Howard Zinn 's A People 's History Of The United States Essay

Howard Zinn 's A People 's History Of The United States Essay

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Whenever one speaks about the history and creation of the United States it is often given a particular spectacular and glorious appearance, unless the individual speaking about the subject is Howard Zinn. Unlike the traditional textbooks seen in public schools that are always praising the greatness of America and ignoring the oppression forced upon different social classes; Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States gives readers a brief idea about the lives of those lesser known and it speaks for those that were voiceless. Zinn’s characterization of the United States’ history certainly holds truth to the reality of life back then but the extent of its validity is limited due to the evident bias from the author’s own point of view. Altogether this book gives an interesting viewpoint from those behind the surface and must be read with the reader’s own personal interpretation. The alternate view of history this book provides is very important for all AP history students to recognize and realize that it is always crucial to see history from several different perspectives.
A People’s History of the United States presents a version of history told from the perspective of slaves, revolutionaries, and lower class men of America. It begins with the arrival of Christopher Columbus in the Greater Antilles in the Fall of 1492. Zinn inserts diary entries and analysis to describe how Columbus, who was working for the Spanish crown and inspired by Marco Polo, lands in America and inhumanly captures Native Americans in hopes of finding valuable goods to trade and most importantly, gold, so that he may return to Europe; Zinn later goes into details about the pain and horrors of slavery, racism through surprising statistics and facts, a...


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...yal of what life was like back then but the extent of its validity is limited due to the author’s own personal background, social aims, and view point on history. Zinn’s book shares a fascinating alternative history from the point of view of people that were of low social and economic class and must be interpreted by the reader’s own personal analysis. The insightful and accurate description of history from multiple perspectives this book provides is very important for all AP history students to comprehend and realize that it is essential to see history from several varying point of views. Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States may have a few instances of personal bias, but altogether the book as a whole gives the reader an entirely new perspective on American history and provides a new appreciation for all of those whose names are often not mentioned.

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