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From Herodotus to H-Net

The Story of Historiography

Second Edition

Jeremy D. Popkin

Publication Date - 02 April 2020

ISBN: 9780190077617

272 pages
5-1/2 x 8-1/2 inches

In Stock

Helps students understand the importance of historiography and the questions that historians think about every day


From Herodotus to H-Net: The Story of Historiography, Second Edition, offers a concise but comprehensive and up-to-date account of the many ways history has been studied and recounted, from the ancient world to the new universe of the Internet. Clearly written and organized, it shows how the same issues that historians debate today were already recognized in past centuries, and how the efforts of historians in the past remain relevant today.

Balanced and fair-minded, the book covers the development of modern academic scholarship, but also helps students appreciate the contributions of popular historians and of the many forms of public history. Often drawing on what historians from Edward Gibbon to Natalie Zemon Davis have written about their own careers, From Herodotus to H-Net, Second Edition, brings the discipline of history alive for students and general readers.

New to this Edition

  • Includes a description of the linguistic and cultural turns in history in the past tense (Chapter 6)
  • Features an augmented discussion of history in new media, with new material about film and museums (Chapter 7)
  • Presents a means of understanding who professional historians are, with coverage of history teaching in high school (Chapter 8)
  • Substantial updates to the list of suggested further reading


  • Provides a comprehensive chronological account of the development of historical thought from ancient times to the present
  • Offers a balanced and fair-minded presentation
  • Covers public history and history in visual media
  • Surveys the impact of new media on history in the Chapter 7, "History and Historians in a New Millennium"
  • Written by a senior historian who has taught seminars on historiography for more that thirty years
  • Examines the development of historiography in Asia, Latin America, and the Islamic World in addition to Europe and the United States

About the Author(s)

Jeremy D. Popkin is the William T. Bryan Chair of History at the University of Kentucky. He is the author of A New World Begins: The History of the French Revolution (2019).


"Characterized by scholarly command of the most relevant literature, thorough and clear discussion of those sources, and an impassioned endorsement of the contributions of the field of history, From Herodotus to H-Net is resoundingly successful in achieving Popkin's stated aims."--H-Net Reviews

"This is a wonderful book; it clearly explains the development of the study of history from ancient times to the present. Also, unlike other books on the subject, it introduces students to the world of academia and how it functions. The book not only clearly explains the history of history in a clear and accessible manner, it also includes a section on what it takes to earn a PhD in history and pursue an academic career."--Patricia Kollander, Florida Atlantic University

"From Herodotus to H-Net offers a superb introduction to historiography on a global scale, with up-to-date analyses of the most recent approaches, a thoughtful discussion of the process of becoming a historian, and a judicious overview of the rapid changes occurring within the profession even now."--David S. Karr, Columbia College, Missouri

Table of Contents

    About the Author


    Chapter 1. What Is Historiography?
    The Concerns of Historiography
    This Book and Its Author
    Justifying the Study of the Past
    A Short Field Guide to the Varieties of History

    Chapter 2. History in Ancient and Medieval Times
    Herodotus and Thucydides
    History-Writing in the Hellenistic and Roman Worlds
    The Origins of Chinese Historiography
    History, Judaism, and Christianity
    History in an Age of Belief
    History in the Chinese and Islamic Worlds
    The Late Middle Ages in Europe

    Chapter 3. The Historiographical Revolution of the Early Modern Era
    The Renaissance Revolution in Historiography
    Historians in a New World
    The Age of Print
    History in the Age of the Enlightenment

    Chapter 4. The Rise of Academic Scholarship and National History
    The Revolutionary Era and the Development of Historical Consciousness
    Ranke and His "Revolution"
    Nationalism and Historical Scholarship
    History and the Sciences of Society
    A Historical Civilization

    Chapter 5. Scientific History in an Era of Conflict
    Critiques of Scientific History
    World War I and the Understanding of History
    The Founding of the "Annales" School
    History and World War II
    Social History in the Postwar Period
    History in the Cold War World


    Chapter 6. From Objectivity to the "Culture Wars": Historiography from the 1960s to the End of the Millennium
    The Challenges of the 1960s
    Searching for a New History
    New Paradigms for History
    Women's History and the History of Gender Relations
    Contesting Eurocentrism
    The History of Memory
    "History Wars"

    Chapter 7. History and Historians in a New Millennium
    A Historical Controversy to End the Millennium
    History in the Internet Era
    History beyond the Printed Page
    New Directions in Historical Scholarship

    Chapter 8. Historians at Work
    The Graduate School Experience
    Searching for a Job in History
    The Quest for Tenure
    Professors' Work
    Is There Life after Tenure?
    History Careers beyond Academia

    Chapter 9. Conclusion

    Suggestions for Further Reading

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