Talk:2086: History Department
The business about the 1750s probably has something to do with the British doing their changeover from Julian to Gregorian calendars then, but you can't look too carefully at the details. 126.96.36.199 18:51, 17 December 2018 (UTC)
- There's also the joke about taking longer to study a period of time than that time took to pass. 188.8.131.52 19:31, 17 December 2018 (UTC)
- I think it's also a reference to the fact that we are creating more and more data in the digital age, leading to the problem of there being too much data to keep up with. 184.108.40.206 01:13, 18 December 2018 (UTC)
Two sides to the same coin? We normally think about historians studying time periods on the order of years, decades, or even longer periods (e.g. the Dark Ages), which naturally takes less time than the original era. Another joke is the idea that an entire department is devoted to such narrow periods, but maybe it's a really small college. Barmar (talk) 20:04, 17 December 2018 (UTC)
It seems to me that the humor is based on the incongruity of thinking in business-like terms of productivity and gains and losses in a history department.
I think the 1750s reference is to Tristram Shandy.