The Field: Truth and Fiction in Sport History by Douglas Booth

By Douglas Booth

2006 North American Society for activities historical past booklet of the 12 months The literature on game background is now good confirmed, taking in a variety of issues and protecting each task from aerobics to zorbing. besides the fact that, compared to so much mainstream histories, activity heritage has not often been referred to as upon to question its foundations and account for the foundation of its historic wisdom. during this publication, sales space bargains a rigorous overview of activity background as a tutorial self-discipline, exploring the ways that expert historians can assemble fabrics, build and consider proof, and current their arguments in regards to the carrying previous. Part 1 examines theories of data, whereas Part 2 is going directly to scrutinize the makes use of of historic wisdom in renowned and educational experiences of game historical past. With transparent constitution, examples, precis tables and a close word list, the sphere presents scholars, lecturers and researchers with an unheard of source to take on matters basic to the way forward for their topic, and units the time table for the talk to come back.

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Extra resources for The Field: Truth and Fiction in Sport History

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Yet, it has done so without offering a means by which to distil and synthesise validated facts for the ‘best understanding of them’. 47 Accurate reporting Everyday people witness objects, events, happenings and incidents, and have feelings and express opinions and viewpoints about them. But these observations and opinions only become historical sources when they, or someone else – usually a relative, friend, student or journalist – record or preserve them. Reconstructionists correctly point out that the accurate recording of observations and testimony is no simple exercise, as different reports of the same event in newspapers continually reveal.

24 Postan’s views fused neatly with those of Edward Carr for whom the push for facts ‘rests not on any quality in the facts themselves, but on an a priori decision of the historian’. Comparing historians to journalists who select and arrange the facts in order to influence opinion, Carr observed that ‘the facts only speak when the historian calls on them’. Historians ‘decide to which facts to give the floor, and in what order or context’ and in this sense they are ‘necessarily selective’. 27 Those not persuaded by Postan and Carr, and convinced that indisputable facts exist, that is, that facts are more than ‘constructions and interpretations of the past’ framed by individual perspectives,28 might consider the following statements taken from ostensibly factual histories of the legendary English cricketer William Gilbert Grace.

74 Some scholars do advocate the existence of a uniquely feminist epistemology. The French feminist theorist Julia Kristeva, for example, argues that there are distinct female and male affective rationalities and subjectivities based on time. 75 But how these might translate into a feminist historiography remains unclear. 76 In short, feminist historians have not, in the words of Penelope Corfield, produced ‘a new general interpretation [of the past or history] or, more ambitiously, a new epistemology.

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