Historiography and Historical Practice
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Level: Graduate
Division: The New School for Social Research
Department: Historical Studies
Course Number: GHIS 6133
Course Format: Seminar
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
Historiography is the study of historical research, writing, representation, and practice. It interrogates what constitutes history as a distinct discipline and mode of inquiry within the social sciences and humanities and instructs students in how to frame — as people and practitioners — their own relationship to history. Some graduate classes on historiography assume that we all know what history is, and peruse cultural, social, political, and gendered approaches to the past in a survey of "schools" of historical writing. This class puzzles over what the past is and what it means to be in dialogue with it, examining the promise and pitfalls of any approach. The course will both look at classic articulations of the question "what is history?", meta-historical reflections on the meaning and vocation of history, distinctions between history as such and historical memory, and seminal works that frame the relationship between theory and empirical research, how we frame the past and the past itself with special sophistication and power. Readings include Marx, Adorno, Todorov, LaCapra, White, Jameson, Stallybrass and White, Fussel, and Lewis. Our goal is to model both ways of both understanding history itself and the execution of research projects that enact various approaches.
Course Open to: Degree Students with Restrictions


Not open to Undergraduate students.