Does Historiography Need to be Provincial? International Circulation of Ideas as Exemplified by the Cooperation of Polish and French Historians in the Period of the Poland

Abstract

Contacts between Polish historians, French historians and French centers of historiography – espcially with the prestigious milieu of Fernand Braudel's Annales – were unusual and extraordinary in comparison with other forms of scientific cooperation with foreign countries: both with the West and the “friendly countries.” Because of the undeniable uniqueness of these relations many scholars from various countries claim that the annalistic methodology “influnced” Polish historiography. What is characteristic, however, is that these statements are most often completely a priori. This paper is a reflection on the nature of the methodological influence of one historical school on the other and discusses such a possibility, taking into consideration models of circulation of ideas proposed by Pierre Bourdieu and Jerzy Maternicki. It is also an attempt at answering whether historical sciences are able to freely interfere on a supra-national level or whether they are by nature characterized by provincialism, understood here as a limitation to national frameworks outside of which they cannot be understood

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