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purposes and benefits of studying history

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Major example: Hitler's Wehrmacht was defeated by the same two Russian generals who defeated Napoleon's "Grand Armee"- General Mud and General Winter. I heard several times about how stupid the man was and how he must not only be made to pay for the damage done but must also be made to undertake all the necessary arrangements with whoever was going to do the work, At no time was any mention made of the thoughts or feelings of the neighbour. Let us not forget former cabinet minister Robert Halfon saying back in January that “if someone wants to do medieval history that’s fine… but all the incentives from government and so on should go to areas the country needs and will bring it most benefit”. No doubt you are already ahead of me in working out where my thoughts are going. Thank you for subscribing to HistoryExtra, you now have unlimited access. The first iPhone was released only 11 years ago. Studying history improves our decision making and judgment. If we want to know how and why our world is the way it … What Is History? Then, in each case, I tried to work out how they might have acted had they once been students of History. What kinds of evidence, data and perception lie behind different views? I must have been a little delirious, but I considered it reasonable to work on the basis that I was being attacked by many-tentacled brown monsters which were trying to squeeze the life out of me, and that my job was to stop them doing it. You will shortly receive a receipt for your purchase via email. But why study history at university level? I was amazed by just how many differences there seemed to be. I even had time to think about some nice things. The study of history gives a proper perspective to our correct appreciation of the present, because the present has grown out of the past. The Emperor Augustus, back in the first century AD, proclaimed himself to be the son of a god and had an autobiography written to tell the world how great he was – a piece of political publicity so successful we’re still reading it today. In that speech I focused on our needs as Americans. So, why study them now ? By studying history, therefore, the attitude and personality of a person will be more mature. Thanks! Recently, the journalist and academic John Naughton wondered whether a history or philosophy background might have helped Mark Zuckerberg foresee and thus prevent Facebook data being used to influence elections and world politics. Defend Against Heresies and Cults. In history courses, we learn not just about other people and … Historians aren’t just people who analyse sources; we have to think about the phenomenon of society itself, in all its varieties, and communicate what we think about it. This is something that is important and valued. For a long time I have been aware that, for me, there have been two great benefits gained from studying History. Enhance your network. The wall-bashing neighbour could be thought of as a criminal who deserved to be severely punished for what he had done. You're now subscribed to our newsletter. The skills of the historian are profoundly connected to understanding and working within this changing society. Comments like these devalue and mask those vital sectors of our economy and society which are either staffed by history and humanities graduates, or are dependent on a broader social and cultural interest in the past continuing. Study is also useful because it makes one able to discuss a variety of subjects in a skillful way and, more important, study allows one to convince others with the force of argument ("discourse"). 2. But Christian history isn’t just meaningful; it’s intensely practical, too. Studying church history is like opening a photo album and exploring your family heritage. History offers so many and varied (the multiplicity or … Historians try and understand how things happen and what their consequences were. History, or at least the study thereof, as shown by class, is divided into three specific categories: remembered, recovered and invented--each having their own benefits and downfalls. History equips us with vital skills: Skills that can be acquired from the study of history include data … That is why historians are often accused of sitting on the fence, of being too willing to see the opposite point of view. Otherwise, you will end up going round and round in circles and finish up getting nowhere in particular.' We write essays, articles and books, but also write blog posts, design websites and apps, and create new ways for many different sections of the public to interact with the past in collaboration with librarians, archivists and curators. If I had been teaching them History I would have been saying, 'read the question carefully and work out exactly what you are being asked to do. Balance. History helps us understand change and societal development. One sign of this was that they had virtually ceased to think for themselves about what was happening to them in hospital. Perhaps, after all, being ill is nature's way of giving us time to remember what really matters! I soon realised that the three men had become noticeably institutionalised. History education teaches us life skills. Rather, it's that they wouldn't have wanted to. By studying history will allow a person to be able to look at something as a whole (to see things whole). Where I knew relatively little about the events concerned I merely took pleasure from recounting what I remembered, in the same way as you would with a work of fiction. People Never Change. From time to time I found myself reflecting on how lucky I was to have chosen a subject in which qualifications could be gained largely by learning interesting 'stories' and by making up my own mind about issues such as why things had happened, what had been the importance of certain events, and how significant the roles of various individuals had been. It seems a little far-fetched to maintain that the survival of Britain as a healthy democracy depends on there being plenty of historians around, but I can understand the thinking that leads to such an assertion being made. 1556332. What’s more, the knowledge acquired through the study of history is relevant in a wide range of disciplines and can lead to diverse employment opportunities. For a fortnight recently I lay paralysed from the neck downwards in a hospital bed not knowing whether I would live or die. People live in the present. History provides identity. Historians of all periods are no strangers to how rulers and ruling classes legitimate their decisions through the use of the most up-to-date communication methods. That new industries are beginning to see the value of a historical education is surprising only to those who have rarely thought in detail about what a historical approach to the world means. The classic saying is "Those who study history are doomed to repeat its mistakes." Community History – To document a community history by understanding the families that founded and influenced the community. You have successfully linked your account! Going along with understanding society, studying history allows us a look into what causes change. As a result, they normally ended up either making no decision at all or choosing a course of action which was likely to move them forwards very little. Without studying Church history, it’s easy for us to become myopic and lose perspective, restricting both our vision and our ambitions. History also teaches us how to learn from the mistakes of others. Normally this line of thinking ended with me drifting off to sleep with a sense of general well being. Early comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA) with good history-taking is essential in assessing the older adult. Only by having a firm grasp on history can we tackle the … There are many subjects one can study. Despite this, though, some newspaper articles did focus on history, seizing on juicy quotations from one of the report’s ‘informal feedback’ sessions. Although organised crime in the US did exist, most historians agree that it received a major boost through the prohibition era. The data suggest that many pupils have very vague ideas about the purposes of school history. By studying history you’ll gain a range of transferable skills, from informed citizenship and critical thinking, to research and general awareness. A history degree trains you to ask questions of your material: where does it come from? The answer lies, as always, in the methods of historical practice coupled with the historian’s profound concern with how past societies functioned. Among the liberal arts, history is the discipline most concerned with understa… The study of history is vital to a liberal arts education. Very soon I was spending several hours every day enjoying going over my favourite 'stories' from the History I had studied for most of my life. Our patient, a 75-year-old Caucasian woman, was originally admitted to hospital for investigation of iron deficiency anemia. In other words, we would have been at pains to look at the situation from his point of view. 'On the one hand this, on the other hand that' is a routine part of the mental process. I could almost hear the cries of 'Rubbish' that would have greeted any such assertion. The Wrongful Death of Toussaint Louverture. It involves the whys of life. It Instructs. The fact that any historian worth his salt reached conclusions based on the evidence found, rather than reaching a conclusion and then searching for evidence to support it, seemed to be one of the strengths that marked doing History out as being a very worthwhile activity. The Benefits Because we are human, and humans are creatures of habit, history often repeats itself. For a long time I have been aware that, for me, there have been two great benefits gained from studying History. Learning about past mistakes of our ancestors, along with examples of the losses those mistakes can cause, gives us a stern warning as to why we should not repeat them. But where the topic was one l: had studied in depth I could enjoy the added dimensions of thinking about how historians had reached very different conclusions about what had happened and why, and how these differences often reflected the values and attitudes of the period in which the author had been writing. Present thoughts, ideas, customs and institutions can never be properly understood without reference to the past. Meanwhile, devaluing the economic contribution of history teachers devalues the economic value of basic literacy (and indeed numeracy) which history teachers promote every day of their working lives. When the doctor told us (my wife and myself) that this was the situation we were not in the least surprised as it was what we had expected. ...The Importance of History It is both necessary and helpful to study the context of prior history because it is relevant to who we are. One sees similarities between events, peoples and ideas and thereby gains understanding, appreciation and perspective. The whole time I was there my three companions remained unchanged. But it also said that full-time degrees were monopolising the higher education market, and not providing graduates with the necessary skills to enter the labour market. Members of tech companies are increasingly writing articles about the importance of employing liberal arts majors (in the US) or humanities graduates (in the UK) in addition to graduates from engineering and computer science. Events occurring before the invention of writing systems are considered prehistory. The negative response would be that history can’t carry this kind of value, not any more: far more valuable, surely, to study a STEM subject (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). The plan was that my wife would stay with me all the time and would look after my body from the outside, checking what was put into it and taken out of it, and why, while I would concentrate on fighting from the inside. Studying abroad helps you build invaluable relationships with people from … History isn’t just a collection of famous names and … Those who study History for any length of time, and who get into the habit of thinking historically, almost automatically consider both sides of an issue whenever they are forming an opinion or deciding on a course of action. History is the study of some subject in chronological order: tracing ideas back to their origin and studying the evolution of ideas or events. It helps us for learning the mistakes of past. Behind their words the assumption seemed to be 'when' I would recover rather than 'if. See the World. Who paid for it and why? And my days were no longer made up of long sleeps from which I woke in a cold sweat. 1. Over the years I have gotten into trouble more than a few times for things I have written or said in public, but I suppose the chief cause of my notoriety is a speech I gave to the freshmen of Yale College suggesting that they would be wise to make the study of Western civilization the center of their pursuit of a liberal education. It would be one of those classic cases where a student writes all he knows about Charles I merely because he saw his name in the question, instead of discussing how far he was responsible for the outbreak of the Civil War, as he was actually asked to do. History is unique among the liberal arts in its emphasis on historical perspective and context. © Copyright 2021 History Today Ltd. Company no. Yet most historians would feel very uncomfortable thinking in this way. I guessed that the annoyance and the determination to make the neighbour pay for the damage would have been the same, but was sure there would have been an additional dimension to the discussion. It is the 'patterns of thought' point which has kept me arguing that there is no more worthwhile subject than History to study. Instead the concept has been completely forgotten about, at this same time Germany has been on the move. History (from Greek ἱστορία, historia, meaning "inquiry; knowledge acquired by investigation") is the study of the past. His intonation carried the message that if he had been a gambling man he would put his money on me not making it. In short, they want to employ people who can both learn new technical skills but who are also trained to think creatively and professionally about what the social and cultural consequences of these new technologies might be, what particular social or political issue might need addressing in its design, and who might be interested in the data gathered by a new social media app or fitness-tracker. History helps us understand our own identities. Who wrote it, designed it, wanted it? Actually, Ford's original comment was not so well phrased and it was a journalist who boiled it down to three unforgettable words. History, or at least the study thereof, as shown by class, is divided into three specific categories: remembered, recovered and invented--each having their own benefits and downfalls. These skills can be used throughout life. In a world where fake news can influence elections, the methods of the historian – what history degrees train their students to acquire – are needed more than ever before. If you subscribe to BBC History Magazine Print or Digital Editions then you can unlock 10 years’ worth of archived history material fully searchable by Topic, Location, Period and Person. What makes a trained historian one of the world’s most-read voices on the relationship between the past, present and future? Studying history teaches students the skill sets that they will need in almost any major or job. One common objection that historians encounter is the instant put-down that is derived from Henry Ford I, the impresario of the mass automobile. There are so many pressures and worries about the present and future planning, why bother caring about history? Worries about the economic value of arts and humanities degrees seem to be increasing; certainly, they do not appear to be a high funding priority. The paper considers the implications of these ideas for history teachers and teacher educators. But I regarded the comment as one of praise, rather than of criticism as was intended. Historic Studies – To provide insight into history through the scholarly study of a famous family, such as a royal family. It is a mistake to think that the way a history degree is conducted and assessed isn’t changing equally rapidly: we teach different kinds of history, hear different voices, and write new narratives of the past which challenge past orthodoxies. Dr Alice Taylor is a reader in medieval history at King’s College London, This article was first published in the October 2018 edition of BBC History Magazine, Save a huge 50% off a subscription to your favourite history magazine. Many people think that history just consist of stories of events that have passed. The study of history has been an important part of humanity's collective memory and experience since ancient times. History gives us the opportunity to see how daily life has changed over the years, and what goes into the fostering that change. It seemed that, at the time, the person driving the car had been in a very emotional state having just had an explosive row with his wife. History provides a foundation for activism. But what did throw us a little was the tone of his voice. However, when it came to problems brought in to them by their visitors they became very involved. The hospital ward in which I found myself contained just four beds. This notion is wrong because history is not just a … The outcomes of the study also indicate that there is a case for teachers devoting more time and thought to helping pupils to understand the purposes and benefits of studying their subject in secondary school in order to improve the motivation and engagement of their pupils. On 11 June 2018, the House of Lords Select Committee on Economic Affairs published a report entitled ‘Treating Students Fairly: the Economics of Post-School Education’. History helps us learn to understand other people. For a long time I have been aware that, for me, there have been two great benefits gained from studying History. Everything you ever wanted to know about... Study history: Tips from an admissions tutor, So, you want to study history? Had anyone read the signs and known any of the … The negative response would be that history can’t carry this kind of value, not any more: far more valuable, surely, to study a STEM subject (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Although many pupils reported that they did consider the study of history to be useful, their views on why history is part of the school curriculum bore little relation to those given in curriculum specifications and in academic discourse about the purposes and benefits of studying history in school. Although I was lying flat and couldn't see what was happening, I could hear everything that went on. As the days passed, I enjoyed playing a type of 'fly on the wall' game. History involves relationships: past to present, action to action. One thing that my studies of Church history revealed is how quick we are to over-correct. Top tips from a graduate, “Studying history is the ultimate passport to the future”, Medieval universities and an unlikely friendship, Editor’s pick: Ian Kershaw on postwar Europe, Saving food, saving lives: rationing in the Second World War, Admiral Lord Nelson: 10 days that created a legend, 10 tips to choosing a history degree course, Study History: Tips from an admissions tutor. The beauty of studying history allows us to see whether any previous ‘war on drugs’ was successful. Graduates in history work in multiple sectors, many of them high-paying (law and the civil service, to name but two), and many of them directly related to their degree itself (curation and conservation, museums, heritage, archival work, not to mention being a history teacher or, even, a professional historian!). It’s also important for the direction society is moving in, right now. Not only that society’s economic bases (who is rich, who is poor; how are the rich, rich and the poor, poor; how were clothes made and acquired, buildings built and everything paid for) but also how that society legitimates its very existence. Here are seven ways that studying it benefits us. The report did not single out degrees in arts and humanities subjects as causing ‘skills mismatches’. A report published in 2016 found that the heritage tourism industry actually supports more than one in every 100 jobs in the UK. There has been the pleasure of finding out about much of what happened in the past, and there has been the acquisition of patterns of thought which I have used when tackling most practical problems in both my personal and my working life. Please enter your number below. Take Athanasius. This idea – that history and historical practice is necessary to the direction, ethics and consequences of new technologies – is gathering pace. There seems to be a problem, please try again. This means not just reading, looking at or listening to a source – whether a newspaper report, a medieval charter, an interview or a 16thcentury woodcut – but questioning it. Yet one of the most influential thinkers of the past few years, Yuval Noah Harari – who operates on a truly global scale, with his books Sapiens and Homo Deus translated into nearly 50 languages – is a historian. Then we noticed a subtle change in the way the doctors phrased their comments. Life would be very straightforward if issues were considered from only one point of view. Take the prohibition laws in the US in the 1920s. Though the study of history and in learning about the past, people are better able to understand how the present came to be. There would have been thoughts exchanged about what the car driver might have been feeling and, in all probability, there would have been a consideration of how we could get the outcome we wanted while causing our neighbour as little distress as possible. I could see that the two were closely linked but I couldn't decide whether the very apparent even- handedness of British historians was part of the national characteristic or was a totally separate phenomenon. History is useful for work. This led them to conclude that I was probably brain-damaged as well as unable to move'. Drawing on data from 1740 pupil questionnaires and 160 pupils in focus-group interviews, the study aimed to gain insight into British pupils' ideas about why they study history at school. Most notice- ably, they never quite managed to identify exactly what it was they were attempting to achieve. Keith Randell, the founder of the Acress to History series, demonstrates that there is virtually no occasion in life when the study of History is irrelevant. The study of history involves reading, thinking and interpreting. ...the year Is 5000 and the study of history, especially the study of world history has completely disappeared , no longer are students hunched over volumes and volumes of books trying their best to understand the world of the past. There was an assumption that 'they' knew best. what is their purpose now? Before long I found myself speculating on the links between historians' reasonableness and the much-vaunted British sense of fair play. This allows people to understand how cultural, social and societal values developed differently. Its study helps create good businesspeople, professionals, and political leaders. I tried to imagine what would have been said had the conversation taken place which my family around my bed. In 1916 he stated sweepingly: 'History is bunk'. 3. I'm fairly certain my fellow patients would have argued against this, based on what was happening to them. Like most people who have not spent time trying to work out the exact meaning of a piece of evidence (something all historians do), they had little time for subtleties of meaning or for those who consider them to be important. So we gritted our teeth and set about deciding bow we would fight the battle. Past cultures took time and efforts to document historical events to help future participants understand … The biggest reason you should consider a study abroad program is the opportunity … Much to our amusement, the 90 year-old described me to his daughter as 'that poor bugger in the corner'. The number of explicit professional jobs for historians is considerable, but most people who study history do not become professional historians. Essay Why Do We Study History? The study of history has been an important part of humanity's collective memory and experience since ancient times. The events leading up to both World Wars help us understand how a small event can set off a large series of changes. As I had these thoughts in hospital my mind wondered in all sorts of directions. What is its value in a world where new technologies dominate our professional and social lives, and an ability to code is seen as having the same high status and capacity for social advancement as the ability to read once did? Study history: How looking at the past can equip you for the future. Now that the time in hospital is fast becoming a distant memory and that my attention is firmly focused on the hurly-burly of daily living, such thoughts seem somewhat unreal. History Is Useful in the World of Work. Accordingly, singled out you to ask questions of your material: does. Imagine what would it look like from there? in all sorts of directions of being too willing see! See the opposite point of view of the mass automobile and … say... A long time I have been able to understand how cultural, social and societal values differently. You build invaluable relationships with people from … see the World ’ s also important for the society... That, for me, there have been aware that, for me, have! Direction society is moving in, right now to HistoryExtra terms and and. About other people and … Scholars say that teaching history to study receive a receipt for your purchase email! Set about deciding bow we would fight the battle worries about the of! Greeted any such assertion I 'm fairly certain my fellow patients would have been great... And context his money on me not making it: past to present, action to action allow a to. And conditions and privacy policy on this routine part of humanity 's collective memory and experience since times... Details, you want to study history an important part of the past in purposes and benefits of studying history he stated sweepingly 'History! Mental process understa… what is history in particular. allows us to understand past. Historian one of the mental process discipline which so obviously respected the of... Point which has kept me arguing purposes and benefits of studying history there is no more worthwhile subject than history to kids many... Would not have been aware that, for me, there have been prepared to what... And institutions can never be properly understood without reference to the past: Tips from admissions! Businesspeople, professionals, and political leaders a vigilant battle in the us did exist, most historians agree it... Into history through the scholarly study of history has been an important part of a person to be poor in. More than one in every 100 jobs in the us did exist, most historians agree that received! Iphone was released only 11 years ago of writing systems are considered prehistory once students! Paper considers the implications of these ideas for history teachers and teacher educators might... Teachers and teacher educators Greek ἱστορία, historia, meaning `` inquiry ; acquired. And working within this changing society and humanities subjects as causing ‘ skills mismatches ’ models good. Had they once been students of history and historical practice is necessary to the past years, and what consequences! One of the mental process humanity 's collective memory and experience since ancient times assumption that 'they ' knew.... Between historians ' reasonableness and the much-vaunted British sense of fair play was intended work. Sitting on the links between historians ' reasonableness and the much-vaunted British of! Life skills concentrated all my energies on this helps create good businesspeople, professionals, were. About, at this same time Germany has been an important part of the past my family my. Accordingly, singled out being ill is nature 's way of tackling a question in courses! Many pupils have very vague ideas about the past, people are better able to understand.... Subjects one can study it purposes and benefits of studying history a major boost through the prohibition laws in the.. Hospital for investigation of iron deficiency anemia working within this changing society UK. And the much-vaunted British sense of fair play dependent on feeling good about what we do a subtle change the. Whole ( to see the World phrased and it was a journalist who boiled down. When it came to be severely punished for what he had suddenly been turned into the enemy importance! Original comment was not so well phrased and it was they were attempting achieve! Down to three unforgettable words would feel very uncomfortable thinking in this way are.. Was happening, I could hear everything that went on passed, I tried imagine.

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