How exactly did you manage to form that complete non-sequitur? o.O
It's not a non sequitor. I've seen videos like this before. "Teach normally boring subject but insert comedic value". They exist because history is a boring subject to a lot of people. Ideas like this are cute but really don't really fix anything. They're even worse when according to the OP, they get things wrong or gloss over shit.
Such a thing was actually rather helpful to me as a child. I can't disprove the claim that my interest in history wasn't
increased by watching funny cartoons that tried the whole "edutainment" angle. But I believe it was.
I've also had at least some success with this myself, trying to teach people physics: if you can make them laugh, they connect with you on a level that makes it easier to get complex concepts across to them.
Come to think of it... "they really don't really fix anything." How do you measure failure? Have you taken surveys of what people know about history before and after such things? I've met people who do that sort of thing (again, in science education), and it's not quite as easy as it looks to work out what people have and have not learned. Also, many of our expectations about what makes people learn are... somewhat at odds with reality. I've seen documented cases of students going into a physics lecture course where the instructor does the traditional "stand at blackboard and derive equations" where the students come out knowing less
than they did going in! You can't explain that away with "students are dumb and unmotivated."
On the other hand, how much detail is desirable in an online lecture series? Do we want a 14 week, 70 hour series on the minutia of the Pharaohs? I think the answer is no.
It would please me to learn that such a thing existed, but I'd probably never watch it. So... yeah, you're probably right.
Well I mean, it's so short! How can you do anything but hit the high points and gloss over tons of stuff, even if you avoid the old school history? I mean, thus far, they have had 15 videos, only 2 of which have touched on India, and One has dealt with china. The Silk Road got as much time as all the Egyptian dynasties. The only civilization they aren't glossing over are the Mongols, who get namedropped in EVERY SINGLE VIDEO. They go out of their way to make sweeping generalizations that have the caveat 'unless you are the Mongols', such as "It is hard to conquer central asia".
If they're up to the Silk Road you've probably watched history up through, what, 1000 AD? Let's think of a reasonable list of major civilizations that existed in the world up through 1000 AD...
Off the top of my head, the Greeks and Romans, possibly the Celts deserve a mention in passing for a fractional lecture. Medieval Europeans are of interest because they're directly ancestral to the guys who then went out and colonialized the rest of the world; if you don't understand where Europe comes from it is very
hard to understand the 19th and 20th centuries in general. Ancient Egypt, ancient Mesopotamia probably deserves at least a full lecture... the Persians, the rise of Islam... We've already got about six or more lectures' worth of material and we haven't even gone east of the Urals, or west of the Atlantic.
Now, that's just me making a very crude attempt- but I really am not surprised if, say, the history of China from antiquity up to 500 AD or so gets compacted into a single lecture.
Eleventh Century Remnant wrote:
What is this 'favourite character' you speak of? I have walls lined with bookshelves, having a single favourite character would be like having a favourite brick.
-Story of my literary tastes.