Do you know about Big History? Sometimes you may not. The concept called Big History became popular for the first time in 2014. It’s because of an article in New York Times Magazine which was written by David Christian. He was a giant figure in developing this Big History concept. This concept about the origin of the world is very amazing and it made me curious. Hopefully, I think you may also have such curiosity to know about this Big History. So in this article, I hope to bring you some basic information and idea about this concept of Big History.
#What is Big History?
Usually, historians define history from the beginning of written records. They include many things such as special events that happened in the world, great figures who ruled the world as well as laws and regulations which were there.
But, can you understand there is a gap in this history? There is no mention of what happened before people learned to write. With the technologies used in Archeology, many artifacts have been identified which happened thousands of years to the era of writing. And also when considering the written history, historians doubt that sometimes ancient rulers and writers have written information in the shape of what they wanted their future generations to think about them. This may happen because what we call “people’s history” was not important in that Era.
But science has built up a story which way back to 3.8 million years to the time period in which Big Bang happened. This Big History concept takes us back to the beginning and turns that scientific story into ordinary history. According to the developers, the purpose of the Big History concept is to allow everyone to understand the development of the universe after the Big Bang from the origins of planets, the start of life on earth, and the development of humans.
When comparing to these overall 13.8 billion years, the development of humans and life on earth costed only a small percentage of that time. So for the ease of understanding David Christian and colleagues have separated Big History into eight major thresholds. Each of those thresholds represents major development stages in the universe.
#How this Big History is taught?
The story told in Big History moves beyond normal history and it focuses on information from science and social science. The first effort to teach about Big History at a university level started at Dominican University at California by Cynthia Brown. And also David Christian and Cynthia Brown were the founders of IBHA (International Big History Association) which now consists of scientists, scholars, and historians from many fields throughout the world.
What is the difference that Big History makes? Turning the scientific story about the development of the universe into a historical story has been very popular among many students. With the combination of history and science, the Big Bang history has been able to point out current social and environmental problems on a large scale. And another impact is the effects of the Big History on religious beliefs. The students from different cultures and different religions have to adjust their beliefs with the evolution of life according to the Big History.