Lies My Teacher Told Me

Lies My Teacher Told Me

Everything your American History Textbook Got Wrong

Book - 1995
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Baker & Taylor
A tenth-anniversary commemorative edition of the award-winning history of America begins with pre-Columbian history and covers a diverse range of events, from the Reconstruction and the life of Helen Keller to the first Thanksgiving and the Mai Lai massacre. Reissue.

Norton Pub
High school students hate history. When they list their favorite subjects, history always comes in last. They consider it "the most irrelevant" of twenty-one school subjects; "bo-o-o-oring" is the adjective most often applied. James Loewen spent two years at the Smithsonian Institution surveying twelve leading high school textbooks of American history. What he found was an embarrassing amalgam of bland optimism, blind patriotism, and out-and-out misinformation. In response he has written Lies My Teacher Told Me--winner of the American Book Award and a national best-seller--in part a telling critique of existing textbooks but, more importantly, a wonderful retelling of American history as it should--and could--be taught to American students.

& Taylor

Criticizes the way history is presented in current textbooks, and suggests a fresh and more accurate approach to teaching American history

Publisher: New York : New Press : Distributed by Norton, c1995
ISBN: 9781565841000
Characteristics: x, 372 p. : ill. ; 24 cm


From the critics

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CMLibrary_gjd_0 Nov 13, 2018

Yeah, my copy arrived today. I cannot wait to read this; if we don't know our History, we are doomed to repeat it!

Sep 27, 2018

REQUIRED READING....particularly if you are student brighter than your high school history teacher and are bored in class. Should be read by educators as well

Dec 25, 2017

I found both this book and Lies Across America to be super boring. I love the concept of these books...something I would really dig...tidbits of history that have now been debunked, or we were just mis-informed or the ole “there’s more to the story”.

But the topics that the author discusses were of zero interest to me. I searched the Table of Contents for something that appealed to me, to draw me in, but nothing. I did start reading some topics, but was bored...the author’s writing style is very dry...dry as a textbook.

I highly do NOT recommend.

Mar 29, 2017

A must read for anyone that is interested in history. Made me a little angry that I was never taught the truth. Great read.

TSCPL_ChrisB Jun 03, 2016

For anyone who has questioned the telling of history or done research of their own on the subject, many of Loewen bigger points will be redundant. It is the smaller details—the journals and articles from the people who actually lived through these events—that make this book so shocking. His liberal “white man is bad” tone will anger some. For others it will finally tell history from a unique perspective, one that is infinitely more colorful.

Dec 19, 2015

I have known that the shadow government has been brain-washing the masses since they arrived here long ago. This book explains how they do it. Why do they do it? It is the only way that they can control and manipulate the unsuspecting. Education? Indoctrination is a more appropriate word. Education is when the truth is revealed. There may be some in denial after reading this book. Why? Perhaps reality and their perception may be in conflict. America will be a better place after reading this book.

Oct 12, 2015

This is one of the few books every American should read. If only high-school history taught us the depth of information and critical thinking that this book is full of, we'd have a more informed, enlightened electorate.

It's all real history, and it's presented by a college history professor in such a way that it's easy and fun to read.

Aug 19, 2013

Truly worthy read although it too is heavily loaded with biased language. I love that the author presents the good, bad, and ugly of our country's history all the while acknowledging the horrendous injustices or transgressions of our past, present, and future leaders and prominent lay people does not deter from our country's greatness. The truth is worth exploring so past mistakes are avoided. I truly wish we could stop celebrating Chris Columbus; he is such an unworthy hero.

Apr 29, 2013

I saw James Loewen speak at the University of Missouri about a month ago and I though he was a terrific speaker. His writing is very close to the way he lectures, that is, both funny and thought-provoking. I found this book to be equally engrossing. Loewen provides a clear and engaging view of the issues that plague social studies education in the United States and the consequences that manifest themselves as a result. His logic is sound as he is both scathingly critical and patiently empathetic with the students, teachers, administration, parents, and textbook sellers and authors that make up the system. As an ex-middle school social studies teacher myself, I can attest to the deplorable state that the U.S. education system is in. The social sciences suffer heavily within this system because of heroification, misinformation, and logical falicies that will only allow history class to be a bland, boring regurgitation of "facts." I would recommend this book to anybody with an investment or interest in social justice issues or education in the United States.

Dec 31, 2012

I read the first edition of this book around the time I graduated high school, and I was surprised, no shocked, by how much American history I didn't know. And that was just the stuff I thought I knew. Glossing over complex topics in a history textbook is one thing, but the real offense is when the facts presented are simply wrong. This happens far more often than you think.

The author is spot-on about high school history courses being unforgivably boring. Teaching history well means teaching controversy, and that means upsetting a lot of people—a nearly impossible task to sustain in a publicly-funded institution.

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Dec 19, 2015

Al6Hameed thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


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