Advertisement

Validation and the Uniqueness of Historical Events

  • Josef KöstlbauerEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Simulation Foundations, Methods and Applications book series (SFMA)

Abstract

Historians have been slow to include computer simulations into their discipline’s methodological apparatus. This chapter details the challenges faced when trying to employ simulations for historical research. Central to this is the idiographic character of historical research, which leads to problems regarding computer simulations and validation. Historians are concerned with the unique, with distinct historical processes, whose ultimate result is known. They do not formulate general laws or rely on deductive-nomological approaches. But this should not keep historians from exploring the potentials of computer simulations to the full extent: Big-data projects may help to dissolve the nomothetic-idiographic divide, microhistorical research may profit from simulations for contextualization or to compensate for fragmentary sources. In all cases, validation has the potential to make historians reflect more on evaluative assumptions, and on the ways, they pose questions and explain processes.

Keywords

Simulation Computer Simulation History Humanities Big Data in Historical Research Simulation in History Validation Video Games and History 

References

  1. Baudrillard, J. (1994). Simulacra and simulation. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  2. Bigelow, B. E. (1978). Simulation review: Simulations in history. Simulation & Gaming, 9, 209–220.Google Scholar
  3. Bogost, I. (2007). Persuasive games: The expressive power of videogames. Cambridge, MS: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  4. Braudel, F. (1990). Das Mittelmeer und die mediterrane Welt in der Epoche Philipps II. Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp.Google Scholar
  5. Braudel, F., & Colin, A. (1987). Histoire et sciences sociales: La longue durée. Réseaux, 27, 7–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brendel, H. (2010). Historischer Determinismus und historische Tiefe - oder Spielspaß? Die Globalechtzeitstrategiespiele von Paradox Interactive. In A. Schwarz (Ed.), Wollten Sie auch immer schon einmal pestverseuchte Kühe auf Ihre Gegner werfen? (pp. 95–122). Münster: Lit-Verlag.Google Scholar
  7. Bunzl, M. (2004). Counterfactual history: A user’s guide. American Historical Review, 109, 845–858.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Burdick, A., Drucker, J., Lunenfeld, P., Presner, T., & Schnapp, J. (2012). Digital_Humanities. Cambridge, MS: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  9. Castiglione, B. (2007). Il Libro del Cortigiano. Milano: Garzanti Libri 2007.Google Scholar
  10. Corbeil, P. (2011). History and simulation/gaming: Living with two solitudes. Simulation and Gaming, 42, 418–422.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Crabb, G. (1824). English synonyms explained. London, UK: Baldwin & Cradock.Google Scholar
  12. Creative Assembly. (2011). TotalWar: Shogun II. Creative Assembly. Windows, Mac.Google Scholar
  13. Darnton, R. (1982). What is the history of books? Daedalus, 111(3), 65–83.Google Scholar
  14. Demandt, A. (2011). Ungeschehene Geschichte. Ein Traktat über die Frage: Was wäre geschehen, wenn …? Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht.Google Scholar
  15. Ekirch, A. R. (1994). Sometimes an art, never a science, always a craft. A conversation with Bernard Bailyn. The William and Mary Quarterly, 51(4), 625–658.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. François, P., et al. (2016). A Macroscope for Global History: Seshat Global History Databank, a methodological overview. Digital Humanities Quarterly, 10(4).Google Scholar
  17. Frasca, G. (2003). Simulation versus narrative. Introduction to ludology. In M. J. P. Wolf & B. Perron (Eds.), The video game theory reader (pp. 221–235). New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  18. Gavin, M. (2014). Agent-based modeling and historical simulation. Digital Humanities Quarterly, 8(4).Google Scholar
  19. Geiss, I. (1998). Zukunft als Geschichte. Historisch-politische Analysen und Prognosen zum Untergang des Sowjetkommunismus, 1980–1991. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner.Google Scholar
  20. gespielt.hypotheses.org (2017). Manifest für geschichtswissenschaftliches Arbeiten mit Digitalen Spielen! Version 1.1. Retrieved from http://gespielt.hypotheses.org/manifest_v1-1.
  21. Gracián, B. (1993). Hand-Orakel und Kunst der Weltklugheit. Zurich: Diogenes.Google Scholar
  22. Guldi, J., & Armitage, D. (2014). The history manifesto. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from http://www.cambridge.org/core/what-we-publish/open-access/the-history-manifesto.
  23. Hartmann, S. (2011). The world as a process: Simulations in the natural and social sciences. In R. Hegselmann, U. Mueller, & K. G. Troitzsch (Eds.), Modelling and simulation in the social sciences from the philosophy of science point of view (pp. 77–100). London: Springer.Google Scholar
  24. Hazard, P. (2013). The crisis of the European mind, 1680–1715. New York: New York Review Books.Google Scholar
  25. Herbst, L. (2004). Komplexität und Chaos. Grundzüge einer Theorie der Geschichte. Munich: C. H. Beck.Google Scholar
  26. Hirschfeld, G., Krumeich, G., & Renz, I. (2009). Enzyklopädie Erster Weltkrieg. Aktualisierte und erweiterte Studienausgabe. Paderborn: Schöningh.Google Scholar
  27. Koselleck, R. (1989). Vergangene Zukunft. Zur Semantik geschichtlicher Zeiten. Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp 1988.Google Scholar
  28. Köstlbauer, J. (2013). The Strange attraction of simulation: Realism, authenticity, virtuality. In M. Kapell & A. B. R. Elliott (Eds.), Playing with the past. Digital games and the simulation of history (pp. 169–184). New York: Bloomsbury Academic.Google Scholar
  29. Köstlbauer, J. (2015). Spiel und Geschichte im Zeichen der Digitalität. In Schmale, W. (Ed.): Digital Humanities. Praktiken der Digitalisierung, der Dissemination und der Selbstreflexivität (pp. 95–124). Stuttgart: Franz Steiner.Google Scholar
  30. Lengwiler, M. (2011). Praxisbuch Geschichte. Einführung in die historischen Methoden. Zurich: Orell Füssli.Google Scholar
  31. Lévy, P. (1998). Die Erfindung des Computers. In M. Serres (Ed.), Elemente einer Geschichte der Wissenschaften (pp. 937–943). Frankfurt am Main.Google Scholar
  32. Manovich, L. (2017). Cultural analytics, social computing, and digital humanities. In M. T. Schäfer (Ed.), The datafied society. Studying culture through data (pp. 55–74). Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Manovich, L., Tifentale, A., Yazdani, M., & Chow, J. (2014). The exceptional and the everyday: 144 hours in Kiev. Retrieved July 28, 2018, from http://manovich.net/content/04-projects/084-kiev-article/sk219_1225.pdf.
  34. McLuhan, M. (1962). The gutenberg galaxy. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.Google Scholar
  35. Meeks, E. (2015). Networks in the study of culture and society. In H. Kaper & C. Rousseau (Eds.), Mathematics of planet earth: Mathematicians reflect on how to discover, organize, and protect our planet (pp. 157–159). Philadelphia, PA: SIAM.Google Scholar
  36. Michl, S. (2007). Im Dienste des “Volkskörpers”: Deutsche und französische Ärzte im Ersten Weltkrieg. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Murauer, J. (2014). Modellbildung und Simulation als Methode zur Bearbeitung soziologischer Fragestellungen aus dem Bereich der Entwicklungszusammenarbeit. Erörterungen anhand einer Fallstudie zu einem Erosionsschutzprojekt in Burkina Faso (Westafrika). Berlin: Lit-Verlag.Google Scholar
  38. Nonn, C., & Winnerling, T. (2017). Eine andere deutsche Geschichte 1517–2017. Paderborn: Schöningh.Google Scholar
  39. Pfister, E. (2017). „Wie es wirklich war.“ – Wider die Authentizitätsdebatte im digitalen Spiel. Arbeitskreis Geschichtswissenschaft und Digitale Spiele, 18 May 2018. Retrieved from https://gespielt.hypotheses.org/1334.
  40. Porsdam, H. (2011). Too much ‘digital’, too little ‘humanities’? An attempt to explain why many humanities scholars are reluctant converts to Digital Humanities. Retrieved July 28, 2018, from https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/244642.
  41. Redhead, M. (1980). Models in physics. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science, 31, 145–163.MathSciNetCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Rodiek, C. (1997). Erfundene Vergangenheit. Kontrafaktische Geschichtsdarstellung (Uchronie) in der Literatur. Frankfurt am Main: Klostermann.Google Scholar
  43. Saam, N., & Schmidl, A. (2018). A distinct element of play. Scientific computer simulation as playful investigating. In A. Friedrich, P. Gehring, Ch. Hubig, A. Kaminski, & A. Nordmann (Eds.), Arbeit und Spiel. Jahrbuch Technikphilosophie 2018 (pp. 99–118). Baden-Baden: Nomos.Google Scholar
  44. Sauvé, L., Renaud, L., Kaufman, D., & Marquis, J.-S. (2007). Distinguishing between games and simulations: A systematic review. Educational Technology & Society, 10(3), 247–256. Retrieved from http://www.ifets.info/journals/10_3/17.pdf.
  45. Schelling, T. C. (1978). Micromotives and microbehavior. New York: Norton.Google Scholar
  46. Schich, M. (2016). Personal Website. Retrieved from http://www.schich.info/research.htm.
  47. Schich, M., Song, C., Ahn, Y.-Y., Mirsky, A., Martino, M., Barabási, A.-L., et al. (2014). A network framework of cultural history. Science, 345(6196), 558–562.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Schmale, W. (2006). Schreib-Guide Geschichte. Wien: Böhlau.Google Scholar
  49. von Hilgers, P. (2008). Kriegsspiele. Eine Geschichte der Ausnahmezustände und Unberechenbarkeiten. Paderborn: Fink, Schöningh.Google Scholar
  50. Sehsat: Global History Databank. (2017). Retrieved from http://seshatdatabank.info/.
  51. Sellin, V. (1995). Einführung in die Geschichtswissenschaft. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht.Google Scholar
  52. Sidnell, P. (2006). Warhorse: Cavalry in ancient warfare. London: Continuum.Google Scholar
  53. Snyder, J. R. (2009). Dissimulation and the culture of secrecy in early modern Europe. Berkeley: University of California Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Svensson, P. (2012). Envisioning the digital humanities. Digital Humanities Quarterly, 6(1).Google Scholar
  55. Thomas, R. C. (2014). Does diffusion of horse-related military technologies explain spatiotemporal patterns of social complexity 1500 BCE-AD 1500? Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 111, E414. Retrieved from http://www.pnas.org/content/111/4/E414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Throne, J. (2014). Modeling the communications circuit. In P. A. Youngman & M. Hadžikadić (Eds.), Complexity and the human experience. Modeling complexity in the humanities and social sciences (pp. 105–119). Singapore: Pan Stanford Publishing.Google Scholar
  57. Troitzsch, K. G. (1994). The evolution of technologies. In N. Gilbert & J. Doran (Eds.), Simulating societies. The computer simulation of social phenomena (pp. 41–62). London, UK: Routledge.Google Scholar
  58. Turchin, P., Currie, T. E., Turner, E. A. L., Gavrilets, S. (2013). War, space, and the evolution of Old World complex societies. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States if America, 110, 16384–16389. Retrieved from http://www.pnas.org/content/110/41/16384.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Turchin, P., Currie, T., Turner, E. A. L., Gavrilets, S. (2014). Reply to Thomas. Diffusion of military technologies is a plausible explanation for the evolution of social complexity, 1500 BCE-AD 1500. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 111, E415–E415. Retrieved from http://www.pnas.org/content/111/4/E415.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Turchin, P., Brennan, R., Currie, T., Feeney, K., François, P., Hoyer, D., et al. (2015). Sehsat: The Global History Databank. Cliodynamics, 6, 77–107. Retrieved from http://www.researchgate.net/publication/279849138.
  61. Turkel, W. J. (2008). Towards a computational history. Digital History Hacks (August 20, 2008). Retrieved from http://digitalhistoryhacks.blogspot.com/2008/07/towards-computational-history.html.
  62. War Office Committee. (2004). Report of the War Office Committee of Enquiry Into “Shell Shock” (pp. 141–144). First published 1922, London.Google Scholar
  63. Weber, K. (2007). Erklärung historischer Abläufe mit Computersimulationen. Historical Social Research, 32(4), 94–121.Google Scholar
  64. Weller, M. (2011). The digital scholar: How technology is transforming scholarly practice. London, UK: Bloomsbury Academic.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Windelband, W. (1915). Geschichte und Naturwissenschaft (Starßburger Rektoratsrede). In W. Windelband, Präludien. Aufsätze und Reden zur Philosophie und ihrer Geschichte (Vol. 2, pp. 136–160). Tübingen: Mohr.Google Scholar
  66. Winnerling, T. (2017). Selbstversuch: Wenn zwei Historiker ein Spiel machen… Gespielt. Arbeitskreis für Geschichstwissenschaft und Digitale Spiele. Retrieved from http://gespielt.hypotheses.org/1231.
  67. Winnerling, T. (2018). Projekt Sumerian Game: Digitale Rekonstruktion eines Spiels als Simulation eines Modells. Gespielt: Arbeitskreis Geschichtswissenschaft und Digitale Spiele. Retrieved from https://gespielt.hypotheses.org/1796.
  68. Zedler, J. H. (1746). Grosses vollständiges Universal-Lexicon Aller Wissenschafften und Künste (Vol. 47). Leipzig und Halle.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.History DepartmentUniversity of BremenBremenGermany

Personalised recommendations