‘Being there’ for an historian is the feeling for the past that can only be matched by the hours, the days, the weeks, the months, the years I sit at the tables in the archives. It is the assurance that my extravagance with time here is rewarded with a sensitivity that comes in no other way. It is an overlaying of images one on the other. It is a realisation that knowledge of the past is cumulative and kaleidoscopic, extravagantly wasteful of my energy.
Greg Dening ‘Culture is talk. Living is story’ in Hsu-Ming Teo and Richard White Cultural History in Australia, Sydney, UNSW Press, 2003 p. 232