Post by loucapitano on Apr 8, 2017 15:59:12 GMT -5
Could it be? Have we actually run out of new information about the Alamo? Must we admit that historical information on the Alamo et al is exhausted? I suppose it's possible to run out of new information. I wonder if this vacancy of historical data will affect some other popular events and battles like: Little Big Horn, Yorktown, Gettysburg and D-Day. It seems many current histories just rehash what's already been studied and researched to death. Although some current historians like: David McCullough, Doris Kearns Goodwin and Stephen Ambrose, can still retell a story as if you're reading it for the first time. But the last book I read about George Custer was just a retread of the same tired controversies that show no indication they will ever be resolved. Anyway, that's how it appears out here. What do you guys think? Lou from Long Island
Post by mjbrathwaite on Apr 8, 2017 17:15:10 GMT -5
I wouldn't be surprised if another old letter or something turned up in someone's family archives, but I suppose the more time passes the less likely we are to get answers to the questions we have. I'm not familiar with any of the historians you mention: we don't see a lot of books on American history here since our university closed its American Studies department. When I went to university it was free if one had a necessary prerequisite for getting in, and I just went for something to do in the daytime when I was a professional musician, but later my M.A. in American history and films helped me bluff my way into film-making jobs. These days it's prohibitively expensive, and people mainly go there to get job qualifications. Regarding historical books, if one is familiar with the primary sources it's a bit like my experiences of watching Elvis impersonators: every time one copies one of Elvis's moves, I immediately know which performance he got it from. Similarly, when I read about the battle in "The Blood of Heroes", I could tell which accounts he was quoting from, although that's not a criticism, as one would expect the retelling to be based on eyewitness accounts. Michael.
Post by loucapitano on Apr 19, 2017 16:27:21 GMT -5
Thanks Mike, I guess it's kind of chauvinistic to think American History would be very popular all over the world. But, it looks like a lot of it got through to you. Are there any internationally available books on New Zealand and Australian history I might enjoy?
I'd love to hear what other members think about this topic? Lou from Long Island
Post by mjbrathwaite on Apr 20, 2017 0:36:57 GMT -5
There are probably more people here who are interested in American history than ones interested in New Zealand history. Before I went to high school I was interested in New Zealand history, and it's not that I have no interest in it now, but at high school we were taught the most boring elements of it. Now, whites tend not to talk about it for fear of offending our Maori friends, whose version differs from ours, and they don't like to be reminded about their savage past. The last book I read on the subject was "Journal of a Ten Months' Residence in New Zealand" by R.A.Cruise, which was originally published in 1924, and is about someone's visit in 1819. I have a suspicion that modern history books would be a bit left-wing for my taste. I did go through the autobiography of the founder of Flying Nun records to see if it mentioned me (as I was one of their first recording artists), but it didn't. Now I've gone back to American books, and am currently reading Chuck Berry's autobiography. As for Australian books, I never read those as there is rivalry between Australians and New Zealanders. We stick together when the chips are down, but as Australia started out a penal colony, we tend to think of Australians as a nation of con men, and that has tended to be my experience of them, although I do have Australian friends. We also tend to look down a bit on their treatment of their Aborigines, and like to think we've treated our Maoris better. Michael.
Post by loucapitano on Apr 24, 2017 16:12:46 GMT -5
It's hard not to get philosophical about the native people who get invaded or otherwise occupied by other people. It usually does not turn out well for the native people and it stains the moral history of the new people. It doesn't show any sign of improvement around the world. Can't we all just get along? Lou from Long Island
Post by mjbrathwaite on Apr 25, 2017 3:50:54 GMT -5
I don't think we were as bad with our Maoris as some other countries were with their indigenous people: early on the Crown made a treaty with them which is still regarded as New Zealand's founding document. They were probably better off before we came, but I think their main problem has been urbanization: they've given up their old way of life and many have moved to the cities, where some do well (One even made a documentary about me, and has worked on some of my films and video clips!), but a lot haven't, and they are over-represented in the prison population. I think they possibly interact more with whites than your Indians do, but I may be wrong about that. When I was in America, I only ever met one Indian, and that was on the street - but my son is part Indian, although I've never managed to get any detail about which tribe from my in-laws. I didn't understand racism until I went to America: early in my career, I often played in Maori and Samoan bands, and never saw or experienced any racial tensions, and before I went to America, nearly all of the American Blacks I'd met were my musical heroes from the 1950s and 1960s (Muddy Waters, B.B. King, Bo Diddley etc.), and they had all been the sort of people I would be happy to welcome to my home, but after a few days of Black beggars and hustlers trying to part me from my money, I soon found myself thinking I was glad we didn't have them in New Zealand. I also met a lot of Blacks I liked - especially the San Antonio bus driver who took me on an unscheduled trip to the Alamo in the middle of the night so I could see it. Recently, we've started having a bit of trouble with beggars here, but most of them are white, and they're not as aggressive as American beggars. Most of them aren't really homeless, either: we have a good welfare system here, and no-one has to be homeless. I've been told that a lot of them just want the money for skateboarding. Michael.