Monday, October 13, 2014

Columbus? Lies My Teacher Told Me (video)

Editors, Wisdom Quarterly; James W. Loewen (wiki); The Film Archive; ICTMN
Columbus and his men release the dog to torture and kill Native Americans for sport along with rape, Christianization, and enslavement (

Who discovered America? Not Columbus
Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong is a 1995 book b
y sociologist James W. Loewen. It critically examines 12 American history textbooks and concludes that textbook authors propagate factually false, Eurocentric, and mythologized views of history.
In addition to critiquing the dominant historical themes presented in textbooks, Loewen presents a number of his own historical themes that he says are ignored by traditional history textbooks. A newly revised and updated hardcover edition was released on April 1, 2008. The New Press lists Lies My Teacher Told Me as its top all-time bestseller.

In it Loewen criticizes modern American history textbooks for purposely containing incorrect information about people and events such as Christopher Columbus. The deliberate lies and general inaccuracies in the history books regarding the dealings between the brutal invading Europeans and the Native Americans labelled "savages," and their often deceptive and inaccurate teachings told about America's commerce in chattel slavery.

He further criticizes the texts for a tendency to avoid controversy and for their "bland" and simplistic style. He proposes that when American history textbooks elevate American historical figures to the status of heroes, they unintentionally give students the impression that these figures are superhumans who live in the irretrievable past.
In other words, the history-as-myth method teaches students that America's greatest days have already passed. Loewen asserts that the muting of past clashes and tragedies makes history boring to students, especially groups excluded from the positive histories. More

Seattle Marks Indigenous Peoples’ Day Amid Calls to End Federal Holiday Celebrating Columbus

[Happy Indigenous Peoples' Day!] Today marks Columbus Day, a federal holiday to commemorate the arrival of Christopher Columbus to the so-called "New World" in 1492. But the holiday has long evoked sadness and anger among Native Americans, who object to honoring a man who opened the door to European colonization, the exploitation of native peoples, and the slave trade.

Last Monday, the Seattle City Council unanimously adopted a resolution to celebrate the second Monday in October as Indigenous Peoples’ Day at the encouragement of indigenous activists -- joining many other cities and states with non-Columbus Day holidays.

"We’re making sure that we acknowledge the absolute horrors of colonization and conquering that happened in the Americas at the hands of the European so-called explorers, and Columbus was one of the primary instigators," says socialist City Councilmember Kshama Sawant, one of the sponsors of the resolution to celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day. She is a member of Socialist Alternative, a nationwide organization of social and economic justice activists.

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