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The Past as Text: The Theory and Practice of Medieval Historiography (Parallax: Re-visions of Culture and Society) Paperback – October 15, 1999


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The Past as Text: The Theory and Practice of Medieval Historiography (Parallax: Re-visions of Culture and Society) + The Book of Memory: A Study of Memory in Medieval Culture (Cambridge Studies in Medieval Literature)
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Product Details

  • Series: Parallax: Re-visions of Culture and Society
  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press (October 15, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801862590
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801862595
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,792,238 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Spiegel, in elegant and thoughtful fashion, and with a deep understanding of the period, provides us with a skillful analysis of the sources, their inter-connections, and the motives of their authors, which makes this a very useful and worthwhile book.

(Virginia Quarterly Review)

Successful in its entirety, as parts and as a whole. It is lucid, acute, deeply humane in the author's ongoing project of understanding the medieval past and the history-making present. It is a reader-friendly book in the very best sense. It is good theory and good history: postmodernism without apocalyptic posing, exhilarating and humane.

(Nancy F. Partner, McGill University)

About the Author

Gabrielle M. Spiegel is a professor of history at the Johns Hopkins University. She is the author of The Chronicle Tradition of Saint-Denis: A Survey and Romancing the Past: The Rise of Vernacular Prose Historiography in Thirteenth-Century France.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By Pedro L. San Miguel on June 11, 2014
Verified Purchase
If you are interested in Medieval history or in historiography--which is my case--, you'll find in this book a fascinating discussion of historical writing during the Middle Ages.
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Those pursuing advanced study of medieval texts would do well to read Spiegel's book (a collection mostly of previously published articles). It helps the reader understand how the 'linguistic turn' of the 20th century affected our understanding of the distant past. Spiegel lays out a path of approach for texts that had begun to appear useless. The chapters summarising major theorists and laying out the historiography are alone worth the price of admission, and Spiegel herself proves an adept philosopher of history.
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