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Why is it that we tend to see the European "explorers" accounts of creatures as reliable...

And see similar accounts by natives from the same time period as "native myth"...

Sorry about all the strange questions, I'm watching Monster Quest... lol! But this is one of those things that drive me nuts! What do you think?

Answer Question
 
SabrinaMBowen

Asked by SabrinaMBowen at 5:34 PM on Mar. 25, 2010 in Religion & Beliefs

Level 40 (122,988 Credits)
Answers (11)
  • That's a good question. Why would one race of people's depiction of history be believed over another.

    Maybe it's because way, way back in the day(waaaay back) Native people were seen and thought of as "savages" by the europeans therefor not taken seriously or respect.
    That along with the language barrier.
    Europeans were "educated" and could read and write whereas the Native people couldn't in the same way. The documentation of events by the europeans was taken more seriously because it was written down.
    The Native "myths" were passed from generation to generation in the form of stories told not documented and written.

    That's just my guess though.
    Laila-May

    Answer by Laila-May at 5:48 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • *respected* Sorry.

    Sometimes I get so ahead of myself and can't type as quickly as I think so I mess up. Lol!
    Laila-May

    Answer by Laila-May at 5:49 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • I think because explores are thought of scientists and "Native Myths" were often stories used to explain, educate and entertain their population. Since we don't always understand which type of story it was its difficult to know how true it is. It might be a metaphor, instead of an actual account.


    We understand the language of European explores much better so we have a better idea of what are written as actual observation and what is not.  It depends how far back you go also the more ancient the culture the harder it is for us to fully understand the ideas they are describing in their own language.

    RyansMom001

    Answer by RyansMom001 at 5:55 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • Do you watch Destination Truth as well? Did you see the one last night where he might have caught evidence of the Israeli mermaid on camera?

    IhartU

    Answer by IhartU at 6:16 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • I think because they thought that their descriptions were more scientific, being documented and written down while the native people stories or drew pictures that could easily be misconstrued as stories.
    mrsjonzy

    Answer by mrsjonzy at 6:52 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • What is Destination Truth?? I never heard of that one. Sounds good
    SabrinaMBowen

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 8:09 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • Yeah its a bad stereotype I guess. The steroetype being that Europeans are educated and Natives Americans are narrative and simple.
    3gigglemonsters

    Answer by 3gigglemonsters at 8:34 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • I think because they thought that their descriptions were more scientific, being documented and written down while the native people stories or drew pictures that could easily be misconstrued as stories.

    Ok, that hits on my pet peeve (nothing against you, you just brought it up). The native civilizations did have many of these things written down. The explorers couldn't understand what was written because they didn't understand the language, so they assumed by default that it was all demonic and evil and destroyed most documentation they discovered - historical accounts, population records, anything they didn't understand was torched. It's part of the reason so much of the history of the British Isles is missing too, the Romans destroyed everything, just like the explorers did in Africa and the Americas.
    NotPanicking

    Answer by NotPanicking at 8:53 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • It's the same thing as if a drunk see's a man beating his wife to death In the small town I lived If the town drunk called the cops they told him to go to bed. In that town the drunk called on a spousal abbuse no body came. Well when some one else saw and called by the time the police got there she was barely alive and my dh got an assault charge for interfering. No he was not the town drunk. We were the second to see the problem. How ever though I don't agree a lot of people see native Americans as drunk and pot heads. It sucks but hey that's how people are.
    hot-mama86

    Answer by hot-mama86 at 9:32 PM on Mar. 25, 2010

  • Destination Truth is on ScyFy Wednesdays's after Ghost Hunters. It's like in it's 4th season now I think. Josh Gates goes out looking for cryptids and investigates reports of strange creatures. He's actually got some pretty good evidence in a few cases.
    IhartU

    Answer by IhartU at 9:19 AM on Mar. 26, 2010

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