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Which is the more important attribute of the historian: the ability to analyse evidence scientifically, or the ability to develop interpretations of evidence using creative imagination?

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Introduction

Cristina Valencia 12th grade Theory of Knowledge Murray Thomas Which is the more important attribute of the historian: the ability to analyse evidence scientifically, or the ability to develop interpretations of evidence using creative imagination? The main aim of a historian is to issue knowledge and information from the past. The word history is portrayed as a recollection of evidence from ancient times. This evidence has helped people to deduce and build up ethical historic events that took place centuries ago. Nevertheless, the analysis of evidence and knowledge a historian undergoes is extremely subjective, and its significance is of great importance. The information conveyed in this historic knowledge can be used by other people to interpret facts from the past. Here, we can see a clear contrast between the History Area of Knowledge and the Art-Science Area of Knowledge. The desire to publish conclusions of the historical evidence is something that all historians share when it comes to analyzing facts. Despite the resemblance between methodologies, the one that deals with scientifical analysis is quite different from the artistic interpretation. Historians, have the tendency to present their findings with a detailed description, the causes, and the consequences. Thus, for a historian to reach this, they have to be dominant and strong when it comes to develop interpretations. ...read more.

Middle

The rectification of the information brings validity as well as the reduction of problems of knowledge they might have in their conclusions. There are distinct problems historians encounter when they search for information and evidence, the main one is bias. Bias is a big problem as it lowers the capacity of reliability and it generates people's disagreements towards it. This bias relates to an area of knowledge, in this case "Reason". This influences the historian to present his or her conclusions in an unbiased manner; this will help people to understand both sides of the conclusion. In the Area of Knowledge of Science and History, there is a clear link between logic and reason; however this link does not exist in the Arts. The analysis of evidence through the process of interpretation makes this particular method not only misleading but in many ways link to distinct ways of knowing, one of them being emotion. Interpretations can be misleading as the conclusion of a historian can be influenced by distinct factors, an example of this is cultural awareness. Culture does not influence the interpretations of evidence when using the scientific method, as this method is quite objective. This shows that in order to deduce a historical fact, all cultures must agree with it. ...read more.

Conclusion

When it comes to research an analysis people tend to look only at the scientific or mathematical method of doing things, without giving scope for interpretations. Although this is the method usually preferred by the historians, they are still not capable to proof and demonstrate their conclusions to all the humanity, as this will only be understood by scientists and historians themselves. When developing the scientific findings, it is a historians duty to use its interpretation in order to translate it to an idea that will be accepted and understood by all of humanity. It is key for a historian to have both of these attributes, as they will be enlightened in both ways, they will also have the capability to look at their evidence through different viewpoints, this will help him not only to formulate conclusions from the evidence from a scientific or artistic manner, but also in a personal, emotional and logical way. Only by reaching this point can a historian truly analyze the evidence in the most efficient and reliable way. Furthermore it is when a historian achieves this that he or she can be satisfied as they have shown that an incident from the past took place in that time, this will be considered by humanity "history". ...read more.

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