Thursday, June 24, 2010

My lack of knowledge

I am almost finished reading volume 8 of the Anne of Green Gables novels. This book is about Anne's youngest daughter, Rilla. Some of Rilla's brothers and friends join the troops to fight the war (WWI). I have been very frustrated with my lack of history knowledge as I read this book. When it mentions places that the troops won or lost battles and other historical events, it means nothing to me. I can't even tell you when they (Canadians) will start coming home. The book makes a big deal of 1914 and I think they will come home in 4 years, but I don't know that for sure.
In high school we just touched on WWI and spent more time on WWII in history class because our teacher was more interested that. I was a history minor in college and I took three semesters of World Civilization, but again it was very similar to high school, we hardly touched WWI.
My other problem is when I memorized or read about history in school it always had an American slant. I assume that Canada was very much like America during WWI, but I don't know that for sure. Were the Canadians more patriotic than Americans during WWI? Did they volunteer for Red Cross type activities more than Americans? By percentage did more Canadians join the troops than Americans? I have no idea.
It's obvious that even as a history minor I need to educate myself on "modern" history a lot more. Actually there are a lot of topics that I need to educate myself better. It's a funny cycle, without having TV, I am reading more. But I would enjoy that reading more if I read even more!

*One more note: If you have watched the Anne of Green Gables movies, what happens in the book is nothing like what happens in the movies (especially after the first movie). I will always enjoy watching the movies, but I am going to now think of the book and the movie separately. I had never read more than the first volume of Anne of Green Gables, so this has been very interesting to me. A few things really surprised me in the books after watching the movies, but I won't share those here so that you can be surprised when you read the books too!

1 comment:

Sue said...

The name Rilla caught my eye. I've never read the books (voracious reader that I've always been. That was my grandmother's nickname - her name was Lorilla.