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Thread: Flat Earthers, move over - the three centuries that weren't ?

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    Re: Flat Earthers, move over - the three centuries that weren't ?

    I had to go look him up. Yup. he was the one.
    Some strange notions he had.
    It may not be so much that I've conceded your point as that you just can't hear me rolling my eyes.

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    Re: Flat Earthers, move over - the three centuries that weren't ?

    I think he poses good questions though.
    Fake news ....as they call, it is not a new invention.
    Its like that Roman historian who (also a journalist i suppose) said...something along the lines of 'i write what wittnesses tell me, but dont neccesarily believe it myself'.

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    Re: Flat Earthers, move over - the three centuries that weren't ?

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    I've been reading Livy's History of early Rome. At present I've rather ground to a halt because a lot of it is mind bendingly dull stuff - lists of Consuls and their worthy careers...however the interest (apart from a picture of the development of early Rome) is his biases. There were people in HIS Rome he had to keep sweet who were descended from these people and "history" is written to minimise their failures and magnify their glory. In modern terms it is dreadful history - the facts may be basically correct but the interpretation of those facts is pure propaganda and a lot of it is pure fiction. Ramses II did the same thing with a battle against the Assyrians which was a bloody draw as is known from Assyrian records and the subsequent history (the first known treaty between superpowers) but is written up as a glorious triumph on Egyptian temple walls.

    How much of the Iliad and the Odyssey are truth? Some of it is: a load of Greeks went and sacked a city and burned ruins of the right age have been found in the right place. Is it History? Ummm...not really. That was not its purpose. Livy is much more a historian - he does try to present the facts, but is unashamed in slanting it to please his patrons and inventing flavour scenes so their ancestors could look heroic (a wise move in what was fundamentally a Mafia state).

    Historically, the trouble with History was that it always had to be written to please someone. Really, it's only with genuinely independent Universities that we have had the chance to do otherwise and even now people are constantly trying to rewrite history to suit their agenda, or control the people writing the history, as a Tory Minister recently did with his request for the details of University courses covering brexit.

    There are a lot of people nowadays attacking the BBC for not backing particular issues that suit their agenda, for not "boosting Britain", for not telling them the news they want to hear. Yes, it's true: we have people demanding our independent news provider tell them sweet little lies rather than ugly truths.

    nb that complete and total truth and objectivity are beyond human capacity. All you can ever do is try to get closer.
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