People Share 84 Facts To Change Your Perspective On History

History used to be one of my favorite subjects back in school and I still have a soft spot for it to this very day—you can probably see that from the history books I’ve got in my personal library in-between my favorite fantasy novels. So I know just how weird the subject can get if you switch up your perspective even a tiny bit. That’s exactly what reporter and novelist Zack Budryk helped internet users do with his recent viral thread on Twitter.

Zack inspired his followers to share some mindblowing historical overlaps that might just make you see the world in an entirely different light… or give you a small existential crisis. My personal favorite? Hands down, the fact that a samurai could have technically sent a fax to US president Abraham Lincoln. Now that’s the kind of real-life lore that could lead to the creation of a mini-series about Lincoln fighting steampunk fax machines alongside his samurai allies. Netflix, I hope you’re taking notes!

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We’ve collected some of the coolest tweets about history for you to enjoy, dear Pandas. Go on, have a read, upvote the posts that you found to be the most interesting, and let us know if you’ve got any unusual historical overlaps in mind as well.

Lee McIntyre from Boston University previously told me that repetition plays a very important role in getting us to believe certain historical facts. “Repetition is important in making us believe things, whether they are true or not. There is a cognitive bias called the ‘illusory truth effect’ which is when we are repeatedly exposed to false information over and over and, over time, it begins to seem more plausible,” he said.

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“Social psychologists have known since the 1960s that repetition works, for truth or falsity. In fact, this idea goes back to Plato who said that it didn’t hurt to repeat a true thing. And of course, for falsehood, this was one of the main propaganda tactics in Nazi Germany, where Hitler’s propaganda minister understood the ‘repetition effect,'” Lee from Boston University told Bored Panda. He added that what we should focus on is finding reliable, trustworthy sources, instead of relying on double-checking every single fact we stumble across because of how time-consuming this is.

Zack is an environment and energy reporter at The Hill and is also a novelist in his spare time. His viral thread got more than 100k likes on Twitter in less than a week and so far has been retweeted over 13k times by fans of the topic.


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However, Zack’s thread isn’t just entertaining, it also proves that we’re not really aware of how interconnected we all are. History, as we learn about it in school, might not put enough emphasis on how different cultures interacted with one another during the same time periods. A more holistic approach might be key here. I’d argue that ignorance about history makes us more susceptible to conspiracy theories, fake news, and misinformation.

Earlier, I spoke about conspiracy theories and separating fact from fiction with Joseph M. Pierre, a professor of psychiatry at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He said that many conspiracy theories that had cropped up recently “have been fairly inconsequential without any largescale behavioral ramifications.” Theories like what happened to JFK and Princess Diana to 9/11 or the Flat Earth theory.


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However, Joseph noted that conspiracies about climate change are having negative real-life consequences. Though that doesn’t mean that all of the debate about the topic is focused just on conspiracy theories themselves. 

“In fact, the most conspiratorial claim about climate change may be that ‘big oil’ companies, like ‘big tobacco’ decades before, know that climate change is real and is caused by human CO2 production, but that they’re purposely claiming otherwise and putting out misinformation to the contrary that refutes what the vast majority of climate change scientists have stated in order to protect profits from the industry,” he told Bored Panda earlier.


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“Those of us who believe that conspiracy theory (remembering that some conspiracy theories are true!) argue that real-life physical actions—more so on the part of industry than individuals per se—are necessary now.”

According to the professor, figuring out whether or not someone actually believes a conspiracy theory or is simply looking to drum up followers for attention and financial gain is very hard. “Determining if someone is lying isn’t easy and is complicated by the fact that we don’t really have a clear agreement of what it means to ‘believe’ something, much less genuinely,” he said.


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People like Alex Jones have been called to answer about “belief conviction in various lawsuits,” according to the professor, but they’d always been able to get away without stating it bluntly whether or not their beliefs are real or if it’s all playing pretend for the show. “[He] has been able to skirt a firm account of whether he’s a huckster or true conspiracy theory believer,” Joseph gave an example.


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