The History Manifesto

The History Manifesto

new updated version 5th February 2015

Jo Guldi and David Armitage

Cambridge Open Access

At Cambridge University Press we are committed to Open Access.

Creative Commons Licence

The History Manifesto by Jo Guldi and David Armitage is licensed under a CC-BY-NC-ND 3.0'

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How should historians speak truth to power - and why does it matter? Why is five hundred years better than five months or five years as a planning horizon? And why is history - especially long-term history - so essential to understanding the multiple pasts which gave rise to our conflicted present? The History Manifesto is a call to arms to historians and everyone interested in the role of history in contemporary society. Leading historians David Armitage and Jo Guldi identify a recent shift back to longer-term narratives, following many decades of increasing specialization, which they argue is vital for the future of historical scholarship and how it is communicated. This provocative and thoughtful book makes an important intervention in the debate about the role of history and the humanities in a digital age. It will provoke discussion among policymakers, activists and entrepreneurs as well as ordinary listeners, viewers, readers, students and teachers.

The HTML and PDF as originally published on 2nd October have been updated. The list of revisions made and the revised PDF are available here.

‘A compelling argument for the relevance of history.’

Daniel Woolf, Queen’s University, Ontario

‘Will invite controversy and instantly invigorate class-room debates with a double shot.’

Ulinka Rublack, University of Cambridge, and editor of A Concise Companion to History

‘An important attempt to make history relevant to a broad public...’

Georg G. Iggers, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York

‘An exhilarating anticipation of a digitised and globalised future, in which historians will assume the role of critical problem-solver.'

John Tosh, University of Roehampton

Forum Feed

Re: New Media And Public History?

Posted on September 15, 2015 at 7:01 PM

The proposals put forward by Prof. David Armitage and Prof. Jo Guldi are well worth acknowledging in regard to the role that historians can and sometimes should play in today's society. That they should be taken as definitive answers is another thing.

Posted by JOSCR05
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Political Economy

Posted on May 14, 2015 at 7:00 PM

The major three topics of global governance, climate change and inequality have already been dealt with by political economy, so the role Guldi & Armitage assign to history is misplaced.

See my report on the session at KNAW Amsterdam May 12 2015: https…

Posted by Colignatus
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