Book

The New Cultural History

Edited by Lynn Hunt

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 1989 | ISBN: 9780520064287
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520908925 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520064287.001.0001
The New Cultural History

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Across the humanities and the social sciences, disciplinary boundaries have come into question as scholars have acknowledged their common preoccupations with cultural phenomena ranging from rituals and ceremonies to texts and discourse. Literary critics, for example, have turned to history for a deepening of their notion of cultural products; some of them now read historical documents in the same way that they previously read “great” texts. Anthropologists have turned to the history of their own discipline in order to better understand the ways in which disciplinary authority was constructed. As historians have begun to participate in this ferment, they have moved away from their earlier focus on social-theoretical models of historical development toward concepts taken from cultural anthropology and literary criticism. Much of the most exciting work in history recently has been affiliated with this wide-ranging effort to write history that is essentially a history of culture. The chapters presented here provide an introduction to this movement within the discipline of history. The chapters in Part One trace the influence of important models for the new cultural history, models ranging from the pathbreaking work of the French cultural critic Michel Foucault and the American anthropologist Clifford Geertz to the imaginative efforts of such contemporary historians as Natalie Davis and E. P. Thompson, as well as the more controversial theories of Hayden White and Dominick LaCapra. The chapters in Part Two are exemplary of the most challenging and fruitful new work of historians in this genre.

Keywords: disciplinary boundaries; cultural anthropology; literary criticism; history of culture; Michel Foucault; Clifford Geertz; Natalie Davis; E. P. Thompson; Hayden White; Dominick LaCapra

Book.  244 pages.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Theory and Practice of Anthropology

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Table of Contents

Texts, Printing, Readings in The New Cultural History

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