Asking the Wrong Questions

Who matters? Recently, I came across this tweet from the historian Greg Jenner. So, @HistoryExtra asked its readers to nominate the most interesting historical figure – here is the shortlist… #Twitterstorians pic.twitter.com/2dHCqhCEDS — Greg Jenner (@greg_jenner) June 30, 2017 What Greg goes on to point out is just how depressingly predictable the list is. It’s […]

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Plot Like a Poet

There is a collateral danger to the commitment that many historians share to telling the truth about the past: is there only one story to tell? The historians’ options might at first might seem limited, especially when compared to the fiction writer. How would a historian follow James Scott Bell’s advice for planning? To find […]

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Audience in Mind

All falsities in writing – and the consequent dry-rot that spreads into the whole fabric – come from the notion that there is a stylistic ideal which exists in the abstract, like a special language, to which all [writers] might attain.[1] All writing is done for specific audiences. A research article in a specialist historical […]

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