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Eliezer_Yudkowsky comments on Hindsight bias - Less Wrong

53 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 16 August 2007 09:58PM

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Comment author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 23 August 2007 05:34:54PM 4 points [-]

David, which other 50 things were they actively worried about?

As Fischoff (1982, above) writes:

Any propensity to look no further is encouraged by the norm of reporting history as a good story, with all the relevant details neatly accounted for and the uncertainty surrounding the event prior to its consummation summarily buried, along with any confusion the author may have felt (Gallie, 1964; Nowell-Smith, 1970). Just one of the secrets to doing this is revealed by Tawney (1961): "Historians give an appearance of inevitability to an existing order by dragging into prominence the forces which have triumphed and thrusting into the background those which they have swallowed up" (p. 177).'

Gallie, W. B. Philosophy and the historical understanding. London: Chatto & Windus, 1964.

Nowell-Smith, P. H. Historical explanation. In H. E. Keifer & M. K. Munitz (Eds.), Mind, science and history. Albany, N. Y.: State University of New York Press, 1970.

Tawney, R. H. The agrarian problems in the sixteenth century. New York: Franklin, 1961.