Ancient Literary Sources How Reliable Essay

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For example, in the United States, the Civil War occurred less than 150 years ago, and yet different historians provide conflicting perspectives about the causes of the war, why it was lost, and the consequences of the war for America's history. Moreover, it was only after the Civil War and the end of slavery that one began to see widespread, reliable publication about various slave rebellions that had occurred in the antebellum South. This is interesting, because it makes one wonder if that information would be available or suppressed had the war ended differently. Moreover, the vast majority of Americans are unaware that some northern states were slaveholding states. Furthermore, when one looks at the number of Holocaust deniers, despite the overwhelming physical evidence and documentation regarding the Holocaust, one can see how intentional misrepresentation can play a role in history; there are entire countries that believe it is a fact that the Holocaust did not occur. If those countries end up as world leaders within the next few centuries, evidence of the Holocaust could disappear, and in later history, the Holocaust could be considered a myth, rather than a historical event. These two examples demonstrate how quickly history can be transmuted and changed within a relatively short period of time. Therefore, I must agree with Wiseman and believe that one should be systemically pessimistic about the likelihood of authentic history being transmitted in the literary tradition.

References

Cornell, T.J. 2005. "The Value of the Literary Tradition Concerning Archaic Rome," in K.A. Raaflaub (ed) Social Struggles in Archaic Rome. New Perspectives on the Conflict of the Orders, 47-74. 2nd ed, Malden, MA.

Forsythe, G. 2005. A Critical History of Early Rome. From Prehistory to the First Punic War. Berkeley, Los Angeles and London. 1-5; 59-77.

Livy, Books 1-10 (trans. de Selincourt, a. 1960. Livy. The Early History of Rome. London and New York). [Scott reserve DG 207 L5 D35 1960 or online at http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/txt/ah/Livy/]

Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Roman Antiquities (trans. Cary, E. 1937-50. The Roman Antiquities of Dionysius of Halicarnassus. 7 vols. Cambridge, MA. [Scott PA 3611 L63 D562 or online at http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Dionysius_of_Halicarnassus/home.html]

Raaflaub, K.A. 2005. "The Conflict of the Orders in Archaic Rome: a comprehensive and comparative approach," in K.A. Raaflaub (ed) Social Struggles in Archaic Rome. New Perspectives on the Conflict of the Orders., 1-46, esp. pp. 24-31. 2nd ed, Malden, MA.

Wiseman, T.P. 1996. 'What do we know about early Rome?,' Journal of Roman Archaeology 9: 310-15.

Sources Used in Document:

References

Cornell, T.J. 2005. "The Value of the Literary Tradition Concerning Archaic Rome," in K.A. Raaflaub (ed) Social Struggles in Archaic Rome. New Perspectives on the Conflict of the Orders, 47-74. 2nd ed, Malden, MA.

Forsythe, G. 2005. A Critical History of Early Rome. From Prehistory to the First Punic War. Berkeley, Los Angeles and London. 1-5; 59-77.

Livy, Books 1-10 (trans. de Selincourt, a. 1960. Livy. The Early History of Rome. London and New York). [Scott reserve DG 207 L5 D35 1960 or online at http://mcadams.posc.mu.edu/txt/ah/Livy/]

Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Roman Antiquities (trans. Cary, E. 1937-50. The Roman Antiquities of Dionysius of Halicarnassus. 7 vols. Cambridge, MA. [Scott PA 3611 L63 D562 or online at http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Dionysius_of_Halicarnassus/home.html]

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