According to Webster and Oxford dictionaries, history is the chronological record of important events (affecting a nation, an individual, or institution) that oftentimes accompanies an explanation. Even though this is a commonly accepted definition of history it is not only just the record of past events but also the cause and effect of events.
A student would often ask the purpose of learning history. They would argue that history is boring and does not help in preparing them for a career. History is everywhere and being used in every facet of your life. Some examples, your medical and dental record, your photos, drawing, the result of last night’s basketball game are part of history.
How Should I View History?
‘History is not just a catalogue of events put in the right order like a railway timetable’ – A.J.P. Taylor
The word history came from the Greek word “historia” which means to inquire. History is not only about recording the past but also investigating it and finding the veracity of events with reliable testimonies and evidence. It is a study deeply rooted in making an inquiry, analyzing the past, and looking back at the past to get a better understanding of the events and find the truth behind the myths and propagandas.
Currently, historians get their sources from different places. Different perspectives about an event are now considered as long as there are shreds of evidence to support it.
Why Is It Important to Learn History?
- To learn about the past
In studying history, you will learn about the struggles and achievements of humanity. It might give inspiration to a person to do good or teach him to avoid the blunders and evils made by humanity.
- To understand the present
Studying the past will give you a better view of the current situation of the world. Many problems the world face today is the result of our past. Understanding the cause and the current situation would help you better in the future.
- To have a bigger perspective
A student of history would have the chance to know other societies and cultures that would help him understand the perspective of other people. Having empathy is the key to understanding other people.
- To achieve a critical mind
Studying the problem and the possible solution is integral in history. You will understand the root cause of many contemporary issues plaguing society.
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