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Historical Perspectives

Essay by   •  December 9, 2010  •  Essay  •  535 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,011 Views

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History is defined as the events forming the subject matter of a historical account. However, that simple definition is immensely significant to people whose lives were dramatically altered as a result of a past event. From generation to generation, cataclysmic events occur that contribute to the growth of individuals, as well as, society. History cultivates the future of individuals and has the ability to impact a person so much so that perceptions about humanity are revolutionized. Not all momentous historical occurrences connect with every person, but undoubtedly, at least one historical event influences a person through factors such as age, location, personality, and upbringing.

The outlook gained from a major historical event is partly grounded on the age of a person or the generation in which he or she was born into, and the location of that individual when the event occurred. For example, I was born 46 years after 1942 and therefore cannot grasp the effects that World War II had on the Philippines, as opposed to my grandfather, an 84-year old Filipino man, who actually experienced the authoritative control of Japanese forces and the influence of American culture. My grandfather, Vicente Fontanilla became a better and stronger person during World War II because he was granted more opportunities and therefore obtained a superior education. Because of the different time periods in which events are set, cultural changes are inevitable, opportunities will arise, and a wide range of knowledge will be acquired. Age undeniably plays a vital role in how certain events in history influence individuals.

Other considerable factors that form changing perceptions of society are an individual's personality, as well as, upbringing. In the midst of desegregation in the United States, my art teacher's welcoming personality allowed her to become best friends with an African-American girl and, in doing so, grew to be more aware of the similarities among different ethnic backgrounds. Because she was brought up in an all-white community, she learned to accept and embrace the differences of cultures unfamiliar to society. Although I was not even remotely close to being born during the desegregation period, I am exceedingly thankful that integration of races occurred because the world now is so rich in diversity. A person's upbringing not only alters the view of society, it also brings hope for the future. For example, my



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