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ERIC Number: EJ929967
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 8
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 33
ISSN: ISSN-0748-8475
Civilization, Big History, and Human Survival
Rodrigue, Barry H.
Thought & Action, p139-146 Fall 2010
A problem that history teachers in the United States face is that they lack an appropriate reference point from which to address many of today's global issues. The source of this problem is an antiquated model of society, still taught in the universities, that largely reflects the society that existed a century ago. For the last decade, the author has been struggling to address this problem, but it is only recently that he has achieved some success, primarily through the introduction of a new course of study called Big History. There are variations on how Big History is researched and taught, but it is concisely defined as: "the attempt to understand, in a unified and interdisciplinary way, the history of the Cosmos, Earth, Life and Humanity." At present, there are perhaps 50 professors teaching courses in Big History at universities around the world, from the United States and the Netherlands to Australia, Russia and India. Big History has been the high point of the author's academic career. He feels as if he is doing something that changes lives and changes society. He believes that this approach transcends national boundaries, political and religious disputes, and economic systems. It serves as a new, unifying reference point for the way one understands the world and the place in it. (Contains 16 endnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A