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Old 18th May 2022, 07:21 AM   #201
TragicMonkey
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I wonder if there were Napoleonic War nerds for the entire nineteenth century the way we have WWII nerds today. "How dare you, sir, I have on parchment before me the figures from the comte du Frou-frou's supply acquisitions for the spring of 1806 and your conclusions are not supported, sir! Good day!"
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Old 18th May 2022, 08:23 AM   #202
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
I wonder if there were Napoleonic War nerds for the entire nineteenth century the way we have WWII nerds today. "How dare you, sir, I have on parchment before me the figures from the comte du Frou-frou's supply acquisitions for the spring of 1806 and your conclusions are not supported, sir! Good day!"
Hell there are still Napoleonic war nerds today. I am not sure which is more popular period in wargaming but there are lots of serious people geeking out on specifics of what exact color and cut of uniform this unit had at such and such a battle.
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Old 18th May 2022, 06:23 PM   #203
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
I wonder if there were Napoleonic War nerds for the entire nineteenth century the way we have WWII nerds today. "How dare you, sir, I have on parchment before me the figures from the comte du Frou-frou's supply acquisitions for the spring of 1806 and your conclusions are not supported, sir! Good day!"
Actually there were indeed Napoleonic WAr Nerds in the 19th century utterly obsessed with the Napoleonic Wars. Among this group were a large number of Napoleon Fanboys and Fangirls who worshipped the most holy and divine Napoleon and who viewed him has a Messiah, the annointed one, God's chosen son who came to Earth to save us but was betrayed by the Evil British and their Gold and other Evil Sons of Satan. And he was crucified on St. Helena and died for our sins. For we were not worthy of him.

Sadly this cult continues to the present day among some.
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Old 19th May 2022, 05:19 AM   #204
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Originally Posted by Pacal View Post
Actually there were indeed Napoleonic WAr Nerds in the 19th century utterly obsessed with the Napoleonic Wars. Among this group were a large number of Napoleon Fanboys and Fangirls who worshipped the most holy and divine Napoleon and who viewed him has a Messiah, the annointed one, God's chosen son who came to Earth to save us but was betrayed by the Evil British and their Gold and other Evil Sons of Satan. And he was crucified on St. Helena and died for our sins. For we were not worthy of him.

Sadly this cult continues to the present day among some.
Have you ever visited the museums present at the battlefield of Waterloo?

Now, that particular battle just has to be the most imposing victory that Napoleon ever visited on his enemies.
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Old 19th May 2022, 06:19 AM   #205
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I used to think the Romans probably did execute someone who was the historical basis for Jesus.
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Old 19th May 2022, 08:47 AM   #206
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Originally Posted by erwinl View Post
Have you ever visited the museums present at the battlefield of Waterloo?

Now, that particular battle just has to be the most imposing victory that Napoleon ever visited on his enemies.
No I have not visited but I have heard and read that if you go there you would think Napoleon had won. Needless to say a product of Napoleonic Fanboys and Fangirls who too this day grovel in abject adoration of the One True God - Napoleon!!

The whole Napoleonic Cult is quite something and it started in Napoleons lifetimes and still continues to this day from those whose worship of power is blatant and whose desire to submit to the all wise, all perfect holy one all too clear.

On various Youtube channels which had videos about various Napoleonic battles there were often Napoleonic Cultists whose adoration of Napoleon was just silly. I was accused of self hatred, (I'm French Canadian), because I criticized Napoleon.
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Old 20th May 2022, 01:30 AM   #207
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
There's quite a bit of pseudo-history involved with the founding of Israel too, especially when it comes to the existence of native Palestinians that had to be pushed out to make way for the Zionist state.

The book "From Time Immemorial" is probably the most well known in the genre, asserting that Palestinians were not native but in fact recent Arab immigrants. It has since been thoroughly debunked, charitably either poorly reasoned, but more likely outright academic fraud. This has not stopped this false history from being a useful tool for those minimizing the harm done by the Zionist project.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/From_Time_Immemorial

Israel being created out of nothing, turning desert into oasis, is largely a myth. It was a settler-colonial project since day 1.
I have this book, and I have also read the wiki page on it. Whilst Wikipedia claims the book has been debunked, and you also repeat this claim, if you read the page, it's actually not at all clear that this is indeed the case.
For a start, the most prominent critics are Norman Finkelstein, Noam Chomsky's attack dog, and Chomsky himself. I have very little time for Chomsky: he is a poor scholar, with a record of incorrect claims. Then, whilst it is acknowledged that Peters made some errors in the book, the central premise, that many of the Palestinian Arabs were not descendants of long-settled families, but actually quite recent immigrants to the area, has not, AFAIK, been disproved. The records Peters draws from are there, and are accurate.
I think this issue is still very much up in the air. If there is valid academic criticism of this book and its claim, I would like to read it, so if anyone's got any, do please post it.
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Old 20th May 2022, 02:17 AM   #208
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Originally Posted by Pacal View Post
No I have not visited but I have heard and read that if you go there you would think Napoleon had won. Needless to say a product of Napoleonic Fanboys and Fangirls who too this day grovel in abject adoration of the One True God - Napoleon!!

The whole Napoleonic Cult is quite something and it started in Napoleons lifetimes and still continues to this day from those whose worship of power is blatant and whose desire to submit to the all wise, all perfect holy one all too clear.

On various Youtube channels which had videos about various Napoleonic battles there were often Napoleonic Cultists whose adoration of Napoleon was just silly. I was accused of self hatred, (I'm French Canadian), because I criticized Napoleon.
It's worth a visit, just because of the fanboying you can see in action there. Although I can imagine it would be quite the trip for you.

On the other hand, Lions Mound excepted (thanks William of Orange!), a lot of the battlefield is reasonably as it was there at the time and certainly worth a visit. Certainly considering it has been an active farm area since that time.
Particularly Hougoumont is original enough, bullet holes included, that it is very easy to imagine how it was during the battle.
(yes the wood where the French came from) has disappeared, the grounds are a bit smaller and the garden wall with firing holes is from a few years after the battle (I believe the original wall was so damaged during the battle, that it more or less fell down afterward and as the farm was then and still is an active farm, they had to have some kind of wall there).
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Old 20th May 2022, 04:46 AM   #209
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Originally Posted by Cosmic Yak View Post
I have this book, and I have also read the wiki page on it. Whilst Wikipedia claims the book has been debunked, and you also repeat this claim, if you read the page, it's actually not at all clear that this is indeed the case.
For a start, the most prominent critics are Norman Finkelstein, Noam Chomsky's attack dog, and Chomsky himself. I have very little time for Chomsky: he is a poor scholar, with a record of incorrect claims. Then, whilst it is acknowledged that Peters made some errors in the book, the central premise, that many of the Palestinian Arabs were not descendants of long-settled families, but actually quite recent immigrants to the area, has not, AFAIK, been disproved. The records Peters draws from are there, and are accurate.
I think this issue is still very much up in the air. If there is valid academic criticism of this book and its claim, I would like to read it, so if anyone's got any, do please post it.
Well, the wikipedia page includes many critical citations, even if you out of hand dismiss Finkelstein's exhaustive work for dubious reasons.

Quote:
Reviewing the book for the November 28, 1985 issue of The New York Times, Israeli historian Yehoshua Porath described it as a "sheer forgery," stating, "In Israel, at least, the book was almost universally dismissed as sheer rubbish except maybe as a propaganda weapon."[15] In 1986, Porath repeated his views in The New York Review of Books, and published a negative review that cites many inaccuracies.[4]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/From_T..._note-Porath-4
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Old 20th May 2022, 06:55 AM   #210
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In the past I've talked about how I get an "icky" feeling off of with how much gusto the "Oh if only X had happened Hitler would have won!" and "Oh if only Y had happened the South would have won!" reimaginings of history have because they nearly always brush up against wish fulfillment fantasies and they are always wrong. Hitler was never going to win WWII and the South was never going to win the Civil War.

Essentially the constant reimaging of Hitler as some sort of mad genius who came "this close" to ruling the world every other 5 minutes to hear some alternative history fanboys gush on about it.
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Old 20th May 2022, 07:17 AM   #211
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
In the past I've talked about how I get an "icky" feeling off of with how much gusto the "Oh if only X had happened Hitler would have won!" and "Oh if only Y had happened the South would have won!" reimaginings of history have because they nearly always brush up against wish fulfillment fantasies and they are always wrong. Hitler was never going to win WWII and the South was never going to win the Civil War.

Essentially the constant reimaging of Hitler as some sort of mad genius who came "this close" to ruling the world every other 5 minutes to hear some alternative history fanboys gush on about it.
Yup, although I hadn't realised how utterly stupid their plans were to the people drawing up the plans at the time, nor had I appreciated just how bad their approach to logistics was - "let's use a thousand different types of lorries for our invasion of Russia", for example.
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Old 20th May 2022, 07:21 AM   #212
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
In the past I've talked about how I get an "icky" feeling off of with how much gusto the "Oh if only X had happened Hitler would have won!" and "Oh if only Y had happened the South would have won!" reimaginings of history have because they nearly always brush up against wish fulfillment fantasies and they are always wrong. Hitler was never going to win WWII and the South was never going to win the Civil War.

Essentially the constant reimaging of Hitler as some sort of mad genius who came "this close" to ruling the world every other 5 minutes to hear some alternative history fanboys gush on about it.
It's Schrodinger's Hitler, simultaneously insane enough to wage war with all of his neighbors guaranteeing his own demise, but also cool headed enough to not make stupid decisions and somehow thread the impossible needle to win.

I suppose there's a tenable alternative history where the Nazis were content to just be authoritarians within their own borders and Hitler has a long personal reign like other less belligerent fascist contemporaries (Spain, Portugal for example), but that requires imagining Hitler was a more pragmatic person rather than 100% dyed in the wool ideologue.
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Old 20th May 2022, 07:51 AM   #213
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
In the past I've talked about how I get an "icky" feeling off of with how much gusto the "Oh if only X had happened Hitler would have won!" and "Oh if only Y had happened the South would have won!" reimaginings of history have because they nearly always brush up against wish fulfillment fantasies and they are always wrong. Hitler was never going to win WWII and the South was never going to win the Civil War.

Essentially the constant reimaging of Hitler as some sort of mad genius who came "this close" to ruling the world every other 5 minutes to hear some alternative history fanboys gush on about it.
I agree, I'm sure some is really meant as a cautionary tale but, the Alt History of the nature, "What if the bad guys had won?" Does often come across as a bit creepy for the reasons you say.

And, history is pretty clear, Hitler almost certainly cost the German war effort more than he contributed.
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Old 20th May 2022, 08:15 AM   #214
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Oh I'm not saying the entire scope of alternative history is just Nazi/Racist fan fiction. I mean WWII and the Civil War were watershed moments in history, some "What If"ing is to be expected. The Man in the High Castle is a minor classic and Harry Turtledove can be counted on to crank out a good yarn and neither of those examples had the "ickyness" I'm talking about.

My issues are:

- The fact that for all practical purposes WWII and Civil War is all of where all the focus is. Quick what's the last Revolutionary War alt-history work you read?

- It's almost always "What if the Nazis or Confederacy Won" instead of "Hey what if the Allies won even MORE and the war ended with Hitler breaking down and crying and pissing his pants like a little bitch in front the Nuremburg Trials?" I'm not saying you can't write an alternative universe fiction where the Nazis/Confederacy win without turning them into the heroes, or at least villain protagonist, I'm just saying a lot of writers can't seem to do it or don't seem to want to.

- You can write believable stories where the Nazis or Confederacy win, but you have change a LOT of moments in history to do it. Neither the Nazis or the Confederacy ever had that "For want of a nail" moments alt-history writers are so in love with. No one single moment was gonna make Hitler or the South win. They would have needed a long string of very good luck.
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Old 20th May 2022, 09:27 AM   #215
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
In the past I've talked about how I get an "icky" feeling off of with how much gusto the "Oh if only X had happened Hitler would have won!" and "Oh if only Y had happened the South would have won!" reimaginings of history have because they nearly always brush up against wish fulfillment fantasies and they are always wrong. Hitler was never going to win WWII and the South was never going to win the Civil War.

Essentially the constant reimaging of Hitler as some sort of mad genius who came "this close" to ruling the world every other 5 minutes to hear some alternative history fanboys gush on about it.
Oh absolutely. If you're pontificating on "what if X had won" as part of some sort of alt-history world building for something like Man in the High Castle then fine, but you should know that it never would have happened. The South could only ever have won if a number of the great powers at the time had supported it and that was never going to happen. Germany could only have won WWII if somehow every single citizen of the Soviet Union and America had dropped dead at once for no reason.
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Old 20th May 2022, 09:47 AM   #216
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Originally Posted by MarkCorrigan View Post
Germany could only have won WWII if somehow every single citizen of the Soviet Union and America had dropped dead at once for no reason.
"A congenital heart defect has felled Tatum , moments before entering the ring." - Homer's imagined strategy as to how he was going to beat the Heavyweight Champion.
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Old 20th May 2022, 09:55 AM   #217
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Oh I'm not saying the entire scope of alternative history is just Nazi/Racist fan fiction. I mean WWII and the Civil War were watershed moments in history, some "What If"ing is to be expected. The Man in the High Castle is a minor classic and Harry Turtledove can be counted on to crank out a good yarn and neither of those examples had the "ickyness" I'm talking about.

My issues are:

- The fact that for all practical purposes WWII and Civil War is all of where all the focus is. Quick what's the last Revolutionary War alt-history work you read?

- It's almost always "What if the Nazis or Confederacy Won" instead of "Hey what if the Allies won even MORE and the war ended with Hitler breaking down and crying and pissing his pants like a little bitch in front the Nuremburg Trials?" I'm not saying you can't write an alternative universe fiction where the Nazis/Confederacy win without turning them into the heroes, or at least villain protagonist, I'm just saying a lot of writers can't seem to do it or don't seem to want to.

- You can write believable stories where the Nazis or Confederacy win, but you have change a LOT of moments in history to do it. Neither the Nazis or the Confederacy ever had that "For want of a nail" moments alt-history writers are so in love with. No one single moment was gonna make Hitler or the South win. They would have needed a long string of very good luck.
Nothing there I disagree with.
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Old 20th May 2022, 10:04 AM   #218
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Originally Posted by MarkCorrigan View Post
Oh absolutely. If you're pontificating on "what if X had won" as part of some sort of alt-history world building for something like Man in the High Castle then fine, but you should know that it never would have happened. The South could only ever have won if a number of the great powers at the time had supported it and that was never going to happen. Germany could only have won WWII if somehow every single citizen of the Soviet Union and America had dropped dead at once for no reason.
An issue I see is that as we move away from a point in history we often seem to end up believing the propaganda that was produced at the time, so Hitler was a certain existential threat to us rather than a more considered reflection of the facts. (Churchill's reputation today as the greatest ever Briton is another example.)
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Old 20th May 2022, 10:07 AM   #219
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God yes, the lionising of Churchill really annoys me. Yes, he gave some great speeches and probably did help keep morale high during the war but he was a shockingly poor Prime Minister during peace time and was a total lunatic who wanted to immediately rearm Germany and invade the USSR. I don't understand why people fall over themselves to talk about how wonderful he was and that's without his deeply racist attitudes towards the colonies.
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Old 20th May 2022, 11:43 AM   #220
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"And in local news. Nightvale Elementary School has announced that history class is being replaced with Alternative History Class. Subjects next year will include What if Germany Won WWII, What if the South Won the Civil War, and the AP Level What If the South Won WWII."
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Old 20th May 2022, 12:05 PM   #221
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I guess another piece of pseudo history I once sorta believed is that the USSR was one of the good guys in WW2.
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Old 20th May 2022, 02:53 PM   #222
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I don't think this thread is about pseudohistory anymore.
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Old 20th May 2022, 02:54 PM   #223
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Old Yesterday, 07:42 AM   #224
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
Well, the wikipedia page includes many critical citations, even if you out of hand dismiss Finkelstein's exhaustive work for dubious reasons.
Finkelstein's 'exhaustive work' consisted of a lot of ad hominems, and some factual errors.
The critical citations on the wiki page do not contain the serious academic critiques that would be necessary to dismiss the claims in Peters' book. That includes this one:


Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
I read as far as the paywall would let me, and there was no actual factual rebuttal of the book.
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Old Yesterday, 03:43 PM   #225
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Again not exactly the intent of the thread but close...

I have a hard time really "scaling" history properly. Like don't get me wrong I know on an intellectual level that this happened before this and that this happened WAAAY before that and all that, I'm not ignorant of the raw facts but on base, raw, emotional "feel" I'm real bad about just sort of halfway lumping everything together into vague "recent past", "decent past" and "real distant past."

Like I know that the Pyramids were as old to Cleopatra as Cleopatra is to us. I know this as a fact, but it doesn't "feel" the same.
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Old Yesterday, 06:26 PM   #226
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Again not exactly the intent of the thread but close...

I have a hard time really "scaling" history properly. Like don't get me wrong I know on an intellectual level that this happened before this and that this happened WAAAY before that and all that, I'm not ignorant of the raw facts but on base, raw, emotional "feel" I'm real bad about just sort of halfway lumping everything together into vague "recent past", "decent past" and "real distant past."

Like I know that the Pyramids were as old to Cleopatra as Cleopatra is to us. I know this as a fact, but it doesn't "feel" the same.
There's probably some inherent bias there, because yep, you're right. I know that the pyramids were built like 2000 years before Cleopatra, but still, seems more the same than 1500 AD feels to now.
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Old Yesterday, 06:29 PM   #227
TragicMonkey
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
Again not exactly the intent of the thread but close...

I have a hard time really "scaling" history properly. Like don't get me wrong I know on an intellectual level that this happened before this and that this happened WAAAY before that and all that, I'm not ignorant of the raw facts but on base, raw, emotional "feel" I'm real bad about just sort of halfway lumping everything together into vague "recent past", "decent past" and "real distant past."

Like I know that the Pyramids were as old to Cleopatra as Cleopatra is to us. I know this as a fact, but it doesn't "feel" the same.
The further back you go, the less stuff happened. There were fewer people, spread out less, with fewer things to do. Most of human existence was pre-historic versus historic anyway, and most of the historic stuff was pretty much subsistence agriculture and primitive religions. As a species we didn't even become mildly interesting until about three thousand years ago.
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Old Yesterday, 07:13 PM   #228
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Originally Posted by Cosmic Yak View Post
I have this book, and I have also read the wiki page on it. Whilst Wikipedia claims the book has been debunked, and you also repeat this claim, if you read the page, it's actually not at all clear that this is indeed the case.
For a start, the most prominent critics are Norman Finkelstein, Noam Chomsky's attack dog, and Chomsky himself. I have very little time for Chomsky: he is a poor scholar, with a record of incorrect claims. Then, whilst it is acknowledged that Peters made some errors in the book, the central premise, that many of the Palestinian Arabs were not descendants of long-settled families, but actually quite recent immigrants to the area, has not, AFAIK, been disproved. The records Peters draws from are there, and are accurate.
I think this issue is still very much up in the air. If there is valid academic criticism of this book and its claim, I would like to read it, so if anyone's got any, do please post it.
When the book was published in Israel it was torn to pieces in reviews.

If you want a review read Yehoshua Porath's review of the book published in the NYRB, Jan. 16 1986.

He describes the book has:

Quote:
The unfortunate thing about Joan Peters’s From Time Immemorial (1984) is that from a position of apparently great learning and research, she attempts to refute the Arab myths merely by substituting the Jewish myths for them.
And he further states:

Quote:
According to the Zionist myth, only modern Jewish colonization brought about the economic development of Palestine and improved the hard conditions there. These developments, it was said, attracted poor Arabs from the stagnant neighboring countries. Their numbers grew faster than the Jewish immigrants because the malicious British authorities always encouraged them to come and did much to help to absorb them, both economically and legally.
and

Quote:
The more extreme you were in your Zionist beliefs the more thoroughly you propagated the Jewish mythology. What is surprising is that Joan Peters still writes as if the Zionist myths were wholly true and relevant, notwithstanding all the historical work that modifies or discredits them.
More quotes:

Quote:
The precise demographic history of modern Palestine cannot be summed up briefly, but its main features are clear enough and they are very different from the fanciful description Mrs. Peters gives.
Quote:
But even if we put together all the cases she cites, one cannot escape the conclusion that most of the growth of the Palestinian Arab community resulted from a process of natural increase.
Quote:
Demographically speaking, however, neither movement of population was significant in comparison to the decisive factor of natural increase.
Quote:
(I am afraid though that her command of both Arabic and Hebrew is far below the standards required of anyone who is engaged in original research in Palestinian history.)
Quote:
Mrs. Peters’s use of sources is very selective and tendentious, to say the least.
I could go on.

In the March 26, 1986 issue of the NYRB Yehoshua Porath replies to two letters critical of his review and basically says Joan Peter's book From Time Immemorial, isn't very good.

If you want another review see the review and letters in The London Review of Books by Ian and David Gilmour, published on February 7, 1985 which also savages Peter's book. https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v07/...udo-travellers. Revisiting an old controversy that has been long settled is tiresome.

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Old Today, 07:26 AM   #229
Cosmic Yak
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Originally Posted by Pacal View Post
If you want another review see the review and letters in The London Review of Books by Ian and David Gilmour, published on February 7, 1985 which also savages Peter's book. https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v07/...udo-travellers. Revisiting an old controversy that has been long settled is tiresome.
I spotted that review in the references on the wiki article, It's quite a long and involved read, but I'm working my way through it.
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