Fri 20 Jan, 2006 09:01 pm
I read somewhere, though I do not remember where, about a newly adopted standard for teaching history (or maybe new history textbooks).
Apparently, the new textbooks are aimed at stressing the roles of minorities and women in events and downplaying prominent figures. An example would be stressing the role of women and native americans in the American Revolution and downplaying such people as Paul Revere, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington.
From what I understand, this made a lot of historians angry and there was a compromise I believe.
I was just wondering what other people's opinions were on the subject.
I tried to find a list comparing a text book from the 1970's to current text books...but I could not find anything.
But yes, this has been a common thing for several years now. The number of references to Washington, Jefferson, Madison,...etc have all been reduced, while the number of times the names King or Carver appear have significantly increased.
Some non essential people have been ommited completly, such as Thomas Payne, Patrick Henry, Ben Franklin and as you mentioned Paul Revere.
From what I've read, this tends to vary from state to state...which states have required the most "updating"....hard to say. Naturally California and New York spring to mind, but I have also found Texas to be right up there with them.
In looking for the list, I also ran across a few articles about the same thing happeing in Europe, such as....The Vikings are now being written in as very good merchants, with no mention of them being the "Vikings" we all have come to know.
So I guess in the future, instead of Hagar the horrible, he will be known as Hagar the not so bad.