Episode 61: Chance, Randomness, and Luck in History

Historians, philosophers, and armchair historians have often pondered the role of chance in history. To what extent does randomness or luck dictate what happens to us? Are the events of history just a random spin on the wheel of fate, or is there a more determined explanation of historical events? Bringing up questions about historical free will, determinism, and cause-effect relationships, this episode goes through some of the history of people thinking about these types of questions. It also discusses some historical examples of "chance" in action, and the implications that asking these questions has for the study of history-particularly as it relates to the recent rise of "counterfactual" history.

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