Direct Response “Military Histories Old and New: A Reintroduction”

Military history is one of the oldest forms of study of the past. It has become divided on the approach beneath its “big tent.” There are many who pursue one of the two main approaches of either what might be called the old and new schools of the study such as, Reed Browning, Dennis E. Showalter, Geoffrey Parker, Donald R. Shaffer. Whether they stick to the grit of how a battle occurs or looks to the surroundings for the why it would happen, they search through many periods for reasons that shaped the happenings of the world. The second approach sees the way a battle turns out directed by what decisions are made or the tools available to those commanding. These resources or decisions fall into the “old” or operational aspects of military history. On the other-side looks to the reasons the mentioned items come from or are introduced the parts of the developments of the world and politics that shape it. There is a third school and it looks to not just history but also memory. The way things are remembered or memorialized can and do shape military history just as much as the arguments historians show about what made the battles happen or shaped their outcomes. Not all historians in the present want to look beyond the event studied to the memory or later cultural icons that may have resulted and remain in tied to the studies of the first two schools that have been labeled in Robert M. Cintino’s writing. Studies are not simply new or old military histories, but often fallow the cultures, societies, and even memory to shape the studies of this branch of history. Should this type of development be reflected in branches of the study in history or is it better to leave some to the current reach and development they achieve? Military history evolved based on cultural and societal elements that shape the reason for the study, but other branches do not contain the restrictions based on the distance from the potential effects on how we view of our identity. Military history is likely to find other angles to be analyzed but will another group evolve from it cannot be predicted. No matter era there are battles recorded  that can use any of these methods whether it is the social reasons why whether that is mistrust of government the or the misrepresentation with in the government like the history or memory surrounding the Revolutionary War or political happenings that are used to motivate the the push for lebensraum that was a major push in World War II there are social reason that the “new military history” put as reasons for battles happening as well as how they reach their outcomes. Other historians will examine the events and technologies in a battle like the use of cavalry in the battles around the battles to face the Huns and latter development of feudal age. whether these developments in the tales of history help us find the truth or something closer to a memory developed with some fiction as the German’s presented for WWII.

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