Contribute

Do you do historical research involving knowledge as a socially determined product of human beings and activities? If so, you are involved in the history of knowledge. Whether or not you label yourself and your work in such terms, we would like to hear from you. We invite you to share some thoughts about your work on this blog.

Blog posts can be about a specific project or historical phenomenon involving the formation, transmission, circulation, or translation of knowledge. Or perhaps you would like to discuss a related book. Or reflect on the broader meaning and potential of the history of knowledge.

The last suggestion entails a variety of possible questions. What is the history of knowledge? How does it relate to other historiographical approaches and interests that inform your research? Why have you come to engage in knowledge as an object of historical analysis? What does a history of knowledge perspective help you to think about that other concepts, approaches, or methods have not made sufficiently accessible? What kinds of research do you think the history of knowledge could open up and why? What is the specific analytical potential of knowledge history? What problems do you see in the history of knowledge, whether as practiced or in terms of conceptual limitations? What differences do you see in how “knowledge” is understood in different academic or historiographical cultures?

Or perhaps you are interested in what constitutes knowledge as an object of historiographical, anthropological, or sociological interest in the first place and the relationship of knowledge to information, beliefs, and culture.

If you find these kinds of questions interesting and fruitful, please contact us about joining the discussion and review the details below.

Details

Blog posts must be original texts, unless we have explicitly discussed a rare exception and clarified the rights situation. Posts should generally be no longer than 2,000 words, often around 1,000, although we can be flexible about these limits. Texts will be edited by an experienced editor–historian, so people not completely at home in English can still contribute in this language.

When inquiring about a possible submission, please include a note about your academic position or qualifications or a link to your professional homepage.

Texts should generally follow U.S. spellings. Scholarly apparatus can entail weblinks, endnotes, or a combination of the two. For endnotes, simply use that function in your word processing application and follow the Chicago Manual of Style. Weblinks should be placed in parentheses after the relevant portion of the text from which you want to link.

Please keep in mind that reading a blog post is different from reading an academic book or journal article. To be sure, you can write the same basic way (or less formally, if you prefer), but note that somewhat shorter paragraphs are easier on the eyes when reading on screen.

Images can be included, but you must demonstrate that you have the right to publish them on this weblog. Rights are too complicated an issue to summarize here, but the same kinds of issues that you encounter in print are relevant here too. (Many university libraries make copyright information available on their websites.) To help us make a determination, please include the images and detailed source information with your post. If you (re)produced the images yourself, please provide details on that.

Finally, the blogging platform we’re using will make your work and authorship more accessible and easier to reference if you have a WordPress.com account. You will still submit your post via a Word document for us to review and edit, and we will post the material to the blog ourselves, assigning authorship to you using that attribute on WordPress.

If you already have a WordPress.com account, please let us know the email address associated with it so we can make you a contributor.1 You can also set up a new account or, if you would prefer not to manage your own account, we can do that on our end for the purposes of this blog. Just let us know your preference.2

Of course, we must reserve the right to publish only those contributions that we deem suitable for this venue.


  1. If your account is anonymous, please set up a new one that uses the name (and position) you publish professionally under. To do this, log out of your current account and set up a new one with these directions
  2. One advantage of having your own account is the ability to change the listing for your academic position. This information does not appear in individual blog posts with our current theme, Penscratch 2, but it does show up on archive pages for posts of a specific author. (Click on some of the author names in our Archive to see how this information is currently displayed.) Having your own WordPress.com account also makes it possible to follow other blogs with their Reader