Topics: History, Herodotus, Historian Pages: 8 (1129 words) Published: December 2, 2013

Ext. History Revision
History- What historians chose to interpret from the surviving evidence of the past Source + Historians = Histories
All historians have their own views and interests due to their upbringing hence that the process of selection and interpretation distorts our ‘knowledge’ further. Issues in historiography
Training of historians
Objectivity in history
Oral societies and history
Problems of historical research
Universal history
Evidence- selection
Source- How?
Truth- Consensuses
Context/ Perspectives
Selection- Who decides?
Ideology- Reputation, perspective, emerging ideas, lack of evidence Language and technique- To place emphasis and how historians chose to say Methodology- How the way you put the sources? (cross-examine, verification) Facts in history

History from ‘above or below’
Judgement- Whose?
History and Ideology- Political beliefs influence
Explicit vs. Implicit
Something clearly or implied
Form of literature- poems, speech

“What are historical facts?” – Carl Becker
1. History is subjective- personal desires and prejudices (history changes along with society’s values) 2. History is interpreted differently between people (interpreting what in the past is though) 3. History cannot be re-enacted as a series of events

4. History is written on how much the Historian can extract from the evidence and his knowledge- background, audience, purpose, motive. 5. History is pre-occupied with ‘cold’ and ‘hard’ facts and not small detail (the obvious history)

Case Study: Herodotus
The historian
Born at Halicarnassus (485 BC – 425 BC)
Exiled due to conspiring against Persians
Merchant and traveller
Greek Historian
Cannot be free form bias (critical judgement)
Educated (upper class)
Harnessed ill feelings towards Persian

Motive and Purpose for Writing
“These are the researches of Herodotus of Halicarnassus, which he publishes, in the hope of thereby preserving from decay the remembrance of what men have done, and of preventing the great and wonderful actions of the Greeks and the foreigners from losing their due need of glory; and to put on record what were their grounds of feud” To commemorate

To preserve the memory of the past by putting on record the astonishing achievements both of his and other people and more particularly. To show how they come into conflict To record the “glory” of Greeks

To record stories even where truth is impossible (fantasises, legends) Inspired by Home and Hecateus

Methodology and Technique
Witness accounts
The Mind

Language and Style (words and phrases chosen, speeches, audience) Future Generations
People’s viewpoint/ interpretation
Honour Home and Hecateus
Orally- entertaining
Conflicting accounts

Type of History
Anthropology- study of mankind
Traditions, cultures and religious stories- oracles, wonders, marvels, dreams, myths, omens, sacrifices, prophecies, fables Societies- common practices
Orators, politicians, demagogues, battles and warriors

Constructed and recorded
Books- customs, legends, history and tradition (The Histories) War between Persia and Greece
Social and literary narrative
Similar work style from predecessors (Homer and Hecateus: oral historians) Knowledge from his extensive travels
Consulted witnesses and examined whenever possible and dreams, oracles and portents His opinion on plausible reports from implausible ones
Intention of publishing hence being bias (perspective)
Poetry (exaggeration)

Impact of the historian on historiography
Set a ‘standard’ no matter what (guidelines and rules)
Creation of Western historical writing
Include everything/ everybody
Based on research
Establishes historical writing as freely...
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