September 8

Columbus Revisited

After reading the excerpt from Howard Zinn’s The People’s History of the United States (italics), what opinions have you formed about telling a story and different perspectives? Apply your view to modern times. Do you think current stories are being told from various perspectives or do we get our information from any one particular voice? Explain your ideas. Give concrete examples.

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Posted September 8, 2011 by tashak38 in category Uncategorized

About the Author

I live in the San Francisco Bay Area--Big Up to the East Bay

12 thoughts on “Columbus Revisited

  1. George C

    I do believe that there are always 2 sides to every story and we will never completely know the true events that transpired in history because we were not there. However, history, to me, isnt fact, but an opinion. Everything we see as history is actually just pieces of a puzzle. Everyone’s puzzle is different and we all have different pieces. It all depends on how you percieve a certain event and how well it connects with your overall perception of what happened in History. I believe that in our modern society we are being more and more sensitive to information appealing to our logos. However, if you think about it, Is logos still logos if its not true? We get our statistics and facts from other people. Most people now days google to get the info they need. Consequently, we see google as a constant source of truth and believe many of the things we find. However, not all the information we recieve it true. Infact, most things are probably wrong. If a website told you that according to a study 20% of americans are smoking less, would you believe it to be true? Truth is, they couldnt possibly have tested every single american, therefore, their statistic is most likely just an accurate guess. However, since claimed to have made a study, we see it as a credible source and accept the statistic is a fact. Most people today get their info from sources appearing to be credible or just take the word of an authority figure, such as the president. For example, during the presidential elections in 2009, many people had hope for Obama and believe he would bring a significant change to America because that was his claim and he had a great amount of authority as a presidential candidate. However, now in 2011, alot of people, according to a study done by Kron 4 news, are mostly likely not going to be re-electing obama for another term in office. Most people these days accept information as truths without doing their own research and therefore, someone with enough coercion to seem credible or a popular authority figure could spread false news and create a series of Blasphemy that will probably stick around for a long time. Therefore, I believe that stories these days are being told from one perspective because most people are to ignorant and naive to clarify the information for themselves. No offence to anyone.

  2. Regina L

    After re-reading the Howard Zinn book, help me remember what I was taught about Christopher Columbus in elementary school. How he was a noble and smart man that discovered the country we live in. In my opinion, I believe he was a heartheated and ruthless man that wanted slaves and gold. Its really sad that men wanted to follow Columbus steps and they did, but much worse. Yes, I do believe people have different perspectives of who and what Christopher Columbus did. For example, I know somebody who believe what Columbus was bad, but it was smart. I use to believe you only get your information by one source, but I’ve learned there are ton of perspectives to learned from.

  3. Mendelssohn V

    People can tell stories for their own convenience or the convenience of others, these stories vary from person to person, everyone has his own and unique perspective, and here is where the different points of view throughout time distort what really happened, there is only one way to prove these stories and its with real and credible evidence.

  4. Ellce C.

    After reading the expert from Howard Zinn’s, “The People’s History of the United States” my views and personal thoughts on Columbus have dramatically changed. The man who I once saw as a hero is now nothing but a heartless man who sparked the wrong doings of hundreds of European men. He is responsible for the death and maltreatment of thousands of innocent men, women, and children. I believe that what we are informed through media is controlled and done in a way to have a positive effect on how we think or see the topic. Also I think that those in power have complete control in what we “Americans” know and how much we know.

  5. Jason L.

    After reading the excerpt from Howard Zinn’s my thoughts of Columbus have dramatically gone into details of what type of person he really was. I learned that he killed millions of people just his greedy needs of money and gold. He made native men, women, and even children work in the gold mines to collect a certain amount of gold , and if they didn’t he would cut off there hands. He would use this as a way of fear so that they would work harder and collect more of his precious gold. I still cant believe people would go to such extremes just to make himself filled with money. This is inhumane and extremely cruel and should never be repeated in history.

  6. JoseC

    After reading the excerpt from Howard Zinn’s my thoughts about columbus have changed i understand that hes is not what everyone says he is. He is a crewl man did not care about anyone besides himself. His crew was worked to death and so were the women. The women were maid to work until there were dead. This is not the columbus that is told about, he is said to be the founder of America and a great man. But he really is a horrible person that kick out the indians and killed them. He was in a search for gold and money and by all mean he was going to get gold. but at the price of many deaths of indians. My perspective has changed i know understand how he treat the people that were in this land before he discoverd “America”.

  7. manuel c

    after reading the article of howards zinns “The peoples history of the United States” he told the real view points of what really happened when christopher columbus went and “discovered the Americas”. he tells how they treated the natives and what really happened to the people. he treated the native people wih no respect because he would kill them and kill trhem.

  8. Sabrina T

    i know stories are told from different perspectives, and that can cause them to be biased. Reading the excerpt, i thought about what opinions i already had on Columbus. I thought that he was a pretty good guy, that he was a hero envied by everyone in Europe, and all that. This story was told from a perspective of a guy that had all the facts on Columbus, and only wants to educate us. The perspective of elementary school teachers is miseducating, because they leave out all the bloody facts to “protect our innocent minds”. This is a bit biased, because it creates a false image of Columbus being a hero. In news, i think the stories come from the perspectives of a couple different people, but not enough people to say that the information is unbiased.

  9. Serena M

    Howard Zinn, the author of “A People’s History of the Unitied States”, writes about the subject of Christopher Columbus and the others that were with him that “discovered” the Americas and also how he bribed the Natives for taking over their land asnd treating them unfairly. I bet the people that read this article such as people who study Colombus/Natives probably learned a thing or two of how Columbus handled his duties of “taking care of his people”. This whole purpose to this article is to show how Columbus treated the Natives after he traded the gold with the Natives, which is also unjust to the Natives because the Natives let Columbus have their land but he treated them like slaves and separated them from their families. The tone of this article is sympathetic yet traumatizing in a way because of how graphic the article was when I read it which shows how much the author wanted to show people how cructial and malicious Colombus was to the Natvies. For example, He made the pregnant women work until their babies were born, and if the women didn’t want the baby, they had to give their own abortions. In my opinion, Columbus was trying to find the most possible way to get what he wanted.

  10. Eva M

    After reading the excerpt from Howard Zinn’s “The People’s History of the United States,” a few opinions have been formed. I like when people tell story fiction or not. I like to see new a perspective of stories. I would like to hear and read stories from multiple views. If it is from once source how do you know if it is relieable. For example, the Bible is once source and I would prefer other souces of stories in the Bible. Thus, I would like to hear from various viewpoints.

  11. Valerie W

    Reading Howard Zinn’s story “The People’s History of the United States” definitely changed the way I think about the beginning of our history in the Americas. First off, I did not know a lot of what happened when Chistopher Columbus met the Indians. This excerpt provided a lot of inner detail that I was missing. In Zinn’s story I found out that Columbus treated the indigenous people like slaves to get what he wanted. Which is definitely an effective but also crucial way, to handle things. Although it began the colonization of America I think it would of overall been handled differently.

  12. Omar D

    Many people tell the same story, but everyone has their own opinions which form their own prospective and form of telling the story. With all of the different prospectives and perceptions of the past, it could distort or enlighten what is being told. But there is only one way to tell the story and it is by straight-hard facts.


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