About Living History




What is Living History?

A collection of methods, called "first person," "second person," "third person," re-enactments, and demonstrations used to present skills, attitudes, and personalities of historical people, both real and composite characters for the purpose of transmitting historical knowledge.

How old is the technique?

Ancient, the Jewish Passover feast, Christian Communion, and many tribal dances from Africa to New Guinea recreate and pass down significant historical events within their communities.  The more modern types of re-enactments date to the early 1500s when fully costumed Spanish soldiers depicting both Moors and Spaniards re-created the battle for Grenada for the entertainment of the King.  In Sweden in the 1890's, a folk life museum was set up to preserve the skills and folkways of the disappearing past as the Industrial Revolution of the late 19th Century was sweeping away hundreds of years of craft tradesmen.


What are its Strengths?

    Dramatic, powerful storytelling

What are its Weaknesses?

    Narrow in perspective
    Cost/Time intensive to prepare


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