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The history ( English historiology ) is a sub-area of ​​the historical science , which deals with the basics of the subject, z. B. of methodology , source studies , textual criticism , hermeneutics and heuristics .

The first important methodological instructions for a systematically structured history study in the European cultural area date from the 19th century and were formulated by Wilhelm Wachsmuth and Johann Gustav Droysen . The latter wrote the following in his plan of history :

"The given for historical research is not the past, because it has passed, but what has not yet passed by them in the now and here, may it be memories of what was and happened or remnants of what was and happened."

Droysen hereby indicates that the scientist can approach the past empirically , i.e. without making unfounded speculation . This represented a milestone in the history of the science of history. In recent times, Jörn Rüsen's 'Basics of a History' have been particularly influential in German-speaking countries . Rüsen equates the German term historik with the English word metahistory and understands by it the specific self-reflection of the historical sciences.

Internationally, the self-image of historical studies was challenged by the work of Hayden White (“ linguistic turn ”).


  • Blanke, Horst Walter, Historiography history as history , Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt: Frommann-Holzboog, 1991.
  • von Brandt, Ahasver: Tool of the Historian , 17th edition, Stuttgart 2007.
  • Droysen, Johann Gustav: Outline of the History , 1868.
  • Hindrichs, Gunnar, “Empirical History”. Traditionality and the concept of history by Karl Lamprechts , in: Archiv für Kulturgeschichte, 81st year 1999, 371–395.
  • Baumgartner, HM: Theses on the Foundation of Transcendental History, in: Seminar: History and Theory. Edited by Baumgartner, HM / Rüsen, J., Frankfurt a. M. 1976, 274-302.
  • Jörn Rüsen , Fundamentals of a History , 3 volumes
    • 1. Historical reason: The foundations of historical science , Göttingen: Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, 1983. ISBN 3-525-33482-6
    • 2. Reconstruction of the past: The principles of historical research , Göttingen: Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, 1986. ISBN 3-525-33517-2
    • 3. Living history: forms and functions of historical knowledge , Göttingen: Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, 1989. ISBN 3-525-33554-7
  • Koselleck, Reinhart: Art. "Geschichte, Historie", in: Historical lexicon on the political-social language in Germany (basic historical concepts, vol. 2). Ed. Brunner, O./Conze, W./Koselleck, R., Stuttgart 1975, pp. 647-715.
  • Buller, Andreas: The theories of history of the 19th century. The relationship between historical reality and historical knowledge in Karl Marx and Johann Gustav Droysen (contribution to transcendental history), Berlin 2002. ISBN 3-8325-0089-8
  • Wachsmuth, Ernst Wilhelm Gottlieb: Draft of a theory of history , Halle 1820.

See also

Individual evidence

  1. For the classification of history in the interdisciplinary framework of the various theories of science, see: Michael Gal: What is theory? About the concept, diversity and possible uses of theory in historical studies. In: ders., International Political History. Concept - Basics - Aspects. Norderstedt 2019, ISBN 978-3-7528-2338-7 , pp. 120–123.
  2. Jörn Rüsen: History - Narration, Interpretation, Orientation. New York 2005.