Rewriting History….

Imagine that you had access to a Time Machine (unlikely I know but bear with me) and you could go back and correct past mistakes, would you do it? You’d be aware that changing the past could also change your future but you’d be able to undo hurts, say things you never said, in short, come back to the present with no regrets; would you take the risk?

I think I can say that I categorically wouldn’t, for the simple reason that what we learn  most from is our past. Yes we make mistakes but, as long as we only make them once, isn’t that what allows us to grow as human beings? Bearing this in mind, I wonder why there are so many calls to rewrite history these days because things that we said, done or written in the past are now considered racist?

We all know that demonising someone for their race or colour is unacceptable, for that matter, demonising anyone because they are different to us is wrong but is it right to try and erase the past to better fit our vision of the future?

  • The name of the Laura Ingalls Wilder literary award has been changed as the Little House on The Prairie books are now considered to contain racist commentary
  • There are calls for the film Zulu to be banned for being racist
  • The Oompa Loompa’s in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory have been compared to ‘happy slaves’ which is a racist concept
  • Philip Nel, an expert in children’s literature says ““Seuss’ ‘Cat’ serves as one example of how racism hides openly — indeed, thrives — in popular culture for young people,”
  • We’ve had ‘sensitive revisions’ to Enid Blyton books as they are now considered racist
  • The novel Little Women is being rewritten to ‘celebrate’ it’s 150th anniversary to include LGBTQ and multi-racial characters

These are just a few examples that I found after 10 minutes whizzing around on Google, I am sure that there are many, many more.

I can only imagine how awful it must be to be a victim of racism or gender discrimination (sexism I do have experience of but that’s for another time) but the only reason I know anything about it is because I read about other people’s experiences. Isn’t that what reading is all about??

Seeing calls to ‘ban’ books or ‘rewrite’ them is quite shocking to me for one simple reason:

Forget the past

What do you think? I’d love to hear from you if you’ve got a minute.

Have a great day

Lisa x

  25 comments for “Rewriting History….

  1. June 29, 2018 at 7:52 am

    well I am surprised to read they are rewriting the stories – that seems horrid to me –
    and I am with you on leaving them alone.

    side note – I was just watching a movie about a fictional version of how charles dickens might have come about writing A Christmas Carol – I thought the screen writer did a bad job but then it was not posited to be truth – but I was put off because in my opinion the screen writer did not depict the Dickens I think was true to life. But the thing was his work was fiction – and so I accept that.

    But to corrupt any original masterpiece is to taint it….

    Liked by 2 people

    • June 29, 2018 at 7:55 am

      Thanks so much for commenting – it does to me too. Yes I think you’re absolutely right that there must be room for artistic interpretation but not to rewrite or change something because it doesn’t prescribe to modern mentality. Thanks again for your comment and have a great day :O)

      Liked by 1 person

      • June 29, 2018 at 8:26 am

        well I am still put off by the Dickens portrayal – and might even write about it – but to twist the original is a egregious

        and wishing you a great day too
        🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • June 29, 2018 at 8:28 am

        If you’re inspired to write about it I’d say go for it 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      • June 29, 2018 at 9:45 am

        thanks – I definitely will – just not sure when – but I know it is not this week for sure – ha!
        have a ncie day

        Liked by 1 person

      • June 29, 2018 at 10:09 am

        You too 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  2. June 29, 2018 at 8:13 am

    I think revisionism is a tricky area for books, films, theatre. It is equally difficult in the public domain where historical cases are being retried on today’s standards. Not easy to decide upon.

    Mike

    Liked by 1 person

  3. June 29, 2018 at 4:58 pm

    I completely agree to the quote – History is there to teach us a thing or two, to learn or to unlearn!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. June 30, 2018 at 11:07 am

    If I could go back in time, there would be many things I would have done different, But in the long run….as said, we learn, well hopefully learn, from our misakes, and this is what makes us …US….mistakes, struggles, failures, heart aches, etc, are all tools to make us stronger people…..AND that is what is wrong with this world……none of the above are practised anymore…….everyone is now a ‘victim’…seriously people!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • June 30, 2018 at 11:58 am

      You’re right! It’s almost as if, in our attempts to create a perfect world we’re destroying those things that could actually help us achieve it. Thanks so much for your insight 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      • June 30, 2018 at 12:45 pm

        People now a days, especially women, are so trying to be what they are NOT..I wish they would just be who they are..far more attractive than a wanna-be-….no wonder families are destroyed and struggling to stay together..the day of the woman…who was, as far as i am concerned, is the Home maker…..Where are they now??? trying to prove to the world they want to be like men?!!! WHY?????

        Liked by 2 people

      • June 30, 2018 at 12:48 pm

        I wish I knew. We are all different and I don’t know why we can’t embrace that rather than trying to enforce ‘equality’.

        Like

      • June 30, 2018 at 2:23 pm

        We can embrace it, thats the problem…..women now a days are seriously taking it to the extreme….its embarrassing.

        Liked by 1 person

      • June 30, 2018 at 2:29 pm

        Sadly I think that you’re right x

        Liked by 1 person

  5. June 30, 2018 at 9:22 pm

    Agreed. Nobody has the right to rewrite the work of a deceased author anyway, even if this was not so ridiculous. Why not just add some kind of warning text to the blurb on the back or cover of the book to say that it was written in the context if the time and may not fit with modern sensibilities?

    Liked by 2 people

  6. July 1, 2018 at 11:12 pm

    Great post! I think a lot of people would go back to change things (myself included). But, wow, just wow! I can’t understand re-writing books, that’s just insane to me. Sad even!

    No matter how many people you try to please, there will still always be someone offended. Catering to, and feeding that sensitivity to such an extreme is beyond me!

    Live and learn… then suck it up people. History is behind us for a reason, isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

  7. July 17, 2018 at 1:14 am

    Really loved this post. I shared it on my site, Historydojo. I credited you, of course.

    Liked by 1 person

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