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I am beginning to HATE Public History

SNP1
Posts: 2,403
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10/1/2015 6:52:38 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
Title says the gist of what, not why.
My professor is getting angry at my attitude towards Public History (PH) and my grade is suffering because of it.
I CANNOT respect PH, at least not how it is being portrayed in class.

Let's say you are in charge of a Museum Exhibit over event X.
You can go with Exhibit A or Exhibit B.
Exhibit A is 100% factually accurate, but only 10% of people will respond positively towards the Exhibit.
Exhibit B is 85% factually accurate (half-truths, omitting facts, etc.) and 70% of people will respond positively towards the Exhibit.
Which exhibit is the proper one to use?
According to PH, Exhibit B is the correct choice.
According to ANYONE interested in what REALLY happened in history, Exhibit A is the correct choice.

Furthermore, how my professor addresses topics in class is with a bias, trying to ensure that not many people's feelings are hurt.
Reality does not give a damn about your feelings!
#TheApatheticNihilistPartyofAmerica
#WarOnDDO
Atheist-Independent
Posts: 776
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10/3/2015 12:09:26 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 10/1/2015 6:52:38 PM, SNP1 wrote:
Title says the gist of what, not why.
My professor is getting angry at my attitude towards Public History (PH) and my grade is suffering because of it.
I CANNOT respect PH, at least not how it is being portrayed in class.

Let's say you are in charge of a Museum Exhibit over event X.
You can go with Exhibit A or Exhibit B.
Exhibit A is 100% factually accurate, but only 10% of people will respond positively towards the Exhibit.
Exhibit B is 85% factually accurate (half-truths, omitting facts, etc.) and 70% of people will respond positively towards the Exhibit.
Which exhibit is the proper one to use?
According to PH, Exhibit B is the correct choice.
According to ANYONE interested in what REALLY happened in history, Exhibit A is the correct choice.

Furthermore, how my professor addresses topics in class is with a bias, trying to ensure that not many people's feelings are hurt.
Reality does not give a damn about your feelings!

What exactly is public history?
SNP1
Posts: 2,403
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10/3/2015 1:25:08 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 10/3/2015 12:09:26 AM, Atheist-Independent wrote:
What exactly is public history?

Public Histprians don't even have a set definition for Public History. It is supposed to be like a bridge between Academic History and the public.
#TheApatheticNihilistPartyofAmerica
#WarOnDDO
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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10/3/2015 7:34:45 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I really should have responded here instead of to your thread in the Personal section--so I'm gonna paste it here.

At 10/3/2015 7:33:01 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 10/1/2015 6:52:58 PM, SNP1 wrote:
Title says the gist of what, not why.
My professor is getting angry at my attitude towards Public History (PH) and my grade is suffering because of it.
I CANNOT respect PH, at least not how it is being portrayed in class.

Let's say you are in charge of a Museum Exhibit over event X.
You can go with Exhibit A or Exhibit B.
Exhibit A is 100% factually accurate, but only 10% of people will respond positively towards the Exhibit.
Exhibit B is 85% factually accurate (half-truths, omitting facts, etc.) and 70% of people will respond positively towards the Exhibit.
Which exhibit is the proper one to use?
According to PH, Exhibit B is the correct choice.
According to ANYONE interested in what REALLY happened in history, Exhibit A is the correct choice.

I confess to not being super familiar with the concept, so perhaps I'm missing something. But if I plug things into the variables:

Event X: Labor in the early 20th century

Exhibit A: How the cloth for shirts made in shirtwaist factories were made
Exhibit B: How the Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire started

It seems that it becomes not-unreasonable to pick B, even with the percentages you're noting (Though how you'd calculate the 85 is a mystery). So is there something I'm missing in the presentation here? Are we supposed to presume that Exhibit A and Exhibit B are both otherwise identical, so really we're talking about how lies and half-truth make things more palatable?
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Skepsikyma
Posts: 8,280
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10/3/2015 11:25:50 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 10/3/2015 1:25:08 AM, SNP1 wrote:
At 10/3/2015 12:09:26 AM, Atheist-Independent wrote:
What exactly is public history?

Public Histprians don't even have a set definition for Public History. It is supposed to be like a bridge between Academic History and the public.

Sounds like a joke field to me...
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
j50wells
Posts: 345
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10/5/2015 3:33:01 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
That's piss poor. You're professor is openly acknowledging that it's okay to lie about history. If the historians of the past practiced lying, we'd have no idea about our history. Without factual history, we'd have no hope for the future because we wouldn't know what works, and what doesn't.
Imagine if military leaders read the lying version of a military battle, and then went out and emulated the victors in that battle. They'd lose, and the nation would fall. The same is true of political history. The actual version must be read, and must be practiced so as to not make the same mistakes that politicians in the past made.

Your professor is not considering the fact that a false history will be ignored in the future. It will find its way into the septic tank of lying narratives. It has to. No thinking people will read a lie, nor will they make decisions based on that lie. Funny thing is that the real history of something almost always comes out. Your professor will find his books used as toilet paper in fifty years once the real truth comes out. And his name will not be great, nor will it be celebrated, rather it will be despised as a name synonymous with lying.