ERIC Number: ED455152
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Western Civilization, Modernity, and World History: Some Perspectives from East Asia.
Farmer, Edward L.
This paper wrestles with some of the problems of Eurocentrism that must be confronted in teaching world history. Alert to the problem of perspective, the paper focuses on teaching strategies and not on theoretical justifications for personal opinions. The paper addresses the concepts of Western civilization and a modern world. It discusses five rules from an area studies perspective: (1) Handle the concept of civilization with care in a world history course; (2) Be alert to the problem of Eurocentrism; (3) Do not overemphasize the European origins of modernity; (4) Ask what the term "West" means outside Europe; and (5) Pay attention to East Asian (and other) regional perspectives. The paper explores each rule in detail and concludes that the challenge of teaching world history is to figure out how to prioritize and balance a story that could, potentially, include everything. The paper advocates the need to adopt world history strategies that allow educators to create narratives that are pluralistic or multi-centered to avoid undue parochialism, suggesting comparative strategies for this purpose. (Contains 7 notes and 7 references.) (BT)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Teachers
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Asia