Writing history/writing about yourself: What’s the difference?

Book chapter


Fitzpatrick, Sheila. (2017) Writing history/writing about yourself: What’s the difference? In In D. Munro and J. Reid (Ed.). Clio’s Lives: Biographies and Autobiographies of Historians pp. 17 - 37 ANU Press. https://doi.org/10.22459/CL.10.2017
AuthorsFitzpatrick, Sheila
EditorsD. Munro and J. Reid
Abstract

[Extract] According to Philippe Lejeune, writers of autobiography implicitly sign a pact with the reader to tell the truth, or at least the truth as they know it, about themselves. That is, primarily a subjective truth. As for facts, the expectation is presumably that autobiographers will convey the facts as they know or remember them, but without a necessary obligation to check their memory through documentary or other research. There is no autobiographer’s commitment to objectivity, rather the contrary. The autobiographical truth is, by definition, a subjective one.

Keywordsbiography; autobiography; history
Page range17 - 37
Year2017
Book titleClio’s Lives: Biographies and Autobiographies of Historians
PublisherANU Press
Place of publicationAustralia
ISBN9781760461430
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.22459/CL.10.2017
Research GroupInstitute for Humanities and Social Sciences
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