Critical History/History as Social Product

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Presentation[edit | edit source]

Critical History

Humanity creates knowledge, but we do not do this as we please; we do not create it under self-selected circumstances, but from information which already exists, gathered and transmitted from the past.[1]

 * Information is gathered according to the perceived institutional needs of the organisation which gathers it.

 * Information is preserved according to the priorities created by successive institutions

 * Other data may be available and may be subsequently ordered/reordered into information

 * This information may be processed into knowledge in different ways

 * Each of these phases are social processes


  1. Data = symbols
  2. Information = data that has been processed to provide useful answers to "who", "what", "where", and "when" questions
  3. Knowledge = application of data and information to answers "how" questions
  4. Understanding = appreciation of "why"
  5. Wisdom = understanding which has been evaluated through reflection[3]


  1. Derived from Marx, Karl (1852). "The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte". Retrieved September 21, 2012.
  2. Ackoff, R. L., "From Data to Wisdom", Journal of Applies Systems Analysis, Volume 16, 1989 p 3-9
  3. Bellinger, G., Castro, D., Mills A. (2004). "Data, Information, Knowledge, and Wisdom". Gene Bellinger. Retrieved September 21, 2012.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)