Let's talk about historians. Do you have any 'favorite' historians, whose work you particularly admire? Any historians you dislike?
What do you think qualifies someone to call themselves a 'historian'? I've seen many history books on shelves written by people with degrees in English or other arts degrees aside from history--are their works as valuable as someone who has degrees in history, or do they need history degrees to successfully write about history?
>What do you think qualifies someone to call themselves a 'historian'?
A history doctorate.
>or do they need history degrees to successfully write about history?
They need a history doctorate.
I dislike "historians" who are really just philosophers who try to legitimize their worldviews with references to politics, economics and historical events. They usually do very little historical research of their own and rely on secondary sources and case studies of famous events.
This type of "historian" includes Foucault, Marx, and Hofstadter.
Eugen Weber is my favorite because of his lecture series The Western Tradition
comfy as fuck
You shouldn't call yourself a historian unless you have actually gone through the training/education/etc necessary to obtain at least a Master's degree.
But I think you can write about history, even professionally, without a history degree--but you're working at a disadvantage and you have to be much more diligent because of it.
I've seen way too many "pop history" books (and articles, hellooooo Evelyn Farr's unbelievably wrong 'MARIE ANTOINETTE SHOCKER' news circling the internet in the last week) written by people who seem to have no comprehension of how to actually study history, take the results of that study, and use them to explore history, whether it's just summaries of what happened or theories.
These are the type of people that read something in a source (sometimes not even primary!) and repeat it as fact. They don't dissect the source: do we know who wrote it? Is there any question of their identity? When did they write it, and how far removed from the event were they when they did? What was the context of the writing? What bias would this person have had? Etc. And once you dissect the material, you compare it with as many other pieces of dissected material. You go further: you get material surrounding the context of what you read earlier, to get the bigger picture. And so on. All things you learn, or should have learned, in a history program. Studying history teaches you how to understand sources, how to dissect them, you learn how to look for bias, etc.
But they don't do any of that. They just go "Oh! I read this, so I'll use it for my book."
>You shouldn't call yourself a historian unless you have actually gone through the training/education/etc necessary to obtain at least a Master's degree.
In my country "historian" is not a protected title.
Anyone can call themselves a historian, regardless of their education level.
It doesn't really require anything other then a very strong interest to be a historian if you ask me.
18 Brumaire is a piece of journalism, not history, and it's a self-congratulatory exercise in Marx literally inventing social classes in order to explain away the shortcomings of his own theory.
David Howell - focusses on British political history in the early 20th century up to 1951
Robert Skidelsky - focuesses on economic history in the 20th century, most famous for his biography of Keynes, as well as having written biographies of other British economists and politicians
Denis Mack Smith - British historian specialising in Italian history in the 19th and 20th centuries, most noted for his biographies of Mussolini, Garibaldi, and Cavour
Matthew Worley - again focussing on early 20th century British political history, but more specially on the movements of the left or breaking off from them; Labour party, Communist Party of Great Britain, the New Party
>It doesn't really require anything other then a very strong interest to be a historian if you ask me.
But it really does. You need to know how to actually study history, how to interpret history, how to examine sources, how to find out if a source is bullshit or not, how to compare sources with other contemporary material, how to back up your theories, etc.
Interest is something is a drive. You need more than drive: you need the proper tools. No, getting a degree doesn't automatically mean you are right or better than someone else, but it makes it much more likely that you've had an education that prepares you for historical research.
José Hermano Saraiva.
I don't know about his gifts to the field but he was extraordinary at divulging Portuguese History and Culture. To this day his documentaries are still full of information and life and national historical productions are still rare to this day.
They should have put the bastard in the Pantheon instead of the mozambican football player.
I like Kevin Hicks. No idea what his qualification are but I would still love to listen to him discuss English history. The fact he's bothered to learn and teach a piece of iconic history is commendable as well imo.
There are far too many historians who simply talk about things but never actually do them. I don't think you can truly understand something you have never done.
As someone who studies a dual degree, I find that scholars from one discipline trying to write about another are usually pretty bad (my degrees are law and international relations, and they tend to overlap quite a bit, but the state of interdisciplinary knowledge is shocking). Lots of lawyers I know have a passing interest in history, and I know some barristers in the chambers I work with have tried their hand at writing history books.
I think it can sometimes add an extra element of understanding (although I can only speak for my discipline) that a person who studied straight history might not have - for example, a lawyer might possess a more nuanced understanding of common law developments occurring as a result of the Industrial Revolution than a history major.
Literally sewer tier. Snyder's accounts of Austria - Hungary especially are so laughable I wouldn't wipe my ass with his books. And Suvorov is just a conspiracy theorist making shit up on the spot.
Both deal in Eastern Europe. The topic that interests me quite a bit lately. Both help to educate western readers who usually don't know shit about what happened there especially around WWII. They're very useful writers. In Suvorov's case. He knows firsthand about the working of the communist system and he doesn't mince his words which I really like about it. I especially like how he brings the attention to the similarities of Stalin, Hitler and their regimes. And their political and dyplomatic history together. It's especially important today.