The Idea of History : With Lectures 1926-1928, Paperback

The Idea of History : With Lectures 1926-1928 Paperback

Edited by W. J. van der Dussen

4 out of 5 (1 rating)


The Idea of History is the best-known work of the great Oxford philosopher, historian, and archaeologist R.

G. Collingwood. Published posthumously in 1946, it examines how the idea of history has evolved from the time of Herodotus to the twentieth century, and offers Collingwood's own view of what history is.

This revised edition has a substantial new introduction which discusses how scholars have responded to Collingwood's classic over the last fifty years.

It also makes available for the first time some of Collingwood's lectures on the philosophy of history - essential for a fuller understanding of his thought, and in particular for the interpretation of The Idea of History itself.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 564 pages, bibliography
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: History: theory & methods
  • ISBN: 9780192853066


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Collingwood's "The Idea of History" is arguably one of the most important books in the 20th Century on history and the study of. The author attempts to get at what exactly it means when refers to "studying history" and what the heck history is in the first place. The first section, after briefly touching on the aforementioned topics, dives into the history of history: how everyone from the ancient Greeks to his contemporaries (~1930s) view history and what are the problems with those views. The next section consists of Collingwood outlining his very convincing argument of what history is and why it is so important that history is studied. While it can ramble on a bit, it is a fascinating book that is still important to read if you are interested in the study of history.