Why Learn History (When It’s Already on Your Phone). Sam Wineburg’s just-published book in which he makes it clear that the current hand-wringing over U.S. students’ ignorance of history is nothing new. It’s a concern that stretches back to at least the early part of the last century when students were similarly challenged by historical recall. The idea that there was ever a “golden age of fact retention” is a myth, writes Wineburg. With some urgency, the book confronts our growing reliance on search engines to do the work that our book reading once did. “Never has so much information been at our fingertips, but never have we been so ill-equipped to deal with it,” Wineburg explains. Our growing challenge with discerning fact from fiction portends trouble for our democracy. Part warning and part roadmap forward, the book comes with guidance on how we can become a better-informed citizenry.
Well worth a read, as always with Sam.