What is a Personal Account?
How do Historians Use Personal Accounts?
Questions to Ask
1. Who is the subject of the personal account?
2. How does the form of the personal account influence content?
3. What is the motivation for the personal account?
4. How did the account reach the reader?
5. How do personal accounts function in a larger context?
Sample Analysis: Fatima Mernissi, Dreams of Trespass
Sample Analysis: Marjorie Shostak, Nisa, a !Kung Woman
Personal Accounts Online
You Be the Historian!
About the Author
Grateful acknowledgement is made to the following institutions and individuals for permission to publish material from their collections:
Beverley Mack, Kansas University
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, New York State
finding world history | unpacking evidence | analyzing documents | teaching sources | aboutA project of the Center for History and New Media, George Mason University,
with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation© 2003-2005 center for history & new media