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Title: Philosophy of History
Contributor(s): Lloyd, Christopher  (author)
Publication Date: 2010
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Abstract: Traditionally the philosophy of history has been concerned with two broad, quite distinct, forms of discourse, as famously articulated by W. H. Walsh (1967): firstly, speculative philosophising about the historical processes of the world and, secondly, analytical enquiries into the ontology and epistemology of explanation and writing. Speculative philosophy of history has been the main concern during the last century not of philosophers as such but of historians, and it overlaps a good deal with historical theory so that by the late twentieth century those two forms of discourse became indistinguishable. In addition to Walsh's separation of the two forms of philosophising, we must add a third mode of discourse-the production and critique of historical writing as a form of culturally and socially-embedded quasi-philosophical ideology that is designed to impact upon social and political beliefs and behaviour. Analytical philosophy of history in Australia in a formal, explicit sense has always been a very small sub-discipline with few practitioners. In a less explicit sense, however; there have been and are many more scholars ·whose work within social science disciplines, including history, can be understood as contributing to a broader field of historical philosophy, methodology, and theory. But these social scientists and historians, often being 'unschooled' in philosophy in a formal sense, usually have little new or profound to contribute to discussions about and the solving of problems within historical explanation. They tend to be 'users' of philosophy of history rather than contributors to it. Nevertheless, there have been significant quasi-philosophical contributions to social theory that sometimes verge on being speculative philosophy of history.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: A Companion to Philosophy in Australia and New Zealand, p. 26-28
Publisher: Monash University Publishing
Place of Publication: Melbourne, Australia
ISBN: 9780980651218
Field of Research (FOR): 220209 History of Ideas
220210 History of Philosophy
229999 Philosophy and Religious Studies not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Outcome Codes: 970122 Expanding Knowledge in Philosophy and Religious Studies
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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