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Lecture, Lecture series

Reflections on Historicity, Time and Historical Research

Lecture by François Hartog (Directeur d’études émérite, Ecole des hautes études en  sciences sociales, Paris)

The online seminar is free and open to the public upon registration. For registration, please send an email to HISDEMAB@gmail.com

In his presentation, François Hartog will examine five main questions pertaining to the definition and relevance of the notion of historicity. He will first present the notion of historicity itself and discuss its uses in the present context of historical research and intellectual debates. Around a questioning of the uses of the past in contemporary societies, as well as of the complex relationship between past, present and future, he will also illustrate how an attention to regimes of historicity represents a coherent methodological tool for research. In a second part of the presentation, based on the research featured in his new book, Chronos, he will discuss the successive evolutions of Christian conceptions of time and the conditions of emergence of the modern regime of historicity. The third focus of the presentation will be dedicated to theoretical and historiographical questions on the relationship between democracy and historicity. François Hartog will then present reflections on the emergence since the 1970s of new uses of the past in societies and of policies marked by tendencies that he analyses as manifestations of presentism. The final point of the presentation will critically deal with the question of the historicity of democracy beyond the ‘West’ and in general with questionings on the civilisational and cultural values that have been attached to the notion.

François Hartog (Research Professor Emeritus, EHESS, Paris) is a French historian whose early work focused on Ancient Greece and on questions pertaining to historiography. He later oriented his research towards reflections on the notion of temporality. 

This event is part of the lecture series:
Lecture series in the academic year 2020/21
The Historicity of Democracy Seminar