|Born||July 12, 1928|
Martin, Tennessee, U.S.
|Died||March 5, 2018 (aged 89)|
|Alma mater||University of Michigan|
|Influences||Aristotle, Max Weber, Jean-Paul Sartre, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Roland Barthes, William J. Bossenbrook, Erich Auerbach, Northrop Frye|
|Main interests||Theory of history|
|Notable works||Metahistory: The Historical Imagination in Nineteenth-Century Europe|
|Influenced||Sharon Traweek, Norman J. Wilson|
Hayden White (July 12, 1928 – March 5, 2018) was an American historian in the tradition of literary criticism, perhaps most famous for his work Metahistory: The Historical Imagination in Nineteenth-Century Europe (1973/2014). He claimed that the manifest historical text is marked by strategies of explanation, which include explanation by argument, explanation by emplotment, and explanation by ideological implication. He argued that historical writing was influenced by literary writing in many ways, sharing the strong reliance on narrative for meaning, therefore eliminating the possibility of objective or truly scientific history. White also argued, however, that history is most successful when it uses this "narrativity", since it is what allows history to be meaningful. He ended his career as University Professor Emeritus at the history of consciousness department of the University of California, Santa Cruz, having previously retired from the comparative literature department of Stanford University.