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Re: [ANE-2] Re: [OT?] Survey: Usage of "historicity"

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  • Bea Hopkinson
    While toxic-ity seems to work for clarity of meaning, my own feeling is that historic-ity to the lay reader is more anomolous compared to veracity or
    Message 1 of 10 , May 23, 2006
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      While toxic-ity seems to work for clarity of meaning, my own
      feeling is that historic-ity to the lay reader is more anomolous
      compared to 'veracity' or 'historic-al' choices you present below.

      Verbiage, the manner in which something is expressed in words, conveys
      many nuances of meaning - Clarity of meaning should be the name of the
      game. 'Historicity' just doesn't do that.

      It was once my job to get three different disciplines to work together to
      accomplish a specific goal for a Space project. The problem was that
      terminology within each discipline was not clear to the others.

      Beatrice Hopkinson


      yahoo-ane-2@...

      >> Q1.a: If "historicity" is a scientific term, what is its definition?
      >> Ariel L. Szczupak
      >
      >I perceive it as a contraction of "historical veracity". That's the
      >term Andrew Vaughn used in his dissertation on Chronicles ("Theology,
      >History, & Archaeology in the Chronicler's Account of Hezekiah"
      >[Scholars Press, 1999]; the first "scientific publication" focusing
      >on a specific historical controversy that pops into my mind).
      >Therein he also uses:
      >
      >"historical data"
      >"historical value"
      >"historical reliability"
      >"historical understanding"
      >"historically accurate tradition (or source)"
      >
      >They almost seem synonymous. He's also pointed out elsewhere that
      >archeological data can only "raise varying degrees of probability".
      >
      >So I would define "historicity" as:
      >
      >"The quality/value of data derived from present traditions or
      >tangible artifacts of the past that raises/lowers degrees of
      >probability towards an accurate account of what happened in the past."
      >
      >The actual quality/value should not be thought of as true/false,
      >but "in flux" getting closer to or further from the truth since we
      >will never have all the data of contemporary eyewitnesses.
      >Archeology is ever ongoing. Historians can agree unanimously today,
      >but when a new datum makes headlines tomorrow, history textbooks must
      >change to accommodate it. What's the percentage of scientific
      >publications written a mere 50 years ago that have not already been
      >superseded on one or more points? "Datum/data" seems like the best
      >terminology to me because of its complete neutrality. Words
      >like "evidence" & "facts" (suggested by Szczupak in his Q3) carry too
      >much baggage for an objective definition.
      >
      >I think of History as an interpretation, & Historicity as a quality
      >test (what I've done for a living the past 2 decades) or state of the
      >interpretation, sort of like a thermometer measuring the degree of
      >probability towards certainty. Szczupak used "toxicity" as an
      >example of the word formation, & that's a good analogy since it's a
      >testimony as to how toxic something is. Since science, by
      >definition, must be testable, "historicity" is a scientific term.
      >
      >George Michael Grena, II
      >Redondo Beach, CA
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