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History and Its ObjectsAntiquarianism and Material Culture since 1500$
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Peter N. Miller

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780801453700

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801453700.001.0001

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Karl Lamprecht and the “Material Turn” c. 1885

Karl Lamprecht and the “Material Turn” c. 1885

(p.41) Chapter 2 Karl Lamprecht and the “Material Turn” c. 1885
History and Its Objects

Peter N. Miller

Cornell University Press

This chapter looks back to an eminent predecessor of these twentieth-century antiquarians and artists, Karl Lamprecht (1856–1915). Arguably the most important historian for the twentieth century and yet one of the least known to non-specialists, Lamprecht fills the role of grandfather to the formulators of “material culture studies”—and father to the pioneers who wrote history from material sources without giving their vision a name. Today, Lamprecht is mostly recognized for the debate about his cultural history, the Lamprecht-Streit, which was as much a debate about what history should constitute as it was a debate about whether Lamprecht was a good historian. Yet Lamprecht's career goes further than that, as this chapter shows, and his academic work has left a strong influence on the twentieth-century proponents of material culture discussed in the previous chapter.

Keywords:   Karl Lamprecht, cultural history, twentieth century, material culture studies, historian, material turn

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