A lot has happened since I’ve last written on this site. I finished an amazing student teaching experience, I wrapped up an incredible time at Messiah College studying history, and I am now a college grad waiting for my “big boy” job. All this time though, I have been thinking of this blog, and how much joy it brought me. I am very excited to be back on, and am hoping to pick up Reckless Historians where I left off at the end of my Junior Year, and hoping to be much more consistent posting.
Having a degree in history I am convinced is one of the most rewarding opportunities. Something about the classical study of humans and human events just stands out as special. Perhaps now people know my opinion on history enough, but I am no longer asked “Phil what are you going to do with history?” because I have sought to teach those around me about the incredible power in a history degree.
When I interview for teaching positions, I always seek to point out that at the end of the day, the most profound things I can teach my students are the transferable skills of history. I want my students to be able to look at information and think critically about it. More importantly, I want my students to learn the power of empathy. As I watch the news and hear the talking heads go after each other, I am convinced that they have no concept of empathy, which in turn has inhibited the ability of younger generations to develop this skill. I want my students to be immersed in a world entirely different from their own — Medieval Europe, African History, or even a different region of the United States — and I want them to understand how the people of this world work. I am not asking for my students to fully accept everything that happened during these times — far from it — but rather I am asking them to at least understand why people in particular times made the decisions they did.
Since graduating college (wow has it really been almost 2 months?) I keep thinking back regularly to how my degree in history has transformed me into a major thinker, and how history has the profound ability to teach us that we are indeed not the center of the universe.
And all this to say that I am very happy to be back at Reckless Historians. I recently read an old email sent to reckless historian’s email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and they thanked the blog “for promoting the positive aspects of history and encouraging history students.” I want to firstly apologize for not emailing back this incredible reader, but also thank him and thank all of you for allowing me to use this window to pour into your lives the importance of history so that you all can experience the transformative power of history.
It’s good to be back, now let’s go continue to hone our thinking skills and seeing the impact of people throughout history.