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Interpretations in History

W.H.B. Court has pointed out: "History free of all values cannot be written. Indeed, it is a concept almost impossible to understand, for men will scarcely take the trouble to inquire laboriously into something which they set no value upon." That has always been the case with my writing. Unless I have strong views on the subject, I don't bother to write about it. The first materials I ever produced concerned the First World War. It was a subject I had felt passionately about for many years. In fact, I can date it to 1956, the year that I inherited from my father the brass medal type object that provided details of my grandfather's death, John Edward Simkin, on the Western Front in 1915. My research into why he died did not give me a value-free view of the war.

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John Simkin

In September, 1997, Spartacus Educational founder and managing director John Simkin became the first educational publisher in Britain to establish a website that was willing to provide teachers and students with free educational materials.

According to a survey carried out by the Fischer Trust, Spartacus Educational is one of the top three websites used by history teachers and students in Britain (the other two are BBC History and the Public Record Office’s Learning Curve). The Spartacus Educational website currently gets up to 7 million page impressions a month and 3 million unique visitors.

As well as running the Spartacus Educational website John Simkin has also produced material for the Electronic Telegraph, the European Virtual School and the Guardian's educational website, Learn. He was also a member of the European History E-Learning Project (E-Help), a project to encourage and improve use of ICT and the internet in classrooms across the continent.

We have published six e-books, Charles Dickens: A Biography (October, 2012), First World War Encyclopedia (October, 2012), Assassination of John F. Kennedy Encyclopedia (November, 2012), Gandhi: A Biography (December, 2012), The Spanish Civil War (December, 2012) and The American Civil War (December, 2012). He also contributed an article to the recently published book, Using New Technologies to Enhance Teaching and Learning in History (December, 2012).

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