Is history racist?

caseyedwards

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Was the United States founded to protect slavery from English abolitionists? If you say no you agree 1619 project is garbage
 

overedge

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Was the United States founded to protect slavery from English abolitionists? If you say no you agree 1619 project is garbage

Have you been reading any of this thread? That is one of many explanations as to why the US was founded. That's what history is about - multiple perspectives coming together to paint a picture of the whole. And unlike you, I would not write off as "garbage" all of a very thorough well-researched and well-written historical project if I disagreed with one part of the analysis.
 

caseyedwards

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Have you been reading any of this thread? That is one of many explanations as to why the US was founded. That's what history is about - multiple perspectives coming together to paint a picture of the whole. And unlike you, I would not write off as "garbage" all of a very thorough well-researched and well-written historical project if I disagreed with one part of the analysis.
Any perspective that is taught must be grounded in reality. If you are teaching Washington was really hired by (other) slave owners to attack the british abolitionists before they could abolish slavery in America you are not teaching “facts of the past” but wild nonsense
 

clairecloutier

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I think that @MacMadame's and @once_upon's posts touched on an important point, which is that history is never static. It is never settled. It is ever-expanding, because we are always finding out new things and learning more people's stories. Every addition to history enriches it and changes it and forces us to consider new evidence/theory. This is one of the reasons it is difficult to settle on established curriculums. Yes, you have to have a somewhat simplified version of history to teach to kids in grade school. I don't see that as a problem, as long as there is representation of other viewpoints and experiences than the dominant male experience (and a general strong understanding that such viewpoints/experiences are equally valid and important). There is a limit to how much kids can learn and absorb at younger ages, anyway. As to the original question of whether history itself is racist, well, at times it may be, due to the victors writing it. OTOH, if we didn't have historical study and inquiry, we wouldn't know much about the experience of racism or the institutions of structural racism at all.
 
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overedge

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History used to be and probably still is to some extent about white men in power, as told by white men in power. His story.

For example, in the 60s and 70s we learned nothing about Canada's indigenous peoples. They were whitewashed out of the history textbooks.

IME they weren't totally whitewashed out of the histories - in the elementary and secondary school curriculum I took, they were presented as the brave Indian nobles who welcomed the English and French colonizers and cooperated with them. We also learned about notable Indians like Joseph Brant (but not about him being a slaveowner) and Chief Dan George, who was from our area (some of his kids went to my high school) and who was nominated for an Oscar. And we also learned a bit about the traditions and culture of the nations in our area, like longhouses and totem poles.
 
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MacMadame

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IME they weren't totally whitewashed out of the histories - in the elementary and secondary school curriculum I took, they were presented as the brave Indian nobles who welcomed the English and French colonizers and cooperated with them.
In my school, we learned about the Indian tribes who used to live in the area but it was somewhat divorced from US History and they kind of skimmed over why they don't live here anymore.
 

Japanfan

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IME they weren't totally whitewashed out of the histories - in the elementary and secondary school curriculum I took, they were presented as the brave Indian nobles who welcomed the English and French colonizers and cooperated with them. We also learned about notable Indians like Joseph Brant (but not about him being a slaveowner) and Chief Dan George, who was from our area (some of his kids went to my high school) and who was nominated for an Oscar. And we also learned a bit about the traditions and culture of the nations in our area, like longhouses and totem poles.

My experience may have reflected where I grew up, in a northern Canadian mining town, with a reserve just out of town. We learned nothing about First Nations. As posted above, the townsfolk knew nothing about how the natives lived on reserve. There would have been a residential school, since the native kids didn't attend school in town, but we knew nothing about it.
 
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overedge

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My experience may have reflected where I grew up, in a northern Canadian mining town, with a reserve just out of town. We learned nothing about First Nations. As posted above, the townsfolk knew nothing about the natives lived on reserve.

I realize that it may not have been the same everywhere, which is why I started my post with "IME". I'm not sure that Chief Dan George would have got any attention in our curriculum if he had just been a "regular" First Nations member rather than an Oscar-nominated actor.
 
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Japanfan

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History needs to be based on the facts of what happened! Certainly no history class should ever ever contain students taking about what it’s like to be the race they are. That’s not history. That’s sociological stuff. Why should that ever be in a history class?

Talking about the race one is can allow one to reflect on history, and how it has impacted them and shaped their society. Though I prefer 'ethnicity' to 'race' - the concept of race has been debunked. There is just one race, the human race.

Reflecting on and talking about race can impact/change our history going forward.

The importance of this has come to light recently due to George Floyd's murder, and the murder of other African Americans.

In Canada, it's been highlighted by the recent and tragic murder of four members of a Muslim family. A guy mowed them down in broad daylight, then confessed to his crime. I haven't heard much about him, other than he was a neo-Nazi.

The family was just going for an after-dinner walk in their neighborhood.

A nine-year old boy was the only survivor, but seriously injured.

:wuzrobbed:angryfire
 

gkelly

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Have you been reading any of this thread? That is one of many explanations as to why the US was founded. That's what history is about - multiple perspectives coming together to paint a picture of the whole.
This is important.

We're talking about millions and millions of individual people over the centuries, and multiple different groups defined by ethnicity, sex, sexuality, age cohort, location, etc., etc.

Everyone has had a different personal experience. People belong some of the same groups will have similar experiences, and people with few or no groupings in common will have very different experiences.

The problem is when only the dominant groups gets to tell the story of everyone. Which is why more voices are needed in researching, writing, teaching history.
 

PRlady

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Critical race theory is an enormous political and psychological threat to the white people who hate it. If the US was founded partially on structural racism that still exists today, it means the benefits of whiteness are unearned. CRT opponents think that means they didn’t earn what they’ve gotten, rather than that there is a layer of added benefit they have, just because the playing field is unequal.

History that is based on first person accounts and actual primary evidence is still flawed. The oral histories of Holocaust survivors are notoriously inaccurate factually; people get names and dates and places wrong, amalgamate each others’ stories, etc. It really is an art, not a science.
 

allezfred

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Vagabond

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I was going to post the following:

George Santayana said, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." This aphorism has led to another: "Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it."
This thread is proof.
The troll keeps posting claptrap.
Certain posters present reasoned, factual arguments, expecting that they will cause the troll to stop and maybe even get a diagnosis and treatment.
And I keep telling them that they will never win those arguments with the troll.

But then I remembered that this has happened before and decided not to post.

:p
 

caseyedwards

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Critical race theory is an enormous political and psychological threat to the white people who hate it. If the US was founded partially on structural racism that still exists today, it means the benefits of whiteness are unearned. CRT opponents think that means they didn’t earn what they’ve gotten, rather than that there is a layer of added benefit they have, just because the playing field is unequal.

History that is based on first person accounts and actual primary evidence is still flawed. The oral histories of Holocaust survivors are notoriously inaccurate factually; people get names and dates and places wrong, amalgamate each others’ stories, etc. It really is an art, not a science.
If you are white and live in a small apartment and have minimum wage jobs what do you have that deserves to be broken down as a benefit of racial privilege? So you will be the target of educational programs that attack whiteness for what reason?
 

clairecloutier

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Critical race theory is an enormous political and psychological threat to the white people who hate it. If the US was founded partially on structural racism that still exists today, it means the benefits of whiteness are unearned. CRT opponents think that means they didn’t earn what they’ve gotten, rather than that there is a layer of added benefit they have, just because the playing field is unequal.


Absolutely, and this is exactly why we're seeing such a strong backlash against CRT politically, with the new laws being passed in the TX and TN legislatures, among others, about what history can/can't be taught in public schools. It's the very strength and fury of the opposition to the idea of structural racism that reveals the importance of it to some Americans.

History that is based on first person accounts and actual primary evidence is still flawed. The oral histories of Holocaust survivors are notoriously inaccurate factually; people get names and dates and places wrong, amalgamate each others’ stories, etc. It really is an art, not a science.

True of course, but this is why historians study, analyze, fact-check personal and oral histories. I don't think anyone would suggest that personal/oral histories should be the sum of the historical record, so to speak, or taken at face value. They're an absolutely vital aspect and input to the larger history of any period, and must be studied and placed in context along with official and public sources of information.

It is an interesting question whether history is an art or a science, though. I would view history is an interpretation of reality based on available facts and records. as such, it has aspects of both art and science. But you could argue that science itself is involved in sifting through and choosing various facts or scientific principles to investigate or focus upon. There are of course incontrovertible facts in science (just as in history) but there is also the matter of what exactly scientists choose to study, how they design their experiments, and how they frame the conclusions they arrive at. Anyhow, kind of interesting questions to ponder ....
 
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DORISPULASKI

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I was going to post the following:

George Santayana said, "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." This aphorism has led to another: "Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it."
This thread is proof.
The troll keeps posting claptrap.
Certain posters present reasoned, factual arguments, expecting that they will cause the troll to stop and maybe even get a diagnosis and treatment.
And I keep telling them that they will never win those arguments with the troll.

But then I remembered that this has happened before and decided not to post.

:p
But as Robert A Heinlein said:

Of course the game is rigged. Don't let that stop you--if you don't play, you can't win.

;)
 

DORISPULASKI

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How does it attack "whiteness" to say:

Medical outcomes are worse even for rich blacks than white people because of falsehoods believed by some doctors that are enshrined in some medical books, and which date back to slavery days. This is reported in medical reports.



1. They feel pain less https://www.statnews.com/2016/04/04/medical-students-beliefs-race-pain/

2. Their skins are thicker and the next several items below:

3. Their nerve endings are less sensitive

4. They are less intelligent and can be assumed to not be following doctors advice.

5. They are more likely abusing drugs.



How does any of this make a white child hate themselves?


And the above are also reported in the 1619 Project in this article.

 

jenny12

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If you are white and live in a small apartment and have minimum wage jobs what do you have that deserves to be broken down as a benefit of racial privilege? So you will be the target of educational programs that attack whiteness for what reason?

White privilege is not the absence of hardship. It is the fact that those hardships are not the result of systemic racism and oppression.
 

jenny12

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Exactly. "White privilege" doesn't mean that all white people are driving around in limousines and sipping champagne.

So true and because of this, I wonder where this notion of white people getting hurt or white children hating themselves when they hear about white privilege comes from. Feeling compassion for someone else's experience shouldn't mean hating yourself. I don't know if this is a good example and perhaps this is way over-simplifying it but say you are having a great day and your friend later tells you they've had a rough day because they lost their job. Do you suddenly hate yourself for having a good day or do you feel compassion for them and listen to what they are going through? Ultimately, learning about white privilege and systemic racism is about learning to have compassion for others on a larger scale and listening and learning from experiences that are unlike our own so we can work toward the continual growth and improvement of this country for everybody. I just don't see how that could be a bad thing.
 
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caseyedwards

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So the white kids living in the trailer park have to be taught they are or their ancestors are the reason black kids could be living in a project? Is anyone responsible for the white people living in the trailer parks?
 

Japanfan

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If you are white and live in a small apartment and have minimum wage jobs what do you have that deserves to be broken down as a benefit of racial privilege? So you will be the target of educational programs that attack whiteness for what reason?

A poor white person will have an easier time renting an apartment and getting a minimum wage job. Some landlords discriminated against black people in the past - Donald Trump is known to have been one of them. Landlords probably still discriminate against blacks today.

The poor white person will not be subjected to racism and racist slurs in her/ his workplace, as a poor white person would. The white person is probably far less likely to be assaulted, raped or killed while walking home from work.

Hence, the poor white person has racial privilege.

So the white kids living in the trailer park have to be taught they are or their ancestors are the reason black kids could be living in a project? Is anyone responsible for the white people living in the trailer parks?

The responsibility goes to white people as a class - although certain white persons in power are much more responsible than others. But white people who lack position and power can be racist against POC, and benefit from being white.

Class analysis is a valid perspective.

To give an example, male privilege exists just as white privilege exists. One may ask how a poor black man living in the slums can have male privilege, especially in relation to a white woman living in a mansion. The reason is because all men have male privilege within their own class. Women of all colors are actual or possible victims of domestic assault and violence.

Likewise, the white person in the trailer park has greater privilege than the black person in the trailer park. I'd like to say that it is less than it once was, and that is obviously true to a certain attack. But just think about all the black people who are arrested or assaulted just for talking a walk, picnicking, and so on.

However, it must be acknowledged that racism can be perpetrated against white people, the Jews being a primary example. Anti-semetism continues to exist today. But a Jewish person isn't identified by color, so won't be arrested or assaulted just for walking, picnicking etc. while Jewish.
 
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DORISPULASKI

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So the white kids living in the trailer park have to be taught they are or their ancestors are the reason black kids could be living in a project? Is anyone responsible for the white people living in the trailer parks?
Rich people who underpay them? Politicians who dismantled the social safety net?

Btw Even poor white people have the privilege of not fearing their child will be killed by a cop every time they leave the house. They do not have to give their children "The Talk" as white parents do.

Evicted by Matthew Desmond

describes the problems of 8 impoverished families in Milwaukee, some white, some black. In almost all situations, the black families got worse treatment.
 
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