Microhistory, far from a brief and controversial experiment in history writing of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, has become one of the most creative ways to tackle the difficult problems of writing history in our time. This JMEMS special issue brings together practicing microhistorians who are taking microhistorical practices into new frontiers. A major roundtable discussion features an open-ended conversation about archives, the many ways to read a document, the scaling of historical perspective, the possibilities of story-telling, and the nature and limits of historical knowledge. The articles that follow, by the roundtable particpants themselves, bring microhistorical methodology to the study of social and cultural history, legal history, the history of crime, gender history (making use of the often overlooked potential in literary texts), and global history. These articles reflect the openness and self-reflexivity that often characterize microhistorians and their craft.
Thomas Robisheaux; Microhistory and the Historical Imagination: New Frontiers. Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies 1 January 2017; 47 (1): 1–6. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10829636-3716554
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