The Visitable Past, by Helen Rogers

I delight in a palpable imaginable visitable past—wrote Henry James—in the nearer distances and the clearer mysteries, the marks and signs of a world we may reach over to as by making a long arm we grasp an object at the other end of our own table. It was the recent past that intrigued this … Continue reading The Visitable Past, by Helen Rogers

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Choose Your Own Adventure History, by Julia Laite

Long before I discovered history as my favourite way of telling stories, I loved choose your own adventure books, writes Julia Laite.  The ‘choose your own adventure’ children’s books were one of Bantam’s most popular series in the 1980s.  These slim and accessible volumes, invited ‘you’ to be ‘the hero’ of a particular story, and … Continue reading Choose Your Own Adventure History, by Julia Laite

“As I Went Forth One Summer’s Day”: Putting the Story in Early Modern History, by Mark Hailwood

Twas the night before Christmas, in the year 1681, and one Soloman Reddatt was drinking in the Nag's Head in Reading, with his sister, Elizabeth, and a friend, George Parfitt, when, at around 9pm, their sociability was disturbed by the shattering of glass. Moments earlier, Debora Allen had burst into the alehouse in search of … Continue reading “As I Went Forth One Summer’s Day”: Putting the Story in Early Modern History, by Mark Hailwood

Ten Resolutions to Work More Creatively, by Will Pooley

I don’t have a definition of ‘creativity’.[1] I see creativity not as a solution, but a set of problems around how we play, hard.[2] Ten resolutions: 1 Make it.[3] 2 Seek difference.[4] 3 Process, not output. 4 Cherish your tools. 5 Feel it.[5] 6 Do. The. Work.[6] 7 Write more, sooner.[7] 9 See everyone as … Continue reading Ten Resolutions to Work More Creatively, by Will Pooley

Possibilities of Archives, by Ann Chow

Pink Flamingos and the chance of seeing those gorillas at Bristol Zoo. The conferences I like aren’t only those held in unusual places but the sort that open up possibilities, writes Ann Chow. The Creative Histories conference gave me much to think about. This was a meeting of the intersections between creativity, history and the arts … Continue reading Possibilities of Archives, by Ann Chow

Creative Histories: Vulnerability, Emotions, and the Undoing of the Self, by Sonja Boon

“I liked your writing, the flow, the words… It all works,” my editor, Allyson Latta, told me after she read through a draft of the opening section of the memoir I’m currently working on. “But what are the emotional stakes?” My current research project, writes Sonja Boon, is about messy histories – those pasts that tangle … Continue reading Creative Histories: Vulnerability, Emotions, and the Undoing of the Self, by Sonja Boon

Creative history is…? By Laura Sangha

Creative history is…?[1] not a luxury[2] an active part of the historical process at every stage of the process[3] a way to uncover and reveal the research process[4] a way to work out how others look and see[5] a curiosity, a delight[6] a means to create space in our writing[7] a means to make an … Continue reading Creative history is…? By Laura Sangha

But is it REFable? A Challenge for Creative History by Catherine Fletcher

At the Creative Histories conference in July we heard about all sorts of exciting projects using creative techniques to explore the past, writes Catherine Fletcher. One of the challenges for academics in this field lies in establishing how the quality of that type of work might be measured. The next iteration of the UK’s national … Continue reading But is it REFable? A Challenge for Creative History by Catherine Fletcher

Blog Series: ‘Creative Histories’

StoryingthePast are pleased to present a series of blog posts based on the ‘Creative Histories’ conference held in Bristol in July, and supported by the British Academy, Bristol Institute for the Humanities and Arts, and the Department of History, University of Bristol. The first post from Catherine Fletcher is live today, and the subsequent posts … Continue reading Blog Series: ‘Creative Histories’