history history relevance practical history purpose of history using history

How Does History Serve Those Who Use Profanity?

It Started with an Email I got an interesting question by email recently. It concerned the use of profanity in a historic document … should it be used or not, specifically within a direct quote? Or, should the swear words, specifically fuck and shit, have asterisks replacing letters thusly: f*** and s***? My reply was that if the direct quote illuminates the history in some way, the swear words should be used as is, spelled…

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history history relevance practical history purpose of history using history

Practicing History Is in Filling the Gaps

Mar Hicks, a historian of technology who tweets @histoftech, posted a thread with her thoughts on having read a couple of biographies about Steve Jobs. One was by his first daughter; the other by this daughter’s mother. This particular tweet from the thread is illuminating: Yes, women’s lives have typically been left out of historical documentation. If you read obituaries from the late 1800s and early 1900s, if there is an obituary for a woman,…

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history history relevance practical history purpose of history using history

Digging Up “Sites Unseen”

Back in September, I mentioned a book I read about in The Guardian, “Sites Unseen: Uncovering Hidden Hazards in American Cities” by Scott Frickel and James R. Elliott.  Because I was so curious about it, I ordered it through our public library. The library system did not have a copy of this book in circulation, but, and here is the beauty of today’s public library system, I was able to order it and they purchased…

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