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Old December 29th, 2017, 06:22 AM   #31

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History book writers write history books for a living.

They can't just write one book.
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Old December 29th, 2017, 07:19 AM   #32

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I will say that Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi known in India and elsewhere as ' Mahatma ( Great Soul ) ' Gandhi and his follower J. L. Nehru, being the first prime minister of India, are highly blown up figures who deserve to be trashed.
In fact they had been calamity figures for India. And I say India still suffers politically and economically for their numerous blunders. And I fail to understand why so much credit is given them for Indian Independence. If at all credit is to be given, it should be shared by Hitler and FDR, the first named for having dealt a body blow the British Empire and the second named for pursing this issue with Churchill.
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Old December 29th, 2017, 07:28 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by rvsakhadeo View Post
I will say that Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi known in India and elsewhere as ' Mahatma ( Great Soul ) ' Gandhi and his follower J. L. Nehru, being the first prime minister of India, are highly blown up figures who deserve to be trashed.
In fact they had been calamity figures for India. And I say India still suffers politically and economically for their numerous blunders. And I fail to understand why so much credit is given them for Indian Independence. If at all credit is to be given, it should be shared by Hitler and FDR, the first named for having dealt a body blow the British Empire and the second named for pursing this issue with Churchill.
Crediting Hitler and FDR, and not Indians like Gandhi and Nehru, for India's independence is simply baseless and preposterous.
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Old December 29th, 2017, 07:45 AM   #34

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Crediting Hitler and FDR, and not Indians like Gandhi and Nehru, for India's independence is simply baseless and preposterous.
The prelude to the Independence of India Act tabled in the British Parliament , soon after the Labour Government took over after WW II,says that ' Britain is no longer able to hold down India ', thus implying , in a way, that Britain lacks the economic strength or political stamina or both to rule India any more.
The trauma that Britain sustained in overcoming Hitler is obvious.
It is a well known fact that FDR had repeatedly pressurised Churchill on the question of Indian independence.
Baseless and preposterous ?
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Old December 29th, 2017, 07:46 AM   #35

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You arenít engaging in presentism if the people of the age were saying the same things.
This is an important distinction. The OP appears to be talking about judging historical figures by our present moral standard.

Of course, the problem with using solely what people thought about an historical figure back when he or she was alive presents the problem that for most historical figures, some people thought he or she was wonderful and others thought he or she was a villain. But I believe this is more correctly "doing history" than the current fad for trying to throw everyone who traded slaves or tobacco or fought for the Confederacy in the US Civil War down the "memory hole"
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Old December 29th, 2017, 08:06 AM   #36
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Originally Posted by rvsakhadeo View Post
The prelude to the Independence of India Act tabled in the British Parliament , soon after the Labour Government took over after WW II,says that ' Britain is no longer able to hold down India ', thus implying , in a way, that Britain lacks the economic strength or political stamina or both to rule India any more.
The trauma that Britain sustained in overcoming Hitler is obvious.
It is a well known fact that FDR had repeatedly pressurised Churchill on the question of Indian independence.
Baseless and preposterous ?
Even if there were no FDR and Hitler, India would still have gotten its independence. The two world wars most likely delayed it. A key reason for the Labor party's win in Britain was Indians clamoring for Independence and the British generally supporting it. One should keep in mind that world was changing, and colonialism was going out of fashion.
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Old December 29th, 2017, 12:27 PM   #37

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Certainly Ghandi hallowed position could be taken down a notch or two

Nehru could be getting a bit of a trashing too ,
he followed the textbook line of British educated post colonials with a severe case of "great man "syndrome and economic ignoramuses
must be something in oxbridge waters

to some credit to him India remained a vibrant boisterous democracy

@ Kevinmeath
"But in that period of time a 'good King' was supposed to be a warlord his contemporaries actually thought of him as a great King"

that's a very valid point , present day opinions are of limited value to judge personage in the past , the longer the distance , the more circumspect one should be

Last edited by sparky; December 29th, 2017 at 12:31 PM.
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Old December 29th, 2017, 01:39 PM   #38

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Define bashing.

It's opinions. And a person can have an opinion on any other individual, whether living or long deceased.
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Old December 29th, 2017, 01:40 PM   #39

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Originally Posted by VHS View Post
Karl Popper's saying "Great men may make great mistakes" may be correct; then, there is a growing trend to trash historical figures because of their racist, sexist, or other attitudes that are not compatible with the current value system.
For example, a continuous attempt to purge names of historical figures with racist connections from public properties continue in Canada.
By extension, should we trash Alexander the Great and Genghis Khan simply for mass murders and massacres?
Why does the current trend happen?
How should we evaluate historical figures?
Floccinaucinihilipilification is too much a word; "trashing" is much more plain English.
I agree we should not allow our current morals to override this. But then I think this is true of all eras.

I think from a historical standpoint, it should always be objective as possible, and take into account the morals of the day.
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Old December 29th, 2017, 02:01 PM   #40

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It's true that modern political correctness has grown so influential these days that it started to wield influence over our understanding of history.
On the other hand, it should be stated that perception of history changes, and that each era has its own distinctive criteria of accessing historical events and personalities.
The Romanticism of the XVIII and partly XIX century, for example, created a highly idealistic and aesthetic picture of the High Middle Ages, ignoring or minimizing the brutality and violence of that era.

In a similar manner, the assessment of great historical figures constantly changes together with the social and political context of the time. Therefore we see today the attempts to exonerate some of history's villains, and to reassess the legacy of those figures generally held as 'positive' forces in history, and all according to the moral, political and cultural standards of our time.

I see nothing unusual, nor new in this. It is a normal development. Who is to say with certainty that the legacy of figures today considered as villains (the great dictators of the XX century, for example) would not be reassessed in the future?

All being said, to return to my first point, modern political correctness has indeed distorted our image of some historical events and personalities. Still, I find it impossible to escape the spirit of the time we're living in, because, whether we like it or not, we are as individuals influenced by the era we're living in, and so is our understanding of history.

Last edited by Valens; December 29th, 2017 at 02:03 PM.
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