Key Contemporary Thinkers
1. Edition June 2011
2011. 224 Pages, Softcover
ISBN 978-0-7456-5014-2 - John Wiley & Sons
Also available as Hardcover.
E-Books are also available on all known E-Book shops.
This new book offers a clear and accessible exposition of Hayden White's thought. In an engaging and wide-ranging analysis, Herman Paul discusses White's core ideas and traces the development of these ideas from the mid-1950s to the present. Starting with White's medievalist research and youthful fascination for French existentialism, Paul shows how White became increasingly convinced that historical writing is a moral activity. He goes on to argue that the critical concepts that have secured White's fame - trope, plot, discourse, figural realism - all stem from his desire to explicate the moral claims and perceptions underlying historical writing. White emerges as a passionate thinker, a restless rebel against scientism, and a defender of existentialist humanist values.
This innovative introduction will appeal to students and scholars across the humanities, and help develop a critical understanding of an increasingly important thinker.
From the contents
Introduction: How to Read Hayden White.
Structure of the Book.
1. Humanist Historicism: The Italian White.
The Papal Schism of 1130.
White's Covering Law Model.
"Ideology" or "Value Orientation".
The Disenchantment of the World.
From Historicism to Sociology.
A Croce Partisan.
Questions In/About History.
2. Liberation Historiography: The Politics of History.
Choosing a Past.
Strong Humanist Father Figures.
Social Conditions of Freedom.
In Defense of Metahistory.
A Philosophy of Liberation.
3. The Historical Imagination: Four Modes of Realism.
An Inverted Disciplinary History.
Escaping the Ironist's Cage.
Imagination: Thinking and Dreaming.
A Manual of Tropology.
The Freedom of Imagination.
White's Linguistic Turn.
4. The Power of Discourse: White's Structuralist Adventure.
Three Modes of Comprehension.
Fictions of Factual Representation.
Objectivism and Relativism.
The Prison-House of Language.
Getting Out of History.
5. Masks of Meaning: Facing the Sublime.
The Content of the Form.
Stories Are Not Lived But Told.
Sublime Historical Reality.
The Specter of Fascism.
6. Figuring History: The Modernist White.
A Turning Point?
The Practical Past.