It’s time everyone admitted it, History is the hardest degree
We’re not spoon-fed like everyone else
It’s often said that History is a bit of a shit degree. It’s not got the obvious job prospects that a Finance degree holds, and some parts of the past are a bit dull.
There can be plenty of times when you’re sat doodling in a lecture, whilst being subjected to the monotonous voice of a lecturer, waffling on about food and how important diet was in 16th century England in order to understanding the social order.
Yet, History is seen as an ‘easy’ degree, a cop-out three years before you inevitably do your PGCE at Oxbridge and find yourself using a red-pen in a South London comprehensive to mark a 12 mark essay on whether Hitler really had one ball.
Stop telling me how easy my degree is, and that there’s only one career path destined for me. Like our ancestors, you have no idea of the pain that we go through to getting our 2:1 and a bottle of Brut.
The amount of ‘required reading’
Sure, you can get away with not doing the reading. But, what are you going to do when the world’s leading professor in the niche subject that you’ve been forced to study asks you for an opinion?
You can only bullshit properly if you have a vague understanding of a topic, and that means reading.
Most weeks have an average of 4/5 readings per module, and when a reading takes an hour on average, those seemingly endless free hours where you can watch Made in Chelsea are filled with E.P. Thompson and the Moral Economy.
But then, if you don’t read enough, then say goodbye to that 2:1.
Accessing sources is as hard as writing the essay
So, you’re doing your essay on the Soviet economy, and you want to know the in’s and out’s of the economic system in Stalingrad. Well, you can’t. Because some people in History are dickheads and decided to erase all sources for us, the budding Historians of the future, to analyse.
As a result of this, there are so many sources that you’d love to use. You know it’s true, but all of the internet barriers and how History has been produced means that you can’t. You simply can’t.
Wave goodbye to that hope of being a beacon of light in a historical field. You’re stuck with the same 5 sources that everyone’s had. No original argument for you.
Good luck trying to be original
For a first, you need to have very high quality work, with a full understanding. You need to demonstrate maturity; a reasoned argument that is full of your own idea.
But, how can you do this on a topic which is so full of debate that there’s no more original thought left? Have fun working out a part of the Nazi Party that hasn’t been touched upon. Historical analysis on the Nazi Party is more saturated than the sat fats on a Full English.
Historiography is a little fucker
Developing your essay and exam technique comes with being faced by the main word. If I get “where is the Historiography”, “you should definitely read some Foucault” or “I’d recommend this book to assist your non-assessed essay”, then I’m going to cry.
Historiography is a dreaded term, and nobody knows what it actually means. Historiography is made to make everything clear, but it’s so vague.
Historiography will haunt every History student forevermore. You can never think of something in the same way.
How do you nuance an idea? How do you become fresh? What is History? These are questions that have never been answered, and never will.
Where is the budget?
What’s wrong with the world mama, the unjust spending for different departments at the university, History ain’t got no mama.
History buildings are without a doubt, the ugliest buildings on campus that you will ever see.
It’s a hell-hole of floors, full of BA students finding out they were close to the 2:1 or a first, but their tutor gave them a 59/69 because it wasn’t that good enough. (What does that mean?)
History buildings have no personality. Ironic, considering that History is full of studying the most iconic personalities that have ever lived.
The only thing I’ve personally come close to from a History budget is being given vodka in a seminar and getting drunk and doing shots with my tutor.
Just because you see the club full of History students in the club as they haven’t got a 9am, doesn’t mean that our degree is piss easy.
We’ve paid for our library membership, we’ve got to uni, and it’s hard to keep motivated every day with so few contact hours. Nobody knows if they’re saying anything right, because no opinion is wrong.
Apart from the war, we definitely won the war.