Infinite Power is da ****
- Aug 7, 2002
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Lots of things you're taught in school are bullshirt. When I was a kid they were still telling us the reason no one would fund Columbus' voyage was because they thought the Earth was flat. The reality is naval navigation had been based on the concept of a spherical Earth since the time of ancient Greece.
I was also taught that Louisiana was named for King Louis and his wife Queen Anna. Unfortunately three seconds of research would tell you his wife was not named Anna.
Exactly this. Case in point...I'll also add that a lot of our teaching of history is based around hero worship and turning complicated and flawed real people into mythological figures. So less history and more cultural myths perpetuated as history. This is rooted in the late 19th century mythologization of the founding fathers and other notable leaders, but also expanded from there. Honest Abe. Washington and the cherry tree. That kind of stuff.
In elementary and high school, history and social studies were my absolute worse subjects, not because of bad grades, but in what and how it was taught. We had three American history teachers in one year in my junior year. One had an injury and retired. The second was fired for lying and saying he was certified when he wasn't (they could've easily found that out beforehand). The third confused the sheet out of everyone because he contradicted a ton of what was in the textbooks. Turns out he was right to do so. The amount of whitewashing was ridiculous. There was one exceptions in all of those years - world history. And it was easy to see why that turned out to be the case. My world history teacher graduated from UNO as well. Turns out his mentor and research professor ended up being my mentor and research professor as well many years later.