History, people power, and practical education

The late progressive historian Howard Zinn is best known for his landmark book, A People’s History of the United States, which has been widely acclaimed and exposes to the light the “ceaseless conflict between elites and the masses whom they oppress and exploit.” Here’s an official description:

A classic since its original landmark publication in 1980, Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States is the first scholarly work to tell America’s story from the bottom up—from the point of view of, and in the words of, America’s women, factory workers, African Americans, Native Americans, working poor, and immigrant laborers. From Columbus to the Revolution to slavery and the Civil War—from World War II to the election of George W. Bush and the “War on Terror”—A People’s History of the United States is an important and necessary contribution to a complete and balanced understanding of American history.

Reviews can be found at Amazon.com. The book is widely available and can now be viewed online at http://www.historyisaweapon.com/zinnapeopleshistory.html.

A few days ago, someone sent me a link to a TED talk in which Sanjit “Bunker” Roy describes the “Barefoot College, which is he founded. He tells a story that is both inspiring and informative, a model of what can be achieved when ordinary people share what they know and how communities can become more self-sufficient. You can view it here.

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3 responses to “History, people power, and practical education

  1. What’s really sad, is that the natives, though they couldn’t really illustrate how nonsensical loaning a person a bunch paper, wampum, or even gold for that matter, and expecting the principal plus what we call “interest” in return is, there are Native American banks popping up. Pathetic.

  2. From the book –
    [In the villages of the Iroquois, land was owned in common and worked in common. Hunting was done together, and the catch was divided among the members of the village. Houses were considered common property and were shared by several families. The concept of private ownership of land and homes was foreign to the Iroquois. A French Jesuit priest who encountered them in the 1650s wrote: “No poorhouses are needed among them, because they are neither mendicants nor paupers.. . . Their kindness, humanity and courtesy not only makes them liberal with what they have, but causes them to possess hardly anything except in common.”]
    Communist propaganda. The Iroquois lived in a free market. They may not have had formal deeds to property, but they still knew who owned what. Houses that were built by families who pooled their resources to construct them could not just be taken over by other families. The land was owned by whoever worked it. That’s how it works in a free market. Bankers, their agents – “philosophers”, Jesuits, Illuminati – they do have your life planned out for you years in advance. Banks = poverty, free market = prosperity. Trust me, an Iroquois obviously capable of taking care of himself but choosing not to would end up living in the woods by himself.

  3. Watched the vid sponsored by the bankers/industrialists. Nope, nothing about a currency not controlled by bankers. I’m definitely being ignored. I’m being laughed at. I’m off to a good start. Now I’ll read the book. Propaganda is a funny thing.

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