3) Undergraduate and graduate students with an interest in history who have taken the introductory courses in American and world history and now want to reflect on causality and how things are connected one to another, the philosophy of history….
Who is the audience for this material?
1) High school students with an interest in history.
2) Instructors of high school students who are interested in new ways to spark interest in history, to make it more interactive, so it doesn’t seem so boring and deterministic, helping students develop their critical thinking skills, who want material for students to reflect on causality and how things are connected to one another, the slender threads that determine how human history is shaped..
4) Instructors of history, political science, journalism, communications or religion interested in exploring causality or consequences of historical events;
5) Baby Boomers who followed current events and now want to re-examine the meaning and significance of events they lived through with a sense of perspective and with the benefit of hindsight, or who want to rethink their perspective on certain events or historical characters;
6) Political activists or partisans who want to be challenged out of hyper-partisanship by taking a longer view of history;
7) Budding authors of fiction in the early stages of identifying a slender thread or writing an alternate history;
8) Journalists who know a lot of details about current events, can with a little help identify dramatic moments, decisions or points of divergence from history or slender threads and imagine alternate histories in the events that occurred in their lifetimes.
9) Readers of history or fans of alternate history who like to ponder the “what if’s” as a hobby.
10) Long-time readers of current events who remember the events discussed here and want to consider a different perspective.
I have identified some or most points of divergence or “slender threads” or turning points of history from the beginning of recorded history up through January, 2021.
Historians generally believe we don’t have enough emotional distance or inside knowledge to fairly evaluate leaders, events or actions (either in the public eyes or in our personal lives) less than 10 years ago. It takes at least a decade for self-serving statements, the partisan passions of the moment and defensiveness to begin to subside, and for patterns of behavior to become fully visible.