Driven by the increasing importance of discussions around 'impact' and its meaning and implications for history, The Impact of History? brings together established and new voices to raise relevant questions, issues and controversies for debate. The chapters are articulated around the themes of public history, the politics of history, the role of history in the shaping of learning and the situation of history in the changing world of education. While this subject is driven differently by the research bodies and councils of different countries, similar debates about the value and place of the academy in society are taking place in the UK, the USA and Europe as well as in other parts of the world.

Chapters cover diverse areas of history from this perspective including:

  • public history
  • national histories
  • new technologies and the natural sciences
  • campaigning histories
  • the impact agenda.

This collection is a political and intellectual intervention at a time when scholars and readers of history are being asked to explain why history matters and it seeks to intervene in the debates on ‘impact’, on education and on the role of the past in the shaping of our future. Bringing together leading authors from a wide range of fields, The Impact of History? is an accessible and engaging yet polemical and thought-provoking overview of the role of history in contemporary society.

chapter |20 pages

Doing history in public?

Historians in the age of impact

chapter |13 pages

The genealogy boom

Inheritance, family history and the popular historical imagination

chapter |12 pages

History 2.0

History, publics and new technologies

chapter |24 pages

The humanities and public service broadcasting

A history film-maker's view

chapter |12 pages

From Roy Jenkins downwards

The historian/journalist and journalist/historian in contemporary Britain

chapter |13 pages

‘Different and better times'?

History, progress and inequality

chapter |16 pages

History and practitioners

The use of history by humanitarians and potential benefits of history to the humanitarian sector