Sunday, March 28, 2010

History: Tales of Kings and Tales of Ordinary People

More than the average people, I like to read history. The reason that I like to read history is that it is related to human beings. Today what I am doing will become history tomorrow. Thus, if I can become an important person then I can be a part of history of my field or my country or my society. If I am not an important person then I will be gone forever after my death.
When we read about the past time, we mainly read about the important political events. It is natural because in the past knowledge was limited to rich people and it was the king or the rulers who could afford to pay money to historians and write about their glories. The rulers thought that they were very important and they ordered their poets and scholars to write about their heroic deeds.
Often, the poets and scholars or historians did exaggerations to please the king.
If we look at the history of India then we will notice that before the coming of England, no king could rule all the parts of India. It was British who could totally capture almost all the parts of the modern day of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Myanmar or Burma. However, in the past, the poets and historians of Indian kings used to glorify the kings as the rulers of all over India until the Indian Ocean. This was a very common trend among Indian kings. As a result, we can see claims of completing kings over one area at the same time.
Now a days, we are giving more importance to the social history. Social history is also important because this gives us an idea of the people and their society. We now like to know about ordinary people and how they were in the past. I think that Chaucer did extra ordinary thing in his The Canterbury Tales. There, we can find the description of ordinary people in England in the 14th century. I really cannot think of any other book written in English literature that depicted the lives of ordinary people so well like The Canterbury Tales in medieval age. 

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