Case Study: Promoting creativity, empathy and historical imagination


By Glória Solé, published 22nd March 2013

Early Years Students learning the topic 'Portuguese discoveries'

Empathy and Imagination

Creativity, imagination and historical empathy are concepts with different meanings although interrelated in the field of historical learning (Lee, 1984; Shemilt, 1984, Ashby & Lee, 1987). According to Lee (1984) concepts such as empathy, understanding and imagination are connected in complex ways in history. Lee discusses the concept of empathy associated to historical imagination, and sees it as a cognitive skill in which imagination has a role. Like imagination, empathy is a problematic historical concept.

However, the author distinguishes imagination from empathy: imagination is associated with mere fiction while empathy is associated with the feelings of others, sharing emotions and even the ability to identify with another person (p.89)....

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