar events in history. In the extreme, the concept hypothetically assumes the form of the Doctrine of Eternal Recurrence, which has been written about in various forms since antiquity and was described in the 19th century by Heinrich Heine and Friedrich...

, with events regularly recurring.

There were historical traditions and sophisticated use of historical method in ancient and medieval China
China
Chinese civilization may refer to:* China for more general discussion of the country.* Chinese culture* Greater China, the transnational community of ethnic Chinese.* History of China* Sinosphere, the area historically affected by Chinese culture...

. The groundwork for professional historiography in East Asia
East Asia
East Asia or Eastern Asia is a subregion of Asia that can be defined in either geographical or cultural terms...

 was established by the Han Dynasty
Han Dynasty
The Han Dynasty was the second imperial dynasty of China, preceded by the Qin Dynasty and succeeded by the Three Kingdoms . It was founded by the rebel leader Liu Bang, known posthumously as Emperor Gaozu of Han. It was briefly interrupted by the Xin Dynasty of the former regent Wang Mang...

 court historian known as Sima Qian
Sima Qian
Sima Qian was a Prefect of the Grand Scribes of the Han Dynasty. He is regarded as the father of Chinese historiography for his highly praised work, Records of the Grand Historian , a "Jizhuanti"-style general history of China, covering more than two thousand years from the Yellow Emperor to...

 (145–90 BC), author of the Shiji (Records of the Grand Historian
Records of the Grand Historian
The Records of the Grand Historian, also known in English by the Chinese name Shiji , written from 109 BC to 91 BC, was the Magnum opus of Sima Qian, in which he recounted Chinese history from the time of the Yellow Emperor until his own time...

). For the quality of his timeless written work, Sima Qian is posthumously known as the Father of Chinese Historiography
Chinese historiography
Chinese historiography refers to the study of methods and assumptions made in studying Chinese history.-History of Chinese Historians:Record of Chinese history dated back to the Shang Dynasty. The Classic of History, one of the Five Classics of Chinese classic texts is one of the earliest...

. Chinese historians of subsequent dynastic periods in China used his Shiji as the official format for historical texts
Twenty-Four Histories
The Twenty-Four Histories is a collection of Chinese historical books covering a period from 3000 BC to the Ming Dynasty in the 17th century. The whole set contains 3213 volumes and about 40 million words...

, as well as for biographical literature.

Saint Augustine
Augustine of Hippo
Augustine of Hippo , also known as Augustine, St. Augustine, St. Austin, St. Augoustinos, Blessed Augustine, or St. Augustine the Blessed, was Bishop of Hippo Regius . He was a Latin-speaking philosopher and theologian who lived in the Roman Africa Province...

 was influential in Christian
Western Christianity
Western Christianity is a term used to include the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church and groups historically derivative thereof, including the churches of the Anglican and Protestant traditions, which share common attributes that can be traced back to their medieval heritage...

 and Western thought
Western thought
The term Western thought is usually associated with the cultural tradition that traces its origins to Greek thought and the Abrahamic religions...

 at the beginning of the medieval period. Through the Medieval and Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

 periods, history was often studied through a sacred
Sacred history
The term sacred history is sometimes used in theology for the parts of the Torah narrative on the boundary of historicity, especially the Moses and Exodus stories which can be argued to have a remote historical nucleus without any positive evidence to the effect.In a wider sense, the term is used...

 or religious perspective. Around 1800, German philosopher and historian Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel
Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel was a German philosopher, one of the creators of German Idealism. His historicist and idealist account of reality as a whole revolutionized European philosophy and was an important precursor to Continental philosophy and Marxism.Hegel developed a comprehensive...

 brought philosophy
Philosophy
Philosophy is the study of general and fundamental problems, such as those connected with existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. Philosophy is distinguished from other ways of addressing such problems by its critical, generally systematic approach and its reliance on rational...

 and a more secular approach in historical study.

In the preface to his book, the Muqaddimah
Muqaddimah
The Muqaddimah , also known as the Muqaddimah of Ibn Khaldun or the Prolegomena , is a book written by the Maghrebian Muslim historian Ibn Khaldun in 1377 which records an early view of universal history...

(1377), the Arab historian
Historiography of early Islam
The historiography of early Islam refers to the study of the early origins of Islam based on a critical analysis, evaluation, and examination of authentic primary source materials and the organization of these sources into a narative timeline....

 and early sociologist, Ibn Khaldun
Ibn Khaldun
Ibn Khaldūn or Ibn Khaldoun was an Arab Tunisian historiographer and historian who is often viewed as one of the forerunners of modern historiography, sociology and economics...

, warned of seven mistakes that he thought that historians regularly committed. In this criticism, he approached the past as strange and in need of interpretation. The originality of Ibn Khaldun was to claim that the cultural difference of another age must govern the evaluation of relevant historical material, to distinguish the principles according to which it might be possible to attempt the evaluation, and lastly, to feel the need for experience, in addition to rational principles, in order to assess a culture of the past. Ibn Khaldun often criticized "idle superstition
Superstition
Superstition is a belief in supernatural causality: that one event leads to the cause of another without any process in the physical world linking the two events....

 and uncritical acceptance of historical data." As a result, he introduced a scientific method
Scientific method
Scientific method refers to a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on gathering empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of...

 to the study of history, and he often referred to it as his "new science". His historical method also laid the groundwork for the observation of the role of state
State (polity)
A state is an organized political community, living under a government. States may be sovereign and may enjoy a monopoly on the legal initiation of force and are not dependent on, or subject to any other power or state. Many states are federated states which participate in a federal union...

, communication
Communication
Communication is the activity of conveying meaningful information. Communication requires a sender, a message, and an intended recipient, although the receiver need not be present or aware of the sender's intent to communicate at the time of communication; thus communication can occur across vast...

, propaganda
Propaganda
Propaganda is a form of communication that is aimed at influencing the attitude of a community toward some cause or position so as to benefit oneself or one's group....

 and systematic bias in history, and he is thus considered to be the "father of historiography" or the "father of the philosophy of history".

In the West historians developed modern methods of historiography in the 17th and 18th centuries, especially in France and Germany. The 19th century historian with greatest influence on methods was Leopold von Ranke
Leopold von Ranke
Leopold von Ranke was a German historian, considered one of the founders of modern source-based history. Ranke set the standards for much of later historical writing, introducing such ideas as reliance on primary sources , an emphasis on narrative history and especially international politics .-...

 in Germany.

In the 20th century, academic historians focused less on epic nationalistic narratives, which often tended to glorify the nation or individuals, to more objective and complex analyses of social and intellectual forces. A major trend of historical methodology in the 20th century was a tendency to treat history more as a social science rather than as an art
Art
Art is the product or process of deliberately arranging items in a way that influences and affects one or more of the senses, emotions, and intellect....

, which traditionally had been the case. Some of the leading advocates of history as a social science were a diverse collection of scholars which included Fernand Braudel
Fernand Braudel
Fernand Braudel was a French historian and a leader of the Annales School. His scholarship focused on three main projects, each representing several decades of intense study: The Mediterranean , Civilization and Capitalism , and the unfinished Identity of France...

, E. H. Carr, Fritz Fischer
Fritz Fischer
Fritz Fischer was a German historian best known for his analysis of the causes of World War I. Fischer has been described by The Encyclopedia of Historians and Historical Writing as the most important German historian of the 20th century.-Biography:Fischer was born in Ludwigsstadt in Bavaria. His...

, Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie
Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie
Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie is a French historian whose work is mainly focused upon Languedoc in the ancien regime, particularly the history of the peasantry.-Early life and career:...

, Hans-Ulrich Wehler
Hans-Ulrich Wehler
Hans-Ulrich Wehler is a German historian known for his role in promoting social history through the "Bielefeld School", and for his critical studies of 19th century Germany.-Career:...

, Bruce Trigger
Bruce Trigger
Bruce Graham Trigger, was a Canadian archaeologist, anthropologist, and ethnohistorian.Born in Preston, Ontario, he received a doctorate in archaeology from Yale University in 1964. His research interests at that time included the history of archaeological research and the comparative study of...

, Marc Bloch
Marc Bloch
Marc Léopold Benjamin Bloch was a French historian who cofounded the highly influential Annales School of French social history. Bloch was a quintessential modernist. An assimilated Alsatian Jew from an academic family in Paris, he was deeply affected in his youth by the Dreyfus Affair...

, Karl Dietrich Bracher
Karl Dietrich Bracher
Karl Dietrich Bracher is a German political scientist and historian of the Weimar Republic and Nazi Germany. Born in Stuttgart, Bracher was awarded a Ph.D. in the Classics by the University of Tübingen in 1948 and subsequently studied at Harvard University from 1949 to 1950...

, Peter Gay
Peter Gay
Peter Gay is Sterling Professor of History Emeritus at Yale University and former director of the New York Public Library's Center for Scholars and Writers . Gay received the American Historical Association's Award for Scholarly Distinction in 2004...

, Robert Fogel
Robert Fogel
Robert William Fogel is an American economic historian and scientist, and winner of the 1993 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. He is now the Charles R. Walgreen Distinguished Service Professor of American Institutions and director of the Center for Population Economics at the...

, Lucien Febvre
Lucien Febvre
Lucien Febvre was a French historian best known for the role he played in establishing the Annales School of history. He has designed the Encyclopédie française together with Anatole de Monzie.-Biography:...

 and Lawrence Stone
Lawrence Stone
Lawrence Stone was an English historian of early modern Britain. He is noted for his work on the English Civil War and marriage.-Biography:...

. Many of the advocates of history as a social science were or are noted for their multi-disciplinary approach. Braudel combined history with geography, Bracher history with political science, Fogel history with economics, Gay history with psychology, Trigger history with archeology while Wehler, Bloch, Fischer, Stone, Febvre and Le Roy Ladurie have in varying and differing ways amalgamated history with sociology, geography, anthropology, and economics. More recently, the field of digital history
Digital history
Digital history is the use of digital media and tools for historical practice, presentation, analysis, and research. It is a branch of the Digital Humanities and an outgrowth of Quantitative history, Cliometrics, and History and Computing...

 has begun to address ways of using computer technology to pose new questions to historical data and generate digital scholarship.

In opposition to the claims of history as a social science, historians such as Hugh Trevor-Roper, John Lukacs
John Lukacs
John Adalbert Lukacs is a Hungarian-born American historian who has written more than thirty books, including Five Days in London, May 1940 and A New Republic...

, Donald Creighton
Donald Creighton
Donald Grant Creighton, was a noted Canadian historian.-Background:Born in Toronto, the son of Methodist minister, Creighton attended Victoria College, in the University of Toronto, where he received his BA in 1925...

, Gertrude Himmelfarb
Gertrude Himmelfarb
Gertrude Himmelfarb , also known as Bea Kristol, is an American historian. She has written extensively on intellectual history, with a focus on Britain and the Victorian era, as well as on contemporary society and culture....

 and Gerhard Ritter
Gerhard Ritter
Gerhard Georg Bernhard Ritter was a conservative German historian.-Before the Third Reich:...

 argued that the key to the historians' work was the power of the imagination
Imagination
Imagination, also called the faculty of imagining, is the ability of forming mental images, sensations and concepts, in a moment when they are not perceived through sight, hearing or other senses...

, and hence contended that history should be understood as an art. French historians associated with the Annales School
Annales School
The Annales School is a group of historians associated with a style of historiography developed by French historians in the 20th century. It is named after its scholarly journal Annales d'histoire économique et sociale, which remains the main source of scholarship, along with many books and...

 introduced quantitative history, using raw data to track the lives of typical individuals, and were prominent in the establishment of cultural history
Cultural history
The term cultural history refers both to an academic discipline and to its subject matter.Cultural history, as a discipline, at least in its common definition since the 1970s, often combines the approaches of anthropology and history to look at popular cultural traditions and cultural...

 (cf. histoire des mentalités). Intellectual historians such as Herbert Butterfield
Herbert Butterfield
Sir Herbert Butterfield was a British historian and philosopher of history who is remembered chiefly for two books—a short volume early in his career entitled The Whig Interpretation of History and his Origins of Modern Science...

, Ernst Nolte
Ernst Nolte
Ernst Nolte is a German historian and philosopher. Nolte’s major interest is the comparative studies of Fascism and Communism. He is Professor Emeritus of Modern History at the Free University of Berlin, where he taught from 1973 to 1991. He was previously a Professor at the University of Marburg...

 and George Mosse
George Mosse
George Lachmann Mosse was a German-born American social and cultural historian. Mosse authored 25 books on a variety of fields, from English constitutional law, Lutheran theology, to the history of fascism, Jewish history, and the history of masculinity...

 have argued for the significance of ideas in history. American historians, motivated by the civil rights era, focused on formerly overlooked ethnic, racial, and socio-economic groups. Another genre of social history
Social history
Social history, often called the new social history, is a branch of History that includes history of ordinary people and their strategies of coping with life. In its "golden age" it was a major growth field in the 1960s and 1970s among scholars, and still is well represented in history departments...

 to emerge in the post-WWII era was Alltagsgeschichte
Alltagsgeschichte
Alltagsgeschichte is a form of microhistory that was particularly prevalent amongst German historians during the 1980s. It was founded by historians Alf Luedtke and Hans Medick....

(History of Everyday Life). Scholars such as Martin Broszat
Martin Broszat
Martin Broszat was a German historian specializing in modern German social history whose work has been described by The Encyclopedia of Historians as indispensable for any serious study of the Third Reich. Broszat was born in Leipzig, Germany and studied history at the University of Leipzig and...

, Ian Kershaw
Ian Kershaw
Sir Ian Kershaw is a British historian of 20th-century Germany whose work has chiefly focused on the period of the Third Reich...

 and Detlev Peukert
Detlev Peukert
Detlev Peukert was a German historian, noted for his studies of the relationship between what he called the "spirit of science" and the Holocaust and in social history and the Weimar Republic. Peukert taught modern history at the University of Essen and served as director of the Research Institute...

 sought to examine what everyday life was like for ordinary people in 20th century Germany, especially in the Nazi period.

Marxist historians
Marxist historiography
Marxist or historical materialist historiography is a school of historiography influenced by Marxism. The chief tenets of Marxist historiography are the centrality of social class and economic constraints in determining historical outcomes....

 such as Eric Hobsbawm
Eric Hobsbawm
Eric John Ernest Hobsbawm , CH, FBA, is a British Marxist historian, public intellectual, and author...

, E. P. Thompson
E. P. Thompson
Edward Palmer Thompson was a British historian, writer, socialist and peace campaigner. He is probably best known today for his historical work on the British radical movements in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, in particular The Making of the English Working Class...

, Rodney Hilton
Rodney Hilton
Rodney Howard Hilton, , was an English Marxist historian of the late medieval period and the transition from feudalism to capitalism. He was born in Manchester and studied at Balliol College Oxford University and was a member of the Communist Party Historians Group before leaving the party in 1956...

, Georges Lefebvre
Georges Lefebvre
Georges Lefebvre was a French historian, best known for his work on the French Revolution and peasant life. He coined the term "history from below", which was later popularised by the British Marxist Historians...

, Eugene D. Genovese
Eugene D. Genovese
Eugene Dominic Genovese is an American historian of the American South and American slavery. He has been noted for bringing a Marxist perspective to the study of power, class and relations between planters and slaves in the South. His work Roll, Jordan, Roll: The World the Slaves Made won the...

, Isaac Deutscher
Isaac Deutscher
Isaac Deutscher was a Polish-born Jewish Marxist writer, journalist and political activist who moved to the United Kingdom at the outbreak of World War II. He is best known as a biographer of Leon Trotsky and Joseph Stalin and as a commentator on Soviet affairs...

, C. L. R. James
C. L. R. James
Cyril Lionel Robert James , who sometimes wrote under the pen-name J.R. Johnson, was an Afro-Trinidadian historian, journalist, socialist theorist and essayist. His works are influential in various theoretical, social, and historiographical contexts...

, Timothy Mason
Timothy Mason
Timothy Wright Mason was a British Marxist historian of Nazi Germany.-Life and work:He was born in Birkenhead, the child of school-teachers and was educated at Birkenhead School and Oxford University. He taught at Oxford from 1971–1984 and was twice married. He helped to found the...

, Herbert Aptheker
Herbert Aptheker
Herbert Aptheker was an American Marxist historian and political activist. He authored over 50 volumes, mostly in the fields of African American history and general U.S. history, most notably, American Negro Slave Revolts , a classic in the field, and the 7-volume Documentary History of the Negro...

, Arno J. Mayer
Arno J. Mayer
Arno Joseph Mayer is a United States Marxist historian originally from Luxembourg, who specializes in modern Europe, diplomatic history, and the Holocaust, and is currently Dayton-Stockton Professor of History, Emeritus, at Princeton University.-Early life and academic career:Mayer was born into a...

 and Christopher Hill
Christopher Hill (historian)
John Edward Christopher Hill , usually known simply as Christopher Hill, was an English Marxist historian and author of textbooks....

 have sought to validate Karl Marx
Karl Marx
Karl Heinrich Marx was a German philosopher, economist, sociologist, historian, journalist, and revolutionary socialist. His ideas played a significant role in the development of social science and the socialist political movement...

's theories by analyzing history from a Marxist perspective. In response to the Marxist interpretation of history, historians such as François Furet
François Furet
-Biography:Born in Paris on 27 March 1927, into a wealthy family, François Furet was a brilliant student who graduated from the Sorbonne with the highest honors and soon decided on a life of research, teaching and writing. He received his education at the Lycée Janson de Sailly and at the faculty...

, Richard Pipes
Richard Pipes
Richard Edgar Pipes is an American academic who specializes in Russian history, particularly with respect to the Soviet Union...

, J. C. D. Clark
J. C. D. Clark
Jonathan Charles Douglas Clark is a British historian of both British and American history. He received his undergraduate degreee at Downing College, Cambridge. Having previously held posts at Peterhouse, Cambridge and All Souls College, Oxford into 1996, he has since held the Joyce C...

, Roland Mousnier
Roland Mousnier
Roland Émile Mousnier was a French historian of the early modern period in France and of the comparative studies of different civilizations.-Life:...

, Henry Ashby Turner
Henry Ashby Turner
Henry Ashby Turner, Jr. was an American historian of Germany who was a professor at Yale University for over forty years...

 and Robert Conquest
Robert Conquest
George Robert Ackworth Conquest CMG is a British historian who became a well-known writer and researcher on the Soviet Union with the publication in 1968 of The Great Terror, an account of Stalin's purges of the 1930s...

 have offered anti-Marxist interpretations of history. Feminist
Feminism
Feminism is a collection of movements aimed at defining, establishing, and defending equal political, economic, and social rights and equal opportunities for women. Its concepts overlap with those of women's rights...

 historians such as Joan Wallach Scott, Claudia Koonz
Claudia Koonz
Claudia Ann Koonz is an American feminist historian of Nazi Germany. Her principal area of interest is the experience of women during the Nazi era.-Career overview:...

, Natalie Zemon Davis
Natalie Zemon Davis
Natalie Zemon Davis is a Canadian and American historian of the early modern period. She is currently a professor of history at the University of Toronto in Canada. Her work originally focused on France, but has since broadened to include other parts of Europe, North America, and the Caribbean...

, Sheila Rowbotham
Sheila Rowbotham
Sheila Rowbotham is a British socialist feminist theorist and writer.-Early life:Rowbotham was born in Leeds, the daughter of a salesman for an engineering company and an office clerk From an early age, she was deeply interested in history...

, Gisela Bock
Gisela Bock
Gisela Bock is a German feminist historian. She studied in Freiburg, Berlin, Paris and Rome. She took her doctorate at the Free University Berlin in 1971 and her Habilitation at the Technical University Berlin in 1984...

, Gerda Lerner
Gerda Lerner
Gerda Lerner is a historian, author and teacher. She is a professor emerita of history at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and a visiting scholar at Duke University...

, Elizabeth Fox-Genovese
Elizabeth Fox-Genovese
Elizabeth Ann Fox-Genovese was a feminist American historian particularly known for her writing about women in the Antebellum South...

, and Lynn Hunt
Lynn Hunt
Lynn Avery Hunt is the Eugen Weber Professor of Modern European History at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her area of expertise is the French Revolution, but she is also well known for her work in European cultural history on such topics as gender...

 have argued for the importance of studying the experience of women in the past. In recent years, postmodernists
Postmodernism
Postmodernism is a philosophical movement evolved in reaction to modernism, the tendency in contemporary culture to accept only objective truth and to be inherently suspicious towards a global cultural narrative or meta-narrative. Postmodernist thought is an intentional departure from the...

 have challenged the validity and need for the study of history on the basis that all history is based on the personal interpretation of sources. In his 1997 book In Defence of History, Richard J. Evans
Richard J. Evans
Richard John Evans is a British academic and historian, prominently known for his history of Germany.-Life:Evans was born in London, of Welsh parentage, and is now Regius Professor of Modern History at the University of Cambridge and President of Wolfson College...

, a professor of modern history at Cambridge University
University of Cambridge
The University of Cambridge is a public research university located in Cambridge, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest university in both the United Kingdom and the English-speaking world , and the seventh-oldest globally...

, defended the worth of history. Another defence of history from post-modernist criticism was the Australian historian Keith Windschuttle
Keith Windschuttle
Keith Windschuttle is an Australian writer, historian, and ABC board member, who has authored several books from the 1970s onwards. These include Unemployment, , which analysed the economic causes and social consequences of unemployment in Australia and advocated a socialist response; The Media: a...

's 1994 book, The Killing of History.

Historians


Professional and amateur historians discover, collect, organize, and present information about past events. In lists of historians, historians can be grouped by order of the historical period in which they were writing, which is not necessarily the same as the period in which they specialized. Chroniclers and annalists, though they are not historians in the true sense, are also frequently included.

Areas of study



Particular studies and fields

These are approaches to history; not listed are histories of other fields, such as history of science
History of science
The history of science is the study of the historical development of human understandings of the natural world and the domains of the social sciences....

, history of mathematics
History of mathematics
The area of study known as the history of mathematics is primarily an investigation into the origin of discoveries in mathematics and, to a lesser extent, an investigation into the mathematical methods and notation of the past....

 and history of philosophy
History of philosophy
The history of philosophy is the study of philosophical ideas and concepts through time. Issues specifically related to history of philosophy might include : How can changes in philosophy be accounted for historically? What drives the development of thought in its historical context? To what...

.
  • Ancient history
    Ancient history
    Ancient history is the study of the written past from the beginning of recorded human history to the Early Middle Ages. The span of recorded history is roughly 5,000 years, with Cuneiform script, the oldest discovered form of coherent writing, from the protoliterate period around the 30th century BC...

     : the study from the beginning of human history until the Early Middle Ages.
  • Atlantic history
    Atlantic history
    Atlantic history is a specialty field in history that studies of the Atlantic World in the early modern period. It is premised on the idea that, following the rise of sustained European contact with the New World in the 16th century, the continents that bordered the Atlantic Ocean—the...

    : the study of the history of people living on or near the Atlantic Ocean.
  • Art History
    Art history
    Art history has historically been understood as the academic study of objects of art in their historical development and stylistic contexts, i.e. genre, design, format, and style...

    : the study of changes in and social context of art.
  • Big History
    Big History
    Big History is a field of historical study that examines history on large scales across long time frames through a multidisciplinary approach, focusing on both the history of the non-human world and on major adaptations and alterations in the human experience...

    : study of history on a large scale across long time frames and epoch
    Epoch (reference date)
    In the fields of chronology and periodization, an epoch is an instance in time chosen as the origin of a particular era. The "epoch" then serves as a reference point from which time is measured...

    s through a multi-disciplinary approach.
  • Chronology
    Chronology
    Chronology is the science of arranging events in their order of occurrence in time, such as the use of a timeline or sequence of events. It is also "the determination of the actual temporal sequence of past events".Chronology is part of periodization...

    : science of localizing historical events in time.
  • Comparative history
    Comparative history
    Comparative history is the comparison of different societies which existed during the same time period or shared similar cultural conditions. The comparative history of societies emerged as an important specialty among intellectuals in the Enlightenment in the 18th century, as typified by...

    : historical analysis of social and cultural entities not confined to national boundaries.
  • Contemporary history
    Contemporary history
    Contemporary history describes the period timeframe that is without any intervening time closely connected to the present and is a certain perspective of modern history. The term "contemporary history" has been in use at least by the early 19th century. In the widest context of this use,...

    : the study of historical events that are immediately relevant to the present time.
  • Counterfactual history: the study of historical events as they might have happened in different causal circumstances.
  • Cultural history
    Cultural history
    The term cultural history refers both to an academic discipline and to its subject matter.Cultural history, as a discipline, at least in its common definition since the 1970s, often combines the approaches of anthropology and history to look at popular cultural traditions and cultural...

    : the study of culture in the past.
  • Digital History
    Digital history
    Digital history is the use of digital media and tools for historical practice, presentation, analysis, and research. It is a branch of the Digital Humanities and an outgrowth of Quantitative history, Cliometrics, and History and Computing...

    : the use of computing technologies to produce digital scholarship.
  • Economic History
    Economic history
    Economic history is the study of economies or economic phenomena in the past. Analysis in economic history is undertaken using a combination of historical methods, statistical methods and by applying economic theory to historical situations and institutions...

    : the study of economies in the past.
  • Futurology
    Futurology
    Futures studies is the study of postulating possible, probable, and preferable futures and the worldviews and myths that underlie them. There is a debate as to whether this discipline is an art or science. In general, it can be considered as a branch under the more general scope of the field of...

    : study of the future: researches the medium to long-term future of societies and of the physical world.
  • Intellectual history
    Intellectual history
    Note: this article concerns the discipline of intellectual history, and not its object, the whole span of human thought since the invention of writing. For clarifications about the latter topic, please consult the writings of the intellectual historians listed here and entries on individual...

    : the study of ideas in the context of the cultures that produced them and their development over time.
  • Maritime history
    Maritime history
    Maritime history is the study of human activity at sea. It covers a broad thematic element of history that often uses a global approach, although national and regional histories remain predominant...

    : the study of maritime transport and all the connected subjects.
  • Modern history
    Modern history
    Modern history, or the modern era, describes the historical timeline after the Middle Ages. Modern history can be further broken down into the early modern period and the late modern period after the French Revolution and the Industrial Revolution...

     : the study of the Modern Times, the era after the Middle Ages.
  • Military History
    Military history
    Military history is a humanities discipline within the scope of general historical recording of armed conflict in the history of humanity, and its impact on the societies, their cultures, economies and changing intra and international relationships....

    : the study of warfare and wars in history and what is sometimes considered to be a sub-branch of military history, Naval History
    Naval History
    Naval History is a bi-monthly magazine published by the United States Naval Institute since 1987. The 72-page publication not only includes feature articles spanning the course of Naval History written by significant scholars of their subject, but also has standing features including: "Looking...

    .
  • Natural history
    Natural history
    Natural history is the scientific research of plants or animals, leaning more towards observational rather than experimental methods of study, and encompasses more research published in magazines than in academic journals. Grouped among the natural sciences, natural history is the systematic study...

    : the study of the development of the cosmos
    Timeline of the Big Bang
    This timeline of the Big Bang describes the history of the universe according to the prevailing scientific theory of how the universe came into being, using the cosmological time parameter of comoving coordinates...

    , the Earth
    History of Earth
    The history of the Earth describes the most important events and fundamental stages in the development of the planet Earth from its formation 4.578 billion years ago to the present day. Nearly all branches of natural science have contributed to the understanding of the main events of the Earth's...

    , biology
    Timeline of evolution
    This timeline of evolution of life outlines the major events in the development of life on planet Earth since it first originated until the present day. In biology, evolution is any change across successive generations in the heritable characteristics of biological populations...

     and interactions thereof.
  • Paleography: study of ancient texts.
  • People's history
    People's history
    A people's history or history from below is a type of historical narrative which attempts to account for historical events from the perspective of common people rather than political and other leaders.-Description:...

    : historical work from the perspective of common people.
  • Political history
    Political history
    Political history is the narrative and analysis of political events, ideas, movements, and leaders. It is distinct from, but related to, other fields of history such as Diplomatic history, social history, economic history, and military history, as well as constitutional history and public...

    : the study of politics in the past.
  • Psychohistory
    Psychohistory
    Psychohistory is the study of the psychological motivations of historical events. It attempts to combine the insights of psychotherapy with the research methodology of the social sciences to understand the emotional origin of the social and political behavior of groups and nations, past and present...

    : study of the psychological motivations of historical events.
  • Pseudohistory
    Pseudohistory
    Pseudohistory is a pejorative term applied to a type of historical revisionism, often involving sensational claims whose acceptance would require rewriting a significant amount of commonly accepted history, and based on methods that depart from standard historiographical conventions.Cryptohistory...

    : study about the past that falls outside the domain of mainstream history (sometimes it is an equivalent of pseudoscience
    Pseudoscience
    Pseudoscience is a claim, belief, or practice which is presented as scientific, but which does not adhere to a valid scientific method, lacks supporting evidence or plausibility, cannot be reliably tested, or otherwise lacks scientific status...

    ).
  • Social History
    Social history
    Social history, often called the new social history, is a branch of History that includes history of ordinary people and their strategies of coping with life. In its "golden age" it was a major growth field in the 1960s and 1970s among scholars, and still is well represented in history departments...

    : the study of the process of social change throughout history.
  • Universal history
    Universal history
    Universal history is basic to the Western tradition of historiography, especially the Abrahamic wellspring of that tradition. Simply stated, universal history is the presentation of the history of humankind as a whole, as a coherent unit.-Ancient authors:...

    : basic to the Western tradition of historiography.
  • Women's history
    Women's history
    Women's history is the study of the role that women have played in history, together with the methods needed to study women. It includes the study of the history of the growth of woman's rights throughout recorded history, the examination of individual women of historical significance, and the...

    : the history of female human beings. Gender history
    Gender history
    Gender history is a sub-field of History and Gender studies, which looks at the past from the perspective of gender. It is in many ways, an outgrowth of women's history.-Impact:...

     is related and covers the perspective of gender.
  • World History
    World History
    World History, Global History or Transnational history is a field of historical study that emerged as a distinct academic field in the 1980s. It examines history from a global perspective...

    : the study of history from a global perspective.

Periods



Historical study often focuses on events and developments that occur in particular blocks of time. Historians give these periods of time
Periodization
Periodization is the attempt to categorize or divide time into named blocks. The result is a descriptive abstraction that provides a useful handle on periods of time with relatively stable characteristics...

 names in order to allow "organising ideas and classificatory generalisations" to be used by historians. The names given to a period can vary with geographical location, as can the dates of the start and end of a particular period. Centuries and decade
Decade
A decade is a period of 10 years. The word is derived from the Ancient Greek dekas which means ten. This etymology is sometime confused with the Latin decas and dies , which is not correct....

s are commonly used periods and the time they represent depends on the dating system
Calendar era
A calendar era is the year numbering system used by a calendar. For example, the Gregorian calendar numbers its years in the Western Christian era . The instant, date, or year from which time is marked is called the epoch of the era...

 used. Most periods are constructed retrospectively and so reflect value judgments made about the past. The way periods are constructed and the names given to them can affect the way they are viewed and studied.

Geographical locations


Particular geographical locations can form the basis of historical study, for example, continent
Continent
A continent is one of several very large landmasses on Earth. They are generally identified by convention rather than any strict criteria, with seven regions commonly regarded as continents—they are : Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Antarctica, Europe, and Australia.Plate tectonics is...

s, countries and cities. Understanding why historic events took place is important. To do this, historians often turn to geography
Geography
Geography is the science that studies the lands, features, inhabitants, and phenomena of Earth. A literal translation would be "to describe or write about the Earth". The first person to use the word "geography" was Eratosthenes...

. Weather patterns, the water supply, and the landscape of a place all affect the lives of the people who live there. For example, to explain why the ancient Egyptians developed a successful civilization, studying the geography of Egypt
Geography of Egypt
The Geography of Egypt relates to two regions: Southwest Asia and North Africa.Egypt has coastlines on both the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea. The country borders Libya to the west, the Gaza Strip and Israel to the east, and Sudan to the south...

 is essential. Egyptian civilization was built on the banks of the Nile River, which flooded each year, depositing soil on its banks. The rich soil could help farmers grow enough crops to feed the people in the cities. That meant everyone did not have to farm, so some people could perform other jobs that helped develop the civilization.

World



World history is the study of major civilizations over the last 3000 years or so. It has led to highly controversial interpretations by Oswald Spengler
Oswald Spengler
Oswald Manuel Arnold Gottfried Spengler was a German historian and philosopher whose interests also included mathematics, science, and art. He is best known for his book The Decline of the West , published in 1918, which puts forth a cyclical theory of the rise and decline of civilizations...

 and Arnold J. Toynbee
Arnold J. Toynbee
Arnold Joseph Toynbee CH was a British historian whose twelve-volume analysis of the rise and fall of civilizations, A Study of History, 1934–1961, was a synthesis of world history, a metahistory based on universal rhythms of rise, flowering and decline, which examined history from a global...

, among others. World history is especially important as a teaching field. It has increasingly entered the university curriculum in the U.S., in many cases replacing courses in Western Civilization, that had a focus on Europe and the U.S. World history adds extensive new material on Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Regions

  • History of Africa
    History of Africa
    The history of Africa begins with the prehistory of Africa and the emergence of Homo sapiens in East Africa, continuing into the present as a patchwork of diverse and politically developing nation states. Agriculture began about 10,000 BCE and metallurgy in about 4000 BCE. The history of early...

     begins with the first emergence of modern human beings on the continent, continuing into its modern present as a patchwork of diverse and politically developing nation states.
  • History of the Americas
    History of the Americas
    The history of the Americas is the collective history of the American landmass, which includes North and South America, as well as Central America and the Caribbean. It begins with people migrating to these areas from Asia during the height of an Ice Age...

     is the collective history of North and South America, including Central America and the Caribbean.
    • History of North America
      History of North America
      The history of North America is the study of the past, particularly the written record, oral histories, and traditions, passed down from generation to generation on the continent in the Earth's northern hemisphere and western hemisphere....

       is the study of the past passed down from generation to generation on the continent in the Earth's northern and western hemisphere.
    • History of Central America
      History of Central America
      The history of Central America is the study of the past of the region known as Central America.- Before European contact :In pre-Columbian times, most of modern Central America was part of the Mesoamerican civilization. The Native American societies of Mesoamerica occupied the land ranging from...

       is the study of the past passed down from generation to generation on the continent in the Earth's western hemisphere.
    • History of the Caribbean
      History of the Caribbean
      The history of the Caribbean reveals the significant role the region played in the colonial struggles of the European powers since the 15th century. In the 20th century the Caribbean was again important during World War II, in decolonization wave in the post-war period, and in the tension between...

       begins with the oldest evidence where 7,000-year-old remains have been found.
    • History of South America
      History of South America
      The history of South America is the study of the past, particularly the written record, oral histories, and traditions, passed down from generation to generation on the continent in the Earth's western hemisphere and southern hemisphere. South America has a history that spans a wide range of human...

       is the study of the past passed down from generation to generation on the continent in the Earth's southern and western hemisphere.
  • History of Antarctica
    History of Antarctica
    The history of Antarctica emerges from early Western theories of a vast continent, known as Terra Australis, believed to exist in the far south of the globe...

     emerges from early Western theories of a vast continent, known as Terra Australis, believed to exist in the far south of the globe.
  • History of Australia
    History of Australia
    The History of Australia refers to the history of the area and people of Commonwealth of Australia and its preceding Indigenous and colonial societies. Aboriginal Australians are believed to have first arrived on the Australian mainland by boat from the Indonesian archipelago between 40,000 to...

     start with the documentation of the Makassar trading with Indigenous Australians on Australia's north coast.
  • History of New Zealand
    History of New Zealand
    The history of New Zealand dates back at least 700 years to when it was discovered and settled by Polynesians, who developed a distinct Māori culture centred on kinship links and land. The first European explorer to discover New Zealand was Abel Janszoon Tasman on 13 December 1642...

     dates back at least 700 years to when it was discovered and settled by Polynesians, who developed a distinct Māori culture centred on kinship links and land.
  • History of the Pacific Islands
    History of the Pacific Islands
    History of the Pacific Islands covers the history of the islands in the Pacific Ocean.-Easter Island – Rapanui:Easter Island is one of the youngest inhabited territories on Earth, and for most of the History of Easter Island it was the most isolated inhabited territory on Earth...

     covers the history of the islands in the Pacific Ocean.
  • History of Eurasia
    History of Eurasia
    The history of Eurasia is the collective history of a continental area with several distinct peripheral coastal regions: the Middle East, South Asia, East Asia, Southeast Asia, and Europe, linked by the interior mass of the Eurasian steppe of Central Asia and Eastern Europe...

     is the collective history of several distinct peripheral coastal regions: the Middle East, South Asia, East Asia, Southeast Asia, and Europe, linked by the interior mass of the Eurasian steppe of Central Asia and Eastern Europe.
    • History of Europe
      History of Europe
      History of Europe describes the history of humans inhabiting the European continent since it was first populated in prehistoric times to present, with the first human settlement between 45,000 and 25,000 BC.-Overview:...

       describes the passage of time from humans inhabiting the European continent to the present day.
    • History of Asia
      History of Asia
      The history of Asia can be seen as the collective history of several distinct peripheral coastal regions such as, East Asia, South Asia, and the Middle East linked by the interior mass of the Eurasian steppe....

       can be seen as the collective history of several distinct peripheral coastal regions, East Asia, South Asia, and the Middle East linked by the interior mass of the Eurasian steppe.
      • History of East Asia
        History of East Asia
        -Prehistory:In East Asia, the Neolithic period may have begun as early as 7500 BC. The earliest evidence suggests the existence of the Pengtoushan culture in northern Hunan province from about 7500 BC to 6100 BC and of the Peiligang culture in Henan province around from about 7000 BC to 5000...

         is the study of the past passed down from generation to generation in East Asia.
      • History of the Middle East
        History of the Middle East
        This article is a general overview of the history of the Middle East. For more detailed information, see articles on the histories of individual countries and regions...

         begins with the earliest civilizations in the region now known as the Middle East that were established around 3000 BC, in Mesopotamia (Iraq).
      • History of South Asia
        History of South Asia
        The term South Asia refers to the contemporary political entities of the Indian subcontinent and associated island. These are the states of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan and the island nations of Sri Lanka and the Maldives....

         is the study of the past passed down from generation to generation in the Sub-Himalayan region.
      • History of Southeast Asia
        History of Southeast Asia
        The history of Southeast Asia has been characterized as interaction between regional players and foreign powers. Each country is intertwined with all the others. For instance, the Malay empires of Srivijaya and Malacca covered modern day Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore while the Burmese, Thai,...

         has been characterized as interaction between regional players and foreign powers.

Military history


Military history
Military history
Military history is a humanities discipline within the scope of general historical recording of armed conflict in the history of humanity, and its impact on the societies, their cultures, economies and changing intra and international relationships....

 concerns warfare, strategies, battles, weapons, and the psychology of combat. The "new military history" since the 1970s has been concerned with soldiers more than generals, with psychology more than tactics, and with the broader impact of warfare on society and culture.

History of religion


The history of religion has been a main theme for both secular and religious historians for centuries, and continues to be taught in seminaries and academe. Leading journals include Church History, Catholic Historical Review
Catholic Historical Review
The Catholic Historical Review is the official organ of the American Catholic Historical Association. It was founded at The Catholic University of America in 1915 and is published by The Catholic University of America Press. The journal publishes articles and book reviews received in all areas of...

, and History of Religions. Topics range widely from political and cultural and artistic dimensions, to theology and liturgy. Every major country is covered, and most smaller ones as well.

Social history



Social history, sometimes called the new social history, is the field that includes history of ordinary people and their strategies and institutions for coping with life. In its "golden age" it was a major growth field in the 1960s and 1970s among scholars, and still is well represented in history departments. In two decades from 1975 to 1995, the proportion of professors of history in American universities identifying with social history rose from 31% to 41%, while the proportion of political historians fell from 40% to 30%. In the history departments of British universities in 2007, of the 5723 faculty members, 1644 (29%) identified themselves with social history while political history
Political history
Political history is the narrative and analysis of political events, ideas, movements, and leaders. It is distinct from, but related to, other fields of history such as Diplomatic history, social history, economic history, and military history, as well as constitutional history and public...

 came next with 1425 (25%).
The "old" social history before the 1960s was a hodgepodge of topics without a central theme, and it often included political movements, like Populism, that were "social" in the sense of being outside the elite system. Social history was contrasted with political history
Political history
Political history is the narrative and analysis of political events, ideas, movements, and leaders. It is distinct from, but related to, other fields of history such as Diplomatic history, social history, economic history, and military history, as well as constitutional history and public...

, intellectual history
Intellectual history
Note: this article concerns the discipline of intellectual history, and not its object, the whole span of human thought since the invention of writing. For clarifications about the latter topic, please consult the writings of the intellectual historians listed here and entries on individual...

 and the history of great men
Great man theory
The Great Man Theory was a popular 19th century idea according to which history can be largely explained by the impact of "great men", or heroes: highly influential individuals who, due to either their personal charisma, intelligence, wisdom, or Machiavellianism utilized their power in a way that...

. English historian G. M. Trevelyan
G. M. Trevelyan
George Macaulay Trevelyan, OM, CBE, FRS, FBA , was a British historian. Trevelyan was the third son of Sir George Otto Trevelyan, 2nd Baronet, and great-nephew of Thomas Babington Macaulay, whose staunch liberal Whig principles he espoused in accessible works of literate narrative avoiding a...

 saw it as the bridging point between economic and political history, reflecting that, "Without social history, economic history is barren and political history unintelligible." While the field has often been viewed negatively as history with the politics left out, it has also been defended as "history with the people put back in."

Subfields


The chief subfields of social history include:
  • Demographic history
    Demographic history
    Demographic history may refer to:*Historical demography*Paleodemography*Prehistoric demography*Classical demography*Medieval demography*Historical world population-See also:*demographic history by region or country**Americas...

  • Black history
  • History of education
    History of education
    The history of education its part of the past and present teaching and learning. Each generation, since the beginning of human existence, has sought to pass on cultural and social values, traditions, morality, religion and skills to the next generation. The passing on of culture is also known as...

  • Ethnic history
    Ethnic history
    Ethnic history is a branch of social history that studies ethnic groups and immigrants. Barkan argues that the field allows historians to use alternate models of interpretation, unite qualitative and quantitative data, apply sociological models to historical patterns, examine more deeply...

  • Family history
    Family history
    Family history is the systematic narrative and research of past events relating to a specific family, or specific families.- Introduction :...

  • Labor history
    Labor history
    Labor history may refer to:* Labor history , a subfield of the discipline of history**Labor history of the United States, describes the history of organized labor, as well as the more general history of working people, in the United States...

  • Rural history
    Rural history
    Rural history is historical research into rural life. Agricultural history handles the economic and technological dimensions, while rural history handles the social dimension...

  • Urban history
    Urban History
    Urban history is a field of history that examines the historical nature of cities and towns, and the process of urbanization. The approach tends to be multidisciplinary, crossing boundaries into fields like social history, architectural history, urban sociology, urban geography and archaeology.At...


  • Cultural history



    Cultural history replaced social history
    Social history
    Social history, often called the new social history, is a branch of History that includes history of ordinary people and their strategies of coping with life. In its "golden age" it was a major growth field in the 1960s and 1970s among scholars, and still is well represented in history departments...

     as the dominant form in the 1980s and 1990s. It typically combines the approaches of anthropology and history to look at language, popular cultural traditions and cultural interpretations of historical experience. It examines the records and narrative descriptions of past knowledge, customs, and arts of a group of people. How peoples constructed their memory of the past is a major topic.

    Diplomatic history



    Diplomatic history
    Diplomatic history
    Diplomatic history deals with the history of international relations between states. Diplomatic history can be different from international relations in that the former can concern itself with the foreign policy of one state while the latter deals with relations between two or more states...

    , sometimes referred to as "Rankian History" in honor of Leopold von Ranke
    Leopold von Ranke
    Leopold von Ranke was a German historian, considered one of the founders of modern source-based history. Ranke set the standards for much of later historical writing, introducing such ideas as reliance on primary sources , an emphasis on narrative history and especially international politics .-...

    , focuses on politics
    Politics
    Politics is a process by which groups of people make collective decisions. The term is generally applied to the art or science of running governmental or state affairs, including behavior within civil governments, but also applies to institutions, fields, and special interest groups such as the...

    , politicians and other high rulers and views them as being the driving force of continuity and change in history. This type of political history is the study of the conduct of international relations between states or across state boundaries over time. This is the most common form of history and is often the classical and popular belief of what history should be.

    Economic history



    Although economic history has been well established since the late 19th century, in recent years academic studies have shifted more and more toward economics departments and away from traditional history departments.

    Environmental history



    Environmental history is a new field that emerged in the 1980s to look at the history of the environment, especially in the long run, and the impact of human activities upon it.

    World history



    World history is primarily a teaching field, rather than a research field. It gained popularity in the United States, Japan and other countries after the 1980s with the realization that students need a broader exposure to the world as globalization proceeds.

    The World History Association publishes the Journal of World History every quarter since 1990. The H-World discussion list serves as a network of communication among practitioners of world history, with discussions among scholars, announcements, syllabi, bibliographies and book reviews.

    People's history



    A people's history
    People's history
    A people's history or history from below is a type of historical narrative which attempts to account for historical events from the perspective of common people rather than political and other leaders.-Description:...

     is a type of historical work which attempts to account for historical events from the perspective of common people
    Populism
    Populism can be defined as an ideology, political philosophy, or type of discourse. Generally, a common theme compares "the people" against "the elite", and urges social and political system changes. It can also be defined as a rhetorical style employed by members of various political or social...

    . A people's history is the history of the world that is the story of mass movements and of the outsiders. Individuals not included in the past in other type of writing about history are part of this theory's primary focus, which includes the disenfranchised
    Disfranchisement
    Disfranchisement is the revocation of the right of suffrage of a person or group of people, or rendering a person's vote less effective, or ineffective...

    , the oppressed
    Oppression
    Oppression is the exercise of authority or power in a burdensome, cruel, or unjust manner. It can also be defined as an act or instance of oppressing, the state of being oppressed, and the feeling of being heavily burdened, mentally or physically, by troubles, adverse conditions, and...

    , the poor
    Poverty
    Poverty is the lack of a certain amount of material possessions or money. Absolute poverty or destitution is inability to afford basic human needs, which commonly includes clean and fresh water, nutrition, health care, education, clothing and shelter. About 1.7 billion people are estimated to live...

    , the nonconformists
    Nonconformism
    Nonconformity is the refusal to "conform" to, or follow, the governance and usages of the Church of England by the Protestant Christians of England and Wales.- Origins and use:...

    , and the otherwise forgotten people. This theory also usually focuses on events occurring in the fullness of time, or when an overwhelming wave of smaller events cause certain developments to occur.

    Historiometry



    Historiometry
    Historiometry
    Historiometry is the historical study of human progress or individual personal characteristics, using statistics to analyze references to geniuses, their statements, behavior and discoveries in relatively neutral texts...

     is a historical study of human progress or individual personal characteristics, by using statistics to analyze references to eminent persons, their statements, behavior and discoveries in relatively neutral texts.

    Gender history



    Gender history
    Gender history
    Gender history is a sub-field of History and Gender studies, which looks at the past from the perspective of gender. It is in many ways, an outgrowth of women's history.-Impact:...

     is a sub-field of History and Gender studies
    Gender studies
    Gender studies is a field of interdisciplinary study which analyses race, ethnicity, sexuality and location.Gender study has many different forms. One view exposed by the philosopher Simone de Beauvoir said: "One is not born a woman, one becomes one"...

    , which looks at the past from the perspective of gender
    Gender
    Gender is a range of characteristics used to distinguish between males and females, particularly in the cases of men and women and the masculine and feminine attributes assigned to them. Depending on the context, the discriminating characteristics vary from sex to social role to gender identity...

    . It is in many ways, an outgrowth of women's history
    Women's history
    Women's history is the study of the role that women have played in history, together with the methods needed to study women. It includes the study of the history of the growth of woman's rights throughout recorded history, the examination of individual women of historical significance, and the...

    . Despite its relatively short life, Gender History (and its forerunner Women's History) has had a rather significant effect on the general study of history. Since the 1960s, when the initially small field first achieved a measure of acceptance, it has gone through a number of different phases, each with its own challenges and outcomes. Although some of the changes to the study of history have been quite obvious, such as increased numbers of books on famous women or simply the admission of greater numbers of women into the historical profession, other influences are more subtle.

    Public history



    Public history
    Public history
    Public history is a term that describes the broad range of activities undertaken by people with some training in the discipline of history who are generally working outside of specialized academic settings. Public history practice has quite deep roots in the areas of historic preservation,...

     is a term that describes the broad range of activities undertaken by people with some training in the discipline of history who are generally working outside of specialized academic settings. Public history practice has quite deep roots in the areas of historic preservation, archival science, oral history, museum curatorship, and other related fields. The term itself began to be used in the U.S. and Canada in the late 1970s, and the field has become increasingly professionalized since that time. Some of the most common settings for public history are museums, historic homes and historic sites, parks, battlefields, archives, film and television companies, and all levels of government.

    Pseudohistory


    Pseudohistory
    Pseudohistory
    Pseudohistory is a pejorative term applied to a type of historical revisionism, often involving sensational claims whose acceptance would require rewriting a significant amount of commonly accepted history, and based on methods that depart from standard historiographical conventions.Cryptohistory...

    is a term applied to texts which purport to be historical in nature but which depart from standard historiographical conventions
    Historical method
    Historical method comprises the techniques and guidelines by which historians use primary sources and other evidence to research and then to write histories in the form of accounts of the past. The question of the nature, and even the possibility, of a sound historical method is raised in the...

     in a way which undermines their conclusions.
    Closely related to deceptive historical revisionsm
    Historical revisionism (negationism)
    Historical revisionism is either the legitimate scholastic re-examination of existing knowledge about a historical event, or the illegitimate distortion of the historical record such that certain events appear in a more or less favourable light. For the former, i.e. the academic pursuit, see...

    , works which draw controversial conclusions from new, speculative, or disputed historical evidence, particularly in the fields of national, political, military, and religious affairs, are often rejected as pseudohistory.

    Teaching history


    From the origins of national school systems in the 19th century, the teaching of history to promote national sentiment has been a high priority. In the United States after World War I, a strong movement emerged at the university level to teach courses in Western Civilization, so as to give students a common heritage with Europe.

    At the university level, historians debate the question of whether history belongs more to social science or to the humanities. Many view the field from both perspectives.

    The teaching of history in French schools was influenced by the Nouvelle histoire
    Nouvelle histoire
    The term new history from the French term nouvelle histoire, was coined by Jacques Le Goff and Pierre Nora, leaders of the third generation of the Annales School, in the 1970s...

     as disseminated after the 1960s by Cahiers pédagogiques and Enseignement and other journals for teachers. Also influential was the Institut national de recherche et de documentation pédagogique, (INRDP). Joseph Leif, the Inspector-general of teacher training, said pupils children should learn about historians’ approaches as well as facts and dates. Louis François, Dean of the History/Geography group in the Inspectorate of National Education advised that teachers should provide historic documents and promote "active methods" which would give pupils "the immense happiness of discovery." Proponents said it was a reaction against the memorization of names and dates that characterized teaching and left the students bored. Traditionalists protested loudly it was a postmodern innovation that threatened to leave the youth ignorant of French patriotism and national identity.

    Political correctness



    In many countries history textbooks have been censored to put the national story in a more favorable light. For example, in Japan, mention of the Nanking Massacre
    Nanking Massacre
    The Nanking Massacre or Nanjing Massacre, also known as the Rape of Nanking, was a mass murder, genocide and war rape that occurred during the six-week period following the Japanese capture of the city of Nanjing , the former capital of the Republic of China, on December 13, 1937 during the Second...

     has been removed from textbooks and the entire World War II is given cursory treatment. Other countries have complained. It was standard policy in communist countries to present only a rigid Marxist historiography.

    In the United States the history of the American Civil War
    American Civil War
    The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

     was phrased to avoid giving offense to white Southerners and blacks.

    Academic historians have often fought against the politicization of the textbooks, sometimes with success.

    In 21st century Germany, the history curriculum is controlled by the 16 states, and is characterized not by superpatriotism but rather by an "almost pacifistic and deliberately unpatriotic undertone" and reflects "principles formulated by international organizations such as UNESCO or the Council of Europe, thus oriented towards human rights, democracy and peace." The result is that "German textbooks usually downplay national pride and ambitions and aim to develop an understanding of citizenship centred on democracy, progress, human rights, peace, tolerance and Europeanness."

    See also


    • Annal
    • Auxiliary sciences of history
      Auxiliary sciences of history
      Auxiliary sciences of history are scholarly disciplines which help evaluate and use historical sources and are seen as auxiliary for historical research...

    • Chronicle
      Chronicle
      Generally a chronicle is a historical account of facts and events ranged in chronological order, as in a time line. Typically, equal weight is given for historically important events and local events, the purpose being the recording of events that occurred, seen from the perspective of the...

    • Historian
      Historian
      A historian is a person who studies and writes about the past and is regarded as an authority on it. Historians are concerned with the continuous, methodical narrative and research of past events as relating to the human race; as well as the study of all history in time. If the individual is...

    • List of historians
    • History Journal
      History Journal
      A history journal is an academic serial publication designed to present new scholarship on a historical subject, usually a subfield of history, with articles generally being subjected to peer review.-History and development:...

    • Historiography
      Historiography
      Historiography refers either to the study of the history and methodology of history as a discipline, or to a body of historical work on a specialized topic...

    • List of history journals
    • Timeline of world history
      Timeline of world history
      The timeline of world history details recorded events since the creation of writing roughly 5000 years ago to the present day.*For events from ≈3350 BCE to ≈500 CE see: Timeline of ancient history...


    External links