Thursday, October 25, 2018

Historical Fiction Graphic Novels Could Save History For The Future

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By Patricia Evans

History is ugly. Everyone knows it is full of violence and death, but it is also full of heroism, self-reflection, romance, intrigue, and achievements which have occurred against all odds. Why should we deny young people the opportunity to experience it through historical fiction graphic novels.

These are basically comic books that utilize all the details historians and researchers know about certain events in history. Some details must be improvised, which is why they are regarded as fictional recollections. However, considering how our text books are written now, no amount of artists license could possible bend the truth any further than we already have.

More than novelists, however, as some of these young people grow up to create science fiction as fact. Many elements of basic physics have been woven into the stories of Marvel comics from the very beginning. As a young person begins to realize that some of this technology is actually being developed, they have a desire to be a part of that future.

If we can make the future seem so interesting to young readers, then is it such a crime to bring the same light and color to stories of the past. Many history teachers might get their feathers ruffled a bit, but their complaints really should be ignored at this point. The men and women who teach history are often as dry as winter grass themselves, and are less interesting than the classes they purport to teach.

When we make history as exciting as science fiction, then we create a connection in young minds between past and present. Memorizing lists of dates, names, and events never taught a student anything meaningful. However, a colorful novel filled with images of the real pain, suffering, and glory of humanity makes this information stick in way that creates an impression.

Naturally, subject matter has to be taught in a manner that is age-appropriate, and should be changing as such as the students grow. This should not mean that the genocide of invading corporate interests from Europe on the native tribes living on every continent gets watered down into the story of Thanksgiving. It does not mean that we teach them to be ashamed to be descended from Europeans, but that they learn to take pride in changing how we treat each other on Planet Earth.

There are a number of researchers diligently rewriting the lies our generation was handed for the past ten thousand years. We are finally able to use terms like alien technology in the overall discussion of theory. If we are to rewrite the misinformation and denial of blatant facts that is the history of history, then we must do this now before we let down yet another generation of students.

It is not simply not knowing the past which condemns mankind to repeated patterns of behavior. You can memorize all the dates, names, battles, and events you want. If we cannot teach in a way that connects this random stream of data to where humans are now, explaining why the world is in the state that exists, then go ahead and get ready for the next Dark Age.

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