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Title: The Methodologies of Social History: A critical survey and defence of structurism
Contributor(s): Lloyd, Christopher  (author)
Publication Date: 2005
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Abstract: This paper offers a critical examination of the methodological frameworks within which the history of society is now being studied. Social history writing in its various forms is ubiquitous. It sometimes seems as though all historians want to climb onto the bandwagon of social history's popularity. "Social history" is becoming part of popular culture and like all elements of popular culture in the electronic age it has a fluid, intangible, constantly changing character. Its popularity is significant for many reasons, one of which is its role in providing meaning in an anomic, competitive age. With the decline of community and family there arises a countertendency to recover the past of communities and families, with the hope of reconstructing them or at least producing new ones. Also significantly the politically oppositional character of much social history writing. With the decline of organized party opposition to bureaucratic corporate centralism in most industrial societies, opposition has arisen instead at a local, non-class level, and the appropriation of history has been made as a form of or a contribution to grass-roots political ideology. A third aspect, which is to some extent counter to but also complementary of the others, is a desire for global comprehension - to see the local as enmeshed in the totality of world structures at all levels.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: Historiography: Critical Concepts in Historical Studies, v.II [2] : Society, p. 24-67
Publisher: Routledge
Place of Publication: London, United Kingdom
ISBN: 0415320798
Field of Research (FOR): 220207 History and Philosophy of the Humanities
220208 History and Philosophy of the Social Sciences
210399 Historical Studies not elsewhere classified
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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