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How Do You Know Anything About the Civil War?

Author: Meagan C. McGowan


Robert E. Lamberton High School

Year: 2009

Seminar: Oats, Kings, Proofs, and Climate Change: How Do You Know?

Grade Level: 9-12

Keywords: Civil War, History, How do you know?

School Subject(s): History, Social Studies

When pondering the question “how do you know?” many humans are bound to make assumptions. We have been assuming as a race for millennia that there is an order to things and that – if we look closely or study rigorously – we will discover and be able to explain that order. We also take for granted the concept of research and the resulting “canonical knowledge” from such efforts. If someone has taken the time and energy to make discoveries and if that someone has shared said discoveries with his or her peers, and furthermore if said discoveries are accepted and lauded by his or her peers, than it stands to reason that the human race has had a tremendous breakthrough and that all humanity now knows something that it did not before. These are the assumptions that humans make in justifying how they know something.

Download Unit: 09.01.06.pdf

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