- The video “What is History For?” argues that history matters because it provides solutions to the problems of the present. Recall the statement “Those who don’t know history won’t be able to improve the present.” Consider a recent event, either in your personal life or in the news. In a few sentences, describe a way that history might help inform that event and a strategy for how you could be conscious of presentism in applying the past to the present.
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After reviewing Zinn’s and Schweikart’s personal assumptions, beliefs, and values as well as excerpts from their historical writing, respond to the following questions:
- What do you believe to be the major distinctions in their personal assumptions, beliefs, and values?
- What do you believe to be the major distinctions in their interpretations of history?
- Do you notice any biases? If so, what are they?