The development of historical disciplines in the Caribbean
THE idea of history as a ‘discipline’ belongs almost exclusively to Western culture of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It was in this recent period that authority was accorded to representations of the past produced by professionals working in institutionalized academies. The authority of such modern accounts was hard won, and remains contested within the academy as well as in the wider intellectual world. In the Caribbean, a region created in its modern creole incarnation by European carriers of Western culture in interaction with African and Asian peoples, disciplinary history was a relative latecomer, with the academy generally becoming a significant feature of local life only in the second half of the twentieth century.
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