A Short Guide to Writing about History

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  • Edition: 8th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2011-07-14
  • Publisher: Longman
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A Short Guide to Writing about Historyis an ideal complement for any history course intended to teach students to think and write like historians.  This engaging and practical text will teach students how to go beyond reporting the basic dates and facts of their history books and show them how to infuse their writing with their own ideas and unique perspective.   Covering brief essays and the documented resource paper, the text explores the writing and researching processes, different modes of historical writing (including argument), and offers guidelines for improving style as well as documenting sources.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. xi
Acknowledgmentsp. xiii
Writing and Historyp. 1
Stories About the Past Intended to Be Truep. 1
Writing History as a Way of Thinkingp. 5
Basic Principles for History Essaysp. 9
Good Historical Essays Are Sharply Focused on A Limited Topicp. 9
Historical Essays Should Have a Clearly Stated Argumentp. 12
Historical Essays Are Built, Step By Step, on Carefully Acknowledged Evidencep. 14
Historical Essays Reflect the Dispassionate Thoughts of the Authorp. 17
History Essays Are Clearly Written With an Intended Audience In Mindp. 21
Writer's Checklist of Basic Principlesp. 23
Paraphrase and Plagiarismp. 23
Writer's Checklist for Avoiding Plagiarismp. 28
Thinking About Historyp. 29
Historical Questioningp. 32
"Who" Questionsp. 33
"What" Questionsp. 34
"When" Questionsp. 36
"Where" Questionsp. 37
"Why" Questionsp. 37
Historical Fallaciesp. 39
Making Inferencesp. 42
Quantitative Data and Historyp. 44
Evaluating Materialsp. 48
Writer's Checklist for Evaluationp. 53
Gathering Informationp. 54
Focusing on a Topicp. 56
Making Initial Inquiriesp. 61
Identifying Key Sourcesp. 69
Secondary Sourcesp. 69
Primary Sourcesp. 76
Concluding Your Researchp. 84
Writer's Checklist for Researchp. 87
Notes and Draftsp. 88
Recording Information and Ideasp. 89
Keep An Ongoing Bibliographyp. 96
Avoid Copying Quotationsp. 97
Keep Any Quotations Separatep. 98
Record Your Own Commentsp. 98
Writer's Checklist for Taking Notesp. 99
Organizing Your Essayp. 100
Writing and Revising Draftsp. 105
Writer's Checklist for Peer Editingp. 113
Voice and Stylep. 114
Modes of Writingp. 115
Narrationp. 115
Descriptionp. 118
Expositionp. 119
Persuasionp. 122
Simple and Direct Writingp. 124
Write in Coherent Paragraphsp. 125
Keep Sentences Manageablep. 126
Avoid the Passive Voicep. 127
Write About the Past in the Past Tensep. 129
Connect Your First and Last Paragraphsp. 130
Word Forms and Punctuationp. 131
Keep Modifiers Under Controlp. 132
Be Certain Pronouns Refer to Antecedentsp. 132
Form Plurals and Possessives of Nouns Accuratelyp. 133
Use Intended Forms for Common Wordsp. 134
Use Objective Case Pronouns Appropriatelyp. 135
Maintain Parallel Form for a Seriesp. 136
Use Commas and Semicolons Appropriatelyp. 137
Carefully Present and Punctuate Quotationsp. 138
The Final Presentationp. 139
Writing for Speakingp. 141
Writer's Checklist for Expression and Conventionsp. 143
Documenting Sourcesp. 144
Basic Principlesp. 145
Authorshipp. 146
Title(s)p. 147
Locationp. 148
Datep. 148
Shortened" Forms for Subsequent Note Citationsp. 149
Electronic Sourcesp. 150
Notes and Bibliographiesp. 154
Writer's Checklist of Source Citationsp. 156
Sample Student Research Paperp. 164
Manifest Destiny A: Characteristic of Nationsp. 165
Things to Notice About This Paperp. 179
Writer's Checklist for Sample Research Paperp. 180
Writing Reviewsp. 181
Reviewing as a Special Form of Writingp. 181
A Sample Student Reviewp. 186
Thomas Fleming's Discovery of Another Warp. 187
Things to Notice About This Reviewp. 193
Writers Checklist for Reviewsp. 193
Short Essay Assignmentsp. 194
Writers Checklist for Short Essaysp. 201
Select Bibliography of Student Resourcesp. 202
Text Creditsp. 206
Indexp. 208
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