On this 5th anniversary of the passing of Howard Zinn, we encourage you to visit HowardZinn.org to read his biography, articles, and interviews. The site was rebuilt in August of 2014 and provides a treasure trove of his work.
If you have additional interviews, photos, or archival materials by Howard Zinn that can be published online, email email@example.com.
Howard Zinn, Our Favorite Teacher
Howard Zinn taught at Spelman College and Boston University where he had an extraordinary influence on his students’ understanding of history and their role in the world. Known everywhere as the author of A People’s History of the United States, Zinn was not only a scholar and a writer. Howard Zinn, Our Favorite Teacher highlights Zinn’s lasting impact as a professor.
If you are a former student of Howard Zinn, please submit your story. Here’s how.
On the Road to Voting Rights: Freedom Day in Selma, 1963
In the 1960s, Howard Zinn, along with Ella Baker, served as advisers to SNCC, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. On this 50th anniversary year of the 1965 Selma-to-Montgomery marches and the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, we revisit Zinn’s first-hand account of Selma’s Freedom Day in 1963.
"The idea was to bring hundreds of people to register to vote, hoping that their numbers would decrease fear. And there was much to fear,” Zinn writes. Continue reading.
Photo by Peter Simon.
The Logic of Withdrawal
This year, as the Pentagon prepares to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War, it's important to re-visit Zinn's writing challenging the war and his call for immediate withdrawal. Here's an excerpt from an article Zinn wrote for The Progressive in 2004 during the presidential elections. While the administrations may have changed, the reasons for withdrawing from war, all wars, have not.
"In the spring of 1967, my book, Vietnam: The Logic of Withdrawal, was published by Beacon Press. It was the first book on the war to call for immediate withdrawal, no conditions. Many liberals were saying: 'Yes, we should leave Vietnam, but President Johnson can’t just do it; it would be very hard to explain to the American people.'” Continue reading.
New Books and Editions Available
Some Truths Are Not Self-Evident: Essays in The Nation on Civil Rights, Vietnam and the "War on Terror"
With an introduction by Frances Fox Piven, this collection of essays published in The Nation illustrates that Zinn was not only an astute observer of history but also, as Frances Fox Piven writes, “That for nearly fifty years Zinn himself was deeply involved in the major twentieth-century struggles for social justice in the United States.” Available from Nation Books.
Doing History from the Bottom Up: On E.P. Thompson, Howard Zinn, and Rebuilding the Labor Movement from Below
In the 1960s, historians began to challenge the assumptions of their colleagues and push for an understanding of history “from below.” In this collection, Staughton Lynd, himself one of the pioneers of this approach, makes the case that contemporary academics and activists alike should take more seriously the stories and perspectives of Native Americans, the enslaved, rank-and-file workers, and other marginalized voices. Available from Haymarket Books.
10th Anniversary Edition Now Available
Voices of a People’s History of the United States is a companion to Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States with first person voices—speeches, letters, poems, and songs.
This edition features new voices including whistleblower Chelsea Manning; Naomi Klein, Glenn Greenwald, and teacher Jesse Hagopian.Available from Seven Stories Press.
The People Speak Re-release Now Available
Inspired by A People's History of the United States and Voices of a People's History of the United States, The People Speak is a documentary feature film that uses dramatic and musical performances of the letters, diaries, and speeches of everyday Americans from throughout U.S. history. This film is narrated by Howard Zinn. See trailer and learn more.