Howard Zinn A People’s History of the United States

Last updated: June 26, 2019


You learned about American history in school, but primarily from one perspective. Howard Zinn's work takes a look at history through the eyes of those whose stories are rarely told. The book connects oppression to many of the issues that America has faced over the years.

Howard Zinn A People’s History of the United States

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Product Details

In our analysis of 60 expert reviews, the Howard Zinn A People's History of the United States placed 3rd when we looked at the top 9 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

From The Manufacturer

Howard Zinn (1922–2010) was a historian, playwright, and social activist. In addition to A People’s History of the United States, which has sold more than two million copies, he is the author of numerous books including The People Speak, Passionate Declarations, and the autobiography, You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train.

Expert Reviews


What reviewers liked

So Zinn has an important, necessary story to tell in “A People’s History.” This was especially true in 1980 when his book was first published. Then, it was a tonic to the hyper-propaganda that passed for history in our textbooks and official histories.
I actually found his personal opinion to be quite positive, particularly in chapters towards the end where he describes his vision of the future, where the military-industrial complex has been overthrown and the American government concerns itself with all of its people, not just the wealthiest.
If you’re looking for a contrasting voice to more traditional narratives of U.S. History, then ‘A People’s History of the United States’ is an excellent read. A moral passion that is lacking in other existing historical texts is what this book conveys.

What reviewers didn't like

To hear Zinn tell it, all anyone did in America at any time was to oppress or be oppressed; and so he obscures as much as his hated mainstream historical foes do--only in Zinn's case there is that absurd presumption that virtually everything that came to pass was the work of ruling-class planning: this amounts to one great indictment for conspiracy.
Reading it from cover to cover for the first time, I realized how utterly lacking in objectivity and political sophistication it is.
The book is, obviously, quite biased.
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