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date: 20 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Business history as a specific field was not born inside the historical profession. It first appeared in the United States at Harvard Business School, in 1927. N. S. B. Gras held the first chair in business history. Today business history has indeed become universal. For quite a while, however, and in spite of the initial support from the Annales, the value and methods of business history were questioned by many historians. At the same time, the fact that business history could be taught in departments other than history, mostly business administration and economics, meant that its practitioners could come from these very disciplines and that research and teaching in business history brought them in contact with the trends at work in the historical profession. This article assesses the results of this double process for a field that is steeped in two worlds: inside history and outside history.

Keywords: business history, Harvard Business School, Annales, business administration, economics

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