Area of Knowledge: History

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Area of Knowledge: History. Turan Ketene Chris Bunker Sam Giner Christine Rominski. What kind of Knowledge Claims are made?. Claims about why an event happened Ex: Why did the Civil War happen? Based on point of view, basic facts Examples:
Area of Knowledge: HistoryTuran KeteneChris BunkerSam GinerChristine RominskiWhat kind of Knowledge Claims are made?
  • Claims about why an event happened
  • Ex: Why did the Civil War happen?
  • Based on point of view, basic facts
  • Examples:
  • New Deal was not a solution for the Great Depression
  • The navy did play an important role in the Vietnam War
  • How are they justified? Are any particular methods or tests used or required?
  • Pragmatic, Coherence, Correspondence
  • Reason, Emotion
  • Methods:
  • Pick out evidence that fits
  • Assemble in various ways, like a puzzle
  • Apply claims, analyze
  • Justified through
  • Research of historical evidence
  • Analysis of historical evidence
  • Example: Howard Zin uses newspapers and books from the times to analyze and make a historical claim
  • Is there a particular community of peers or experts who review or evaluate knowledge claims?
  • Yes
  • Peer review
  • Peer review communities
  • Example: International Journal of Anthropology
  • Historians
  • To what extent does the general public take part in evaluating knowledge claims?
  • Evaluate for themselves
  • Decide whether to believe the claim or not
  • Influenced by culture, sense of pride of nationality/ethnicity
  • Everyone has own “distortion” of history so what they choose to believe has to fit
  • Do changes in history/society/economic conditions/culture influence knowledge claims?
  • Yes; history is supposed to record these changes and analyze them  knowledge claims need to fit these changes
  • Example: Cultural change, historian needs to interpret the change and make a new knowledge claim
  • To what extent are particular ways of knowing (sense perception, reason, language, emotion) used in justifying claims?
  • Methods of justification
  • Language
  • Reason
  • Most actual evidence in history stems from ancient records and information, which take the form of language.
  • Records are typically incomplete, therefore require interpretation to build an accurate idea of history
  • Use reason: completing and inferring information from records.
  • Opinions of a group of experts come into play to ensure that the information decided upon remains consistent with the known historical record.
  • Examples:
  • Egypt’s Rosetta Stone
  • Livy’s history of Rome.
  • What do you view as particular strengths or weaknesses in justifying claims?
  • Most striking feature of the justification of historical claims as opposed to other knowledge claims is the way by which they are included in the historical record.
  • Typically a claim must be agreed upon by a panel of “experts”
  • Compared to existing records, before being certified as fact.
  • Strength: the comparison ensures that all new information is consistent with accepted fact
  • Weakness: inherently conservative—it is difficult to gain acceptance for new ideas.
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