Response to Cormac Shine

October 9, 2018 |  Tagged | Comments Off on Response to Cormac Shine

1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 Diana Lumaque                                                                                                                                  Due Date- 10/10/18

2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 His 799

3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0  

4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0 Cormac Shine’s writing piece “Our world is changing. It’s time for historians to explain why,” suggests that technology is becoming accessible to everyone. Due to the growth of technology, the public is exposed to a wide variety of information. The author’s tone contends that historians should participate in civic engagement and are obligated to explain the “change over time,” which is found in many disciplines. Shine attacks historian’s lack of utilization of technology. Depending on the topic of conversation, historians do not have to use technology as a platform, nor are obligated to heavily rely on digital media to engage in discussions.

5 Leave a comment on paragraph 5 0 The author claims that media can benefit academia because of its “renewed sense of purpose.” Media sensationalizes stories, politics, and all other subject matters. Some disciplines use the media platform because it works for them. Examples listed are the social scientist and economist. Historians are often at a crossroads in deciding how they can engage the public in historical debates. Traditionally, historians have continued to write scholarly articles, monographs, and among other things to preserve, relay, and debate history.

6 Leave a comment on paragraph 6 0 Participation in public forums such as social media can compromise the integrity of the discipline. Historians are experts in their respective field, and should not be expected to be experts and “teachers” to the general public. For the most part, historians look through the lens of objectivity when evaluating topics and debates. This dilemma can cause public discord when discussing both negative and positive aspects of history. The public would engage in conversations from a subjective point of view.

7 Leave a comment on paragraph 7 0 For example, in 2017 the Charlottesville riots led to public discord. Arguments centered on whether Southern statues of Confederate figures should be conserved. There were too many opinions, which resulted in the confliction of (point of views) objectivity versus subjectivity. Digital Media depicted the various opinions of Americans and chose to focus on the entertainment aspect of the matter rather than the historical perspective. Historians explained the historical aspect of why these figures are prominent and the atrocities committed by these individuals that were uncomfortable for the general public to digest.

8 Leave a comment on paragraph 8 0 Shine criticizes historian’s lack of presence in these conversations, but more importantly, it’s presence in civic engagement as compared to other disciplines. Are historians justified in their reluctance to engage with the public? There is no counterclaim when observing this within his article. Shine believes that other subjects are assuming the role of historians in explaining, “change over time.” Shine should be impartial. The public may not have a well-rounded understanding of history. Also, history requires a depth of knowledge beyond a surface level understanding. Many individuals are NOT trained in the specialization that historians have shaped and acquired.

9 Leave a comment on paragraph 9 0 It’s safer for historians to debate within their community than to do so with the public. Historians who dispute within their community understand “who” their audience is. Debating with the general public is entering dangerous territory. Interpretation of the historical perspective can vary. Historians would compromise the integrity of the discipline with the likes of using social media, or other forums to debate and converse. “Historian are skilled in building and interpreting varied narratives dealing with change over time.” Shine suggests that historian’s perspectives are necessary to explain the historical perspective. Are Historians required to explain the historical perspective when needed or should do so consistently for every discipline?

10 Leave a comment on paragraph 10 0 Furthermore, shaping the narrative over other disciplines means bridging interdisciplinary connections to other fields. A historical perspective is only relevant to other subjects depending upon the matter. Shine uses the 2008 Financial Crisis as an example to demonstrate the lack of historical perspective. Economist dominated the Financial Crisis because it is their subject matter. Shine includes not one historian who engaged in this debate. It is impossible that no historians provided a historical perspective to the financial crisis of 2008.

11 Leave a comment on paragraph 11 0 Cormac Shine’s article attacks historians for its lack of voice in other fields to explain debates, narratives, and trends in change over time. Historians, as Shine criticizes, remains secluded in their community. With a renewed sense of purpose, he proclaims that media is a resourceful tool to use as a platform to connect history with other disciplines and insert a historical perspective when the opportunity presents itself. Historians have made strides in participating in conversations beyond the history community. Cormac does not acknowledge nor cites historian’s participation conversations, which further allows him to argue against historians, unfortunately.

12 Leave a comment on paragraph 12 0 Technology is a growing phenomenon that makes information more accessible to people, but to suggest using media as an outlet is the easiest way to engage the public; however, it is not the only way to do so. History had been involved in conversations long before different variations technology became the primary method of communication (internet, social media, and among other things). Historians have traditionally engaged public audiences and continue to do so. Shine’s one-sided argument against historians is a bit biased, considering that he is NOT a historian.


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