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    I was reading an examiner's report that said:
    'As in previous years, the best essays offered shrewd interrogations of the terms of the question, ranged across authors in an historically informed way, built on criticism and theory as they developed their arguments, showed sensitivity to the texture of the language, and were written with panache.'
    Could someone please tell me what they mean by 'historically informed way'?
    Thanks
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    (Original post by Elvish)
    I was reading an examiner's report that said:
    'As in previous years, the best essays offered shrewd interrogations of the terms of the question, ranged across authors in an historically informed way, built on criticism and theory as they developed their arguments, showed sensitivity to the texture of the language, and were written with panache.'
    Could someone please tell me what they mean by 'historically informed way'?
    Thanks
    BrasenoseLitGeek ?
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    (Original post by Elvish)
    I was reading an examiner's report that said:
    'As in previous years, the best essays ... were written with panache.'
    Not much prospect for candidates with Chanel or Old Spice then.
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    Hello

    Historically informed:

    Well the reason I chose the Oxford course (and not the Cambridge one) is because of the emphasis on historiographical analysis.

    That is to say, quite simply, when you are choosing your answers you need to show sensitivity to a logical, literary chronology.

    For example--if I was talking about, let's say Dickens--an answer that ranges across authors in an informed way might also choose to bring in comparisons with Elizabeth Gaskell or contemporary works that could have provided influences on the writing process, such as Darwin's On the Origin of Species (a complex link in that case).

    A less historically sensitive answer might decide to compare Dickens with T S Eliot, or Gerard Manley Hopkins. Both poets are writing within 30 years of Dickens, but (broadly speaking) neither of them would fit into an answer alongside him.

    Of course there are and would be exceptions to this, and so it largely depends on the question. But a historically informed answer generally needs to think about direct and reasonable influences/links/conversations between writers instead of arbitrary links.

    Does that make sense?
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    Elvish ?
 
 
 
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