1 L. O. Mink, ‘The theory of practice: Hexter’s historiography’, in B. C. Malament (ed), After the Reformation: Essays in honor of J. H. Hexter, (Philadelphia 1980) 5. The essays in this festschrift are mainly devoted to Hexter’s work as an historian of early modern Britain and Europe.

2 But see the critical discussion of some of Hexter’s central contentions in P. Munz, The Shapes of Time (Hanover NH, 1977); Richard T. Vann’s assessment of Hexter in his ‘Turning linguistic: history and theory and history and theory, 1960-1975’, in F. Ankersmit and H. Kellner (ed), A new philosophy of history (London 1995) 40-69; and Peter Novick’s scattered remarks on Hexter in That noble dream: the ‘objectivity question’ and the American historical profession (Cambridge 1988).

3 J. H. Hexter, The History Primer (New York 1971) 328. See also Hexter’s ‘The rhetoric of history’, History and Theory 6 (1967) 3-13 and his contribution on the same topic to D. L. Sills (ed), International Encyclopaedia of the Social Sciences, 6 (London and New York 1968).

4 ibid. 369.

5 ibid. 3.

6 ibid. 156.

7 See W. H. Dray, ‘On the nature and role of narrative in history’, in G. Roberts (ed), The history and narrative reader (London 2001) 25-39.

8 The history primer, 226.

9 ibid. 251. Cf Paul Veyne, ‘Facts exist only in and through plots in which they take on the relative importance imposed by the human logic of the drama’. Cited by P. Ricoeur, The contribution of French historiography to the theory of history (Oxford 1980), 34-35.

10 ibid. 238.

11 ibid. 238.

12 Mink, op. cit., 18-21.

13 ‘Historians write history, all men write what they write, say what they say, do what they do, on the basis of their own experience, because in fact there is no other possible basis for writing, or saying, or doing anything. And the experience of each man is inescapably of his own day or age or time’, Hexter, ‘Carl Becker and Historical Relativism’, in Hexter (ed), On historians (Harvard 1979) 20.

14 The history primer, 31-32.

15 In this connection, see Munz’s comment in The shapes of time, 55-58, that the intelligibility of the Muddy Pants story depends on shared knowledge and understanding of ‘general laws’ of everyday behaviour and human psychology.

16 C. Becker, ‘Everyman his own historian’, The American Historical Review 37 (1932) 221-35. For Hexter’s assessment of Becker, see the article cited above, n. 13.

17 The history primer, 395.

18 ibid. 275.

19 ibid. 137-38.

20 ibid. 141.

21 ibid. 77.

22 ibid. 189.

23 ibid. 328.

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