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Thread: Can we trust history books and articles?

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    Can we trust history books and articles?

    We live in times where we are flooded with books, articles, internet news, social media garbage, etc.....
    Can we trust any of them and which ones?
    The one I never really trust is Wikipedia.
    Why?

    .........."Wikipedia is written collaboratively by largely anonymous volunteers who write without pay. Anyone with Internet access can write and make changes to Wikipedia articles, except in limited cases where editing is restricted to prevent disruption or vandalism. Users can contribute anonymously, under a pseudonym, or, if they choose to, with their real identity. The fundamental principles by which Wikipedia operates are the five pillars. The Wikipedia community has developed many policies and guidelines to improve the encyclopedia; however, it is not a formal requirement to be familiar with them before contributing."..........

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    Senior Member Sigurdsson's Avatar
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    Most of the time Wikipedia articles are heavily sourced at the bottom, whether or not it was done anonymously.

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    I've never trusted Wikipedia, and never will.

    I think with history books and so on, take what works for you. Usually there are extremes on both sides, and usually the truth is in the middle.

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    Wikipedia still has it's merits. The problem is that most historical claims referenced on the wiki are filtered through historians (mainstream or revisionist). Scarcely any of the references link to the primary/secondary sources. People seldom find the time, opportunity, or motivation to read through memoirs, letters, diaries, etc. They want historians to do the reading for them. Historians are the secular priests of a society.
    Another problem is the scarcity of information about the early lives of ancient Greek/Roman individuals. This is not necessarily the wiki's fault, but is the result of omission on the part of ancient historians. Which obliges modern historians to weave their speculations to fill in the gap.

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    Why is history important ?

    What is trust ? Trust that one , who you think benefit the most
    at current times , but there will be backstabbing all the time ,
    because there will be data published one day , that had been
    hidden .

    Even expect photographs from 1933-1945 , which will destroy
    reputations .
    It might take centuries , that photographs , even films ,
    will be found by some "enemy" ,
    from former Wehrmacht soldiers , whose descendents did not
    destroy correctly , in some cellars .
    Mk 10:18 What do you call me a good master, no-one is good .

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    Quote Originally Posted by schwab View Post
    .........."Wikipedia is written collaboratively by largely anonymous volunteers who write without pay. Anyone with Internet access can write and make changes to Wikipedia articles, except in limited cases where editing is restricted to prevent disruption or vandalism. Users can contribute anonymously, under a pseudonym, or, if they choose to, with their real identity. The fundamental principles by which Wikipedia operates are the five pillars. The Wikipedia community has developed many policies and guidelines to improve the encyclopedia; however, it is not a formal requirement to be familiar with them before contributing."..........
    Exactly which part of this body of text makes you distrust Wikipedia?

    Quote Originally Posted by Terminus View Post
    The problem is that most historical claims referenced on the wiki are filtered through historians (mainstream or revisionist). Scarcely any of the references link to the primary/secondary sources. People seldom find the time, opportunity, or motivation to read through memoirs, letters, diaries, etc. They want historians to do the reading for them.
    If they always referred to primary sources, each Wikipedia article would in itself be original research, and I doubt that was ever the point of Wikipedia. Summaries of historical research is very useful and a Wikipedia article can, in this way, be likened to a scientific review. That makes them more objective than any original research.

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    Over the past 3 or 4 years I must have got shut of over a hundred books on the Third Reich.

    Nowadays I don't believe anything written by Jews so they were the first ones to go! Then there are all the fawning mainstream 'historians' who just poach information from previous (approved) books and they soon followed.

    David Irving gave a quite humorous explanation of how this works by saying that if you copy someone else's book it's called plagiarism, but if you copy material from two books they call it 'research' I think he went on to say that after 3/4/5 books it becomes 'profound research' but nothing new has actually been presented.

    This is the stage I eventually reached; where I felt everything I was reading I'd read somewhere before so I radically streamlined my collection.

    Political propaganda is nothing new though, and even in Shakespeare's time it was rife. His 'Richard III' play is notoriously biased, portraying King Richard (the last of the Plantagenet dynasty) as an evil tyrant in order to curry favour with the reigning Tudors who wanted to rewrite the previous century's history

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    "Exactly which part of this body of text makes you distrust Wikipedia?"

    The Anonymity of the writers............They pick and chose what fits their beliefs and opinions.

    ..

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    Quote Originally Posted by schwab View Post
    They pick and chose what fits their beliefs and opinions.

    So it's like the bible? You like that do you not?
    Lieber tot als Sklave!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mööv View Post
    So it's like the bible? You like that do you not?
    No, it's not like the Bible at all.
    Many denominations claim that the Scriptures are only 100% true in their original language. I agree with that. Words can be difficult to translate not knowing what their meaning was or is in a particular culture many years ago.
    I was a certified French-German translator and interpreter in the French Gendarmerie Nationale. Because I grew up in both cultures, it was easy for me to interpret what both sides meant using certain words.
    I always give an example of what I mean:
    The expression "its all for the birds" cannot be translated word for word.
    In Germany, my father in law always said, "Es ist alles fuer die Katze" (cat)
    In France one may say "c'est pour les chiens" (dogs)
    The only problem I have with Scriptures is with the multitude of modern translations, a lot gets lost during the interpretations.
    I use the old KJV in English and the Luther translation in German.
    I also like the Latin translation of the Catholic church. I had 4 years of mandatory Latin in College.

    In the original Scriptures, God had different names.
    All translations dropped that.
    "In the beginning God....". The original text is "In the beginning, Elohim..." Elohim is plural, meaning He was not alone when He said "Let us...."

    The word "fasting" has been dropped in a few translations.

    I cannot find any contradictions among old translations.

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