rewrite history

rewrite history

1. To create a false narrative about how a historical event happened so as to promote one's own personal agenda or beliefs. The government is being accused of rewriting history by instructing schools to use textbooks that paint its formation 200 years ago (and the subsequent decimation of the indigenous population here) in a more positive light.
2. To achieve a level of success that sets a new record or goes against a history of performing poorly. Used especially in reference to sports. After missing out on the playoffs for nearly 50 years in a row, the team has been on a huge winning streak this season, and it has a chance to rewrite history by not only making the playoffs, but winning the whole championship. The up-and-coming player is rewriting history with his stunning debut year on the field.
See also: history, rewrite

rewrite history

If someone rewrites history, they try to make people believe that something happened in a particular way, when that is not the truth. They were good at rewriting history when such a process suited them. As Orwell pointed out, history can be and often is rewritten to suit the needs of the present. Note: This expression is used to express disapproval.
See also: history, rewrite

rewrite history

select or interpret events from the past in a way that suits your own particular purposes.
See also: history, rewrite
References in periodicals archive ?
Hindu nationalists in India want to rewrite history to suggest that Alauddin was an evil figure.
After reigning supreme for the past two years and joining inaugural titlist Santy Barnachea as multiple winners, Morales, 32, is determined to rewrite history as he sets out for another title quest in the eighth edition of this annual race, considered as the biggest in the country.
May I remind the so-called "progressives" on both sides of the Channel when they try to rewrite history, that you simply cannot bury the truth.
ALEX Salmond was yesterday accused of trying to rewrite history after claiming he never said 2014's independence referendum was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
RICKIE FOWLER will have to rewrite history if he hopes to win the 'fifth major' this week.
His novel "Animal Farm" satirizes how despotic governments rewrite history.
The puritanical bid to rewrite history by a number of selfserving students was pathetic.
uk 1 Birmingham's ancient Koran 'could rewrite history of Islam' 2 Atal Nawaz and Mushy named as Small Heath Porsche crash victims 3 Gang of West Bromwich thugs drag teen from bike 4 Birmingham sperm bank paying PS35 for donations desperate for new recruits 5 Tributes paid to Billy Wright's widow Joy Beverley after singing star dies at 91
Their desperate attempt to rewrite history should not be taken seriously.
This desperate attempt to rewrite history will not wash when on every test he set himself, this Chancellor's Plan A has badly failed - on living standards, growth and the deficit.
The new Hillsborough inquests won't even begin until next year and already there has been another attempt to rewrite history - and this time, it's recent history.
By analyzing the recent visit of BDI leader to the United States, analyst Jason Miko comments for Dnevnik that to him this simply means that Ali Ahmeti is conducting an active campaign for winning over the kinship using the charisma and, for reasons only known to him, he is trying to rewrite history and affect the bearers of decisions of the presence who most probably do not remember yesterday or the past.
They also must question their own roles in attempting to rewrite history.
Tory MP Mike Weatherley, chairman of the all-party parliamentary group of retail crime, said: "There is a shocking attempt by some police authorities to rewrite history and say the riots were merely incidents of violent disorder.
As a former Speaker of Parliament, I can say that no parliament or law can rewrite history, Arinc stressed.