Can't you keep my hand to yourself?!
Friday, September 1
  Gotta love revisionist history!
Here's an interesting article about the Chinese cutting out some of the nastier aspects of their history. Funny how that works, eh?
When high school students in Shanghai crack their history textbooks this fall they may be in for a surprise. The new standard world history text drops wars, dynasties and Communist revolutions in favor of colorful tutorials on economics, technology, social customs and globalization.

Socialism has been reduced to a single, short chapter in the senior high school history course. Chinese Communism before the economic reform that began in 1979 is covered in a sentence. The text mentions Mao only once — in a chapter on etiquette.
The new text mentions Mao only once? But he was such a loveable figure!
<< Home

Chinese communism before 1979 is covered only in one sentence? It must be the most well written sentence in the history of time.
The sentence actually spans 30 pages.
Yeah, it's unfortunate that governments always leave out the nasty parts of their history or deemphasize it in a way which tells the reader that it was not important.

As Howard Zinn wrote in his great book The People's History of the United States,

To emphasize the heroism of Columbus and his successors as navigators and discoverers, and to deemphasize their genocide, is not a technical necessity but an idealogical choice. It serves-unwittingly-to justify what was done.

My point is not that we must, in telling history, accuse, judge, condem Columbus in absentia. It is too late for that; it would be a useless scholarly exercise in morality. But the easy acceptance of atrocities as a deplorable but necessary price to pay for progress (Hiroshima and Vietnam, to save Western civilization; Kronstadt and Hungary, to save socialism; nuclear proliferation, to save us all)-that is still with us. One reason these atrocities are still with us is that we have learned to bury them in a mass of other facts, as radioactive wastes are buried in containers in the earth. We have learned to give them exactly the same proportion of attention that teachers and writers often give them in the most respectable of classrooms and textbooks. This learned sense of moral proportion, coming from the apparent objectivity of the scholar, is accepted more easily than when it comes from politicians at press conferences. It is therefore more deadly

So it's unfortunate, but at the same time people should never expect to learn history from the average classroom. It takes much more personal effort to do so.
Well, we wouldn't have bombed Hiroshima if the Japanese would have surrendered. Instead they wanted to force us to battle their samurai swords with bayonets. I'm just surprised we didn't blame the 'bombing' on one of their volcanoes. And as for Columbus, he was Spanish or Portugese, or some type of person that can tan not like me. The point is, that's on those people, not us! Screw Columbus, America was discovered by George Washington who nobly conquered the various barbarian tribes of Canada as well as the Russian whalers in Alaska, which George then purchased with a jar of pickles stolen from the Aztecs. This was clever, for anyone that took a pickle from the jar would find themselves unable to eat, drink, screw, or die, and by moonlight they would appear as skeletons aboard their whaling ship.
lol, thanks j. just how i remember it from HS history class!
Post a Comment

<< Home

A community blog, message board, think tank, toaster oven, and who knows what else...


  • Create a Poll
  • Wikipedia

  • News/Opinion
  • Arts and Letters Daily
  • Political Theory Daily Review
  • Google News
  • NY Times

  • Blogs
  • Short Sharp Science
  • Invention
  • Freethought Weekly
  • Bebothersome
  • Presentation Zen
  • Previous posts

  • PS3 to Cure Cancer?
  • Web culture rocks
  • Welcome to the Dark Ages
  • iPod Killer?
  • All your snakes are belong to us. Wait what?
  • An adventurer is you!
  • Dell laptop explosions
  • Yay Kansas
  • Better than a Brat
  • POLL!
  • Archives

  • December 2005
  • January 2006
  • February 2006
  • March 2006
  • April 2006
  • May 2006
  • June 2006
  • July 2006
  • August 2006
  • September 2006
  • October 2006
  • November 2006
  • Miscellanea

    Designed and tested using:
    Get Firefox! and Safari.

    Unique visitors since 1.28.2006: