Monday, June 16, 2008

Perspective takes only one line

How many of you have read Howard Zinn? Herodotus? William Shirer? Voltaire? Probably not that many...Hell, I haven't even read most of their stuff. Mostly I stick to the "good parts".

History has always been a story to me. And like most stories, there are sides to it; complications, points of view. Nobody has the complete truth, just a piece. I've held to that idea for a long time.

But then I saw this movie, The History Boys. (Great flick, by the way. Adapted from a play by Alan Bennet.) It's about these kids at a semi-decent English school who're on the kinda-fast-track to Oxford and Cambridge - provided they can learn the skills to pass their tests and interviews. Lots of human drama and sexual tension accompany - but the main thing I noticed was the stuff the kids learned from one of their teachers.

It reminded of idea behind Saboteur Academia; knowledge, information, factoids, that have little to no practical application when you first notice it. But then you think about it for a bit, and that stuff they know is worth learning more than the bullshit you usually get in most institutions of higher learning.

The best line (going back to the whole history thing) was, "How do I define history? It's just one fucking thing after another."


Amazing shit, man. That line blew my mind. That's the best explanation for the totality of human civilization I've ever heard. Brilliant!

And so on.

2 footnotes:

Toilet Shark said...

Are you comparing your blog to Herodotus and his tales of gold digging ants? Or more of a Zinnian historical synthesis focusing on "fools, knaves, and Robin Hoods."? Or do you consider yourself more akin to Arouet who considered everyone in the entire world to be stupider than himself? Don't get me started on William Shirer's Nazi loving ass...

Zek J Evets said...

Nah, not really. My blog is more of a sounding post for my own excrement. However, if I had to pick a persona for blogtastical guuidance, I'd be Edward Gibbon.