Blog Post #3

I found it hard to tell an interesting story about my life this past week because the life of a college student is probably one of the most uninteresting things I could imagine. So, attempting to turn something mindbogglingly boring into something that is actually interesting is not exactly my specialty. I understand that a lot of historians have to deal with this, but I don’t generally study things like underwater basket weaving, I generally study military history and political history. Some histories are just easier to make interesting. The story I tried to tell was just to take what could be considered interesting and then try to liven it with a few jokes before coming to a far more serious ending to try an extrapolate some meaning from it.

Is a story representative or not depends entirely on what is trying to be represented. Is the story I told representative of my life in college? Somewhat, but things like studying, reading, and other monotonous things got left out. Along with any deep or meaningful opinions on classes, assignments, etc, but this is the usual. A common occurrence I’ve noticed is that people don’t understand why histories are written, the most common one being the Bible. The Bible is a theological history, but people try to read it as if it were a normal history book – like a textbook, but it isn’t. People attribute things not appearing in the Bible as if it’s some hole in the book, as a gotcha, but the reason things usually aren’t mentioned is because it isn’t a full history. Adam and Eve had children other than Cain and Able, but only Cain and Able are mentioned because their struggle is theologically important, whilst the other children’s aren’t. Missing the purpose as to why a history is written is a common fatal error.

Has this week’s reading and exercise changed the way I think about what historians do? No, not really. My primary interest lies in Antiquity and the Medieval ages, so understanding the biases of the writer, the information the writer uses and says, and how that impacts the narrative of the writer is extremely important to not be duped.

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