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I am trying to learn real history, please help.

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I am trying to learn real history, please help.

Postby Moretorque » Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:39 pm

I have never really been much of a history buff and I am glad I have not been because it has come to my attention from the internet that history is being tampered with completely in order to produce a desired affect in the mass thinking of the populace.

I am going to try and get a handle on the past but just want sites or books that are somewhat legitimate for trying to understand somewhat real history. It has come to my attention that the real historians who wrote somewhat accurate history are dead or dying and the new books being written are hog wash in a lot of cases unless sourced from older wittings.

This is all new to me so any help on good sites to learn from and books would be great, thanks.
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Postby momopi » Thu Apr 03, 2014 12:39 am

History published in any language, is usually ethnocentric to the writer. To gain a wider view, learn to read in foreign languages.

For example, in Japan their school textbook on history tend to "skip over" large parts of WW2, justified by the "lengthy history since Amaterasu-ōmikami" and therefore the book doesn't have sufficient space to cover things like, WW2.

In China, the school textbook on history claims the Chinese civilization has 5,000 years of history, yet much of the content is devoted to the Second Sino-Japanese War (WW2) from Sino-centric perspective.
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Postby Moretorque » Thu Apr 03, 2014 12:58 am

This all just pisses me off because we have the technology through digs and linquistics to get a accurate picture but yet politics is muddying it all up. Don't they do accurate translations to English? Again this pee's me off, when will the human race grow up and seek truth over ego and self profit?

So what you are telling me is just what these people were saying in a documentary I watched, history is totally bent.

Thanks for helping, are there any good sites where they are trying to present real history?
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Postby dreamer82 » Thu Apr 03, 2014 1:28 am

If you want to read real history, dig into Edward Gibbon's "Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire". He sources ancient writers to craft a narrative that goes from the first century to 1453. There is so much to learn. He spends a few chapters on the early Christians and the origins of that religion. The overall theme, though, is that as they slide into a monarchy from a democracy, they go downhill. This is very instructive for our current times. Our senate is getting weaker as the President gets stronger. There are parallels. You can find it at the library and it's in about 6 or 7 volumes. It will take awhile to read and it helps to have a computer nearby to locate all the ancient cities and regions. The vocabulary and style can be difficult but you get used to it, with a good dictionary.
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Postby Moretorque » Thu Apr 03, 2014 2:01 am

Thanks, I just realized years ago talking to my step father that the history he was taught back in the 50's seems to be much more accurate than what is taught today.

When I watched this video the other day the people in it were claiming all history on all continents was being sanitized to meet a narrative and now that books are starting to become extinct trying to get a somewhat real view of the world long term could become impossible.
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Postby ElReyBoludo » Thu Apr 03, 2014 4:51 am

The best solution is to seek primary sources, and to avoid secondary ones. Primary are the historical documents themselves, for e.g. the Magna Carta, or the eddaic poems of the Viking Era, or the Iliad. Secondary are the books written about them by historians, usually tenured "humanities" academics.

As far as the language question, it's that reading translations alters your thinking as a result of certain unavoidable mistakes when two languages and cultures are too different to translate literally. You get a wrong idea that can be nothing like what the original culture meant to say. There are, for example, entire core theses of the Christian religion derived from bad Hebrew, Aramaic or classical Greek translations into other languages. Jews point out the errors, but mostly are ignored for it. Using music as a language, there are entire sounds that Western and Asian musicians are incapable of imitating in each other's works, because those tones do not exist in their scales. They end up forced to play mistakes and to say, 'Close enough'. The US group 'The Sons of Italy', was supposed to allow all adult descendants of Italian immigrants to join it. It was to be a gathering-place for entire families. They mistook the word figli, which is the word for 'sons', but also the word for 'children' or 'descendency', as being only sons. The result was that it became a men's club similar to the 'Knights of Columbus'.

So, when you can read original historical evidence in its own tongue, you can escape the political polemics plus the potential for serious errors.
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Postby momopi » Thu Apr 03, 2014 7:10 am

Moretorque wrote: So what you are telling me is just what these people were saying in a documentary I watched, history is totally bent.


Stop watching documentaries, or if you must, watch foreign documentaries in subtitles. It's always preferable to learn foreign languages and its associated cultural context, which is lost through machine (or human) translation.

Start with something light, like "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" to gain better understanding of foreign cultural norms and perspectives, before digging into political and historical topics. It was on Netflix but not sure about now. You can always order the DVD on Amazon. Bootlegging on piratebay may result in warning letter from your ISP.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M-aGPniFvS0
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