RSG Part #5, Question #2

Why is it important for individuals to share their history through writing a book? What are consequences if people keep silent about the past?

  1. #1 by Janie Cai on April 16, 2012 - 2:05 pm

    It is important for individuals to share their history so others can learn from others’ mistakes and to have proof that this event truly happened. If there was no proof looking back onto the event, some may look onto their present resources and base their opinion on that. For example, the Cultural Revolution was thought to be good during the Cultural Revolution. But, by looking back, people realized it wasn’t good after all. Without this proof, people may repeat this mistake. Some people may believe this event never occurred or think that it wasn’t that bad. But, with this first-hand account, readers can know that this event occurred and it was a time of misery. The consequences if people keep silent about the past would be that a similar event would be formed and people would have to suffer through this again.

  2. #2 by Danny Peletski on April 16, 2012 - 2:05 pm

    It is very important for individuals to share there history through a book. If they write a book their life story will never be lost. It may one day become very important for future people to study our lifestyle and they would then be able to use the book to aid them in their research. If people keep silent about the past there will be various consequences. They might be forgotten by everyone, even if they did something very important, because they don’t have any evidence of their deeds. Writing a book about your own history can be very valuable in numerous ways so you should definitely share your history by writing a book.
    ~Danny Peletski

  3. #3 by Kara Miller on April 16, 2012 - 2:33 pm

    I agree with both Danny and Janie. As Janie pointed out we need to write down historical events so we can learn from them and not make the same mistakes. In the epilougue it says that everyone realized how terrible Chairman Mao’s actions were right after he died. It’s important that somebody wrote down all the torture they had to bear. While it may be painful to read those stories we sometimes need to remind ourselves what happened so we don’t let it happen again. I also agree with what Danny said. It’s important to write down your thoughts and feelings because you never know what will happen and maybe one day that journal you wrote will be important evidence of some historical event. Like Anne Frank’s Diary. She was just writing to let her feelings out, but her diary ending up being an important document, studied by many to learn about the Hollcaust. If we keep silent about our pasts they can overtake us. I’m sure we all know how nice it feels to let your feelings out after you’ve been keeping them in for so long. If keep the memories of your past inside you for so long they will overtake you. Writing your stories not only helps you feel better, it also could be important evidence in the future.
    KAra Miller 🙂

  4. #4 by Sarah Jane Ayer:) on April 16, 2012 - 3:05 pm

    “Those who ignore history are bound (or doomed) to repeat it” This is famous and very true quote from George Santayana. This quote relates to Red Scarf Girl, because if you ignore the what bad things happened in your past, then it will probably happen again. It can be better to write a book then to tell people about what happened, because more people can hear your story, and what you had to go through. This can also inform people about important historical events, so no one makes the same mistakes. I agree with Kara, that its important to write down your thoughts and feelings because like Anne Franks diary, it can prove to people the hardships of a particular historical event. When people keep silent about their pasts, no one gets to learn from their mistakes, and they are all the more likely to repeat them. Relating this to my own life, I love having older siblings, because I can always learn from their mistakes, so I can fix it when I come to that situation.
    Yeah Buddy

  5. #5 by Erin Vance on April 16, 2012 - 3:13 pm

    It is important for individuals to share their history through writing a book because we need to know what has worked and what hasn’t worked in society in the past so we don’t repeat mistakes. Also it tells what a normal, every day person would feel about a situation such as the Cultural Revolution which isn’t the view that most history books tell it from. It’s a way to see it from a different point of view. If individuals didn’t share their history, we could repeat some horrible mistakes so it is vital to record history.

  6. #6 by Anonymous on April 16, 2012 - 6:28 pm

    Maria Collins

    I reallllllllllllllllllly love Sarah’s quote that she used. I agree with what she said how if we ignore history, it will be repeated and we will have to go through it again. Like, if we ignored the Cultural Revolution, someone could have the same idea Chairman Mao had and then repeat, not knowing all the bad things that happened when it happened the first time. If we ignored the Great Depression, then it could very well happen again. So, if it is written in a book, everyone can know all the bad things that happened during this time and they would then know not to repeat it. Since we are on the topic of quotes right now, here are a few quotes related to this question and Sarah’s quote:

    -“History must be written of, by and for the survivors.” -Anonymous
    This quote definitely relates to the topic! 😀
    -“The past is always a rebuke to the present.” -Robert Penn Warren
    This is a really good quote! It is so true that history affects the future!
    -“There will always be a connection between the way men Late the past and the way in which they contemplate the present.” -Buckle
    This is also alike to Sarah’s quote, it is saying that there is a connection between the way we look at the past and the way we will take on the present.

  7. #7 by Hannah Butera on April 16, 2012 - 7:16 pm

    I agree with what Maria said. If you don’t write a book or keep a diary of the past (espeacially during a hard time) your history could be lost forever. For example, Anne Frank kept a diary, and became inspiring and famous for it. Also, many people learned about the great depression just because of Anne’s diary. I know I learned a ton about the Cultural revolution, just from Ji-Li’s diary/book. You never know who is going to see your writing one day. If people keep silent about the past, the events in your life will stay unknown. One day, many years from now, people could look back and learn all about your life style, and what it was like in your years. If you don’t, your story could be lost forever. Therefore, you should record major events in your life, so others know who you are. After all, you never know who will see your writing.

  8. #8 by Kyle Lee on April 16, 2012 - 7:26 pm

    I think it is important for individuals to share their history through writing a book, because we can learn from other people’s history and experiences. If people keep silent about the past, we would lose an important learning resource, and future generations may make similar mistakes or they would never get the benefits of the positive things that could be learned from the past. Since we learn and teach history using books and writings from different time periods and different people around the world, if people stopped writing about their history, over time the events of that history would be lost. Sharing history, by writing a book, also helps people learn and understand the history of other cultures. On page 271-272 Ji-Li says “If I can help Americans to understand China, and the Chinese to learn about the United States, even a little, I will feel very rewarded. I will have contributed something to my country, China, and my home, America. I hope this book will be part of that mission.”

  9. #9 by Cameron Olenick on April 16, 2012 - 8:10 pm

    It’s important for individuals to share their history through writing because everyone dies and without for example Anne Franks diary we would’ve never known what she and everyone with her during that time had to go through. Also if someone writes a book about their history then everyone that reads the book knows about what the history was, if not then only the people that interviewd the author would’ve know what happened to them. Just like the Red Scarf Girl, if the book was never made then nobody would know what JI-Li Jiang experienced but since a book was made a large amount of people no know her story. No matter the time period as long as a book is made people can still learn off of it.

  10. #10 by :) on September 29, 2012 - 8:02 pm

    I love Mrs. Neto

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