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Old 05-04-2004, 00:24   #1 (permalink)
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Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

A couple of comments made in a few threads I've read of late made me ask a few interesting questions......
Quite a number of articles I've seen in published works of late has shown some quite "varied" versions of certain historical events.... I realise for each & every event there will be at least 3 versions told(ie, your side, their side, & the truth - sometimes they may even manage to agree)
What I'm curious to find out though is how do people decide for themselves which one is truth? is it because they percieve the publisher to be reputable(I've seen more then a fair share of outright lies in print as well as poorly researched but well intentioned articles make it to hard copy)Do people do research to see whether the writer has proof to back up their claims?Do people blindly trust ALL that they read? Do readers just read the articles for what they are & enjoy the content regardless of whether it's factual or not? Where do people draw the line?
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Old 05-04-2004, 00:36   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

Well, you audit the work, and also you have gutt instinct. Historians are supposed to give references to support their claims, so you just try and check the references if you can. You also need to look at the author's motive. If its a politician, they love writing autobiographies to try and justify their own motives whilst in office for instance.

Mainly with 'non fiction" I read the book thinking, very interesting story, but what has the author got to gain ? What sort of controversy has the book caused ? Ive got two books in front of me now - Bravo Two Zero and "The Real Bravo Two Zero". One seems to portray a heroic fight against many of the enemy, the other portrays a complete stuff up, verging on cowardice - which one to believe ? Well, in Bravo Two Zero's defence, another book has been published by another person who was apparently there. Yet, the British Army, and other people involved with the force dispute facts.

Bravo reads too much like an act of fiction. Real reads like an inquisition, with an author apparently gathering facts in Iraq. As to which one is correct, the gutt says Real.
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Old 05-04-2004, 01:29   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

so basically dave_au you trust ya gut instinct tempered by an "educated guess" (adjusted by what other research you could do on the subject)
How about newspaper / magazine articles, or reference books.... how do you establish their credibility....
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Old 05-04-2004, 01:33   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

Newspapers? Credible?
Isn't that an oxymoron?
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Old 05-04-2004, 02:29   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

lol@mongrel.... sad but true. despite all this they STILL KEEP SELLING!!
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Old 05-04-2004, 02:43   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

realisitically these days unless you were there youll never really know what happened as its always 'someones' take on what happened. as you said 3 sides to every story.
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Old 05-04-2004, 03:12   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

Even if you were there it'd still be only an opinion, or a persons version of the story. The most accurate way would be to refer to documents etc recorded at the time though, NOT that these docs are often freely available. I guess that comes down to how well it has been researched.
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Old 05-04-2004, 03:17   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

ok obviously you are looking for something in particular or have something on your mind so maybe you could tell us and we might be able to shed some light on the subject??
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Old 05-04-2004, 03:55   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

There is a saying here that pretty much sums it all up - "Never let the truth get in the way of a good story"

We live in a culture where our history - both oral and written - is told in the form of a story, and stories don't relate well when told in dry factual form.

Even the Bible is just a series of rewrites of a series of rewrites of stories handed down over the years.
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Old 05-04-2004, 04:00   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Publications - FACT vs MYTH.

Every author writes for a specific audience and the reader has to understand that while they write the information. Its all in the wording. The trick is explained above... just use your common sense and your gut instinct guide you.
Things are never 100% correct.
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