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Telling the Story of History with Henry Rousso and Ivan Jablonka

Situating the Present to Write the Past

Nathan Bracher

lead us well beyond the haunting World War II past that clearly will not “pass away” 3 to reflect on the foundations of history and historiography. Why do we study the past and how? In answering those essential questions, both Rousso and Jablonka

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Erasing the Nation

The Historiography of African Nationalism in Conqueror South Africa

Terblanche Delport

The story of conqueror South African historiography relies on the ebbs and flows of narrative clichés and tropes. The main contending narrative arcs relate to specific social theories that frame the understanding and analysis of conqueror South

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Introduction to “Sex across the Ages: Restoring Intergenerational Dynamics to Queer History”

Nicholas L. Syrett

, the intergenerational nature of various instances of same-sex sex is certainly noted by the historians who study it, but the theme has never gained traction or centrality within the historiography. 3 Part of what accounts for this state of affairs, as

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The Gallic Singularity and the Royal Mistress

Christine Adams

galanterie and conversation. 11 That men and women are fundamentally different but complementary has served as the basis of the perceived Gallic singularity that shaped the subsequent historiography of the French royal mistress. Not only was she a unique

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The Mobile Itineraries of Knowledge-scapes

Mimi Sheller

mobilities research. In this response essay, I want to elucidate these fruitful intersections between the historiography of mobilities/itineraries and the interdisciplinary field of mobilities research, as suggested by the work reported in this special

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Mapping the Rise of a New Concept

Ruth Hemstad

encyclopedias and the new maps being drawn and distributed at this time. 8 In Norway, this was clearly understood as Swedish rhetorical uses of “Scandinavian” and related concepts in order to strengthen the common union. Scandinavianism and Historiography The

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Transparent Global History? The Contribution of Vienna Global Studies

Susan Zimmermann

Since the 1980s faculty and visiting lecturers at the University of Vienna, have collaborated on and contributed to various study programs and publications in global history and international development. This article explores how the desire to make these writings accessible to a broad spectrum of reading publics has combined with a specific interest in writing emancipatory rather than conservative and affirmative history. I argue that some of the professional dangers associated with writing global history—sometimes read by, and often directed to, less specialist audiences—are much more universal problems of historiography than many would think. Historians with a globalist agenda tend to be particularly well equipped to deal with these problems. This article explores how a number of writings emerging from the Vienna context have handled these problems and sought to combine transparency with accessibility. It also discusses some of the institutional and political contexts that have sustained the particular features of Vienna Global History, and some of the more problematic or ambiguous traits and critical evaluations of the Vienna enterprise.

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Class Conflict in Ancient Mesopotamia

Between Knowledge of History and Historicising Knowledge

Reinhard Bernbeck

In this article I provide a critique of historiography in Near Eastern archaeology and argue that forms of narrating the past are by necessity always political in nature. Current writing styles have a bias towards the upper classes of the past. I use this insight to elaborate on new ways of writing that shift the focus to different subjects of history. As a case study, I analyse discourses about evidence from fourth millennium Mesopotamia. Finally, I point out some alternative ways to approach historiography by asking new questions about old topics.

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New Zealand Historiography and Transport

James Watson

New Zealand has a rich historiography related to transport, but almost all of it looks at particular sectors, such as railways or shipping, or at parts of these sectors. The most substantial attempt to look at transport throughout New Zealand’s history (and even prehistory) is my own book, Links: A History of Transport and New Zealand Society. It outlines forms of transport as they were introduced and proposes an argument explaining why various forms became preferred. Links also explores transport’s impact on the development of New Zealand society since initial human settlement and indicates how social values have shaped its use. Alan H. Grey’s Aotearoa and New Zealand: A Historical Geography also stresses the importance of transport through New Zealand’s history. More specifically, Rollo Arnold has demonstrated the influence of transport on settler society in New Zealand before the First World War.3 David Hamer explored the importance of transport links, breaks in transport and the general pace of early transport in New Zealand to explain the origins of many of its towns.

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The Contribution of Post-colonial Critique to an Anthropology of Missions

Paula Montero

When compared to the extensive historiography on missionary activity, the anthropology of missions is a relative newcomer, emerging as such in the context of the recent critique of the colonial system. In view of the importance of historiographical literature in outlining the subject, on the one hand, and of the impact of the decolonization of the African continent on anthropology, on the other hand, my purposes in this essay are, firstly, to examine how the historiography of colonial America and of African colonialism has handled the subject of missions; secondly, to describe the role of missionary activity in the historiographical debate in the context of the crisis of colonialism; and, lastly, to analyze how post-colonial critique has given rise to a new anthropology of missions.