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Last Updated on February 4, 2016, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 400

CRITICISM

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Ankersmit, F. R. “Hayden White's Appeal to the Historians.” History and Theory 37, No. 2 (May 1998): 182–93.

Ankersmit discusses the animosity of historians toward philosophers of history—particularly that of Arthur Marwick toward White—and defends White's theoretical inquiries into the nature of historical reality and historical writing.

Carroll, Noël. “Interpretation, History, and Narrative.” Monist 73, No. 2 (April 1990): 134–66.

Carroll provides analysis of White's complex theory of historical discourse as interpretive narrative writing. Carroll finds the “philosophical considerations” and “empirical theses” of White's argument unpersuasive.

Clive, John. Review of Metahistory, by Hayden White. Journal of Modern History 47, No. 3 (September 1975): 542–43.

Clive judges Metahistory to be “an immensely ambitious undertaking,” though he admits that the book’s central thesis will cause disagreements among historians.

Domañska, Ewa. “Hayden White: Beyond Irony.” History and Theory 37, No. 2 (May 1998): 173–81.

Domañska examines White's theoretical position in Metahistory and discusses the significance of the ironic mode as an attempt to come to terms with the postmodern “prison house of language.”

Golob, Eugene O. “The Irony of Nihilism.” History and Theory XIX, No. 4 (1980): 55–65.

Golob examines aspects of positivism and idealism in Metahistory, and argues against White's application of structural linguistics and positivist assumptions to the field of historical writing.

Leff, Gordon. Review of Metahistory, by Hayden White. Pacific Historical Review XLIII (1974): 598–600.

Leff commends White's theoretical formulation in Metahistory, but finds flaws in its application to nineteenth-century historiography.

Partner, Nancy. “Hayden White: The Form of the Content.” History and Theory 37, No. 2 (May 1998): 162–72.

Partner discusses White's problematic reception among historians, the underlying humor of his analysis of the Annals of St. Gall in The Content of the Form, and affinities between the work of White and philosopher Paul Ricoeur, whom White has criticized.

Pomper, Philip. “Typologies and Cycles in Intellectual History.” History and Theory XIX, No. 4 (1980): 30–38.

Pomper praises White's contribution in Metahistory, but finds flaws in his typological framework, particularly the ironic mode.

Southgate, Beverly. “History and Metahistory: Marwick Versus White.” Journal of Contemporary History 31, No. 1 (January 1996): 209–13.

Southgate discusses the opposing theoretical positions of White and Arthur Marwick, addressing inadequacies in Marwick's views and the unwillingness of traditional historiographers to engage newer developments.

Wellek, René. “The Politics of Interpretation.” Partisan Review LV, No. 2 (1988): 334–37.

An essay in which Wellek criticizes White's arguments in The Content of the Form.

Additional coverage of White's life and career is contained in the following sources published by the Gale Group: Contemporary Authors, Vol. 128; and Literature Resource Center.

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Criticism