History Diego Martinez

AOK Badge: History

How does a historian assess the reliability of evidence (sources)?

Group Members:

Patrick Hsu, Muno Ogelohwohor, Rhea Mehta, Diego Martinez

Date: April 2nd - April 8th

Journal Entries

28th of March, 2017:

Today we started to develop our area of knowledge question. We are unsure about what exactly to talk about, but we have a faint idea. We want to talk about the reliability of sources and how a historian can assess it.

30th of March, 2017:

Today were our presentations. We did a pretty average job and received a 17/25. We technically passed, but we had to redo it. Our presentation was too broad and we didn't focus our presentation on answering our question. We provided too many examples and less analysis.

5th of April, 2017:

Today we had to redo our presentation from last class. This is because our presentation was too broad and we didn't focus our presentation on answering our question. We provided too many examples and less analysis. To redo it, we created an outline and showed it to Mr. Morrison. He approved of it and we officially had passed the badge. I agree with the decision to redo the presentations because it lead us to understanding the topic much better.

Elective Readings

This elective reading was very useful while creating our presentation, as it was our main example for our knowledge question. It talks about a massacre that took place in Slocum, Texas, where a white community killed a black community. The event has been mostly deleted from history by the white community, who don't allow almost any information to be leaked out. This is a great example because it shows how it can sometimes be hard for historians to assess reliability due to a lack of information about a topic. It was a very significant reading, as it allowed us to dive deeper into our knowledge question - How does a historian assess the reliability of evidence (sources)?- in order to understand the topic better and be able to present on it. We came to the conclusion that a historian has to look at all perspectives to make a cohesive conclusion. In this case, the different perspectives would be between the white and black communities.

Extension Proposal

This article is very interesting and significant to this Area of Knowledge because it comes from an institute of research, a university. Also, this article demonstrates how to assess the reliability of a historical source based on its content and background. ''a clear argument that has both logical and persuasive elements interpretations that strive to be as objective as possible but openly acknowledging the underlying concerns and assumptions something new rather than simply re-hashing the work of other authors--sometimes asking old questions and finding new answers or asking questions which never have been asked a response to debates in the field of history, either by challenging or reinforcing the interpretations of other historians evidenced in the footnotes and biography''. This part of the article is what states what makes a historical source reliable. The article says that a historical source must contain a clear argument, be objective but still acknowledge the underlying concerns and assumptions. Therefore, this is a very useful and significant extension proposal because it explains how to assess the reliability of a historical source, my topic.

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