You hear a lot today about the phenomenon of Fake News.

Often, the news is not factually incorrect on the surface but the narratives are deliberately misleading or they simply promote a fake and superficial way of life.

Now, I want to ask you a question… if the news is fake, how real do you think the history is?

History tends to be written by the most violent who win the wars and have the most money. It is typically written to put a spotlight on their heroism while demonizing their enemies and the vanquished.

So, what’s fake about the narratives of history often told in the mass media?

The Untold History of the Modern West

In the early 20th century and advent of mass production, there was a huge shift in the West toward a mass, consumer-based society controlled by industrialists and technocrats from the top.

This has led to all kinds of problems in the world that I believe have culminated in the global ecological crisis and the potential breakdown of industrial civilizational we face today.

If you want to learn the history of how we got to where we are today, I have found no better documentarian and storyteller than the BBC’s Adam Curtis.

He is is an excellent storyteller with a unique ability to uncover the false narratives of modern history while re-telling the events that have shaped our world without entertaining conspiracy theories.

The Best of Adam Curtis’ Documentaries:

If you want to gain a deeper sense of why we’re in the mess we’re in today and how it might be fixed, I highly recommend watching these 5 documentary films made by Adam Curtis.

If you’re new to Adam Curtis and his artistic documentary style, you should start by watching the 5-minute trailer for his latest film HyperNormalisation.

1. HyperNormalisation

The story of the rise of fake news in the post-truth world and how economic statistics are manipulated in the West today to create a false sense of progress and stability.

2. Bitter Lake

The story of the American-Saudi Alliance and how the petrodollar gave America a seemingly unlimited credit card and lead to today’s endless wars in the Middle East.

3. All Watched Over By Machines of Loving Grace

The dark side of Silicon Valley’s techno-utopianism and how technology has lead people into filter bubbles and ideological-slanted safe spaces that distort their view of society and isolate them from alternative perspectives.

4. The Power of Nightmares

The story of the powerful business interests behind the War on Terrorism and how politicians have found it more convenient to use the fear of nightmares to manipulate and control democratic societies instead of offering a vision of a better world.

5. The Century of the Self

Today, there are twice as many journalists working in the public relations and advertising industries than in journalism in most Western democratic societies (a complete reversal from the 1970s).

The term public relations was coined by Sigmund Freud’s nephew Edward Bernays as a way to shape opinion in democratic societies by using advertising and political spectacles designed to manipulate our unconscious desires for validation and group connection.

Have you these documentaries by Adam Curtis inspired you to think differently about modern history and what you read in the news?

Adam Curtis: A Documentarian Exploring Power and How It Works
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