Using Primary Sources To Make The Most Out Of Your Historical Study
History is the systematic study of history. Before the invention of written records, events prior to the invention of written languages are often regarded as prehistorical. “Prehistorizing” is the idea that it is prior to writing that events are organized and recorded. “Prehistorizing” is also the notion that prehistorical events are shaped by culture, social structure, time periods, and memory into forms we call present day history. As such, all events prior to the time of writing have been considered as historical. In some regards, one could consider events prior to the time of writing to be a part of history.
Historians study history for a wide variety of purposes. Students of history rely on the research of historians to understand world history. Many people who seek knowledge about the past use primary sources such as diaries and memoirs, letters, diaries, legal papers, maps, and prints to learn important details about past events and individuals. Other historians depend on secondary sources such as newspapers, books, pamphlets, records, and other written materials to piece together an interpretation of past events.
History can give us an interesting glimpse into the past with its primary source information. Through reading history we are able to develop insight into how people thought and acted in various situations. Additionally, we develop a better understanding of the politics, economics, and culture of past civilizations through the written records. Learning history gives us the ability to see how real people lived through the written word.
Many historians argue that the study history enhances creativity in readers. We become more imaginative when we examine the real people and events that shaped history. For example, one can examine the development of ideas through the work of historians. Through the research of real people through history, we can learn about real problems and real solutions that were tried and tested in past events.
The ability to reason logically and to compare different historical pieces of information gives us an increased understanding of how things really worked back then. We get a good idea of how society operated through the work of historians. Furthermore, the ability to reason logically gives us the ability to evaluate different theories through the historical record. We also get to see what different theories were accepted at different historical times because of the way these theories were presented by the different historians. The combination of the logic and the practicality that come from studying history enhances critical thinking skills for historians.
In order to make the most out of their historical study, many historians find it useful to use primary sources such as newspapers, diaries, and memoirs. Secondary sources, on the other hand, are more likely used by laymen than professionals, but they play an important role in this field. They are more difficult to analyze because they are typically more subjective in nature. But the combination of the two makes it possible for laymen to study history professionally with ease and give us valuable insights into how things really functioned in the past.