Place Published: Philadelphia
Publisher: Saint Joseph's University Press
Date Published: 2007
Book ID: 4
320 pages + preface, introduction, and index | 9.25 x 6.25 inches
This book advances the thesis that the study of biography makes history better understood. Animating History is made up of seven chapters: Ideas and Men; Why Plutarch?; Ideas and Women; Historic Friendships; Anglo-American Rapprochement; Jesuit Presence; and Biography/Autobiography. An introduction develops the main themes of the material included, and a summing up draws out the lessons learned from the lives of the historical persons treated.
It is the collective impact of the seven chapters that gives a full statement and meaning of the value of biography as history. Yet nowhere is the argument advanced that biography is the only way to enter upon history in order to grasp the significance of the past as we live in the present and prepare for the future. Rather, it merely insists that causes, -isms, environment, geography, or other impersonal reference points do not tell the whole story, or anything close to the whole story. Biography personalizes the past, an essential path to follow as we attempt to understand our inheritance.