03 Jul, 2020
Time is present in our lives in different ways. We count the hours to meet a loved one, we love to see photos of our childhood, we learn from the experience of older relatives, we look forward to the first day in a new job, we plan our future and, of course, we are also always willing to live the lives joys that the "now" moment can provide us.
As we see, time is in our daily lives in such an intrinsic way that our relationship with it becomes natural - after all, it passes on to everyone. For some people, it is essential for learning, as there are those who say that certain lessons "only time teaches".
On the other hand, unfortunately, nothing is more delicate than the feeling that we are “wasting time” in dedicating ourselves to a task that does not bring us immediate value. Whether for the benefits it brings us or for not-so-good feelings, time is an essential measure for the construction of our society, in the way we live today.
Time, as a factor that helps in our organization (the annual calendar is an example), is important not only at the individual level. Throughout history, the study of time linked to world events has a strong power to teach us with errors, correct defects, and prepare for what is to come. It is no wonder that several universes, related to Science or the corporate world, love working with predictions.
However difficult and risky it is to predict future scenarios, looking at what has already happened and speculating on possible trends is what makes countless fields useful and promote incredible innovations.
In our article, we will talk a little about a specific field: History. Throughout this text, we will understand together how time and historical events are connected and in what ways time and its measures help to build this science open to possibilities. Follow the reading.
Representations of time
There are several ways to count time. There are ancient historical records that show that the first human beings that inhabited the Earth developed a peculiar way of counting time: from the constant observation of natural phenomena.
For this reason, the first references we have to this type of metric came from the phases of the moon and the position in the sky of other stars, from the differences between day and night, from checking high or low tides and even from the growing season. With an attentive look at what is around you and great proximity to elements of nature, part of the civilization of our ancestors built their own relationships with the measures of time.
As this civilization developed, numerous techniques to quantify the passage of time were being developed, in addition to natural cycles, beliefs, and customs. After all, this could vary greatly from one person to another. In general, the new approaches sought to make counting more accurate and useful for different people, from different places.
Thus, currently, there are two perceptions that combine and guide our population to situate themselves in the face of notions of time. They are chronological time and historical time. Let's see what each one is about below:
Chronological time offers an analysis of time-based on clocks and calendars. This way of looking at time is more logical and takes into account the rotation and translation movements of Planet Earth.
Chronological time dictates seconds, minutes, hours, days, years, decades ... It is largely responsible for attributing things to age. For example, it is from this type of counting that we can know the exact moment of our birth and celebrate our birthdays year by year.
In addition, it is also important to say that chronological time measurements (1 minute equals 60 seconds and 1 day to 24 hours, for example) have been agreed upon and are used by the vast majority of countries in the world.
Even with the different time zones, this idea helps us to understand that the perception we have of the passage of time-related to the period of an hour is the same for everyone, whether here or in Australia, which is on another continent, for example.
As we said, the focus of our text is to explore how the connection between time and history takes place. For this, talking about the concept of historical time is essential.
In this case, even though the absolute count of seconds is an extremely important reference for the structuring of our daily life, in history, this is not the most valuable parameter.
For historians, the passage of time in the calendar does not determine the appearance of changes and events that dictate the direction of this Science. For this group of scholars, other factors influence more the understanding of the so-called historical facts and their main objects of analysis.
Thus, historians around the world use time from their historical perspective, taking into account short and long-term events. The way of organizing society is what dictates how one time differs from another.
If it was not clear, we give an example: following this logic of thought, it is possible to consider that the Middle Ages extends over a period of practically a thousand years, and the Modern Age by only four hundred years. If we were to look at these intervals from the perspective of chronological time, both should have an equivalent time, however, this is not what happens for history.
For the field in question, the changes that societies have promoted in their organizations matter more. In this way, the development of political relations, people's behavior, economic practices, social structures, and other actions are more central to the understanding of the time. This is what dictates the transition from the Middle Ages to the Modern Age, for example, not time alone.
From these explanations, we can see how chronological time has a more rigid understanding of time and, on the other hand, in historical time, other variables dialogue with this notion, sometimes being more determinant for the area.
The relationship between time and history: what are the points of contact between these two factors
The concept of historical time gives us clues to how History and time connect, right? Now, we will understand this subject in more depth.
For those who dedicate themselves to the study of History, thinking about time is quite relative and varies according to the current that is followed within this universe. Time is seen both as the element of articulation of a historiographical narrative and as a civilizational and personal experience.
What does that mean? Historians say that for each group of people and culture, there is a distinct notion of time, be it cyclical or linear, presented or projected for the future, static or dynamic, slow or accelerated. In any case, it is a central factor in creating the reality of that people, establishing how relationships between individuals and their fellow men occur and including man within the society of which he is a part.
For History, aligning ideas related to time to your area of knowledge allows you to draw more delimited parallels on the topic you want to study. Thus, it becomes easier to analyze the transformations that mark the relationship of men with their past and observe how this influences later experiences.
And that's not all: the combination of time and history is still valuable to us because we can reflect on failures that have already happened and avoided them from now on. This constant investigation of circumstances allows us to look to the future with more attention, in search of an evolution that magnifies us not only as people, in the private sphere, but above all as a social group.
In general, time is a word that can hold many meanings. It can be used as a synonym for the past, cycle, while duration, phase, among other possibilities. For a better understanding of the use of the term, when it touches history, we must always pay attention to the author who uses it and also to the text that is read.
There are those who say, mainly contemporary historians, that human beings went from seeing time as dominant of nature to a vision of time while dominated by the man himself. However, nowadays, thanks to various factors, there is an understanding that the man who is dominated by time. Did it make sense there?
To conclude this section of our text, it is worth noting that looking at history based on time intervals also has a very practical function of organizing it, cutting it out, dividing it, structuring it, analyzing it, explain it, theorize it, synthesize it ... Time allows all this to History. Given this, the well-known timelines come into action. Next, we'll see how it happens.
The use of timelines in the representation of history
A timeline is a tool that has great use for history. Many professors, students, and researchers in the field usually include it in their routines to facilitate the understanding of historical facts. In addition to being didactic and very attractive, they allow these people to see information in a more dynamic way.
If you don't remember, we explain: timelines are a special data dissemination technique. They have a central bar and, along with it, events and events are placed in chronological form. In the more traditional models, we see several episodes and the time periods in which they occurred.
Visuals make timelines efficient for retaining content and keywords. In this scenario, the memorization of so many names, dates, events, revolutions, among other concepts, which can be considered a challenge for many, becomes more agile.
The benefits of timelines don't stop: they also offer an effective way to synthesize extensive content, which in turn helps to revise this knowledge.
Nowadays, the technique has gained forms and functionalities that have made it even more attractive to historical understandings. Thanks to technology, we can find several websites that help you create your timelines and, with that, whoever loves history has a lot to celebrate.
Pay attention to the tip: try creating a timeline to organize the information of your choice. As we said, the Internet can be a strong ally in this regard and help you create everything in a quick and practical way. Who knows, this may not help you to improve your performance in different subjects ?!
Are you interested and already want to create, right now, a timeline that is your face? So you have to know Timelinefy: the platform for organizing and disseminating data chronologically.
With Timelinefy, you can build your timeline, according to the theme you want. If you are a lover of history, it is super valid, but Timelinefy is great for giving a different form to the most diverse narratives, be they cultural, market, and even personal.
The platform is very simple to understand and, with a few clicks, you can generate innovative content. Use Timelinefy to dynamically expose a company's data to customers; to share their knowledge about artists and their works; to share his childhood trajectory with friends; and, of course, to study history, its landmarks, and its relationship with time.
Enjoy it right now: in a few steps, you start to explore a new world and, for sure, you will be enchanted by the possibilities that Timelinefy brings to its users.
Understanding the relationship between time and history is not an easy task, especially because, as we saw throughout the article, despite being related, time and history are understood in different ways.
This difference is clear when we analyze chronological time and historical time. While one has a more rigid understanding of time, the other presents variables that dialogue with this notion of time.
In this sense, relating time and history can be less complicated when done using an efficient method, such as timelines, which allow the organization of events, facts, and events in a chronological way, distributed over the time periods in which they occurred.
To facilitate the development and presentation of content through a timeline you can count on Timelinefy. As already mentioned, a digital tool that allows the creation of timelines in a dynamic and interactive way, using resources of images, audios, and videos.