A People's History of the United States

A People's History of the United States


Book - 2003
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Baker & Taylor
A revised edition of the American Book Award-nominated chronicle of U.S. history is told from a grassroots perspective and provides an analysis of important events from 1492 through the current war on terrorism.

“It’s a wonderful, splendid book—a book that should be read by every American, student or otherwise, who wants to understand his country, its true history, and its hope for the future.” —Howard Fast, author of Spartacus and The Immigrants

“[It] should be required reading.” —Eric Foner, New York Times Book Review

Library Journal calls Howard Zinn’s iconic A People's History of the United States “a brilliant and moving history of the American people from the point of view of those…whose plight has been largely omitted from most histories.” Packed with vivid details and telling quotations, Zinn’s award-winning classic continues to revolutionize the way American history is taught and remembered. Frequent appearances in popular media such as The Sopranos, The Simpsons, Good Will Hunting, and the History Channel documentary The People Speak testify to Zinn’s ability to bridge the generation gap with enduring insights into the birth, development, and destiny of the nation.

& Taylor

Chronicles United States history from a grassroots perspective and provides an analysis of important events from 1492 through the current war on terrorism.

Publisher: New York : HarperCollins, c2003
Edition: New ed.
ISBN: 9780060528423
Characteristics: 729 p. ; 25 cm


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Nov 26, 2018

When I returned to college, the only non-major class required for graduation was a semester of American history. Halfway through the turgid assigned text, I decided that the book told me very little that my high school history hadn’t taught, or that I hadn’t already learned simply by living in this country. So, I took the test without further reading, and passed easily. If only Zinn’s book had been the required text, I would have been so much more challenged and better educated! Twiggzette doesn’t get it; exposure to facts isn’t revisionism. Like many history books, the one given to me was written for and about the 5% winners. The other 95% of us need Zinn’s book to fully understand what the American Republic is, and to comprehend the structure of our nominally representative government. SFDolceVita should realize that he is a member of the 95%. And 4thPoliticalTheory’s claim that “The fundamental flaw to this book is the same you'll find everywhere in the 'white people are the most evil race in history' argument” is not found in Zinn’s book. The suggestion that European culture is best because it is dominant is self-congratulatory nonsense. History is so much more complicated than knowing names, dates, places…
Read this book to expand your horizons and to flesh out your view of America.

Nov 10, 2018

A must read for anyone interested in the actual history of America

Oct 30, 2018

A better title would have been "A Losers' History of the United States".

CMLibrary_akeller Mar 24, 2018

It was interesting to read about the side of American history we don't usually hear about. Well worth the read.

Mar 28, 2017

Love this book so much I am going to buy my own copy. Gives a totally different perspective on U.S. history.

cals_joe Mar 25, 2017

Probably did as much to inform my view of the world as anything I've ever read.

Nov 14, 2016

@ Twiggzette - You won't tell us what to read, but you will tell us what NOT to read.

Jul 27, 2015

twiggsette, it is not extreme political correctness to point out truth, simply because you do not agree. You give no specific examples for any of your declarations to make a point or for anyone to disagree with any of your charges. Therefore it is difficult to consider your review.

Mar 19, 2015

Nobody likes to look in the mirror and see a big zit. Zinn makes us do so and a lot of people don't like that (it's not polite to point out zits). America has seen itself as perfect for a long time and we are taught that all the way from grade school through college (and every day on Fox News). People say Zinn blames America for everything. Honestly the nonsense of American Excemptionalism has been so steeped the other way for so long, it forced his hand to go over the top in pointing our our flaws. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle, but without making people take a look at the horrors committed, the overwhelming ideology of America right or wrong will continue. Howard loves America and hates what our government has done in our name, from the beginning to the present.

Mar 17, 2015

I will not recommend Zinn’s History except for two groups of readers --- students NOT included. First, adults who are deeply concerned by, or are studying, the highly destructive effects that extreme political correctness & radical activism and their resulting historical revisionism (and other revisionist disciplines like English, political science, economics, and sociology) are having upon the relevance of K-12 and university educations in the USA. (Whew! That’s a run-on sentence. My bad!) Second, people who already agree with Zinn and who want a “rollicking good yarn” to inspire them and to validate their revisionist beliefs and their reasons for existence, whatever they are worth in the real scheme of things.

For those who want to study REAL US history, there are far better texts than this, most of them written before the ‘60’s. I suggest that you go to your public libraries and browse the history shelves for books that are far more accurate and relevant than this well-written but academically biased screed. I have my favorites and you should find yours. To each his own. I won’t tell you what to read. You decide of your own free volition. Unlike at school or university, it's a free world, not a politically correct one.

As for Zinn and his books, there is a quotation I learned to heart while at university. “No one is ever a complete failure. He can always serve as a bad example.” That quote sums up this book and its author.

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