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Thread: old book A People's History of the United states 1492-present (1999)

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    old book A People's History of the United states 1492-present (1999)

    This book confirmed for me that our conditions haven't changed much throughout history. The rich and powerful set up governments to benefit those already in power. It was sad to read and I skipped much of the detail. The chapter on Robber Barons in the 20s sounds like Robber Barons in 2016. As I taught 4th graders for 31 years, I tried to incorporate some reality into our history units without destroying their confidence in being able to change the world. Perhaps I should have pushed revolution! Not an uplifting history.

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    A great book. Zinn's wife went to my alma mater

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    I read that book many years ago, and probably should re-read and give to my grown children. But it is pretty much the same in many ways huh,

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    It's distressing to see that nothing has truly changed.

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    Having been once challenged by a friend to read Zinn (she had to read Russell Kirk in return), I remember being surprised that so many people took him seriously. The Peoples' History struck me more as simple-minded agitprop rather than history. I remarked to my friend that Zinn does to history what Ayn Rand does to literature: joylessly twisting great human truths in the service of narrow ideology. Of course, she came out of the project with a similar low opinion of Kirk, but I argued that Kirk wasn't pretending that his polemic was historical analysis.

    The best summation of A Peoples' History I've read was the New Republic calling it "Howard Zinn's influential mutilations of American history". https://newrepublic.com/article/1125...erican-history

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    Quote Originally Posted by nswef View Post
    As I taught 4th graders for 31 years, I tried to incorporate some reality into our history units without destroying their confidence in being able to change the world. Perhaps I should have pushed revolution!
    My elementary school teachers taught us that revolution was a duty.

    "But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."

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    Whether or not he is 100% correct it is still another version that can challenge what it taught in schools. What I recall from school history is kinda BS. All about wars and memorizing with no understanding of connections of events or much of anything outside the US. I can recall virtually nothing outside of the Western world, except when we went to war. But maybe someone else got a different education,

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    And the 5th dimension sang it so well!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zoe Girl View Post
    Whether or not he is 100% correct it is still another version that can challenge what it taught in schools. What I recall from school history is kinda BS. All about wars and memorizing with no understanding of connections of events or much of anything outside the US. I can recall virtually nothing outside of the Western world, except when we went to war. But maybe someone else got a different education,
    Too often, Howard Zinn is what is taught in schools. He's not an iconoclast, he's the icon. He's not another version, he's the dogma. I think there was a kerfuffle in one of the midwestern states a few years ago when the governor objected to it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LDAHL View Post
    Too often, Howard Zinn is what is taught in schools. He's not an iconoclast, he's the icon. He's not another version, he's the dogma. I think there was a kerfuffle in one of the midwestern states a few years ago when the governor objected to it.
    Maybe in some college courses - Zinn was nothing like the dogma I was taught as history going through school.

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