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History: An American Pride

===================================================
At the beginning of living here in the US, I was quite annoyed with many Americans who overused the word classic, history, or sort of words like that.

I was wondering that how could they realize these words. They basically didn't have a long history. Their country was just established not too long ago.... They were so proud about their "trivial" sport statistics in American football, basketball, and baseball... These sports were seldom played in any other places in the world.

When I got exposed to more and more Americans and their society, I became more understanding why they're so proud of these "mediocrecity".

Americans valued things differently from our perspectives owing to differences in ways of living/thinking. As important as the previous two, they believed that they could make a history and the history truly belonged to them.

In the contrary, the Thai were born within a stratified society. There were an invisible barrier which curbed the Thai of dreaming or even thinking about making a history.... "It's too difficult or it doesn't belong to your kind".... That would be those invisible entities echoing in our minds and thoughts.

Our history was sacred, untouchable yet academically unproven---in lay terms our history looked like a myth rather than a fact. Many of those were fabricated or politically motivated with less true participations from its people.

Looking back to short American history, they started from being rebel from the English tyranny, then, built themselves from an agricultural-based society. This resulted in slavery... and cracked among people in its society about the slavery issue resulting in its long bloodshedding civil war.

Liberal philosophy prevailed. These ideas respected in human dignity... believing that people were born equal.... From that, Americans and their society embraced people suffering from discriminations and persecutions into their society time after time and waves after waves....

These people within this opened society had built America from a no-history nation to a history-making nation.

Only 150 years of learning and building based upon liberty, liberalism, and freedom, America had changed the world...

In World war II, American troop saved the world from being conquered by the Japanese Imperialism and Nazi Arayan Eugenicism. Without them, the world would have been another place--- a drastically different one than the current one we're living upon....

With its policy about selecting great people into its society, it had Eistein, a Swiss Jew, who, in fact, changed the world with his minds. America got the inventor of German V1 rocket to be a lead scientist in NASA program resulting in the most successful space exploration program in the history of mankind.

Science and technology had relocated from Europe to their new Mecca, America.... Every science, engineering, and technology had been prospering here in the US.

So, from this, Americans had a full right to be proud of its history..... They'd written it with their efforts, ideology, and open-mindedness.

Our history would be "a shorter one" if we maintained our attitudes within this current course, regretably.

If I would like to make a history for myself, my family, my community, my country, and my countrymen, did I have a chance?
===================================================


Create Date : 04 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550
Last Update : 4 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 5:00:33 น. 23 comments
Counter : 233 Pageviews.

 
Khun A.T.

My analysis of the U.S. history is very interesting. Every culture has things its owners can be proud of; yet, there are also unpleasant histories, or mitakes, from which we all can learn.

It inevitably takes a long time for a culture to develop to the point that all systems work well tegether. To influence or change a culture so that it gets collectively better is never an easy task due to the complex and interconnected factors embedded within it. On the contrary, it seems to me that destructive aspects culture develop much faster. Think about the hypocritical, violent, hateful and disgusting acts in the Thai politics, and you will see that these disruptive and destructive characters that never prevailed in the hospitable, easy going land of smiles have begun to tarnish and affect the peaceful Thailand just within less than a year. We cannot, of course, say that everything and every change took place because of what happened less than a year ago when Sondhi started to plant the seeds of hatred and prejudice in the Thai hearts.

Just two cents, Khun A.T. I need to submit the first three chapters of my dissertation this coming Thursday. I am sure you know how much mental energy I'll need to put into it.

Thanks for sharing.


โดย: piangdin IP: 149.159.2.77 วันที่: 4 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:11:38:23 น.  

 
Khun A.T.

I think my earlier comment has gone to the ban comments folder.


โดย: piangdin IP: 149.159.2.77 วันที่: 4 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:11:45:46 น.  

 
It's good article to read..I really like it...



โดย: Bamboocrossing วันที่: 4 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:12:17:17 น.  

 
"My analysis" was meant to be "YOUR ANALYSIS"

I must have been drunk;-)


โดย: piangdin ฉบับไม่ได้ล็อคอินครับ IP: 149.159.2.77 วันที่: 4 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:13:11:16 น.  

 
You will be hero in your kid's history book.



โดย: PatPDX IP: 72.201.17.28 วันที่: 4 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:14:11:00 น.  

 
เห็นด้วยกับคุณ A.T. ค่ะ มุมมองด้านประวัติศาสตร์ของเรากับของอเมริกาแตกต่างกันมาก
ชอบตรงที่เค๊ามีความเชื่อว่าคนเราเกิดมาพร้อมกับสิทธิและความเท่าเทียมกัน ซึ่งนั่นจะเป็นแรงผลักดันทำให้แต่ละคนมุ่งไปตามความฝันที่ตัวเองต้องการ ส่วนของเราก็เชื่อบุญกรรมและวาสนา อย่าไปแข่งกับเขาเลย เรามันไม่มีบุญ ไม่มีวาสนา ทำให้เราอยู่กับที่


โดย: the Vicky วันที่: 4 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:18:50:11 น.  

 
...และทุกวันนี้ อเมริกาก็ยังคงเป็นที่ๆเต็มไปด้วยโอกาส
คงจะยังมีเรื่องราวให้บันทึกอีกยาวเลย

สบายดีนะคะพี่ a.t. :)




โดย: r k i วันที่: 5 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:9:40:08 น.  

 
Hello krub P' A.T.

Totally agree with your aspect of Thai History, it has been a tool rather than a record.

One point I have taken for a long time is that the influence of US over the world started from the WW2. Its pride, (self-evaluated) dignity and weighted vote in the world organizations began after WW2. Unarguably, US had the right because it helped stopping the war and acted like a hero for reconstructing the 'coalition' of winning party, while robing the loser.

One thing I respect in US, it valueed the advanced knowledge. it collected good people and supported them, acknowledged them, and support them financially. This might be different from other countries which are more politics-oriented, like France, Italy and our beloved country Thailand. This advanced knowledge and people have enhanced the position of US since WW2.

Thank you for sharing krub


โดย: AmoreVincitOmnia วันที่: 5 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:16:37:40 น.  

 
Sorry for coming late. I did not log on to the computer at all the past weekend.

Anyway, let me just put it this way. Thai people have been taught that we should put our country above everything else. But really. How can you do that when you don't feel the country belongs to you? We don't feel we can make a big difference because decisions about everything in this country have already been made by you know who so why bother. It's politically incorrect to say that we've been brainwashed. But you heard me.


โดย: Rive Gauche วันที่: 6 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:1:04:20 น.  

 
Yes, you're right. I'm just nit-picking here and pointing out a few minor things

History of America is much more of a 'people's history' than most accounts of Thai history. But remember that history is broader than just what's in officially sanctioned history books. The history books of Thailand focus on political and military history - the glorious deeds of kings and generals - but at the same time there are also folklores and tales that grandparents tell their children, novels and music such as local folk songs and เพลงเพื่อชีวิต - stories about poor Chinese immigrants' fight to become millionaires, about immigrants from Isarn trying to earn a living in Bangkok, about 14 October, 6 October and the Black May. I won't go as far as to say that social history in Thailand has been obliterated - it's just ignored in most books.

As for American history, it's worth remembering that all forms of history are biased. There' s a very interesting book called Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen about how American history textbooks have twisted facts to create a narrative with a strong bias in favour of white, middle class men. So, yes, American history is based on a more open-minded approach than Thai history but don't overestimate how open it is.


โดย: นาย อ. IP: 80.3.64.10 วันที่: 6 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:2:09:08 น.  

 
Dear Khun A.T.

I'm glad to come here and read such a nice article in your blog... It is an interesting fact that once we explore into a new area, we will learn something beyond our old perspective...

Same as me when I first arrived UK but just contrast in content. I felt that I was so new being in UK... I used to believe that Thailand, at least, has quite a history, for example, we invented alphabets since 700 years ago and some old kingdom like Ayuthaya for example has many ancient buildings needed to be preserved... but once I arrived UK... I have found that my university (Cambridge) has been founded for almost 800 years and many buildings there have been there for many hundreds or even a thousand years ago; and still elegantly in used like a normal building in service until now (i.e. you can touch, walk, run, sit, or even kick the old buildings without worrying any elders because they are still the on-going part of history where we have also been included in)... That's something new too me... it is true that when I was in Thailand (before going to study aboard). I used to think that making a history is something so prestige and it is impossible to be a part of it... but once I went to UK / Cambridge, I feel like a paradiam shift... making a history seems to be something touchable... the environment there inspires people that one can push some mechanisms and even change the world if one really give it a try (like when Newton found the theory of gravity, Darwin understand the evolvement theory, or Turing drafted out the computational machine/i.e. a computer)...

Let's come back to the US. I agree that people there have power and attitude to drive today history... anyway, IMHO, one thing that made me doubt is from my experience when I meet people from US, a number of them somehow overlook the other nations' growth capabilities (i.e. so patriotic to their nation recent success) which I believe that it can also narrow their vision as well...

The interesting experience that I have encountered is in an international student conference in Warsaw (Poland) long time ago where a number of people from different nations discuss in Russian or Spanish or French or even Arabics and our American (including British) friends wonder why there are still other languages that people from different nations still choose to communicate and get very very upset...

That's just my humble point of view


โดย: ไร้นาม วันที่: 7 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:0:09:03 น.  

 
Khun A.T.

Here comes another quick analysis of the "Airports, Politics and Pissing in Thailand" to entertain you.
See http://www.bloggang.com/viewdiary.php?id=piangdin&group=9.


โดย: piangdin วันที่: 7 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:2:31:45 น.  

 
Khun ไร้นาม,

The U.S. cultures are not as easily to define as many think. If you talk about one aspect of it in a conclusive manner, you run the risk of being overly ambitious, if not narrow minded. To say anything as a unified entity under the "U.S." umbrella is to risk being accused of uninformed generalization.

When you mention 'people from the U.S.," do you mean that you have seen enough varieties of them?

A country as large and diverse as the U.S.A. is so complex in itself that you will find many different types of people. A number of people may be patriotic and arrogant, as well as ignorant of other countries' potential to do as well as they do. However, there are also many respectful, open-minded U.S. citizens who do not at all hold the same opinions or attitudes.

The same two-sided observation can also be made about people's contribution to the making of the U.S. history (if not histories). There are people who can influence the shape of a new history in positve ways, and there are those who are no good for any history making anywhere.

I hope you don't mind my two cents on this very interesting issue that you have raised.


โดย: piangdin วันที่: 7 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:2:45:35 น.  

 
easily = easy


โดย: piangdin วันที่: 7 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:2:46:17 น.  

 
Dear K. piangdin (เพียงดิน? = ถ้าใช่ จะชมว่าชื่อเพราะค่ะ)

Not sure that you can read Thai or not so let's continue in English... First of all, appologise Khun A.T. in advance about using his blog as a chit-chat space (^^')

I admit that U.S. is divert and also admire many things that they have done and have a potential to do more. When I said "a number of them" in my above sentense, it only comes from my own experience that I have encountered some American citizen compared to the feeling when I have met the other nations... I have no problem with U.S. people (a couple of my close friends are also the U.S. guys) as you have also asked about "Have you seen enough varieties of them?"... I must say that I really don't know -- I only have a chance to be in U.S summing up for ~4 months (only in a few states), working in the U.S. institute/companies (co-ordiating with people from various places in the U.S. for ~6 years)... Anyway, as mentioned above that what I have writen here was/is only my humble point of view :)


โดย: ไร้นาม วันที่: 7 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:10:20:20 น.  

 
Khun ไร้นาม,

Thank you very much for kindly explaining. I didn't think that you meant to say beyond what your have perceived. The U.S. can't deny the many roles it has to take as the world's superpower or at least one of the few superpowers. I agree that it has a lot of potential to do great things, but sadly it has already done many damanges to the world, too.

To add to what has already been said, the U.S. is often seen as represented by Caucasians, but they are in fact becoming a minority, if all other races are combined against it. I worked with the U.S. organization after graduation back in the 80's for five years and thought I saw enough of the "American" ways. Then, having lived for six years in this country, I keep seeing much more of aberrations or diversities that have inevitably pushed me to reconsider the old perceptions and assumptions. Last but not least, I have got an American friend with whom I have been in touch for more than 20 years, but he is in no way close to the people I have seen lately.

At present, I am still skeptical about any assumption I myself make regarding what I see, think and believe about and in this country, its peoples and cultures ('s' being added intentionally).

Thanks for sharing. And thanks for the space, Khun A.T.


โดย: piangdin วันที่: 7 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:10:59:23 น.  

 
Dear k. piangdin and k. ไร้นาม ;

Your discussions are based on great reasonings. Although differences can ensue but I am very pleased seeing this kind of discussion in my blogs.

Honor is mine krub....

Best regards,
A.T.


โดย: A.T. (amatuer translator ) วันที่: 7 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:11:19:00 น.  

 
Dear K. Piangdin

I see ka :)


โดย: ไร้นาม วันที่: 8 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:0:35:11 น.  

 
I had the same thought about American history in the beginning but it gradually changed once I learnt more. I am so proud that I am the parent of 2 US citizen.

Every nation has rights to be proud as long as it doesn't blind them to do the right thing. Iraq war is one of the abusive example of American pride in my humble opinion.

I actually felt more annoyed with American abusive using of "world" such as Baseball World series etc.


โดย: Piglet-Yorkie วันที่: 8 กุมภาพันธ์ 2550 เวลา:2:38:18 น.  

 
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กรุณายืนยันรหัสส่งข้อความ

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=================================
Note: My life has been intertwined with works and many others. New responsibility has emerged, resulting less and less time for my ordinary life. Although, a love to write is still intact... But having less time is related to having less imagination.... Therefore, I could not come up with new writings for quite some times.

It might be a good time for me to leave this forum for moment.... Please take it as Mr. A.T. is having a sabbactatical leave or something like that....

As noted above, my love to write is still the same... and will not be changed. Sometimes somehow, I hope I could come back and give some thoughts in this blog once more.

Cheers,
Mr. A.T.
June 6th, 2008

=================================


Hello,

My pen-name in Pantip is amatuer translator. Actually, I'm a lousy translator with lame translation. My pen-name is somewhat misleading, I have no background in linguistics what-so-ever. Anyway I love to read, write and communicate with people...

Reading is my most favorite hobby. I read everything from shopping bags to articles in theoretical physics. I do research and teaching for my living. So, reading, writing, thinking and doing research works are my everyday routine.

I would like to define myself as a person who is accepting new ideas and adopting those into my way of life.

I believe in power of knowledge/education. I think every society can be a better society with knowledge. Ignorance can be dispelled by it. Humanity can live sustainably and harmoniously with each other along with its biosphere with understandings in the nature surrounding it.

Apart from my philosophical thoughts reflecting who I am, I can tell you something I like or love in particular;

I love dogs.... Particularly, labradore retrievers.... One day, I would like to spend my time and life with them as a big part of my family.

Zhuge Liang is my hero. With his wisdom and faithfulness, he led a tiny army to a mighty and formidable kingdom. He left his humble residence with a hope to come back. But, sadly, he had never returned and died far far away from home in a horse carriage in a battle field. If I could choose where I would, I would say where-ever my lovely wife was nearby.

I value happiness and my family as my first priority. My profession and my philosophy come in the second. Pursuit in wealth has never been in my desire.

I'm glad to be your friend, and look forward to seeing you around krub.

Best wishes,
A.T.
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