Council Approves Book by “Marxist” Howard Zinn for High Schools


Howard Zinn A People's History of the United States

Today City Council approved two schools-related resolutions. 1. Include  Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States” in Philly high schools’ curriculum; 2. Mandate that every school has a nurse in the building. The Inky‘s Troy Graham has a nice tweet hinting at the relative ease with which each of these resolutions will be implemented.

My reading: Books are cheaper than nurses, but the school can’t afford either right now. By the way, the book—a left-wing, populist chronicle of American history—is a great way to teach kids that this country’s past is much more than a bunch of dead, white guys signing documents. That said, many consider Zinn, a self-described Marxist, a deeply problematic historian in his own right. See this recent takedown in The New Republic, for example.

Finally, Graham, who’s in City Hall now, says the vote was unanimous. Yo Philly Republicans David Oh, Brian O’Neill, and Denny O’Brien! Where’s the obligatory nay?

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  • Dutch

    What’s the difference? These kids are getting an atrocious education anyway . Might as well fill their brains up with the discredited lies of Zinn.

    Teaching that “history” is as dumb an act of religion as teaching intelligent design in science class.

  • Liz Spikol

    I was taught this book in school, and I’m all the better for it. I developed a healthy skepticism of single, simplistic narratives, which every citizen should have.

    Oh, I’m posting as Liz Spikol right now, not as Property. Ahem.

    • GoatBlood

      As long as it is not the only history book they read, I would agree.

  • Jay B.

    By all means, let’s teach kids “history” without regard to factual support for the historical assertions made. It is bad enough that our school kids have trouble with foundational skills. Now we are going to fill their brains ideology pretending to be history. But more importantly, it is good to know that city council is focused on solving the key problems in the city like teaching history. Now if they only studied economics in school themselves…

  • RightsTough

    It hardly matters. The kids in Philly schools can’t read so they won’t accidentally trip over Marxist rhetoric. Plus, a large majority of these Philly Public School kids LIVE Marxism and Socialism everyday of there entitled lives (“Where is my free stuff Grandmom??”.

    God forbid anyone actually get a job and contribute to the Philly tax base that was suppose to pay for these Philly babysitting buildings – I mean schools.

    Let’s just keep throwing good money at these hopeless cases and let the kids we could have saved go down the toilet with them. It seems to be working so far right? NOT!

  • Stein

    The Grievance Industrial Complex continues to metastasize and engulf Philadelphia.