What is history? Why should we study history?

What is history? Why should we study history? Within the context of our stories concerning Christopher Columbus, Native Americans, the Pilgrims, or slavery, discuss how historians (Zinn and Loewen) have dealt with the above issues specifically. How have history textbooks begun to complicate our histories even further? With regard to the above topics, how have your readings and studies in this class differed from the ways in which these topics have been portrayed (all the way back to elementary school) to you in previous classes? In the quote above, W.E.B. DuBois suggests that in our studies of history, when we skim over the bad parts, our histories begin to lose their value as “incentive and example.” What does he mean by this? What are the far-reaching consequences of the ways in which so many of us have been taught history?

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