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A Study of History Essay

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In the following essay, Thompson analyzes Toynbee 's theories and formulas and their application to Western society.

Most critics would agree that Toynbee's Study of History is a work of epic proportions. Several commentators have noted that Toynbee, as a historian who zealously recorded the many contrasting beats of history, himself injected a marked counterbeat into historical writing. Since 1910 few works have exceeded one volume; in literature the short story has been threatening the novel. In contrast, both the length and the temper of A Study of History are exceptions to the prevailing ethos. Toynbee consciously struck a blow against the fashionable specialized and "scientific" studies which isolate tiny fragments of experience for the most intensive study. His chief foe, however, was not the discrete use of scientific techniques but rather the idolatry of that method and the ready acceptance of the superficial philosophy of "scientism" with its...

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This section contains 4,531 words
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