About Jeff Maynard

History is About the Future

There is a certain feeling among educators, and even politicians, that history (because it is perceived to relate only to the past) will not interest people, or worse, is not relevant today. It is a mistake to think that way.

History to a group of people, a community, or a nation, is like childhood to an individual. It shapes who we are. More importantly, it determines how we react and the choices we make, both in times of stress, danger or hardship, as well as in times of celebration and joy.

If an individual had a loving, supportive childhood, full of adventure and happy times, that individual will carry those memories into their adult life, and those memories will influence their decision making, lifestyle, and their total life experience.

About Jeff Maynard Author

Conversely, if an individual suffered a traumatic childhood, they often carry the scars of that trauma all their life. Telling the person with a traumatic childhood to simply ignore it, or pretend it never happened, does not work. Worse, expecting a person to look back on their life and fabricate false memories in the hope the fabrication will become their reality, will not work either. In many ways it is more harmful to reinvent the past than it is to confront it and seek resolution.

As a nation, a race, an ethnic group, or even as a worldwide community, our history determines how we face the challenges of the future.

There is a current push in films, television series, and novels to ‘insert’ minority groups into roles that, historically, they would not have been permitted to hold. Such a push doesn’t help that minority group today. In fact, it is condescending to them, and demeans the struggles and prejudices they had to overcome, and often continue to face.

There is also a move to erase certain events from history in the vain hope that, with time, people will come to forget they happened. Ignoring events will not make them any less traumatic or wrong. Not remembering them only leaves communities susceptible to the injustices, corruption or criminal activity to happen unopposed again. Similarly, remembering and celebrating great deeds of courage, perseverance and integrity, encourages people to aspire to higher standards in their own lives.

Never, in the short time people have populated this tiny speck of rock spinning insignificantly in a remote corner of an infinite universe, has it been more important to examine our history openly and honestly, so that we can address the issues that confront us all.

History is about the future.

Discovery in the 21st Century

The world is a globe. And people are explorers.

Because the world is a globe it has a finite surface area. No matter in which direction we travel, we will eventually circle the globe to arrive back where we started. Nor can we leave the surface of that globe to go either up or down without specialised equipment. Even then, the trip will be temporary, because we must return to the surface of the globe to survive.

In the 20th century we reached the North and South Poles. We crossed and mapped every continent. We reached the top of the highest mountain and we reached the bottom of the deepest ocean. In short, we discovered, mapped and explored the surface of our global home. There is no mountain we can reach to gaze upon something unseen on the other side. No jungle in which we can find a lost civilisation. No physical journey we can undertake without knowing what will be at the destination.

Yet we are explorers, and there is still one place we can go to discover. We can go back in time. We can discover a story.


Jeff Maynard Author Non Fiction

Imagine for a moment a soldier in the trenches in World War I, knowing he is about to go ‘over the top’ and charge the enemy. A soldier realising he is most likely about to die. A soldier who takes out a scrap of paper and with a pencil hurriedly writes a letter to his family so say goodbye. Now imagine that letter remaining unread for 100 years until you chance upon it. You discover it, read it, and it transports you back in time. Or imagine discovering the lost journals of an explorer. Or photographs they took when they first went somewhere no one else had been.

There are many stories from our past still waiting to be discovered.

Welcome to the website of Jeff Maynard, Adventure Historian.

I hope you come on this journey with me, through my books and films, and share the joy of discovery and adventure that the 21st century offers.

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