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Att göra historia: En kritisk studie av historieämnet som kunskapsorganiserande system
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of ALM.
2011 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The central theme of the present thesis is the history subject viewed as a knowledge organizing system (KOS). The history subject is studied as a class within the two universal classification systems SAB and DDC, where it is characterized by a conceptual intention and extension giving it a unique identity. The form and structure characterizing the history subject in these KOS are present in other artefacts as well, and world history works function as supplementary empirical examples to SAB and DDC. The established conception of word history is reproduced via a number of prioritized channels, producing a hegemonic formation termed the traditional formation. In that form, history appears as a coherent entity, logically separated from closely related subjects. From a semiotically inspired point of view, KOS are viewed as self-contained systems where the analysis reveal their identity as narratives rather than merely as neutral and universal categories. Instead of regarding the geographical axis as a division of territories, it is acknowledged as a division into “historical subjects”. Furthermore, the division of the temporal axis in periods is viewed as closely related to the narrative described by the historical subject. Thus, a better description of this supposedly neutral Newtonian time-room emerge through the Bakhtinian concept chronotope, intertwining a temporal and spatial dimension. This perspective enables a reading of KOS as a meaningful narrative. An analysis of this narrative reveal what best may be described as “the myth of the white man”. Assembled from a certain myth, the narrative may be contemplated as an expression of the interests of a small group at a certain point in time, rather than a truly universal story. In conclusion, the thesis questions the functionality of the studied systems, arguing for the importance of a critical and contextual analysis of KOS sensitive to historical change.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Institutionen för ABM vid Uppsala universitet , 2011. , 221 p.
Skrifter utgivna vid institutionen för ABM vid Uppsala universitet, ISSN 1652-5353 ; 4
Keyword [en]
Classification systems; Social construction; Narratology; Historiography
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
Research subject
Library and Information Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-150347ISBN: 978-91-506-2207-2OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-150347DiVA: diva2:407095
Public defence
2011-05-14, Auditorium Minus, Gustavianum, Akademigatan 3, Uppsala, 10:15 (Swedish)
Available from: 2011-04-20 Created: 2011-03-29 Last updated: 2011-04-20Bibliographically approved

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