Where do the questions come from that inspire us to investigate the past but from ourselves and the world in which we live? It is life as it is lived in the present with its problems and difficulties, anxieties and fears, notions of progress made and unmade, that provokes us to explore the relationship between past, present and possible futures. Our reading of the archive, of historiographies and of conceptual texts will always be inflected through our own lives. The truths we seek to establish will be partial, addressed to the particular questions we explored, inevitably selective given the limitations of our own understandings and of the sources we can utilize. As Miri Rubin puts it in her contribution to this discussion, we are always at work from and through the present, while trying to be attentive to potential anachronisms. ‘Presentism’, in...

Article PDF first page preview

Article PDF first page preview
Article PDF first page preview
You do not currently have access to this article.