Simon Schama History Lecture

Why History Matters - Simon Schama inspires A Level historians

Date published: Wed 21 Jun 2017   Author: HLH/JCD   Category: News   Share: Share on facebookShare on TwitterShare on MySpaceShare by Email

Simon Schama Lecture Trip

A small group of A level historians enjoyed a wonderful opportunity to attend a lecture by Professor Simon Schama at the Royal Institution on Tuesday 20th June. Prof Schama is currently Professor of History and Art History at Columbia, but is famous for a range of books and television series on a wide range of topics (From “Citizens” to “A History of Britain” and “The Power of Art”).

His talk was based on the central theme of “Why History Matters?” and addressed why, in a world of alternative facts, history was more important than ever to ensure evidential rigour and to challenge authority.


In little over an hour, Schama’s tour de force covered a hugely diverse range of topics including Frederick Douglass, Lincoln, Gettysburg, Trump, 1984, the Putney Debates, Milton’s Animadversions, Thucydides, Brexit, Jefferson, The Venerable Bede, Charlemagne, Richard the Lionheart, Tyndale, Montaigne, Indigo Jones, Herodotus, Daniel Mendoza, the Repeal of the Corn Laws, the bombing of Dresden, Tacitus, The Annales, Churchill, Napoleon… and much more.

Not surprisingly students (and staff) left feeling a little overwhelmed, but inspired by a celebration of erudition and a message that celebrated the vital role of History in our society in creating the narratives that define us and shape our world.