1/26/14

The Death Battle of Howard Zinn and Doris Kearns Goodwin

How Should History Be Told? 


Note: The title of the piece may be a bit much considering that Zinn is dead and Goodwin is not, but hopefully you'll get the point and forgive me. 

Today I finished Howard Zinn's "A People's History of the United States," an incredible book written, in Zinn's words, "…to tell the story of the discovery of America from the point of view of the Arawaks, of the Constitution from the standpoint of the slaves, of Andrew Jackson as seen by the Cherokees, of the Civil War as seen by the NEw York Irish, of the Mexican war as seen by the deserting soldiers of Scott's army, of the rise of industrialism as seen by the young women in the Lowell textile mills…" etc, etc, you get the idea.  "A People's History" came highly recommended by friends, acquaintances, and the internet, and the book is so well-regarded that some progressive high school history teachers use it as an alternative history text. I'm also pretty sure that Zinn's concluding chapter, "The Coming Revolt of the Guards" is responsible for the Occupy epithet, "The 99%."