Monday, January 30, 2012

before I talk, I should read a book

Being that I'm both a fundie and a geek for history, maybe I should be taking something other than intro courses on my lunchbreak, because I find myself going but what about this and this and hey you left this out, and it's not just referring back to the good book, because I'm not so delusional to assume that others regard it the way I do, but history of a people even if not entirely accurate, still says a lot about the way of life and the way that others see the world, and usually there's a historical root to most saga and such.

While the instructor might be a fabulous linguist, and have more experience in the ivory tower, that does not necessarily make a good person to be teaching history if We The Peonage are noticing that things are missing. It's not unlike when I took Swahili two years ago and the professor was East African and had a PhD in sociolinguistics but did not actually speak the language he was teaching and would argue with the teaching assistant, a Tanzanian nun who did speak it as a native and would tell us what to put on the test "this is how he thinks it is" as opposed to "this is what we actually say."

Despite being a profound introvert, guilty of the Stipeian, "Oh no I've said too much, I haven't said enough" binary all too often, and due to being unable to gauge said professor's penchant for intellectual honesty.  I don't know if omissions like Babylonian captivities and destructions of Temple Number 1 might be kind of important from a historical standpoint even if we're tossing the proverbial baby as in the whole religious aspect of certain scriptures out with the bathwater. One doesn't have to believe all the spiritual dicta in there to appreciate the literary traditions of the wisdom literature or to attempt to understand a culture and milieu vastly different from our own. And it seems like the Babylonian exile figured much more prominently into the makeup of Judaic tradition and western cultural imagination while the destruction of the temple in AD 70 was more like the final knell. But I might be wrong, and I'm willing to stand corrected.

I'm skeptical of those who say that faith and reason can't co-exist side by side, but I wish I was learning more, because I find myself zoning out the way I did in high school when a thousand years of Byzantines was reduced to a few paragraphs bookended by the ancient Romans and the "Dark Ages."  I know there's so much more there, and I wish that we were covering it. 


  1. Picky, picky, picky. (not that you're incorrect)

  2. too late to drop the course?