Skip to Main Content


Discover the library.. Find books, journals, articles at library and useful websites on History!

What is history?



History is simply defining as the study of the human past from written, visual, and spoken sources with the analysis and interpretation. The main purposes of the history are to study continuity and change over time. By studying history historians can describe explain the causes and consequences of events Therefore, it should be said that history can be define as understanding past and present. Through the study of history, it should be understanding that how people and societies have changed, developed and how past shaped the future means how the society we live in came to be.

Historians are not using only written documents, but also oral sources and objects such as buildings, artifacts, photographs, and paintings to examine, interpret, revisit, and reinterpret the past. It should not be forgetting that without describe, examine, question, and analyze these both written and non-written historical sources by historians, these sources are silent and incomplete. History also cannot be thought without other disciplines such as economics, anthropology, geography, archeology, numismatics, and linguistics. Thus history can be used to understand other disciplines and other disciplines also helps history to understand past and change over time.

Historians may study the history of particular groups of people, particular events, history of a single country or region and limited time periods. Historians are aware of methods of finding this sources and evaluating these sources. They have talent to make sources voice up. Historians first step is formulating the questions to be answered about the area which they are interested in. Then the questions in their mind let them to find best primary sources for their investigations. After that historians applied secondary sources articles and books written on their chosen topic for their investigation. They are also using archives, on either a physical or digital platform to answer their questions about the past.

Last but not least, there are lots of disciplinary fields for historians use to classify their broad areas of work within the overall academic discipline of history.19th and 20th century, history dominated by political and military history. 20th century French historians with the Annales School emphasized social and economic rather than political and economic history. Then there are now flourishing fields such as intellectual history, Environmental history emerged in the 1980s, Maritime history, Oral history, women's history in the 1970s.


Wolf, Jacqueline H. “Historical Methods.” Journal of Human Lactation 34, no. 2 (May 2018): 282–84. doi:10.1177/0890334418757448.

Kilburn, Matthew. "history." In Dictionary Plus History. : Oxford University Press,


Who is Historian?

            undefined      undefined undefined

A historian is who is person specializes in the discipline of History. They aimed to research, study, analyze, interpret, and historical sources of past humanity. They can specialize particular geographies, events, or periods of history. Historians differently than other people must be objective and must refer to facts avoiding opinions or any form of bias. They started with their investigation with many question than they are collecting historical data from different type of historical sources to analyze and interpret. Then they are organizing data and prepared this organizing data to present historical accounts and findings in the form of published papers, books, and conferences. Historians are not working alone. They are consulting and collaborating with groups, organizations, museums and foundations to promote activities, organize conferences and exhibitions. They can also interview with people to gather information of life events of individuals; and documenting and organizing information. Through they analyzing and documenting historical data, they should be analytical and identifying issues and resolving problems in a timely using critical thinking and good judgment.

In the history, the earliest critical historical work was written by Herodotus of Halicarnassus (484 – c. 425 BCE) who known as the "father of history". He emphasis divinity in the determination of historical events. Thucydides the first historian who distinguished between cause and immediate origins of an event. Chinese historian of the 2nd century BC, Sima Qian was considered as the father of Chinese historiography. In the Roman Empire, famous statesman Cato is the first man who wrote history of Rome in Latin. In the Middle Ages clergies wrote about the history of Jesus Christ, Church history and their religious patrons. The modern academic study of history and methods of historiography were pioneered by Leopold von Ranke who was a pivotal influence in this regard, and is considered as the founder of modern source-based history in the 19th century.

Oxford Reference - History