FIFTY different conceptions of his work in fields such

FIFTY
KEY THINKERS ON HISTORY

 

1.  
THUCYDIDES

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Who is the historian?

Thucydides (c.460
B.C.–c.400 B.C.) was born
in the Athenian suburb of Halimos around 460 B.C and was in Athens during the plague of c.430 B.C. He was one of the greatest ancient historians and author of the History of the Peloponnesian War, which recounts the struggle between Athens and Sparta in the
5th century BC. His work was the first recorded political and moral analysis of a nation’s war policies.

 

 

The influences of the historian

Thucydides’ History has had
an influence on both ancient and modern historiography. It was
embraced by the author’s contemporaries and immediate successors with
enthusiasm; many authors sought to complete the unfinished history. Three
historians all began their histories of Greece where Thucydides left off.

 

The historical view of the historian

Most historians:

The reception of Thucydides focuses on the question
of who was reading Thucydides and what exactly they were reading.
Reinterpretation is about the way that Thucydides was understood as a writer
and an authority. To historians, for example, he is a vital source for ancient
Greek history, but has also been seen as a model for history-writing in
general; to political theorists, however, he is a pioneering political theorist,
and the originator of ‘realist’ approaches to understanding political life. The
final project theme then considers Thucydides’ influence on the modern world,
the impact of these different conceptions of his work in fields such as
International Relations and military education.

 

English philosopher; Thomas Hobbs:

Believed Thucydides used inveted speeches to convey
his doubts about democracy

 

Hughes Warrington view of the historian
and their writings

 

Believed
he was didligent in his research

He
tells us how he wrote his speeches

He
used speeches not only ‘keeping as close as possible to the overall sense’ but
more: he used his speeches to explain the motives and ambitions of individuals
and states but also to draw out important themes.

 

 

 

2.  
LIVY

Who is the historian?

Livy(Titus
Livius) born 59/64 BC, in Padua, Italy and is one of the three great
Roman historians. His history of Rome became a classic
in his own lifetime and exercised a profound influence on the style and
philosophy of historical writing down to the 18th century.

 

Little
is known about Livy’s life and nothing about his family background. 

Livy
began by composing and publishing in units of five books, the length of which
was determined by the size of the ancient papyrus roll. 

 

 

The influences of the historian

Until Livy’s death, he wrote on his History of
Rome from its foundation. 

 

The historical view of the historian

–     
Emperor Gaius
Caligula dubbed him ‘a verbose and careless historian’

–     
To him history should not
just inform the reader but elevate him as well – what some saw as moral
education.

–     
Unfortunately, many of those
historians who followed him criticized him for not being an original researcher
and called him careless for not verifying many of his facts. While he used
several of the sources available at the time, he was dismissed as being merely
a writer and not a true academic.

 

Hughes Warrington view of the historian
and their writings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3.  
GREGORY OF TOURS

Who is the historian?

–      The
Frankish bishop and historian St. Gregory of Tours (538-594) was a Christian
leader who wrote a valuable history of the Franks.

–      The
son of a prominent family in the territory of the Arverni in south-central
France, Gregory was born on Nov. 30, 538

–      He produced
a history of the Frankish people which, despite its being overly long and
crudely written, has become the principal source of knowledge about the
history, language, religion, and social customs of that people. Gregory wrote
from a partisan, Christian point of view, excusing the crimes of those kings
who favored the Church and pointing out the defects in the others.

 

The influences of the historian

It was to this background that Gregory owed much of
his success, and which allowed him to write the works, including ten books of
history usually referred to as the History of the Franks, which
have made him such a prominent figure in modern scholarship on the Middle Ages. 

 

The historical view of the historian

his voice as been a rich source of knowledge for
historians seeking to understand how his world of Roman aristocrats and
Frankish kings functioned, how Christianity spread among pagans, and how the
successor dynasty–the Carolingians–came to power.

 

Hughes Warrington view of the historian
and their writings

 

 

4.  
G.W.F HEGEL

Who is the historian?

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770 – 1831) was a German philosopher
of the early Modern period.
He was a leading
figure in
the German Idealism movement
in the early
19th Century.

Hegel published only
four main books during
his life: 

Hegel was the first major philosopher to regard history and
the Philosophy of History as
important. 

 

 

 

 

The influences of the historian

His influence has been immense,
both within philosophy and in the other sciences, and he came to have a profound
impact on
many future philosophical schools (whether they supported or opposed his
ideas), not the least of which was the Marxism of Karl Marx which
was to have so profound an effect on the political landscape of the 20th
Century.

 

The historical view of the historian

T. Malcolm Knox?
– political thinkers turned to the study of Hegel, particularly his political
works but also his Logic,
because of their influence on Marx. By the time of his bicentennial in 1970, a
Hegelian renaissance was under way.

 

 

Hughes Warrington view of the historian
and their writings

 

 

 

5.  
E.H CARR

 

Who is the historian?

Edward Hallett Carr, (born June 28,
1892, London, England was a British political scientist and historian specializing
in modern Russian history.

 

 

The influences of the historian & The historical view of the
historian

Carr is recognised as a
historian of Modern European history, Soviet History and International,
contemporary history. Carr’s work emphasised the role of the state, power, and
the structure of the international system whilst some of his work also promoted
radical social, economic and foreign policy reform which overlaps with aspects
of Liberal and Marxist ideology.

Carr’s what is history?, has had a clear impact in the
world of education, since it has long been read by students. Professor Alun
Munslow review of What is History?, suggests that ‘the central
ideas in the book constitute today’s mainstream thinking on British historical
practice’.2 The book displays the importance of
the relationship between the historian and the past.

John Tosh, describes Carr’s book as “still
unsurpassed as a stimulating and provocative statement by a radically inclined
scholar”

Furthermore, there are critics towards E. H Carr and his
approach to history. Professor Richard J Evans, in The Two Faces of E. H Carr describes Carr as two different
people. What is History?, is written by Carr the Journalist, whilst A history of Soviet Russia was
written by Carr the Bureaucrat. Carr
been perceived as the eternal outsider, since he lacked any particular ideological
or moral opinion.

 

Hughes Warrington view of the historian
and their writings

 

 

6.  
A.J.P TAYLOR

Who is the historian?

 

A.J.P. Taylor (Alan John Percivale Taylor) was born March 25, 1906, Birkdale in Lancashire (died Sept.
7, 1990, London). He was a British historian
who specialised in 19th- and 20th-century European diplomacy.  He also was a
journalist noted for his lectures on history and for his prose style.

 

 

The influences of the historian

A.J.P. Taylor did not lead
an eventful life in the sense of doing much beyond talking and writing – yet
his influence as a professional historian and as a journalist, particularly in
the new medium of television, was such as to make it understandable that people
should want to know about him

 

As if all this was not
enough, Taylor made an allied reputation as a television star – with the rare
ability to lecture direct to camera and without notes (as in his Oxford
lectures) for a full half-hour. No one else has done such lecturing except on
location or with other visual aids

 

 

 

The historical view of the historian

His combination of academic rigour and popular
appeal led the historian Richard Overy to
describe him as “the Macaulay of our
age”

 

From its first publication
in 1961, A.J.P Taylor’s book, The Origins of the Second World War has
been at the heart of controversy because of his unorthodox treatment of Hitler’s
contribution to the outbreak of war. Key to Taylor’s study is the proposition
that Hitler, should not be charged with complete blame for the war, as if any
countries were in error, it was the allied countries like Britain and France,
rather than Germany alone, that were more at fault.1 Hitler, Taylor argues, did not aim or plan for war,
he simply took opportunities, and was in fact an ordinary statesman of the
period, in the same mould as both his predecessors and contemporaries. Where
Hitler had territorial aims or expansionary goals, many of these were
justified, as in Taylor’s view Germany had a basic, intrinsic right to much of
the territory in her region. It is in the framework of these general arguments
that Taylor clearly supports the inference that WWII was in many aspects a
resumption of the WWI conflict. In Taylor’s eyes, WWII was “… a war which had
been implicit since the moment the first war ended.”3

 

Hughes Warrington view of the historian and their writings

 

 

7.  
ERIC HOBSBAWM

Who is the historian?

Eric John Ernest Hobsbawm (9
June 1917 – 1 October 2012) born in Egypt, was a British Marxist historian
of the rise of industrial capitalism, socialism and nationalism.
His best-known works include his trilogy about what he called the “long 19th
century”, The Age of Extremes on the short 20th century, and an edited volume that
introduced the influential idea of “invented traditions”.

 

The influences of the historian

Eric
Hobsbawm was one of the leading historians of the 20th century, perhaps even
more highly regarded outside than inside the British Isles. He was a Marxist
throughout his adult life and a member of the Communist Party for most of it,
but his influence as an historian and political thinker far transcended those
allegiances. He was a major figure in the creation of the discipline of social
history, and the Age of… trilogy introduced and illuminated modern European
history to a wide audience. In the 1990s he became, perhaps somewhat to his
surprise, one of the major intellectual influences on Neil Kinnock and later on
New Labour.

 

 

The historical view of the historian

 

Eric Hobsbawm reflects upon
the theory, practice and development of history and its relevance to the modern
world.

 

Hughes Warrington view of the historian
and their writings

 

 

8.  
MICHEL FOUCAULT

Who is the historian?

Paul-Michel Foucault (15
October 1926 – 25 June 1984), generally known as Michel Foucault, was a French philosopher, historian of
ideas, social theorist, and literary critic. Foucault’s theories primarily
address the relationship between power and knowledge, and how they are
used as a form of social control through societal institutions.

 

His thought has influenced
academics, especially those working in sociology, cultural
studies, literary theory and critical
theory. Activist groups have also found his theories compelling.

 

 

 

The influences of the historian

Michel Foucault was a major
figure in two successive waves of 20th century French thought–the
structuralist wave of the 1960s and then the poststructuralist wave. By the
premature end of his life, Foucault had some claim to be the most prominent
living intellectual in France.

Foucault’s work is
transdisciplinary in nature, ranging across the concerns of the disciplines of
history, sociology, psychology, and philosophy. 

 

 

The historical view of the historian

Hughes Warrington view of the historian
and their writings