A quote for the Day — from Howard Zinn

News item:  Howard Zinn, award winning author/historian, died this week.


Howard Zinn: 1922-2010

Back when I was in graduate school, a textbook on rhetoric and public address (it was too many years ago, the book is in storage – I remember what it looked like, but not the title or the author) argued that the best place to learn history was not the “important” speeches, but the every-day speeches and sermons of an era.  I don’t disagree.

Howard Zinn is most famous for his book A People’s History of the United States, which told our history through the eyes of the “every-day” people, the forgotten, those not always heard…  It generated fierce passions, much controversy.  He said this in a 1998 interview:

“There’s no such thing as a whole story; every story is incomplete,” Professor Zinn said. “My idea was the orthodox viewpoint has already been done a thousand times.”

Zinn was an unabashed progressive, a vocal critic of war.  But, this much is sure – his was a voice to pay attention to.

Here is a quote from an essay by Zinn, Changing Minds, One at a Time, from 2005, worth pondering:

This would seem to lead to a simple conclusion: that we all have an enormous responsibility to bring to the attention of others information they do not have, which has the potential of causing them to rethink long-held ideas.

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