This article argues that the contemporary hype in digitization and dissemination of our cultural heritage – especially of audiovisual sources – is comparable to the boom of critical source editions in the late 19th century. But while the dramatic rise of accessibility to and availability of sources in the 19th century went hand in hand with the development of new scholarly skills of source interpretation and was paralleled by the institutionalization of history as an academic profession, a similar trend of an emerging digital historicism today seems absent. This essay aims at reflecting on the challenges and chances that the discipline of history – and the field of television history in particular – is actually facing. It offers some thoughts and ideas on how the digitization of sources and their online availability affects the established practices of source criticism.

digital history, source critique, historical hermeneutics, digital humanities, contextualization
Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
VIEW Journal
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VIEW Journal of European Television History and Culture; Vol 1, No 1 (2012): Making Sense of Digital Sources; 19-26

Fickers, Andreas. (2012). Towards a New Digital Historicism? Doing History in the Age of Abundance. VIEW Journal, 1(1), 19–26. doi:10.18146/2213-0969.2012.jethc004