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Lecture 2

SOC303H1 Lecture 2: SOC313 LECTURE 2

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Steven Hayle

SOC313 LECTURE 2 HISTORY AND ITS ROLE We can look at history and how it unfolds, in particular we can look at small historical events that might seem unrelated can have long lasting consequences. WHAT HAS HISTORY GOT TO DO WITH IT? We cannot comprehend the present until we explain the past. COUNTER FACTUAL HISTORY Historiography that attempts to answer “what if” questions. Such as the family questions of what if I didn’t go to the new year’s party? They like to look back in time and ask if those happened differently. What if Germany had won WWII? What if the Roman Empire Never Fell? Instead of watching America’s got Talent, and calling in of voting for favourites wold you be watching gladiators fighting? What if the South Won the Civil War? On the moon there would be no US flag? At the time, in the late 1960s, a popular flag was the blue outside, Luster B. TURNING POINTS Critical Junctures in thecourseofworldhistory. If relativelyminorevents hadunfoldeddifferently during these turning points, the coarse of the world history would have been dramatically altered. Ronda Collins argument is that it is hard to trace these things to one event, such as how far would wego? Let’ssayifHitlerdiedinWWIisthattheturningpoint? Therewerethousandsothersimilar nationalist’s parties that had similar sentiments. If we go back to WWII, it was a complex event that meant more than just one leader, he says that someone else would have risen and declared war, but there were more events such as the stock market crash that play a role. PSEUDO TURNING POINT Turning points that can be influential and path dependant for relatively small events or details of larger historical trends. Can we be so sure that there would be a Holocaust if Hitler died? Or were these the consequences of one person, Hitler? Is the Holocaust a small event or a detail in history? Or if Osama did not live, maybe 9/11 would not happen. PATH DEPENDENCE Peoples choices in the present are limited/restricted by events that have occurred in the past. Examples, if the steam engine had not been invented, the industrial revolution would never have occurred, and we would be still living in an agriculture era. The keyboard that we know, it is no logical reason why the letters are carried that way, it simplycaught on and stuck and became habit forming, even though there may be faster ways to write. LESSONS FOR US? An event is but of a number of events, patterns, trends, and/or forces that, together, contribute to a present outcome. Events are consequential, but it is not an isolation, we need to look at demographic, economic circumstances, stratification, globalization and global forces, and how all these can tell the story. An event is not inevitable. Events don’t make history, people do. Large groups of peoples and social movements. We do not want to take Rondo argument without a little bit of criticism as he downplays the importance of people (such as Trudeau in Canada), he white washes the existence. We can however, say that while they have not caused the outcome, they certainly played a role. FIRST KKK Founded by 6 confederate veterans on December 24, 1865 during the reconstruction of the South. This was after slavery was abolished by the Abraham Lincoln administration. They wanted to restorewhiterespires, andintimidate.Veryquicklyafterthegroupwasformedandviolencebegan, federal authorities worked quickly to repress them. They were deemed as a terrorist organization in 1870. KU KLUX KLAN ACT OF 1871 Federal law enacted that was used to enforce civil rights provisions under the constitution. Why didn’t the KKK become a small footnote in the history of US, what bought it back (second KKK)? Many people have attributed it to a movie based on a book. The Clansman by Thomas Dixon was released was released, and the movie a Birth of a Nation by D.W Griffith’s. It was a movie that pushed barriers. The impact that it had on people. But some scholars suggest that it is the cause of the resurgence of the KKK, in the 1920s. Americans became
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