Question: What are the key categories of historical analysis and/or approach that Citino draws in his review of military history as a field? What are the fundamental conclusions he draws or key arguments he makes? What quote or quotes (be brief—just one or two lines) do you find illustrates these best? Be sure to use citations in your post. What aspect of his discussion did you find most intriguing? Further questions you would draw?
Citino states, in the beginning of the review, that historiography is very different between the topics being written about. Within military history he claims there are three different groups of historians, each of which have different goals and views making the full history of the military a very eclectic field. That view can also be reflected on several other histories as well. Very few historians will have the same views, understanding, or interest in the same topics, resulting in historiography having a vast amount of views and opinions.
The three categories of military history that Citino describes are the “War and Society” scholars, the traditional war scholars, and the history of memory and culture (Citino pg 1017). Citino touches on how each category has their different focuses and how the historians from each group views the historians in the other groups. He splits up the groups by stating that war and society scholars are interested in armies the societies that those armies come from, but are not interested in the physical fighting of the wars that the traditional historians are interested in. The culture and memory historians are interested in just that, the cultures of wars and how the memories of those wars shape the views and histories of it (Citino pages 1070-1071).
Throughout the review, Cintino discusses the different categories and specific writings that defend those types of writings. As the review comes to end, he solidifies his arguments and what the takeaway from this writing should be. In the quote, “My final advice to my professional colleagues? Try something genuinely daring, even countercultural, in terms of today’s academy. Read some military history”(Cintino 1090). This illustrates the work the best, I believe, because it shows how through the different works that each historian does in their respective topic, there is always room to try something more “daring” and change the way history is viewed. In the work Cintino references that the “new military history” is barely new and this quote shows him pushing for there to be a new “new military history”. While the cultural and memory history is the newest approach, there needs to be more effort to expand on that history in today’s age.
I found the way that Citino was able to flow these different styles of historiography to show how the profession has adapted over the time was highly intriguing. I also enjoyed his argument that the most important development in history of recent in the new light being caste on cultures and untold stories. I too find this a to be a very vital part of history because the education system tends to keep history the same, does not include these new stories and untold sides of the events. As a future educator of history, it makes me wonder of those stories will always be looked past or if since they are coming into the light more, the education system will come to adopt those stories to show students different sides and make the question history, not just learn it.
At this moment, historians know everything there is about history, however, history is something that is never through with teaching people new things. While everything is known at this moment, that does not mean they are done knowing, there is a constant flow of new stories, new perspectives, and new facts that are there waiting for this historians to touch on and research. Citino did a wonderful job exploring different authors and exploring the new types of historiography that is being written.