I mostly want to know if anyone has especially good papers they would recommend on how to best understand and employ the principle of charity in our historical work. I have my own views on how to understand and employ it, but I realized that I am not really in touch with what other people’s views are, or whether my approach is idiosyncratic.
At least one aspect of my approach is idiosyncratic. I keenly dislike the term, “principle of charity”, for what probably amount to overly pedantic reasons (charity, in general, is not owed; but, whatever it is that we are trying to capture with that principle seems to be something we do owe to the figures we study). I tend to refer to the relevant interpretive norm as “the principle of sympathetic interpretation” or to describe it in terms of putting on one’s Hume hat, etc.
Feel free also to use the comment thread here as a place to discuss your own views on the principle of charity!