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54253Re: [Authentic_SCA] A question about peace

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  • Robert Van Rens
    Sep 7, 2006
      Ah, yes, the Britannica...another bastion of scholastic integrity. Saying
      that Wikipedia has roughly the same error rate isn't REALLY all that

      My point is this; the article is an EXREMELY brief treatment of an incedibly
      complex topic, one that is rendered more complex by the fact that most
      Westerners are completely clueless when it comes to Asian history, or
      historical point-of-view. Japanese historiography is a field that mostly
      doesn't exist in the English language, but there are good, detailed,
      scholarly works on the subject, in English even.

      My PROBLEM is that this incredibly un-detailed, incomplete, factually vague
      article is used as support for an assertion that ISN'T TRUE.

      We don't cite the Britannica as an authority on anything - at least, I
      don't, and I hope no one else here does, either. Why Wikipedia? 'Cause
      it's convenient?

      I admit to bias. As a frequent researcher, sometime professional academic,
      and frequent user of the university system, I have high standards for
      research and documentation. That's why I'm here - I thought the whole point
      of this listserve was to raise the level of scholarly discourse.

      The problem with sources like Wikipedia, Britannica, Worlds Book, etc, is
      that they are so vague that they are often wrong. It's like your junior
      high history textbooks - you know, the ones that covered world history in
      300 pages, with illustrations. I defy you to show me any broad assertion in
      that book that cannot be disproven with a minimum of research.

      Yeah, we can't all come visit each other's living rooms and peruse each
      others libraries. That's no excuse for lack of critical faculty in
      evalauting the sources we DO cite.

      I'm just trying to do it a little more rigorous, and little more in-depth,
      and little better than has been done before.

      Rob Van Rens

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