History: A Very Short Introduction

I was somewhat disappointed when I first began reading History: A Very Short Introduction.

I was originally coping for a compact and concise list of everything that has happened in the past few thousand years. You know, Depression, Hitler, World War 2, Invention of Supermarkets, etc. You know, a way to know everything that has ever happened, in around a hundred pages.

However, History: A Very Short Introduction follows a different narrative, one more in line with the other books in the series, and common sense. It talks about “Historiography”, the study of history and methodologies used in such study.

While I found it just about interesting enough to continue reading all the way through, I must say that I didn’t feel I learnt a great deal. Having studied history for the first three years of high school, I felt that alone had given me a grounding in history to a greater level. You could of course argue this is obvious (three years of school vs a book that took me two days to read), but I would have expected the book to be pitched at a level that assumes the reader had in fact attended school.

Still, it isn’t entirely about the learning, but also about proving it on paper – and now that I can add having read said book to my CV, as I explained to Hugh, I’m now more than happy to fill in for him at his history lectures at any point.



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This entry was posted on Thursday, May 10th, 2012 at 12:51 pm and is filed under Books. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.