In writing about history for the experimental World History Oracle posts, I have developed in a short period of time a deep appreciation for serious historians. Historical data, I am finding, needs to be analyzed and debated among scholars to sort out what of found records were fact versus what were the writer’s bias based on political affiliations at the time. Biases compound in that current day history enthusiasts have biases of their own to contend with. A degree of falsity is inherent in attempts to relay the truth when one is not a witness.

Part two of this challenge is of equal weight. Even when one is a witness the truth is  subject to shape shifting that colors individual perspective. Essential to a society worthy of record (what isn’t?)  is that future generations can learn from their society’s successes and failures. The failures are worse. Serious journalism is a noble undertaking in that it defends reason. Reason, history has shown, cannot be taken for granted.

Heather Waters