Monday, April 23, 2007

Besieging the Ivory Tower: Blogs in History

Zid offers a paper that he will present soon on the future of blogs in history ("Weblogs: Workshops of the historian"). Give him some comments (it's in French, but he can read your English comments).
Because the historian entrenched in his ivory tower does not discuss with amateurs who try to reconstruct the past in their own manner; the historian entrenched in his ivory tower cannot understand the actions of genealogists, without whom access to the archives would be more difficult; the historian entrenched in his ivory tower lets the state or the [elites] respond to the negationists who attack daily life; the historian cannot entrench himself in his ivory tower. He must put his research in the service of a type of democratic humanism. And the blog allows us to communicate like never before. [My apologies to Zid for this rough translation.]

Car un historien retranché dans sa tour d'ivoire ne discutera pas avec des amateurs qui essaient de faire de la reconstitution historique à leur façon ; un historien retranché dans sa tour d'ivoire ne pourra comprendre le mouvement des généalogistes sans lesquels l'accès aux archives serait rendu encore plus difficile qu'il n'est aux chercheurs ; un historien retranché dans sa tour d'ivoire laissera l'Etat ou les grands pontes répondre aux négationnistes qui attaquent au quotidien ; un historien ne peut être retranché dans sa tour d'ivoire. C'est son devoir de chercheur au service d'un certain humanisme démocratique. Et le blog nous permet de communiquer comme jamais.

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