The Politics Of History By Howard Zinn And The Genius Of American Politics

The Politics Of History By Howard Zinn And The Genius Of American Politics

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In “The Politics of History” by Howard Zinn and “The Genius of American Politics” by Daniel Boorstin, both authors largely focused on American history taught with Eurocentric ideals. Comprised of history through nationalist eyes, American history omits the struggles of minorities’ experiences. In “Why Study History?” Peter Stearns addressed that history’s main contribution is to provide a national identity. Vincent Harding and Joan Scott agree, arguing that it is important to include Black History and the history of Women to provide an identity for previously forgotten social groups. Properly writing history must include a variety of perspectives and firsthand accounts including minorities, so that the United States and American citizens can create a more inclusive and accurate national identity.
Daniel Boorstin argues that Americans need a variety of perspectives because their education does not include the negatives of the past. The education system in the United States is very one sided to promote nationalism. Boorstin makes it clear that “The American must go outside his country and hear the voice of America to realize his is one of the most spectacularly lopsided cultures in all of history.” For an American to not know the voice of their own country is a disgrace and this starts with the history that they are learning. Multiple views of the country and its history does not get taught to promote a nationalistic view of the country. Americans only know this and most of them never come to the realization that the country has imperfections and is seen around the world very differently. Boorstin says, “The facts of our history have thus made it easy for us to assume that our national life, as distinguished from that of history ...


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... heard. By including women and minorities Americans can be informed to be able to grow as a nation and eventually naturally include more than one side to their history of education.
The writings of Howard Zinn, Daniel Boorstin, Peter Stearns, Vincent Harding and Joan Scott put together a very strong argument for how historiography should properly be done. These historical writings should also be included in the education of Americans. For a well-rounded identity to be formed for the United States and American citizens their history needs to include a variety of perspectives and first-hand accounts. Both of these should include minorities and when these pieces are put into the history of America then the United States can reach a new level of success. This will allow for the American citizens to create an inclusive national identity for the United States of America.

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