Magna Carta has often been hailed as a statement of fundamental law, the basis of the English constitution, a defense of individual liberty, the establishment of the rule of law, and even the foundation of English democracy. Actually, it was none of these.
When I came upon the news of Nemtsov’s murder two Friday nights ago, I immediately handed the iPad to my wife and her jaw dropped.
Traditional maps can portray people and places at certain moments, but they do not capture the dynamism of movement and change over time. And historical texts can describe change over time but lack the visual element that makes it possible to see the multiple dimensions of change at once.
Historians won’t be giving up their visits to archives or their days picking notebooks and letters out of boxes any time soon. But the path to those boxes has changed dramatically as institutions and history enthusiasts have been digitalizing and posting their treasures online.
Kelley was a late-nineteenth-century outlaw whose larger than life exploits have been the subject of many retellings in films and novels. The son of impoverished Irish convicts, Kelley has been embraced as a symbol of the harsh colonial regime; as someone whose violent life was a response to the official violence of the colonial government.
Early in the morning on May 20, 1709, before the trials of offenders commenced, the judges of Scotland’s north circuit court in Perth pardoned some 300 men and women who had been charged with fornication or adultery.
We learn to listen before we learn to read and we speak long before we learn to write. Most archives, however, are built to store printed pages, maps, personal letters, diaries, logbooks, notebooks, and manuscripts.
This weekend, as Cairo’s protestors struck their tents and tidied up Tahrir Square, a clean-up operation of another sort was underway nearby: in the Egyptian Museum, home to King Tutankhamen and countless other archaeological treasures.