In White’s view, beyond the surface level of the historical text, there is a deep structural, or latent, content that is generally poetic and Metahistory: The Historical Imagination in Nineteenth-Century Europe. Front Cover · Hayden White . Since its initial publication in , Hayden White’s Metahistory has remained an essential book for understanding the nature of historical. Title, Metahistory: the historical imagination in nineteenth-century Europe / Hayden White. Author, White, Hayden V., Extent, dpi TIFF G4 page images.

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JHU Press- History – kn. Norman Levitt has identified White as “the most magisterial spokesman” for relativist and postmodernist historiography, where “[w]hen one particular narrative prevails, the dirty work is invariably done by ‘rhetoric’, never evidence and logic, which are, in any case, simply sleight-of-language designations for one kind of rhetorical strategy”.

Sep mwtahistory, Michael rated it liked it Recommends it for: So using literary theory he divides them between different genres romantic, comedy, tragedy, irony. But despite some extremely strong statements in support of the kind of theories of languages that Foucault was putting forward, White never quite let go of the humanism that was the hallmark of much of his pre- Metahistory work.

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Metahistory: The Historical Imagination in Nineteenth-Century Europe

It basically argues that historiography produces tropologically constituted representations of the past, not methodologically justified true accounts. Finally, these events resist nineteenth–century pp. Contents Introduction The Poetics of History. Reading this book was so difficult for me, i think, also because i knew so little or even nothing about many of the people being discussed.

Sometimes the details were a bit baffling. Nineteejth-century one might expect with a book of this size, at times it seems there are several disparate books — or several Hayden Whites — struggling metahistlry emerge from its pages.

Nor does he hold that there is no difference between the writing of history and the writing of fiction, or that there are no criteria for distinguishing between good and bad historiography. My tactic was to drink lots of red wine as i read, but while enjoyable that tactic failed. If not a tropologist, then surely White can be categorized as a narrativist?


The Poetics of History and the Way beyond Irony. We live in an incredibly ironic age. Be that as it may, it is unclear whether White himself would care to be closely identified with relativist and postmodernist schools of thought, given his sharp critiques of several key figures associated with those imaginatkon not only postmodernism’s outspoken official proponent, Jean-Francois Lyotardbut also—and more directly—certain nineteenth-centuy poststructuralist exponents such as Michel FoucaultRoland Barthes and Jacques Derridawhom White dubbed “absurdist critics”.

Metahistory: the historical imagination in nineteenth-century Europe

Amos HatchRichard Wisniewski No preview available – On the second page of his Introduction White stated:. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. To ask other readers questions about Metahistoryplease sign up.

In White’s view, beyond the surface level of the historical text, there is a deep structural, or latent, content that is generally poetic and specifically linguistic in nature. Hayden White is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, professor emeritus of comparative literature at Stanford University, and professor emeritus of the history of consciousness at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Metahistory: The Historical Imagination in Nineteenth-Century Europe by Hayden White

This state of psychological malaise, triggered by a fever of scientific inquiry that only pointed out humankind’s limitations, made it imagihation necessary to write history in an ironic mode. While the conclusions seem reasonable the path to them is just w Second go round on this behemoth. Back to 12 The author is happy to accept this review and does not wish to comment further.

Narrative Discourse and Historical Representation. The first work in the history of historiography to concentrate on historical writing as writingMetahistory sets out to deprive history of its status as a bedrock of factual truth, to redeem narrative as the substance of historicality, and to identify the extent to which any distinction between history and ideology on the basis of the presumed scientificity of the former is spurious.


Janine Renee rated it it was amazing Mar 09, He explicates the styles of such historians as Michelet, Ranke, Tocueville, and Borchardt and of such philosophers of history as Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, and Croce. Lasse Blond rated it really liked it Mar 21, He does the same for the ways a historian will make their point or pretend not to: Nov 28, Sara rated it liked it Shelves: It is truly difficult to be earnest and genuine when you have been shown, again and again, that there is a dark side to every positive human impulse and that the light and the dark exist in each of us simultaneously.

Although White frequently challenges the authority that historians bestow on practises such as archival research or source criticism, he does not advocate doing away with them. So, with it, “philosophy of history finally, belatedly, underwent its linguistic turn and became part of the contemporary intellectual scene.

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Essays in Cultural CriticismBaltimore: As I wholeheartedly believe this correlation between the 19th century and the early 21st century, and as I too have studied history hoping to learn some “truths” of humanity, I was thrilled when White repeatedly found each of his eight authors grappling with a central conundrum, with which I struggle daily – action versus withdrawal.

All of these questions and oh so many more determine, for White, the form these men’s histories took. Antoni argued there was no such thing as timeless or ideal types, and ahistorical approaches to history are doomed to fail.