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Old January 5th, 2018, 02:58 PM   #11
Joined: Jan 2018
From: Orion Arm of the Milky Way
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Originally Posted by JoanOfArc007 View Post

At least part of the Real Crusades History provides a positive treatment to the Muslims and Christians,

During the interview with Dr. Helena Schrader, Schrader says that Saladin provided safe conduct to Balian of Ibelin so Balian could get his family from Jerusalem , so long as Balian entered the city unarmed.

Upon entering Jerusalem, Balian was convinced to stay and was absolved of his oath to Saladin by Priests. Balian wrote to Saladin to explain the situation, somehow, amazingly Saladin absolved Balian of the oath and still sent a guard to safely escort Balians family from Jerusalem where Balian stayed behind and Knighted the entire city of Christians in Jerusalem to prepare for battle.

Now that is some amazing chivalry on both sides.
Saladin is the go-to example for Muslim chivalry in the Crusades -- his famous association with Richard the Lion-Heart certainly helps -- but while Real Crusades History continues this view, it takes a rather dim view of Islam as a whole.

Consider "Was Medieval Islam 'More Advanced' than Christian Europe?"

The video focuses more on the advances of Western Europe than comparing the two. The largest portion spent on the Islamic world concerns their adoption of Frankish visors, vambraces, and lances, rather than their own achievements. The video also doesn't concern itself with such things as the philosophy or literature of the two worlds -- understandable, given that the channel is meant to be about the Crusades, but a huge part of the belief of a more advanced Muslim world.

Furthermore, the video uses Viking longships as an example of European technology... despite the title directly concerning Christian Europe. On that note, it claims that European boats were capable of traversing the North Atlantic, while Muslim boats lacked the same sort of versatility. That ignores the fact that the Muslim craft didn't need deep-ocean-going capabilities -- they had by that time extensive trade networks that ranged from Spain to China, held together by vast stretches of coastal seas. The naval advances made by Muslims (such as the lateen sail, monsoon charts) were therefore made to advance this lucrative coastal trade.

Then you have decidedly impartial stuff like "The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise", which is an hour-long interview with the author of the titular book. This, of course, sets the scene for the Reconquista being a tale of valiant Christian knights fighting against the evil Moors.

And when the channel made a four-part response to the first episode of Extra Credits' series on the Crusades, there was an entire video dedicated to putting the Seljuk Turks in a bad light, so as to justify Pope Urban's proclamation.

Finally, with the Fourth Crusade videos, they try to paint the Byzantine Empire as a state in terminal decline, so as to lessen the impact of the Sack of Constantinople committed by the Christian crusaders. I will freely admit to being rather biased in favor of the Byzantine Empire, but I feel that presenting the Fourth Crusade's outcome as anything other than an embarrassment to all parties involved (excommunicated crusaders, excommunicated Venice, chaos in the Balkans and Anatolia due to the power vacuum, destruction or theft of historical artifacts, increased tension among the two churches, the sacking of a city that had never been sacked, absolutely no conflict with the Muslims, terminal blow to Byzantine Empire...) requires a little willful ignorance.

In short, although there are no unbiased sources, Real Crusades History takes a pro-Catholic, pro-Crusader approach to its topic matter, and occasionally goes out of its way to present Muslims as the 'bad guys' or to sweep the darker, more cynical side of the Crusades under the rug.

Wow, this is a late post.
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Old January 14th, 2018, 12:44 AM   #12
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Having actually watched his podcasts I can confirm that his approach is from a pro-Christian standpoint. That said he is putting out info that is very interesting from first hand and or academic sources that correct the narrative of the primitive hillbilly European Christian crusader against the super advanced Muslims of the day. He has provided evidence that various Christian empires and factions in Europe such as the Visigoths and Franks etc. were not a primitive people like many people think and that it wasn't just Muslims who were influencing the world at that time.

Also he is dispelling the image of the Crusaders as strictly negative from the idea of them as Barbarians who couldn't compete Militarily or from a conspiracy point of view made by popular films like the Da-Vinci code. So in that respect he is doing a good job, again by providing first hand and or academic sources.

If your only complaint is that his bias leans more toward the Christians then...so what his Podcast is called "REAL CRUSADER HISTORY" you want a pro-muslim slant that go else where. To me he is an inspiration I hope to have a podcast one day with his level of academic maturity and presentation.
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Old January 24th, 2018, 11:57 AM   #13

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The Crusades is one of those historical subjects that is quickly becoming tainted by modern politics, so I would approach anything about them very warily in our current climate. It's not always easy to distinguish the legitimate scholars from demagogues using history to covertly comment on current events and sway people towards an agenda. History can be as powerful as religion in that regard, and we should always be on guard against people using that power insidiously. I'm not saying that's what this guy is doing, I don't know his work at all. Just saying people need to have their bullshit-o-meters at the ready.
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Old January 24th, 2018, 12:33 PM   #14

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I watched a few of his video's and he definitely is more favorable to the Christian side.

This doesn't really have to be a bad thing though. A narrator can have his biases. As long as you know the bias exist you can probably come to your own conclusions while still hearing some good arguments on the narrators side.

A biased view doesn't need to be a bad one, it just has its focus on one particular side.
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Old January 24th, 2018, 04:08 PM   #15

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I don't mind a scholarly bias. History can (and should) be viewed from many angles. People just need to keep their eyes peeled for propaganda parading as history.

In the west (and especially on the right) the Crusades are currently in the process of being "re-branded" as a justified resistance against Islamic supremacy. That's all well and good, but this re-branding isn't coming as much from scholars as it is from pro-western, pro-Christian partisans who are trying to turn the crusaders into romantic figures that we should take inspiration from. Regardless of how you feel about that idea, it's just bad history. People should know they might run into that kind of thing if they decide to research the subject.
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