Defining Historicity

With a past history distinguished from a present and future history by virtue of the divergent bases of knowledge, the historian begins to approach past historical sources with greater solicitude. Historicity has customarily been regarded as a sort of truth value. The historicity of the source is thought to be the degree to which the source speaks the truth. This understanding of historicity is now inadequate. We need to have an idea of why source testimony exists in the received form. Assigning a truth value may actually sometimes prevent the source from communicating what was intended.

A new and more comprehensive idea of historicity is merely nascent. Our series entitled Historicity is intended, therefore, to give scope to a wide range of possibilities, not only in exploring the idea itself, but also in positioning subject matter within its general confines.


...history is a work in progress...