The studying of history is surrounded by many cliches. One of the most common is definitely that we can learn about the mistakes made in the past so that we may not repeat them here in the present. Personally, I would say in response that its more like we learn how many times we repeat the same mistakes. Anyway, what I find fascinating about the past is that we see not the just the past, but we see what we have the potential to do and be. From viewing the past, the countless wars, disasters, heroes and villains, we can see our potential for good and evil. Take the Holocaust for example. This deliberate attempt to industrially exterminate an entire people shows how low humanity can fall and the acts of inventive evil that it can create and realise.
Yet, despite many instances of great evil, there has also been countless acts of goodness performed. When thinking of positive events from history, I see the Civil Rights movement in the United States, where a marginalised element of the world's most powerful nation refused to accept being second class, and campaigned to achieve the equality that they deserved.
We are all people, and the people of the past are our ancestors. In a nutshell, studying the history of humanity is obviously very important. To just ooze more typical history student/fanatic ideas, the past surrounds us and we see it everyday. It is something inescapable. This was just some rambling from myself but I just wanted to try and articulate what I believe is important about studying the past, as well as what it means to me. This is not even getting me started on whether or not we can actually know about the past at all! Im looking at you postmodernism👀👀.