Histories and Fallacies

January 04, 2011

Problems Faced in the Writing of History--New Book by Rev. Dr. Carl Trueman

Publisher's Description: A first-rate historical theologian references classic examples to confront conceptual and methodological problems in the works of those who seek to appropriate history for their own purposes.

Seeking to raise the bar for all historians, Histories and Fallacies addresses several problems in the historical disciplines: objectivity, evidence and meaning, anachronism, idealism, and causality and context. In each chapter author Dr. Carl R. Trueman, professor of Church History and Historical Theology, gives an account of the problem, examines one or more classic examples of it, and suggests either a solution or an approach that will bear fruit.

This compelling book will be especially valued by advanced undergraduates, graduate students, and history lovers seeking a guide to the conceptual and methodological problems in this challenging discipline.

Visit the Westminster Bookstore to get your copy


Read this review by Pastor Todd Pruitt

"This is a very good book, full of historiographical wisdom. I recommend it strongly as a sure and encouraging guide to budding historians befuddled by the so-called 'history wars,' and to anyone who is interested in the challenges attending those who represent the history of Christian thought."
- Douglas A. Sweeney, Associate Professor of Church History, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"Carl Trueman's cogent and engaging approach to historiography provides significant examples of problems faced by historians and the kinds of fallacies frequently encountered in historical argumentation. Trueman steers a clear path between problematic and overdrawn conclusions on the one hand and claims of utter objectivity on the other. His illustrations, covering several centuries of Western history, are telling. He offers a combination of careful historical analysis coupled with an understanding of the logical and argumentative pitfalls to which historians are liable that is a service to the field and should provide a useful guide to beginning researchers. A must for courses on research methodology."
- Richard A. Muller

"Because the past shapes the present, a just understanding of the past is important for any individual, society, or church. Here is wise and practical advice for those wanting to write history for others about how to do it well. Follow this guidance and avoid the pitfalls!"
- David Bebbington, Professor of History, University of Stirling