The following study deals with “the whig interpretation of history” in what I conceive to be the accepted meaning of the phrase. At least it covers all that is. [All footnotes are editorial; relevant online materials: Butterfield Papers at the Cambridge University Library; E. Royle, The “Whig” Interpretation of History and its. His most widely known work is still The Whig Interpretation of History. saw the publication of the book Butterfield is most associated with. Less a book than.

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History is complex and we have a tendency to want to make moral judgements on those in history. The Whig approach therefore acts perhaps as an extreme symbol of this butterfieod, and a warning of how history can be distorted when we fail to remain aware of our personal inclinations which may affect our work.

I began by thinking I would agree completely with him, in the middle thought I disagreed entirely, and by the end decided he is right about many things but is still missing some essential elements. I will re-read sections this weekend. His Christian beliefs in personal sin, salvation and providence were a great influence in his writings, a fact he freely admitted.

Influenced Thomas Kuhn [2]. Historians have an incredible task set forth for them, one that requires them to lo There are few books that I have read that have made huge impact on me, but I think Dr.

Jan 21, Douglas Wilson rated butetrfield it was ok Shelves: Interesting, but majorly repetitive. Back to 5 E. She is at the service of good causes and bad.

The Whig interpretation of history

Mar 07, Becky Snow rated it it was amazing. The Life and Thought of Herbert Butterfield. And, in his search for Butrerfield is not as easy to understand the past as many who have written it would have us believe. Butterfield was a devout Christian and reflected at length on Christian influences in historical perspectives. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. Beyond this, Butterfield highlights some of the more nuanced habits of the Whig historian: Oct 14, Brenton rated it really liked it.


Aug 28, Vicky P rated it it was amazing Shelves: The subject is treated not as oof problem in the philosophy of history, but rather as an aspect of the psychology of historians. Retrieved 26 July Butterfield wanted his history to be evocative, the story of how people wrestled with moral dilemmas in order to reach and carry their decisions.

Eliohs – Butterfield – The Whig Interpretation of History – Contents

And he is right to point out that drawing simple, black and white moral judgments about past actions is a risky business. Jul 02, Heather rated it liked it Shelves: It bistory a rushed work, and contained at least one error of fact that Butterfield had to publicly apologise for.

September Index Preface 1. The lectures themselves were a disappointment — audience turnout was small and Butterfield himself was underprepared. George III and the historians. Butterfield, though, was never one for archival work at the best of times. The Englishman and His History. This ibterpretation imposing a 21st century view of equality onto a people group several generations back.

Diplomatic history was traditionally a fairly dry subject, often consisting of what one clerk said to another. In his biography of G.

Whig interpretation of history

Butterfield decries the tendency of historians to interpret history as progressively cumulative in the present; or equally, to selectively use history as an ideological justification of “my views”; or finally, to anachronistically read their ideologies into the past so that its heroes were all fighting to produce the ideas they now possess. However, his extreme aversion to drawing any moral lessons or even allowing any teleological purpose to the study of history seem to me not only questionable practice but impossible to accomplish.

Published September 17th by W. Sep 03, Angela Holt rated it it was ok Shelves: Butterfield’s book is a seminal corrective of the bad habits of two generations of Anglo-American historians in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It was a contest in which the Whig interest felt it had prevailed, and which had resulted in the establishment of a constitutional monarchy in Britain. Christianity in Bbutterfield History.


Clearly one of the targets was Acton; to him Bentley feels we must add R. In other words she is a harlot and a hireli Everyone interested wig history should read this very short book. Perhaps one is being too hard on Bentley here; given histry this is to all intents and purposes an official biography, one suspects he is trying to straddle two horses at the same time when he writes about this relationship.

Great food for thought, however much one might qhig Macaulay’s story-line of progress down to the present. Butterfield found the Whig interpretation of history objectionable, because it warps the past to see it in terms of the issues of the present and attempts to squeeze the contending forces of the past into a form that reminds us of ourselves.

Reading this book was like watching someone put five coats of high gloss paint on a rotten board. The then-Regius professor sent Butterfield the Whih papers which had been in his care suggesting that Butterfield might like to write a biography of him — not the sort of invitation one declined.

The Whig Interpretation of History

Many reasons have been put forward as to why he did not finish the Fox biography. History and human relations. No trivia or quizzes yet. Pages containing London Gazette template with parameter supp set to y Webarchive template wayback links Webarchive template archiveis links Use dmy dates from April Use British English from April Histiry person using alma mater Articles with hCards Pages using Template: Without hurry, without rest, the human spirit goes forth from the beginning to embody every faculty, every thought, every emotion, which belongs to it in appropriate events.

Butterfield served as editor of the Cambridge Historical Journal from to and was knighted in I think everyone tends to read history as evidence of whatever they believe certainly I fall into this often.