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Judging previous generations

Could, I need a drink

I feel I was born email. Try as I might to reduce the number I still have over 23,000 in my work inbox…


Like the slave traders of 3 centuries ago, I will have the benefit of being long since dead by the time the judgement is made, and as an atheist, I imagine I will be in no position to take umbrage when my statue is dumped in a river…


I agree to a degree, but if as a species we cannot actually learn from history, what’s the point of just telling stories of the past?


It’s the “why” part from which we learn. . The “what” is the narrative. That is not the same as judging.

I disagree with a lot of this ! Humanity, empathy and being a good human being should have stopped past generations from behaving like filthy animals . Yes I’ll judge when I, like others come from a country that was deeply affected by war, genocide, famine and hatred by those who came to steal from us .
It’s all very well to take a view that we shouldn’t “judge” by todays standards when you don’t come from a country where we had so much taken from us .


Well done. I’m too old and cynical to express my thoughts with such passion.

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Our view of the past is not set in stone. I do enjoy reading revisionist historians. I know he’s a historical novelist, but Robert Harris feels Neville Chamberlain has been unfairly judged for his policy of appeasement and Munich. Not really looked into it, but was Richard 3rd a victim of Royal spin?

Totally agree, @Leah. You don’t need hindsight or today’s ‘moral code’ to judge everything in the past.

Many actions (such as genocide, slavery, invasion and subjugation, excluding women and working class people from the democratic process, racial/sectarian segregation and discrimination etc) were as objectively wrong by the standards of human behaviour 1/2/3/4 hundred years ago as they are in 2022.


Said it better than i could have .

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The problem I have with your response is broadly the same as I have with @Leah. It is a collection of generalisations which may, in some aspects, have an element of truth in them but cannot be of any value without a considerable amount of supporting evidence. You cite “the democratic process” and say that working classes and women in many cases were wrongly excluded from it hundreds of years ago. Upon examination that assertion starts to fall apart very quickly. The “democratic process” as we know it today was not in existence 400 years ago. In fact in most, if not all European countries it was not even in embryonic format. (I have not studied other parts of the world so cannot express an opinion) So how can you blame sections of society from excluding classes of persons from a process that did not exist?
Leah, as for generations behaving like “filthy animals” I don’t know which generations you are referring to. I am sure that there are many countries that were attacked by others and plundered, but how far back do you want to go? I remain to be convinced that when country A launched a savage unprovoked attack on country B the whole population of country A fully and enthusiastically supported that attack and everyone thought that giving country B a sound thrashing was a jolly good idea. There is I believe anecdotal evidence that there were a number of people who lived in Nazi Germany who thought the invasion of Russia was a bad idea and no good would come of it. The first sentence of your post suggests that all those good people should have gone to the Hitler’s office and expressed a view that the attack should not go ahead.


Back in the day, I taught history from Year 3 to Year 9. We talked about men most of the time.

At an Independent School, I can feel the knives in my back already!

Inbar, I receive side emails from posts.I have no problem with that, fire away. What’s the form receiving, replying etc

But it was 100 years ago… again there is no excuse.


Patel really excelled herself that time, didn’t she. Good thing she isn’t in charge of anything important now :roll_eyes:


When you start a thread you will be notified every time someone contributed, but you can manage your notifications.

Here’s the guide on how to:

Thank you. I was wondering if I had to reply to them.

No, no need. And once you mute them, peace will be yours again :+1:

I don’t get much email traffic, I was quite enjoying the attention!