Tag Archive

Richard White

Agency Part III: Deromanticizing Agency

As I mentioned in the first post in this series, both history, as a discipline, and agency—as a concept so central to the premises that inform the discipline—are well embedded within western humanist tradition. As such they are also products of the same romantic impulses that constructed the human subject as a central—perhaps the most central—trope in western imagination. Indeed, it is no coincidence that the modern discipline of history has its roots in the German romanticism of Johann Gottfried Herder and Johann Gottlieb Fichte, which shrouded both individuals and nations with a romantic aura in touch with the sublime. Read more