TORONTO, Canada — In the back seat of an introductory world history class at York University, freshman James Howard, continues to insist that Emperor Nero has been misunderstood by classical historians. Howard, 19, insists that the Roman emperor who ruled until 68 AD was in fact female. This has continued for multiple lessons, disturbing both the lecturer and the students, causing tension in the class.
Howard has been vocal about his intention to openly challenge mainstream historical convention. “Perhaps it is all of you that must consider if contemporary historical knowledge as we know it is filtered through patriarchal standards,” Howard tells Anime Maru while intermittently tapping his phone screen.
Though Howard’s theory has been dismissed by both his professor and other historians, it does not end with Nero. Howard believes other historical figures such as Oda Nobunaga, Francis Drake, and Miyu Edelfelt were all in fact women.
“If you don’t believe me, just search their names on Google images,” Howard quipped.