History as manipulation?

Carl Becker describes the average man as “Mr. Everyman” who is a historian in his own right. He is not a historian who has studied the course of history and the significant events that have taken place, rather a historian of his own life. Becker states that “History is the memory of things said and done” which includes everything in life. Mr. Everyman is a historian of things that occur in his life daily, using memory as his key source. Memory is described as the main function of history, that without it, one would be lost in life and have no significance in the present or in his “tomorrows”. Becker’s argument using Mr. Everyman to describe the average person and his analysis of his every day life to show what is coming in the future is a very interesting perspective to have.

Edward Carr’s article and analysis on history provokes the idea that history is all about manipulation. He describes how historians will find the facts they want to find, and that everything is open to being manipulated, scrutinized, or used in  such a way that it becomes easy to manipulate history. He discusses how history can be defined as just a set of facts, or as our own position in time, in society. Carr’s approach to interpretation is interesting in that he uses the metaphor of fishing to describe how authors, historians, and anyone who is looking for facts usually finds just the ones they want, not necessarily the collective answer. I agree with his analysis that history is open to interpretation, and I do believe it is usually manipulated to get an expected response from the reader.

In my opinion, history is a set of facts, that usually repeats itself.Facts are always subject to interpretation and manipulation.  I believe that history is usually manipulated in the media, only to show pieces to the public.These two articles have opened my eyes to the fact that someones desire to present an idea one way is plausible without presenting all the facts to be truthful. History, in my opinion, does not have to be something significant, but a memory that you have, or a tradition started within a family in hopes of it recurring. History is the story, and the background of any person, place, or thing. Every thing on earth has a history of some kind, whether its where a product came from, who made something happen, or the story of how something came to be, it just all depends on how you look at the facts.

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