Every piece of historical writing has a theoretical basis on which evidence is selected, filtered, and understood. This book explores the theoretical perspectives and debates that are generally acknowledged to have been the most influential within the university-led practice of history over the past century and a half. It advises readers to bear in mind the following four interlinked themes: context, temporal framework, causation or drivers of change, and subjectivities. The book outlines the principles of empiricism, the founding epistemology of the professional discipline, and explores the ways in which historians have challenged and modified this theory of knowledge over the past century and a half. It then focuses upon three important dimensions of historical materialism in the work of Marxist historians: the dialectical model at the basis of Marx's grand narrative of human history; the adaptations of Marxist theory in Latin America; and the enduring question of class consciousness. The use of psychoanalysis in history, the works of Annales historians and historical sociology is discussed next. The book also examines the influence of two specific approaches that were to be fertile ground for historians: everyday life and symbolic anthropology, and ethnohistory. The roles of narrative, gender history, radical feminism, poststructuralism and postcolonial history are also discussed. Finally, the book outlines the understandings about the nature of memory and remembering, and looks at key developments in the analysis and interpretation of oral histories and oral traditions.
’s self. Within the
The invention of the unconscious
new professionaldiscipline of history, interpretations only became acceptable if they could demonstrate that the interpreted object was somehow
insulated from the infective or partisan concerns of the interpreter. Yet
while the authority of the professional historian’s self (like that of the
kenotic Christ) might rest on its finite circumscription, alternative ways
of historical knowing were also possible.13 At the precise moment that
the historical profession emerged, the clairvoyant and the medium were
Nurses’ First World War memoirs offer significant insights into the suffering endured by the war’s wounded and document the power of professional nursing in alleviating such suffering. They reveal both the tensions inherent in the relationship between professional and volunteer nurses and the ways in which these were often overcome to permit a close and supportive partnership. The social and professional backgrounds of nurses and volunteers had a significant impact on the ways in which they wrote about their wartime nursing experiences. Professionals were more likely to write about their patients than themselves; while volunteers offered sometimes harsh critiques of professional discipline while, at the same time, revealing their fascination with the power of nursing practice. Nurses wrote about their travels and adventures as well as about their nursing work, and some of their texts can be seen to have a ‘heretical’ quality: a few offer powerful exposes of the horror and futility of war.
Empiricism is both a theory of knowledge, an epistemology, and a method of historical enquiry. The core tenets of empirical history remained deeply influential among the historical profession throughout the twentieth century. An exclusive emphasis upon the core principles of empirical epistemology may lead historians to reject understandings of the past based upon different types of historical sources, such as oral tradition or material culture. This chapter outlines the principles of empiricism, the founding epistemology of the professional discipline, and explores the ways in which historians have challenged and modified this theory of knowledge over the past century and a half. It presents an example of empiricist history, taken from one of Geoffrey Elton's most influential works, England Under the Tudors, first published in 1955. His corpus of work focuses primarily upon administrative history, and he also become one of the leading defenders of empiricism as a theory of knowledge.
Historians and their personae in the Portuguese New State
António da Silva Rêgo
Portugal, the professionalization of history took place later than in most other European countries.
Starting in the 1910s, it was clearly discernible only by the 1940s. It was
in this period that historical activity transformed from a relatively solitary
activity, practiced by ‘men of letters’, into a more collective enterprise, with
historians working together in a ‘professionalized’ discipline. At the same
time, in 1926, a military dictatorship was established, which in 1933 turned
into the New State, a fascist regime that lasted until 1974.1 Characterized
Global prospects for the development of co-operatives as instruments of consumer- centred health care
and regulated it.
Disciplinary boundaries between professions and functions existed but
did not define the structure of health-care provision or its ownership.
From the vantage point of the early twenty-first century, it is difficult
to comprehend the scope and scale of consumer sovereignty in health
care that these structures represented. The contemporary fragmentation
in health delivery by professionaldiscipline now runs very deep, and
is buttressed by practitioner-controlled accreditation and regulatory
regimes (oriented to restricting supply), often with
) to deepen your understanding of the vocabulary of theory, and historians’ names to expand your knowledge of both the context and the focus of their research.
The next chapter outlines the principles of empiricism, the founding epistemology of the professionaldiscipline, and explores the ways in which historians have challenged and modified this theory of knowledge over the past century and a half.
1 Geoff Eley, A Crooked Line: From Cultural History to the History of Society (Ann Arbor, 2005), p. ix.
2 George Orwell, Nineteen Eighty
few key themes within the sociology of professions, which are
particularly relevant for analyses of welfare encounters (e.g., Abbott 1988;
Dingwall and Lewis 2014). This short presentation is followed by a discussion of the scholarly literature that centres around how norms outside the
professionaldisciplines affect the work of the professionals (e.g., Broadbent
et al. 1997; Freidson 2004; Noordegraaf 2007; Evetts 2009a; Liljegren
2012). Finally, the chapter concludes by discussing the work of scholars
who address the subject matters of expertise, de
appears that the legal profession has much
to learn about history as a professionaldiscipline, and the value
of the processes, method and analysis techniques of professional
historians, who are not simply ‘gatherers of facts’. In
the context of litigation for native title, the legal profession and
the courts appear to be leaning towards such a limited view of
Jarle Trondal, Martin Marcussen, Torbjörn Larsson and Frode Veggeland
if I can hook into local or Swiss programmes that are working on trade
economics and agricultural economics. I am trying to find ways so that I can
do that. We don’t do that much of that kind of work here, so you have to
be kind of proactive to find the opportunities. (WTO 6)
In the Commission, constraints on purely academic research activities
seem to be greater. One civil servant even thinks that in order to survive
for many years in a public bureaucracy such as the Commission one needs
to spend extra time and effort to keep updated in one’s professional