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Can ‘throw-up, then clean-up' work for history?

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In an email message, a reader writes: I was revisiting one of your posts on writing where you advocate a "throw it all up!" method. While I often find myself intrigued by this suggestion, I find it hard to carry through with respect to writing papers in the history of philosophy. The reason I find my history papers go slower than, say, things I have written in ethics or aesthetics, is that careful explanation of the text gets in the way. If I start the day with the goal of getting down X's thoughts about Y, I need to find some good quotes where these thoughts are conveyed, and I need to spend time explaining the passages so as not to drift too far away from the text. If I sit down and say, "I'm writing 3-5 pages today about X on Y, and I'll just find the quotes that support my view later," I find this only prolongs things. I don't think writing history papers necessarily has to go slower, but I am wondering if it might. I'd be curious to hear. . .

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News source: The Philosophers' Cocoon

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