Simon Schama: TV dumber-down or simply the greatest?Historians in the News
Some people think Simon Schama – garlanded academic and presenter of such fabulous series as A History of Britain and Rough Crossings – is full of crap. There have been grumblings that he dumbs down and simplifies his history shows, taking a sweeping view of history designed more for the verbal flourish than historical accuracy.
Few people have summarised these criticisms better than the Sunday Times' Adrian Gill who took a swipe at Schama's 2006 series Power of Art: "The point of these authored, visually clotted documentaries is really to be infomercials for instant coffee table tomes". And yes, it is true that even Schama's premium brand of TV history cannot help skating over the deeper complexities of historical truth. But while it's always tempting to point a mocking finger at a man with a plum job as Columbia professor of art history and history, and lucrative TV contracts coming out of his ears, I love him and make a beeline for him every time. I'd go so far as to say he is easily Britain's best arts presenter....
comments powered by Disqus
- Black Delegates at GOP Convention at Lowest Level in History
- Richard Moe calls on Obama to make Utah's Bears Ears a national monument. Bears Ears?
- What History Says About Donald Trump’s Convention Speech
- Rep. Steve King doubles down on white supremacy claim
- Does Melania Trump know what plagiarism is?
- Daniel Pipes: “Why I Just Quit the Republican Party"
- Jill Lepore attended the GOP convention
- Ramsay Cook died in Toronto on July 14, after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer
- Adam Hochschild says he met the ghosts of his own work at a recent visit to the multiplex
- Colleges are implored to teach their own history