How to Write a Historiography Essay

There are two general approaches to historiography. “Historical evolution” essays compare secondary works that raise questions related to the central text. They start with the fundamental book and then examine subsequent publications that challenge that text, possibly substituting a new general interpretation that is revised in subsequent revisions. While there are several good ways to write a historiography essay, a “historiographical-evolution” approach is best for those who are writing for a course or for personal use.

Distinguishing between scholarly and non-scholarly sources

Scholarly sources are more likely to contain documentation of their source information than non-scholarly sources. Scholarly publications provide detailed bibliographic information for each source and present clear in-text citations for any quotes. Non-scholarly sources often make claims of rigor and credibility while doing little to provide this proof. To distinguish between the two, use a common rule for history essays: make them sound as credible as possible.

Scholarly sources are written by experts in the subject matter and usually undergo peer-review. Scholarly articles report original research findings and contribute to the body of knowledge in a specific field of study. Non-scholarly sources may be written by an unnamed author or rely on personal opinions. Scholarly sources also include references to the author’s credentials and affiliations.

Answering the question, the whole question and nothing but the question

In an essay, you’ll be asked to answer a question about history. Your answer must address the question as completely as possible. While there may be a few parts of the question, do not stray off topic. Your answers will be judged on how well they relate to the question at hand. So, if the question is about witchcraft, avoid answering it in a way that makes your topic seem irrelevant.

Using an integrated analysis

Using an integrated analysis in a history composition can prove beneficial to your work. While choosing the appropriate evidence is important for proving your point, the analysis of that evidence is equally important. Your readers must see how the evidence relates to your main argument. An analysis helps you strengthen your main argument by making it more specific and complex. It breaks down a work and examines it in detail. This helps you come up with a new perspective for your work.

Avoiding generalisations

A history essay’s conclusion and introduction play an important role in the overall paper. While an introduction is generally considered a mere academic addition, it’s crucial in developing a persuasive argument. Here are some guidelines to keep in mind when writing a history essay. This way, you’ll avoid the danger of generalisations. A good opening section will divide the topic into manageable sections. After all, you’re trying to explain a complex event or issue.

It is common for students to form general conclusions based on specific examples. Common examples of this are nobles distrusting the king, peasants starving, and the French nation rising as one. These generalisations are not necessarily true, but they can be a major source of misunderstanding. Avoiding generalisations can also improve your writing. If you can’t avoid using cliches, seek the help of a proofreader.

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