What didn't they teach you in history? Or, what Japanese history lessons leave out.

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by jnpy!$4g3cwk, Mar 16, 2013.

  1. jnpy!$4g3cwk macrumors 65816

    jnpy!$4g3cwk

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    #1
    Interesting article in the BBC News Magazine about how Japanese school classes never seem to quite get around to teaching about WWII:

    What Japanese history lessons leave out
    By Mariko Oi, BBC News, Tokyo

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21226068

    But, in my experience, every country has its blind spots. In the U.S., they used to teach in schools that the Civil War was caused by a combination of regional differences like the struggle over tariffs. Slavery was a secondary issue, despite the fact that it was the major divisive issue from the before the Declaration of Independence right through until the end of the Civil War, and, it was the central issue of the war. Instead, things like Daniel Boone and the Wilderness Road, the building of the Erie Canal, the railroads, telegraph, and the rest of industrialization were much more emphasized.

    I could go on for a long time about what they didn't teach us way back when about Native Americans, but, my point is this: in every country, there are large parts of history that are suppressed during the teaching of history from elementary school through high school, presumably because many people feel, like Nobukatsu Fujioka in the article, that to teach schoolchildren about the Rape of Nanjing is "masochistic".

    So, my question to the forum participants is, what didn't they teach you in school? And, why do most/all countries teach history this way?
     
  2. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    The British Empire isn't covered in much depth in the UK.

    ----------------------------------

    I do think that the Japanese are particularly bad in this area though.
     
  3. Happybunny macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2010
    #3
    Major blank spots and whitewashing of history is common in every country except Germany.
     
  4. eawmp1 macrumors 601

    eawmp1

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    FL
    #4
    You beat me to it.
    I was just going to post that Germany openly teaches its sins. Japan, perhaps through a culture of shame, whitewashes some of their less savory history. But then again, most history is somewhat revisionist.
     
  5. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2002
    Location:
    Republic of Ukistan
    #5
    Nor is England's dominant rôle in the slave trade, nor the centuries of invasion, occupation, rape and pillage of other peoples' countries carried on under the guise of bringing Civilisation to Benighted Savages.
     
  6. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #6
    I was certainly taught about the slave trade at school.

    I'd cover this under "the Empire".
     
  7. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2004
    Location:
    OBJECTIVE reality
    #7
    Eh. Just read a "comprehensive" book about World War II. Several hundred pages that went into detail about the causes, the rise of the various nefarious parties involved, how each Ally got into the war, the strategies of the battles, the various European and Pacific campaigns, the Holocaust...and not a word about the US's Japanese internment camps.
     
  8. roblin macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2007
    #8
    Here in Sweden only 10%* know what Gulag was and even less know about Holodomor. Given our socialist society this is not really surprising.

    *number from some big study.
     
  9. iStudentUK macrumors 65816

    iStudentUK

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2009
    Location:
    London
    #9
    Me too. It was covered in a fair amount of detail (as much as you can in school trying to teach a large curriculum). We were left in no doubt about Britain's role.
     
  10. likemyorbs macrumors 68000

    likemyorbs

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    #10
    We learned about the brutality of America's past with no whitewashing. But it depends what part of the country you live in. Southerners LOOOOVVVEEE to whitewash history.
     
  11. VulchR macrumors 68020

    VulchR

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2009
    Location:
    Scotland
    #11
    I grew up in Virginia, which is admittedly not deep south, but we learned all about what happened to native peoples and to slaves (indeed we had some material on indentured servants). We also covered religious tensions, the Klan and acts of racial violence, and the civil rights movement. We also learned about many WWII episodes that are acknowledged but not typically not discussed (allies firing on U-boats who were picking up survivors; area bombing; Vichy France; Mers-el-Kébir; etc.).

    In any case, whitewashing history is not unique to southerners. When I was at Princeton northerners felt they had to lecture me on the sins of the South, yet they seemed to gloss over the plight of minorities in the North (for instance, the race riots in Boston about busing).
     
  12. APlotdevice macrumors 68040

    APlotdevice

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2011
    #12
    ^ I do recall the textbooks in California glossing over all the racism that was present in the northern states.
     
  13. benwiggy macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #13
    Life in previous centuries was brutal, and if disease didn't kill you, someone with a sword or a gun probably would.
    The British were successful, but no more brutal than any of the other empire builders at the time, or previously.

    Britain's role in slavery is well-taught in schools, right up to the abolition of Slavery in 1807. Slavery still exists in some countries today.
     
  14. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2004
    Location:
    OBJECTIVE reality
    #14
    Even the United States:

    Google "Marianas sweatshops". It's a shameful black mark on our human rights record, it's not un-akin to the crap that goes on at FoxConn, and as far as I know, it's still going on today.

    We just don't hear about it on the news. Or in textbooks. Or almost anywhere.
     
  15. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    #15
    I went to school in the south and we learned all about racism, slavery, native Americans, and even internment camps. Interestingly I though we didn't learn enough about the Japanese either. All of the WWII studies were focused on the holocaust aspect even though 3-4 times as many people died in the various other atrocities. That's Eurocentrism I guess.
     
  16. Orange Crane macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    #16
    Even if slavery in the USA isn't as severe as it was in the antebellum south it seems that Americans are solidly in favor of it, albeit in an outsourced form. Every time anyone chooses to buy the cheapest most mass produced consumer goods, they are supporting slavery. The quality of life afforded by what we call the middle class in America is built on the backs of slaves, not uncommonly child slaves, in other nations.
     
  17. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #17
    Er, source?
     
  18. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    #18
    He's referring to anyone who doesn't live by middle class, 1st world standards as a slave. If you broaden the definition of slave to "pretty much everyone" then yes, the US is built on the backs of slaves.
     
  19. eric/ Guest

    eric/

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2011
    Location:
    Ohio, United States
    #19
    He's probably talking about China. Which ironically enough, if we didn't purchased those goods, those people would be right back to subsistence farming.

    A bleak prospect, to say the least.
     
  20. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #20
    I guess that slavery is still rampant in the US and other developed countries then.

    Well, quite.
     
  21. Orange Crane macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
  22. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    #22
    I'm sorry, were you offering a solution or just throwing stones from your ivory tower?
     
  23. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #23
    As one who grew up partly in GA, I'd strongly challenge that assertion. What proof do you have aside from merely mocking the South?
     
  24. jnpy!$4g3cwk thread starter macrumors 65816

    jnpy!$4g3cwk

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    #24
    There was an expose' in Ms. Magazine a few years back. 2006 to be precise.

    http://www.msmagazine.com/spring2006/paradise.asp

    http://www.msmagazine.com/spring2006/paradise_full.asp

    Anybody out there know what things are like today?
     
  25. Orange Crane macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    #25
    I'm sorry that I don't meet your qualifications for discussion. How terrible of me.
     

Share This Page