Perez Zagorin Analysis

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Perez Zagorin was born in Chicago in 1920, to two Jewish immigrants. Zagorin earned his B.A. from the University of Chicago, and then went on to earn his M.A. and Ph.D. from Harvard in 1947 and 1952. He tried to join the Navy after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, but was turned down because of his eyesight. He instead took a job at the Office of War Information. Early on he taught at Amherst College, and Vassar College, but his contract was never renewed because of his suspicious pro-communist views. It did not help his case when he joined an American Union and led a strike, and then supported Henry Wallace, the pro-Soviet party leader in a presidential election. He left to teach in Montreal at McGill University, where he remained for nine…show more content…
In Perez Zagorin’s article, Historiography and Postmodernism: Reconsiderations, Zagorin points out that F.R. Ankersmit has recommended that historians adopt the postmodernism perspective to understand the discipline of historiography. He points out that in a…show more content…
Next, he claims that Ankersmit identifies with the newest perspective in history, viewing it as a development. Zagorin wants to examine Ankersmit’s claims and their validity. He clarifies that postmodernism is essential to historical concept, and is an inevitable stage in culture. He also says the term carries the connotation of being at the end of an era instead of at the beginning. The last element is its hostility to humanism. Zagorin states that Postmodernism, or the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism,” by Frederic Jameson will be useful to look at for understanding the postmodern concept. Jameson says that postmodernism is neither a fad nor one of a number of trends or styles. He feels that it is a product of a variety of contemporary cultural arts. Zagorin feels that Ankersmit turns away from the past, and rejects evidence, feeling that it is only interpretations of other historians. Ankersmit’s concept of historiography differs from the traditional way historians view history. He feels there is too much production of historical writing. Zagorin feels the present writing of historians is going deeper into material more than it ever has before. The writing has also deepened
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