During the lecture ‘Telling history in print and in digital form, promises and perils of digital history are considered. Jennifer Koslow point out that historians can make the most out of the possibilities which the Internet offers for interactivity. Furthermore she states that a graphic approach can be very useful if you aren’t good with words. On the other hand, some stories can only be told in text because no one took a picture of it. Moreover, images can’t always give enough context or are meaningless without proper knowledge. Therefore, we should be prepared to present history in digital form, but should alse take into account that there are good reasons for historians to write books. That’s why it’s important that we encourage people to read and share our love of reading, according to Koslow.
Also very interesting, was the lecture of Charles Romney about the use of multiple chronologies and the challenge for public historians to create complexity, but also appeal to a wider public. I think this is one of the core challanges we face as public historians, since we strive to communicate a message that isn’t always necessarily a message the public wants to hear. Digital history can be useful to face this challenge and target a specific audience.
Last, but not least, I think Aaron Shapiro made a good point when he said that public history students should be free to explore and learn how to collaborate. Overall, it was a really useful lecture.
- Written by Eline Koning