Howard Zinn A People's History Analysis

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“In that inevitable taking of sides which comes from selection and emphasis in history, I prefer to try to tell the story of the discovery of America from the viewpoint of the Arawaks, of the Constitution from the standpoint of the slaves, of Andrew Jackson as seen by the Cherokees…” (Zinn, A People’s History of the United States, pg. 10). Society as a whole expects historians to be impartial, to report the events of the past as they happened, without incorporating their own thoughts into these events. We choose to believe that they are politically neutral, that they have no bias, and that they report history fairly and that everything occurred the way they say. However, as historian Howard Zinn points out in A People’s History, most historians have succumbed to the disturbing trend of glossing over and sugarcoating some of history’s most horrific events, excusing them as necessary for “progress,” and then moving on.…show more content…
Over the years, in historians’ quest to stay “neutral,” this glossing over has become normalized and resulted in society seeing this writing as “impartial,” when it actually gives us an incredibly slanted and incomplete view of history. As a result, Zinn’s recognition of his personal biases when analyzing history and telling it from the side of the victims instead of the victors is very important. Through Zinn, we see a side of history that is not usually shown, that is hidden and practically ignored because it makes some uncomfortable. Zinn’s personal experiences also make the events more
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