Frank Ankersmit

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Franklin Rudolf Ankersmit (born 20 March 1945, Deventer, Netherlands) is professor of intellectual history and historical theory at the University of Groningen.

Professor Ankersmit has made contributions to contemporary historiography, philosophy of history, and to historical method through his analysis and use of the concepts of narrative, metaphor, and representation. Ankersmit's volumes on Historical Representation (Ankersmit 2001) and Political Representation (Ankersmit 2002) for the Cultural Memory in the Present series for Stanford University Press are examples of his work in these areas.

Ankersmit has also applied the concept of the Effect of Reality proposed by Roland Barthes in his essays The Reality Effect and The Discourse of History [1] to historical analysis to highlight the problems of textuality in the discipline of history (Ankersmit 1989).

In 1986 Ankersmit was elected member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.[2]


  • Narrative logic. A semantic analysis of the historian's language, Den Haag: Nijhoff, 1983
  • Denken over geschiedenis. Een overzicht van moderne geschiedfilosofische opvattingen, Groningen: Wolters/Noordhoff, 1983, 1986
  • The Reality Effect in the Writing of History: The Dynamics of Historiographical Topology, Amsterdam, Noord-Hollandsche, 1989.
  • De navel van de geschiedenis. Over interpretatie, representatie en historische realiteit, Groningen: Historische Uitgeverij Groningen, 1990
  • De historische ervaring, Groningen: Historische Uitgeverij Groningen, 1993
  • History and Tropology. The Rise and Fall of Metaphor, Berkeley/Los Angeles/Oxford: University of California Press, 1994
  • De spiegel van het verleden. Exploraties deel I: Geschiedtheorie, Kampen, Kok Agora, 1996
  • De macht van representatie. Exploraties deel II: cultuurfilosofie en esthetica, Kampen: Kok Agora, 1996
  • Macht door representatie. Exploraties deel III: politieke filosofie, Kampen: Kok Agora 1997)
  • Aesthetic politics. Political philosophy beyond fact and value, Stanford, Stanford/Cambridge UP, 1997
  • Historical Representation, Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001
  • Political Representation, Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2002
  • Sublime Historical experience, Stanford/Cambridge 2005
  • 'Representational Democracy: An Aesthetic Approach to Conflict and Compromise' Common Knowledge 8.1 (2002) 24-46.


  1. ^ Barthes R., The Rustle of Language, trans. R. Howard, Berkeley, University of California Press, 1989
  2. ^ "Frank Ankersmit". Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 26 July 2015. 

External links[edit]

Bibliographical references for Professor Ankersmit's output can be found at the following sites: