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The House of Rumour
"Whenever he's got a new book out I drop everything." - David Bowie
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Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

Created: 04/19/13

Replies: 7

Posted Apr. 19, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
admin

Join Date: 10/11/10

Posts: 369

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Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

The theme of "secret history" runs throughout the novel, and the book has been compared to works as diverse as Dan Brown's "The Da Vinci Code" and Don DeLillo's "Underworld". How does the book change the way you think about "official" history?


Posted Apr. 25, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lesleyf

Join Date: 05/14/11

Posts: 6

RE: Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

Reading a lot of history books has given me several ideas about what it means to read "facts" from a particular source. It all depends on from whom you heard the version of the story! The quote from Ovid was brilliant. Rumours and gossip spread by Roman historians about Cleopatra survived into modern times and only now are being corrected. My favorite example of how false thinking, guesstimates, and assumptions become facts is an obscure book called The Motel of the Mysteries by David Macaulay in which he debunks the theories of archaeologists. It was published by Houghton Mifflin in 1979. House of Rumours kept reminding me of Macaulay's story. If you can find it it is worth the read.


Posted Apr. 25, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
lisag

Join Date: 01/12/12

Posts: 298

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RE: Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

lesleyf, thanks for the book recommendation. Sounds fascinating. I'm putting it on my already out of hand reading list. As I said in answer to another question, I'm normally anal about the frustrating quality of historical fiction, and generally avoid the whole genre, but when I know so little about the characters themselves - as in this case - I had less trouble with that.


Posted Apr. 26, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
Lea Ann

Join Date: 04/20/11

Posts: 63

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RE: Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

I too thank lesleyf for the book recommendation and have written it down to look for soon. I am a fan of historical fiction and if the writer is skilled, find myself caught up in a plot that includes both fact and fiction and sometimes have a difficult time separating the two. As far as "official" history goes, yes, the truth, if you will, depends upon the writer and his or her biases. As readers we need to search multiple sources often times to determine what is actually true and what has been added to or subtracted from. It can sometimes be an interesting search to ferret out the "real" truth.


Posted Apr. 30, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
joyces

Join Date: 06/16/11

Posts: 214

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RE: Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

I think we all know of many instances where the history we were taught in school was far from the true picture
of what really happened. For example the treatment of the Native Indians of this country which was pretty horrible was never mentioned in my elementary school history book. That is just one example of the "spin"
that can happen when we have only one side of any historical event recorded. This same thing happens all the time all over the world and frequently we need to question our governments decisions as we are usually only getting one side of the story


Posted May. 05, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
juliaa

Join Date: 12/03/11

Posts: 64

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RE: Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

What The House of Rumor did for the way I view "official" history is to remind me that behind the "official" version of history there are real persons (and I would use this term to encompass the fictional characters as well) whose lives are affected by the historical event, and those effects are seldom recorded in the official version of the historical event that is passed on to the public through the media and subsequently in text books.


Posted May. 07, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
bonnieclyde

Join Date: 03/07/13

Posts: 16

RE: Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

Thanks lesleyf for the book mention, I am currently trying to find a copy. I think most people know that history or news just depends on your viewpoint. Fox News and CNN can report the same event and have a totally different take on it. Only time will tell what will be remembered. In countries where the press and news are controlled by the government du jour it is even worse.


Posted May. 07, 2013 Go to Top | Bottom | link | alert
sarahc

Join Date: 02/02/12

Posts: 6

RE: Did The House of Rumour change the way you think about "official" history?

i am not sure that we ever get the real history reported to us. it is always slanted toward a political view or a desire outcome. I did find the blend of real history and pure fiction. I wonder how much of that (pure fiction) is actually passed off as history.


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