As we’ve noted before, there’s one element of history where our textbooks aimed at the Christian homeschooling market actually manage to be fairly accurate: for some reason, they’re able to discuss wars without bringing very much Godstuff into the discussion. They’re happy to sermonize about the run-up to wars, the consequences of wars, and the long-term significance of wars, but somehow, the actual battles and maneuvers don’t seek to invoke any divine interventions. And so it is with The Great War: once you’re talking about who did what and where, these books are largely indistinguishable from secular textbooks.
On the other hand, there are little nuggets like this, from our 8th-grade textbook, America: Land I Love (A Beka, 1994):
In the early 1900s, while America continued to enjoy the fruits of spiritual revival, the spiritual condition in Europe was alarming. The ideas of Darwinian evolution and Marxist socialism had become popular in Europe, and the cold, formal state churches of Europe offered little resistance. Evolutionists presented man as an animal, failing to recognize the sanctity of human life. Socialists and Communists reinforced evolution by promoting atheism and violent revolutions as in Russia (1917) to guarantee the “survival of the fittest.”
In 1914, spiritually bankrupt Europe found an excuse for war when, in the tiny country of Bosnia, a young Serbian terrorist shot and killed the heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary, Archduke Ferdinand, and his wife
Having established that secularism and Darwin, plus a lack of evangelical zeal, had led Europe to moral weakness, the book then gets on with the srs bsns of all those entangling alliances and battles, and we don’t hear any more about European moral rot. In a war that involved mass infantry and cavalry charges into barbed wire and machine-gun nests, poison gas attacks, and criminally incompetent British generals, you’d think they’d find something to condemn, maybe. But there are several nice maps. READ MORE »