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Home > Importance of Fathers > Article

In Search of a History

by Richard Hiatt
Page one

   Reasons for the apocalyptic changes in the world are as varied as the professions that cover it. Go to a surgeon for an ailment and he'll tell you need surgery. Go to a dietician and he'll say its your diet. A chiropractor will say it's your joints.

   The irony is that all are probably right to some extent at some point along the way. And certainly the global epidemics which now reach so far into and beyond one another require specific cures for specific regions suffering specific problems. There is no panacea except collective participation on levels that heretofore have never even seemed related.

   From just one of those trajectories is the crisis of one nation without an identity. With the free market establishing itself abroad, foreign companies settling into the quaintest rural communities, the center of world currency shifting overseas, the Internet, faster transportation, etc., we have but only a few traditional bearings left with which to identify the ground and substance of what is "American."

   We have geography, language, a standard of living, and a short history. But the most critical of these, history, has been relegated to the bin of irrelevance for the more lucrative conveniences of entertainment whose provenience springs from instant access, illiteracy and narrow attention spans.

   Without history for ballast, say the experts, the most critical cornerstone of all to a people in need of an identity never solidifies. Geography, language and living standards are rendered inert and meaningless. History is the one anchor which modern technology and the vagaries of a post modern economy (inflation, war, closed factories) cannot steal away. History gives a nation an indelible compass with which to embrace whatever present and future confronts it. Without history, our society is ineluctably referenced to the metaphor of a rudderless ship out to sea.

Page two: Young children learn best by means of stories...


Copyright © 1998, 2005 Richard Hiatt. All rights reserved.

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