What do you like most about discussing history here?

Mar 2011
2,060
Florida
#12
For me there are several different aspects:

History is something outside my profession that I was always mildly interested in to varying degrees depending on the topic. As a result I watch all those history and science related shows on TV about ancient ruins, antiques, war, space, archeology, etc. And I now read history books with greater interest than when I was younger.

I did not become seriously interested in history until I retired and decided to map historical and scientific events, because as a student all those years ago I was terrible in school and the teachers I had, while some attempted to help me, failed in setting me straight. I didn't find the right path until I was an adult, however, I found had the unique gift to communicate and made a career out of marketing communications. So it intrigued me to see if I could use those talents to solve why students like me failed in school. Think of the task as a way reach difficult to teach kids by enabling them to digitally experience history and science and take them to places they can't go to.

The end result is MyReadingMapped.

So how does this apply to Historum? I find it challenging in serval ways:

  • I find the discussions interesting and educational.
  • I love the challenge of debating the issues with ametuer and professional historians. Its my method of how I learn, and it is what I try to build into my maps by involving many related issues.
  • Over the last four years I have found Historum to be a great source of ideas to map and the participants have provided me with topics to map and details, related issues, and locations to plot. So MyReadingMapped is as much their creation as it is mine.
  • In addition, it provided me with a way to reach both educators and students who have used MyReadingMapped. For example, there is a group of Stanford University students who I tracked through a thread Historum who became regular followers of the original MyReadingMapped site because I posted images and links of maps related to the topic. So it was as good for them as it was for me.
 
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Scaeva

Ad Honorem
Oct 2012
5,538
#13
Learning something new.

That isn't always in discussions I participate in, because I read a lot more threads than I post in, but the best part of discussions here are people posting facts I hadn't run across before, or providing a new or interesting perspective on people, places, or periods I am familiar with.

Not really what the OP is asking, but the most frustrating aspects here would be running across revisionist or romanticized views of certain periods or people that are clearly influenced by regional, nationalist, racist, or political biases. Some topics are so prone to being hijacked by any or all of those that you can predict with near 100% accuracy that it will end up locked before a single person has responded.

But you've got to take the bad with the good, and like it or not, history has never just been about the facts. The truth has always had to compete against narratives that are not as politically inconvenient.
 
Last edited:
Jul 2015
679
Near East
#16
I like browsing threads about topics I'm not familiar with, ones I have interest in but don't wish to do some serious reading about. It expands my horizon and gives me an idea of what to expect if I want to delve deeper into the subject. This is especially true if the topic is controversial, like the Irish Famine for example, since the discussions here expose me to the partisan arguments of both sides, which certainly helps a lot in detecting agendas when reading about the thing in a book or an article.
 
Oct 2009
412
Behind a screen
#17
For me there are several different aspects:

History is something outside my profession that I was always mildly interested in to varying degrees depending on the topic. As a result I watch all those history and science related shows on TV about ancient ruins, antiques, war, space, archeology, etc. And I now read history books with greater interest than when I was younger.

I did not become seriously interested in history until I retired and decided to map historical and scientific events, because as a student all those years ago I was terrible in school and the teachers I had, while some attempted to help me, failed in setting me straight. I didn't find the right path until I was an adult, however, I found had the unique gift to communicate and made a career out of marketing communications. So it intrigued me to see if I could use those talents to solve why students like me failed in school. Think of the task as a way reach difficult to teach kids by enabling them to digitally experience history and science and take them to places they can't go to.

The end result is MyReadingMapped.

So how does this apply to Historum? I find it challenging in serval ways:

  • I find the discussions interesting and educational.
  • I love the challenge of debating the issues with ametuer and professional historians. Its my method of how I learn, and it is what I try to build into my maps by involving many related issues.
  • Over the last four years I have found Historum to be a great source of ideas to map and the participants have provided me with topics to map and details, related issues, and locations to plot. So MyReadingMapped is as much their creation as it is mine.
  • In addition, it provided me with a way to reach both educators and students who have used MyReadingMapped. For example, there is a group of Stanford University students who I tracked through a thread Historum who became regular followers of the original MyReadingMapped site because I posted images and links of maps related to the topic. So it was as good for them as it was for me.
I find the mapping a very nice idea!

It is interesting to see how people express their knowledge of history and combine it into something new.
 
Oct 2009
412
Behind a screen
#18
I get exposure to things outside my normal interests and often learn something new or get new sources for historical interests that I already have.
Yes this.

I often see a comment here and then start researching the topic elsewhere, then branching of into related topics.
It's a good starting point to learn more.
 

AlpinLuke

Ad Honoris
Oct 2011
26,235
Italy, Lago Maggiore
#19
Sure, persons from different countries have got access to different local sources. I'm Italian and I've noted that on the net what we know about some aspects of our history [Lombards, Normans in Sicily, Renaissance, Leonardo, Dante ...] is not so well know abroad. I guess it's the same about all the other national histories. This is among the reasons why an international history forum, if serious like Historum, gains kudos.
 
Oct 2015
5,222
Matosinhos Portugal
#20
I like to talk about history, when is it true?
I do not like to talk about history, when it's myth or expectation, for example, to really know the nationality of Christopher Columbus.
 

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