Mark Gritter (markgritter) wrote,
Mark Gritter
markgritter

Historians

One of the things that amuses me most about reading histories is "well, X said Y, and X' said Y', but they were both wrong for reasons I will now explain." My current read (Jonathan Israel, "Dutch Primacy in world Trade 1585-1740") takes this to a whole new level:

Given this bewildering variety of views, the reader will no doubt groan with anguish on realizing that we are now about to reject all of these recent approaches and adopt yet another. He might well ask what possible confidence he can have in a fourth view of the fate of the Dutch world-trading system in the eighteenth century when it is wholly at variance with the findings of all the other participants in the debate....
Tags: books, history
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