Historical Narrative as a Moral Guide and the Present as History as an Ethical Project

The aim of this paper is to explain why the many turns that historiography has undergone from the middle of the twentieth century to the present are related to the “living experiences” that have occurred outside of academia. Trying to grasp the concept of “practical past” from Oakeshott and White, it will be argued that the disciplinary transformations such as “gender history” or the “historiography of decolonization” that accompany “living experiences” outside of academia are the result of the “practical attitude” that accompanies historical narratives and function as a moral guide to the present. Finally, it will be discussed that if historians assume a critical attitude toward the “living experiences” and regard the “present as history,” then the different transformations of the discipline can be explained by a critical attitude and go together with an ethical project.