By: Brad Manock
I recently graduated from college. I will continue my streak of talking about my educational experience and talking shit against the educational system by diving into the subject of history. For years I never understood the significance of history, why would it be one of the most important subjects? Until the very end of my very last history class of my college career, I didn’t know. In this article I will discuss why the subject of history is not presented to students well and what I would call the subject instead.
When you think of the term history what do you think of?
Probably some vague and boring shit. There are dates and events involved but unless we ever run into a time machine, knowing these facts really have no use. Getting a good grade in history usually involved memorization skills. For almost my entire academic career I assumed history was a subject that was included into the curriculum as a method to test the memorization skills of the students.
There would often be questions like “what year was ‘blank?” Who gives a fuck? One of the subjects that I found the most interesting during my academic career was psychology. It would interest me to learn about why people did certain things in certain situations and then using those same lessons in real life while I am interacting with people. If someone is frustrated or is yelling at me, I think about why they would behave in that way in that particular situation. Psychology is very useful in real life because there will always be insane/stupid people in your life that you will need to deal with.
Most History Teachers Don’t Ever Understand
History teachers would always justify the subject of history being taught in school by claiming that everything happens in cycles. “People who do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it.” Unless you decide to make a living as a stock trader, this excuse is pretty much bullshit. History, in my opinion, should be called “situational psychology” instead. The real substance in history classes do not come from memorizing dates and places, it comes from figuring out why people acted certain ways in certain situations.
By discussing the people involved in significant historical events you can break down the decisions they made because of their own thoughts, opinions, and the culture surrounding the situation. The “when” is irrelevant, only the “what and why” matter. There seems to be this instinct with the educational system to only highlight the most boring aspects of academic subjects. Had the subject of history been presented as situational psychology I think I would have been much more interested throughout my high school and college days.