Some Basics About Your Country's History

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  1. Lisa HW profile image62
    Lisa HWposted 12 years ago

    Just a thought.  Who knows how this thread will go.

    As I mentioned in a Fourth-of-July thread, a Boston television station had a piece about how 40% of 18- to 29- year olds surveyed didn't know why Americans celebrate the Fourth-of-July.  I don't think most people would expect most Americans to have the knowledge of history that, say, a history professor would have. Still, there are rock-bottom basics about history that a lot of kids learn in elementary school (and earlier). 

    So, it occurred to me that it might be nice if people on here either wrote Hubs or posted on here some basics about their own country's history and/or things are are meaningful to/for their own country.  I'm not thinking in terms of big, long, posts that the "uninterested" aren't going to read because they aren't "the history-reading type".  I'm think more in terms of nutshell-snippets that help people from other countries pick up some of the basics about your own country's history/beginnings, celebrations exclusive to your particular country - that kind of thing.

    1. profile image0
      china manposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Nah!!  The less they know the better !  There are enough people still talk-fighting your Civil War already I hear.

      1. Lisa HW profile image62
        Lisa HWposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        china man, I live in the Northern part of the US - everybody's happy with the outcome of the Civil War.   lol  (or at least that how it seems, as far as I can tell)

      2. IROQUOIS227 profile image56
        IROQUOIS227posted 12 years agoin reply to this

        yes, the less they know, the better.  That's what the Rockefeller foundation, and other allegedly philanthropic foundations discovered during the early part of the twentieth century.  dumb populations are the only type that swallow the bilge that Americans have and are still gulping like cold beer on a hot afternoon

    2. Cagsil profile image75
      Cagsilposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Hey Lisa,

      I'm not a great history buff, but I have written a hub about the early time, just about or before America became a nation. It doesn't touch on the Civil War, but does talk about when America decided on establishing it's money base and the path that lead America to where we are today somewhat.

      And, to be honest, I would not be surprised that more and more people are without the knowledge of America's History and how it came to be, and that is a down-right shame.

      I do hope you have a GREAT July 4 day and celebrate safely. smile

      1. Lisa HW profile image62
        Lisa HWposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        Cagsil, I'm glad you posted that.  I'm going to go back and read (when it isn't 100 degrees outside).

        1. IROQUOIS227 profile image56
          IROQUOIS227posted 12 years agoin reply to this

          Yes. TRY to read something.

          1. Cagsil profile image75
            Cagsilposted 12 years agoin reply to this

            And, what is your point? hmm

    3. Freeway Flyer profile image84
      Freeway Flyerposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      I'm one of those history teachers (at the community college level), and I try as best I can to connect events of the past to the present. I'm new to Hubpages, so I have only posted a few hubs so far. But when I write history posts, I don't just recite information. Instead, I try to focus on the importance and meaning of events, hopefully helping readers to put themselves in the places of people in the past. Our descendants were not, after all, all that different from us, and their struggles often sound very relevant. Here are a couple of hubs on The Fourth of July and The Civil War:

  2. rebekahELLE profile image85
    rebekahELLEposted 12 years ago

    Lisa, a couple of thoughts. I think the age range mentioned in your post could even go up a decade.  I wonder how many people have even read the entire Declaration of Independence. I remember studying it in school, memorizing sections of it. And discussing some of the incredible sacrifices the signers endured in their lives as a result.

    I found a great hub last night about the 54th regiment from Massachusetts when I was looking to see if there were any hubs about this amazing Glory regiment, one of the first black regiments in US history. Colonel Robert Shaw led the men and died with the men during battle in the Civil War. A very inspiring, important figure in our history.
    The story is also a movie that can be found at this time of year, Glory. … sachusetts

    happy 4th. smile

    1. Lisa HW profile image62
      Lisa HWposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      rebekahELLE, thanks.   I'm going to read that one too (when it isn't 100 degrees - or should I say "a million degrees") here too.   smile    My friend and I were just recently talking about Shaw.  (He's the one who was telling me about him.  I hadn't heard much about him, if anything.)

      I can understand that kids aren't, by nature, usually interested in history (at least as its presented by a lot of teachers).  I remember my first trip on Boston's Freedom Trail, when I was in fourth grade; and I found the whole thing incredibly boring and resented that we didn't get to eat lunch in a restaurant somewhere.  roll    What's kind of mind-boggling, though, is that people can get through school without even absorbing a few of the bigger things (like the meaning of Independence Day) even if they're not interested.   smile   How do you live for 20/28 years and manage not to pick up at least that much????   lol  lol

  3. Petra Vlah profile image61
    Petra Vlahposted 12 years ago

    I am writing an entire series of hubs about my country that will include a hub about history

    and about the history of just one region, here is another link … -Hollywood

    1. Lisa HW profile image62
      Lisa HWposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Petra, I just took a quick look.  (As I said above, I'll be back when I'm not "dying of heat stroke"   lol  )   The top Hub does look very beautiful. 

      As an American, I'm pretty aware of how little I know about so many other countries.  I think even when people travel they only see so much of any place, and for a lot of people there isn't a lot of history being shared on a short visit.  On the other side of things, from what I've seen online, it looks like a whole lot of people from some other countries don't really have much of a clue about the US either.

      I haven't seen this yet (maybe because I haven't looked), but I'm wondering if HubMob covered this kind of thing anywhere along the way....

      1. travelespresso profile image68
        travelespressoposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        This is a really nice idea Lisa and if it hasn't already been done it would be an excellent HubMob topic - in my view.

        1. Lisa HW profile image62
          Lisa HWposted 12 years agoin reply to this

          travelespresso, thanks.   The first house we bought was on a new street where (at least among the immediately surrounding houses) we were the only ones who had always lived in the US.    All the neighbors were young married professionals, and only one couple had a baby younger than my first son (three to seven at the time).   It was so nice for him, because they all had things to share with him about their countries (England, Portugal, Poland, Russia,  Singapore, and Germany).  It was really nice for him because it was his first introduction to "grown-up socializing" with neighborhood get-togethers; and they were all people who were happy to share something interesting with the one (adorable, if I do say so myself) little boy in the neighborhood.

          I just think there's so much to be learned in "regular conversation" or an individual's personal writing.  Learning aside, it's just kind of nice to run into things to talk about other than the same, old, usual, stuff we're all sick of.  smile

  4. timorous profile image81
    timorousposted 12 years ago

    It's a funny thing about history.  I know when I was at school (oh...a few decades ago...), I hated history class.  It all seemed so irrelevant and boring.  I think it's because it's generally presented as facts from books, and not made relevant somehow to what's happening today.  Most people don't consider stuff from wayyy back to be all that important in their lives, as though we've moved on since then.

    However, the one thing history gives us is perspective, and a way forward, so as not to repeat the mistakes made earlier.

    I think in general, the education standards, particularly in North America, are way too lax.  There's also this weird belief by many parents that their little Johnny is a perfect angel, and couldn't possibly fail, and they manage to twist the arms of teachers and principals to make it so.  There doesn't seem to be any accountability in making sure the students really understand what they've been taught.  Even a dimwit gets a passing grade these days it seems..I guess because the teachers and principals are afraid of a backlash from parents.

    There's also too many other more entertaining distractions these days, like computers, tv, video games, cellphones etc.  That's not necessarily making people stupid, just more passive.

    I really don't know what to suggest to smarten people up, and make history more relevant.

    You've kind of inspired me to perhaps consider a short hub about Canadian history.  Hopefully I could make it relevant and interesting.  Being a somewhat younger (143 years) country, we don't have quite the rich and varied history of America or Britain...still, there's some good stuff in there.  I'll think about it.

  5. Flightkeeper profile image67
    Flightkeeperposted 12 years ago

    That's a horrible statistic that 40% of 18-29 year olds don't know about early American history. I guess I shouldn't be surprised though, the school system stinks.

    1. profile image0
      ryankettposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Is it the school system which stinks, or society in general? I cannot imagine that any teacher wants their students to leave uneducated, but if they sit there in class texting each other the latest gossip about paris hilton, and spend their nights drinking illegally with no parental supervision, before turning up to school in a daze, what can a teacher do to prevent it?

      Nothing. It is not the school system which is to blame, it is the generations that preceeded them and modern day parenting which is to blame. I happen to think that kids are generally more rounded people these days, you often hear old people moaning about the "youth of today", but it was the youth of yesterday that played a part in some awful history.... such as segregated societies...

      I like kids these days, let them do what they want and learn what they want. They are here to play a part in the future, not to dwell on the past.

  6. Greek One profile image63
    Greek Oneposted 12 years ago

    In a nutshell, about Canada...

  7. Greek One profile image63
    Greek Oneposted 12 years ago
  8. Greek One profile image63
    Greek Oneposted 12 years ago

    and just for fun.. in a nutshell, about nutshells..

  9. profile image0
    Lionel Brackenposted 12 years ago

    It's not a bad idea . . . I share your concerns about the low level of understanding and appreciating one's history. And I suppose that a few Hubs in that direction can't hurt. But I think the bigger problem has to do with attention spans and people's motivation to learn. My experience as a teacher is that fewer and fewer people want to invest more than a minute or two in any given exercise! They don't want to learn and don't why it should matter.

    That said, plenty of people are not that way - there's lots of U.S. citizens who are knowledgeable and informed.

    Thought-provoking post - thanks!

  10. kerryg profile image83
    kerrygposted 12 years ago

    Yeah, my 13 year old nephew came to live with us three years ago from one of the former Soviet Republics and already knows more American history than any of his classmates. It's really sad.

    (More amusingly, he also knows more about the Bible, which is hilarious because it's a Catholic school and he's not even Christian!)

    I agree with Ryan. The schools suck, but the schools suck because society sucks. Very few kids care about education because very few parents care about education, and if the students and parents don't care, then not even the best school in the world will be able to turn that child into an educated and informed adult.


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