History repeats itself. Someone says this. History throws its shadow over beginning, over the desktop, over the sock drawer with its socks, its hidden letters. history is the little man in a brown suit trying to define a room he is outside of, I know history. There are many names in history... but none of them are ours.
I am opposing it with an idea of the history of philosophy as a history of philosophers, that is, a history of mortal, fragile and limited creatures like you and I. I am against the idea of clean, clearly distinct epochs in the history of philosophy or indeed in anything else. I think that history is always messy, contingent, plural and material. I am against the constant revenge of idealism in how we think about history.
History is a living horse laughing at a wooden horse. History is a wind blowing where it listeth. History is no sure thing to bet on. History is a box of tricks with a lost key. History is a labyrinth of doors with sliding panels, a book of ciphers with the code in a cave of the Saragossa sea. History says, if it pleases, Excuse me, I beg your pardon, it will never happen again if I can help it.
When I went to high school - that's about as far as I got - reading my U.S. history textbook, well, I got the history of the ruling class. I got the history of the generals and the industrialists and the presidents that didn't get caught. How 'bout you? I got all of the history of the people who owned the wealth of the country, but none of the history of the people that created it.
There's a lot we should be able to learn from history. And yet history proves that we never do. In fact, the main lesson of history is that we never learn the lessons of history. This makes us look so stupid that few people care to read it. They'd rather not be reminded. Any good history book is mainly just a long list of mistakes, complete with names and dates. It's very embarrassing.
A. Whitney Brown
If, in schools, we keep teaching that history is divided into American history and Chinese history and Russian history and Australian history, we're teaching kids that they are divided into tribes. And we're failing to teach them that we also, as human beings, share problems that we need to work together with.
Music expresses feeling, that is to say, gives shape and habitation to feeling, not in space but in time. To the extent that music has a history that is more than a history of its formal evolution, our feelings must have a history too. Perhaps certain qualities of feeling that found expression in music can be recorded by being notated on paper, have become so remote that we can no longer inhabit them as feelings, can get a grasp of them only after long training in the history and philosophy of music, the philosophical history of music, the history of music as a history of the feeling soul.
J. M. Coetzee
I have seen nothing and nothing but death and destruction. Creation yes, but more death than birth. Mankind has learned nothing from their forefathers... their ancestors. It is true what they say, history does repeat itself, Delacroix and those after history are left to make history but how can they make history when history has already been made? - Damion Nicodemeus; Chapter 1: Christian's Training
The settler makes history and is conscious of making it. And because he constantly refers to the history of his mother country, he clearly indicates that he himself is the extension of that mother country. Thus the history which he writes is not the history of the country which he plunders but the history of his own nation in regard to all that she skims off, all that she violates and starves.
Black History is enjoying the life of our ancestors who paved the way for every African-American. No matter what color you are, the history of Blacks affected everyone; that's why we should cherish and respect Black history. Black history changed America and is continuing to change and shape our country. Black history is about everyone coming together to better themselves and America. Black history is being comfortable in your own skin no matter what color you are. Black history makes me proud of where I came from and where I am going in life.
If writers only dared to dare, a Suetonius or a Tacitus of the Novel could exist, for the Novel is essentially the history of manners, turned into a story and a play, as is History itself often enough. And there is no other difference than this: that the one, the Novel, cloaks its manners under the disguise of invented characters, while the other, History, provides names and addresses. Only, the Novel probes much deeper than history. It has an ideal, and History has none; it is limited by reality. The Novel also holds the stage much longer. ("A Woman's Vengeance")
Jules Barbey d'Aurevilly
All history is present history in the sense that the concerns of the present are bound somehow to affect the way history is studied and written. All history is also personal, since it is impossible to avoid the influence of one's own opinions and prejudices on the selection and emphasis of one's historical material.
Paul Anthony Cartledge
The biggest challenge facing the great teachers and communicators of history is not to teach history itself, nor even the lessons of history, but why history matters. How to ignite the first spark of the will o'the wisp, the Jack o'lantern, the ignis fatuus [foolish fire] beloved of poets, which lights up one source of history and then another, zigzagging across the marsh, connecting and linking and writing bright words across the dark face of the present. There's no phrase I can come up that will encapsulate in a winning sound-bite why history matters. We know that history matters, we know that it is thrilling, absorbing, fascinating, delightful and infuriating, that it is life. Yet I can't help wondering if it's a bit like being a Wagnerite; you just have to get used to the fact that some people are never going to listen.
History is not everything, but it is a starting point. History is a clock that people use to tell there political and cultural time of day. It is also a compass that people use to find themselves on the map of human geography. History tells a people where they have been and what they have been, where they are and what they are. Most important, history tells a people where they still must go, what they still must be. The relationship of history to the people is the same as the relationship of a mother to her child.
The moment I realised that my history was an excuse for nothing, was the moment I was freed from my history. The great danger of history is that we use it as an excuse and remain trapped in it. I cannot blame my history for anything, and therefore I have to have high standards for myself.
The introduction of the Christian religion into the world has produced an incalculable change in history. There had previously been only a history of nations--there is now a history of mankind; and the idea of an education of human nature as a whole.--an education the work of Jesus Christ Himself--is become like a compass for the historian, the key of history, and the hope of nations.
Jean-Henri Merle d'Aubigne
We should emphasize not Negro History, but the Negro in history. What we need is not a history of selected races or nations, but the history of the world, void of national bias, race, hate, and religious prejudice. There should be no indulgence in undue eulogy of the Negro. The case of the Negro is well taken care of when it is shown how he has far influenced the development of civilization.
Carter G. Woodson
Augustine recast how people should view history, that history was not the story of the rise and fall of empires because those are human things. Those are the city of man. Rather, true history should be the history of salvation, of man moving toward God. It's a focus that takes the light off of this world and shines it much more brightly on the next world.
Thomas F. Madden
History has neither the venerableness of antiquity, nor the freshness of the modern. It does as if it would go to the beginning ofthings, which natural history might with reason assume to do; but consider the Universal History, and then tell us,--when did burdock and plantain sprout first?
Henry David Thoreau