Edward Hallett Carr

Topics: History, Historian, Writing Pages: 1 (273 words) Published: February 26, 2006
In answering the question, "What is History?" E.H. Carr reasons that history is dependent on the views and opinions of historians. History is "a continuous process of interaction between the historian and his facts, an unending dialogue between the present and the past." His essay examines some interesting points in regards to history and whether much of it is actual truth or simply an interpretation of the facts set before the historian.

Carr compares the writings of Acton and Sir George Clark. Acton, who wrote in the later Victorian age, wrote with a sense of awe and admiration towards history, while Sir George Clark seemed merely bewildered by history. By comparing these two writings, Carr came to this; "our answer, consciously or unconsciously, reflects our own position in time, and forms part of our answer to the broader question what view we take of the society in which we live."

Carr sets the reader up to question any and all history they have ever been exposed to. While some facts are inherently true, all history is reliant someone else's account of the events. Everyone has their own views and opinions of a certain event. This affects in a large way how history is recorded. Carr comes to the conclusion that history is dependent on the historian.

Although it took me a very long time to realize what Carr was trying to say, I agree with Carr when he says that history is "a continuous process of interaction between the historian and his facts." He approached the question "What is history?" from all angles and provided a valid answer the question.
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