„a) The definition of history? Every historian would agree, I think, that history is a kind of research or inquiry. What kind of inquiry it is I do not yet ask. The point is that generically it belongs to what we call the sciences: that is, the forms of thought whereby we ask questions and try to answer them. Science in general, it is important to realize, does not consist in collecting what we already know and arranging it in this or that kind of pattern. It consists in fastening upon something we do not know, and trying to discover it. Playing patience with things we already know may be a useful means towards this end, but it is not the end itself. It is at best only the means. It is scientifically valuable only in so far as the new arrangement gives us the answer to a question we have already decided to ask. That is why all science begins from the knowledge of our own ignorance: not our ignorance of everything, but our ignorance of some definite thing-the origin of parliament, the cause of cancer, the chemical composition of the sun, the way to make a pump work without muscular exertion on the part of a man or a horse or some other docile animal. Science is finding things out: and in that sense history is a science.“

Publicidade

Citações relacionadas

Leo Tolstoy photo

„Science is meaningless because it gives no answer to our question, the only question important for us: 'what shall we do and how shall we live“

—  Leo Tolstoy Russian writer 1828 - 1910
Quoted by Max Weber in his lecture "Science as a Vocation"; in Lynda Walsh (2013), Scientists as Prophets: A Rhetorical Genealogy (2013), Oxford University Press, p. 90

Publicidade
Ted Chiang photo
Jerry Coyne photo
R. G. Collingwood photo
Publicidade
Chi­ma­man­da Ngo­zi Adi­chie photo
Ferdinand de Saussure photo
Publicidade
Brian Cox (physicist) photo
Robert E. Howard photo
C.G. Jung photo
Publicidade
William Hazlitt photo

„The origin of all science is in the desire to know causes; and the origin of all false science and imposture is in the desire to accept false causes rather than none; or, which is the same thing, in the unwillingness to acknowledge our own ignorance.“

—  William Hazlitt English writer 1778 - 1830
Burke and the Edinburgh Phrenologists in The Atlas (15 February 1829); reprinted in New Writings by William Hazlitt, William Hazlitt and Percival Presland Howe (ed.), (2nd edition, 1925), p. 117; also reprinted in The Complete Works of William Hazlitt, Volume 20: Miscellaneous writings, (J.M. Dent and Sons, 1934), (AMS Press, 1967), p. 201

Publicidade

„All these things have happened in our history, and we need to talk about them. What kind of country are we that our history is so tragic?“

—  Yuan Tengfei history teacher in Beijing, China 1972
Reported in Didi Kirsten Tatlow, "A System Afraid of Its Own History", The New York Times (September 16, 2010).

Anthony Burgess photo
Próximo