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History and Fiction

Historian Simon Schama
In this interview, historian Simon Schama describes his writing process and how he was drawn to George Parkman's murder.

Interview questions:

Question 1
How did you begin your research into the Parkman murder?

Question 2
Why did you find Parkman's story so compelling?

Question 3
How did you approach the research?

Question 4
What are the challenges of converting archival materials into a historical narrative?

Question 5
In your book, Dead Certainties, you say history must be "a work of the imagination." If your writing includes fictional passages, can it still be called history?

Question 6
Why is it important to consider how historians produce their work?

Interview camera: Peter Krieger.

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