, 9 tweets, 4 min read
This is a good example for talking about how people use and abuse sources and why it is valuable to demand academic standards. short #THREAD #Mughal #history #Aurangzeb
First red flag - No source is given for the picture with text. It is a slightly adapted version of what's on the Wikipedia page for Dara Shukoh. Wikipedia's pages are full of misinformation on Indian history. Case in point: Bicholim conflict.
Another problem. The source is Manucci. Honestly, for all The Hindu Right goes on against people like me because I'm of European descent, man, do they really rely on European sources too much for Indian history. Manucci especially...
Manucci made some stuff up. Numerous scholars have written about this. It doesn't make Manucci worthless. In fact, I cite him in my Aurangzeb book, but you have to think about what Manucci was likely to exaggerate and compare him to other sources.
There are dozens of sources on the War of Succession. But here, the tweeter cites only one that happens to uphold his worldview. That's not history; that's cherry-picking, which is a bad thing.
The tweeter also conveniently omits some of Manucci's harsh words on Dara Shukoh. To cite my summary on one passage (from my Aurangzeb book): #Aurangzeb #DaraShukoh
Going back to the original tweet, it accuses groups of liberal of preferring Aurangzeb to Dara. This is a ridiculous, straw man argument. As best as I can tell, I'm allegedly leading the Aurangzeb lobby, except that I talk about his extreme violence and analyze him, nothing more.
The original tweet uses language that indicates #Islamophobia, a form of bigotry. This tells us about the tweeter's cultural context and his ideological commitments, which are at odds with the ethics of analyzing the past espoused by historians.
That's all for now folks. Please take this thread as a small reminder of the value of the humanities, which empower us to think critically, analyze, and come to our own conclusions rather than being misled by folks with bad arguments.
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