History is often used as a generic term for information about the past, such as in "geologic history of the Earth". When used as the name of a field of study, history refers to the study and interpretation of the record of human societies. The term history comes from the Greek historia, "an account of one'Etymology" title ="Etymology">etymology with the English word story.
Historians use many types of sources, including written or printed records, interviews (oral history), and archaeology. Different approaches may be more common in some periods than others, and the study of history has its fads and fashions (see historiography). The events that occurred prior to human records are known as prehistory.
A criticism of history as a field has been that it hss too narrowly focused on political events or on individuals. Deeper more significant changes in terms of ideas, technology, family life and culture have received too little attention. Recent developments in history have sought to redress this.
See also: History of the world
A very large amount of historical information is available in Wikipedia, and several different ways of classifying it are given below.
History classified by location
History classified by date:
- Ancient history
- Modern history, including early modern history
- Pre-Columbian (History of the Americas also see Mesoamerica)
- Middle Ages (History of Medieval Europe)
- History of Europe
- History of Africa
- History of Latin America
- History of Asia
- History of the Middle East
- History of Australasia (Australia, New Guinea, Micronesia, Melanesia, Polynesia)
- History of Christianity
- History of Islam
- Jewish history
- History of medicine
- History of science and technology
- Intellectual history
(Not necessarily part of academic history studies)
- Cultural movements
- Diaspora studies
- Economic history
- History of art
- History of astrology
- History of astronomy
- History of cinema
- History of economic thought
- History of ideas
- History of individuals (biography)
- History of literature
- History of mathematics
- History of mental illness
- History of philosophy
- History of physics
- History of present-day nations and states
- History of religions
- History of sexuality
- History of theater
- History of extinct nations and states
- Legal history
- Military history
- Philosophy of history
- History of the Pacific Islands
Although a certain amount of bias in history studies is inescapable, national bias being probably the most important, history can also be studied from a narrow ideological perspective, perhaps one that the practitioners feel is usually ignored. For example:
- Marxist history;
- Feminist history (also called herstory);
A form of historical speculation known commonly as virtual history (also called "counterfactual history") been adopted by some historians as a means of assessing and exploring the possible outcomes if certain events had not occurred or had occurred in a different way to that which they did. This is somewhat similar to the alternative history genre in fiction.
You may also want to see dubious historical resources and historical myths for a list of false beliefs and histories that were once or are now popular and widespread, but which are proven to be false or dubious.
Guidelines for history on Wikipedia can be found at Wikipedia:History.
- Evolution of Homo sapiens
- Social Change
- List of historians
- List of historians by area of study
- List of historic travellers
- Pseudohistory for more about uncritical history.
- History painter
- A history resource for kids
- An attempt at NPOV history with a "Chronology of Events in History, Mythology, and Folklore": http://www.b17.com/family/lwp/frameset/frameset.html
- "Timelines of History", A collection of timelines organized by time, location and subject matter: http://timelines.ws
- Internet History Sourcebooks Collections of public domain and copy-permitted historical texts presented cleanly (without advertising or excessive layout) for educational use.
- World History Blog
- History Forum Simaqianstudio
- Talk History - Discussion forum dedicated to all aspects of world history
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