top of page
A People's History of the United States
  • A People's History of the United States

    Howard Zinn. 


    Harper & Row: 1980. Hardcover in a jacket. First edition. Very good book, good jacket. The crown and foot of the book's spine are a little loose and tanned but the textblock is firmly anchored. 


    "My argument cannot be against selection, simplification, emphasis, which are inevitable for both cartographers and historians. But the mapmaker's distortion is a technical necessity for a common purpose shared by all people who need maps. The historian's distortion is more than technical, it is ideological; it is released into a world of contending interests, where any chosen emphasis supports (whether the historian means to or not) some kind of interest, whether economic or political or national or sexual. 

    Furthermore, this ideological interest is not openly expressed in the way a mapmaker's technical interest is obvious. No, it is presented as if all readers of history had a common interest which historians serve to the best of their ability. This is not intentional deception; the historian has been trained in a society in which eduction and knowledge are put forward as technical problems of excellence and not as tools for contending social classes, races, nations. 

    To emphaszie the heroism of Columbus and his successors as navigators and discoverers, and to deemphasize their genocide, is not a technical necessity but an ideological choice. It serves - unwittingly - to justify what was done." 

      bottom of page