Introduction: Historians, the Nation, and the Plenitude of Narratives

Thomas Bender

in Rethinking American History in a Global Age

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2002 | ISBN: 9780520230576
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520936034 | DOI:
Introduction: Historians, the Nation, and the Plenitude of Narratives

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This introductory chapter discusses three main concepts: history, nation, and narratives. It starts by stating that history can be found in a plethora of narratives, which are necessarily reduced by historiography. The discussion notes that the nation represents a certain narrative of social connection, and briefly examines the context of the earliest American national histories. This is followed by a study of the historical reflections of Frederick Jackson Turner, which serves as a relevant starting point for the reframing of American history. The chapter also covers topics such as the professional practice of history teaching and writing, American self-perceptions, and historicizing time. A summary of the following chapters is provided.

Keywords: history; nation; narratives; historiography; social connection; Frederick Jackson Turner; historical reflections; historicizing

Chapter.  9722 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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