12th Class History Solved Paper - History 2012 Outside Delhi Set-I

  • question_answer 'Many historians still remain sceptical of oral history.' Examine the statement.

    Answer:

    Oral history is the collection and study of historical information about individuals, families, important events, or everyday life using audiotapes, videotapes, or transcriptions of planned interviews.
                Thus, oral history gives us qualitative information about the historical events but there are some demerits of oral history too.
                Oral data seem to lack concreteness and the chronology they yield may be imprecise. Oral data may be unique to the person who is giving data and hence the uniqueness of personal experience makes generalization difficult. A large picture cannot be built from such micro-evidence.
                Historians also argue that oral accounts are concerned with tangential issues, and since the data is collected form a small number of people, which remain in memory are irrelevant to the unfolding of larger processes of history.
                However, with regard to events such as the Partition in India and the Holocaust in Germany, there is no dearth of testimony about the different forms of distress that numerous people faced. So, there is ample evidence to figure out trends, to point out exceptions by comparing statements from written and oral data.
                Further, the oral .history is not always tangential. Example: The felt experience of partition give true picture of the stress, agony and fear they went through.
                Therefore, oral history has merits too and it reveals the experiences and facts which were hitherto ignored. Oral history is complementary to written and visible form of history rather than contradictory.


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