Type of Content: Excerpts

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Blaming Outside Agitators

By Howard Zinn. Excerpt from chapter three of Howard Zinn’s autobiography You Can’t Be Neutral on a Moving Train
"When students begin to defy established authority it often appears to besieged administrators that “someone must be behind this,” the implication being that young people are incapable of thinking or acting on their own."
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Disturbing the War

By Howard Zinn. “Speech Against the Vietnam War on Boston Common,” published in Howard Zinn Speaks: Collected Speeches 1963–2009
"They’ll say we’re disturbing the peace, but there is no peace. What really bothers them is that we’re disturbing the war." —Howard Zinn
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‘Je Ne Suis Pas Un Marxiste’

By Howard Zinn. Article. ZCommunications, June 1988; Failure to Quit, and excerpted from The Zinn Reader.
Howard Zinn writes: For a long time I thought that there were important and useful ideas in Marxist philosophy and political economy that should be protected from the self-righteous cries on the right that "Marxism is dead,” as well as from the arrogant assumptions of the commissars of various dictatorships that their monstrous regimes represented “Marxism.”
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Obedience and Disobedience

By Howard Zinn. Excerpt from The Zinn Reader, originally published in Declarations of Independence.
“Obey the law.” That is a powerful teaching, often powerful enough to overcome deep feelings of right and wrong, even to override the fundamental instinct for personal survival. . . . Peace, stability, and order are desirable. Chaos and violence are not. But stability and order are not the only desirable conditions of social life. There is also justice...
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B&W photo of street scene, people arrested

‘The Problem Is Civil Obedience’: Chapter 20 from Voices of a People’s History

By Howard Zinn. Speech given in debate with philosopher Charles Frankel on civil disobedience in November 1970. Excerpt from Voices of a People’s History.
I was supposed to appear in court that day in connection with the charges resulting from the army base protest. I had a choice: show up in court and miss this opportunity to explain—and practice—my commitment to civil disobedience, or face the consequences of defying the court order by going to Baltimore. I chose to go.
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New Book Featuring Howard Zinn: Truth Has a Power of Its Own

Truth Has a Power of Its Own: Conversations About A People’s History is a collection of never-before-published conversations with Howard Zinn, conducted by the distinguished broadcast journalist Ray Suarez in 2007. Suarez’s probing questions and Zinn’s humane (and often humorous) voice—along with his keen moral vision—shine through every one of these lively and thought-provoking conversations, showing that Zinn’s work is as relevant as ever.
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Insisting on the Rights of Everyone (excerpt) | HowardZinn.org

Insisting on the Rights of Everyone Everywhere

By Howard Zinn • Excerpt from The Zinn Reader
was one of the speakers at historic Faneuil Hall in Boston (though named after an early slave trader, it was the scene of many meetings of anti-slavery groups before the Civil War) in 1991, when the Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts organized a celebration of the Bicentennial of the Bill of Rights. I wanted to use the opportunity to make clear that whatever freedoms we have in the United States—of speech, of the press, of assembly, and more—do not come simply from the existence on paper of the first Ten Amendments to the Constitution, but from the struggles of citizens to bring those Amendments alive in reality.
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DIGITALLY COMPOSITED IMAGE of Boston University Professor Howard Zinn and Massachusetts Institute of Technology Professor Noam Chomsky (glasses) at a 1 P.M. press conference at The Committee to Defend the Panthers, 61 River Street, 10/29/70

When Zinn and Chomsky Met

Howard Zinn interviewed by David Barsamian. Excerpt from The Future of History.
December 7 is the birthday of Howard Zinn’s longtime friend Noam Chomsky. In celebration, we share this interview with David Barsamian of Alternative Radio about how they met.
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Beyond Elections | HowardZinn.org

Beyond Voting

By Howard Zinn. Excerpt from The Zinn Reader.
The political culture of the United States is dominated by voting. Every election year is accompanied by an enormous amount of attention, with the media and the politicians joining forces to try to persuade Americans that voting for one candidate or another is the most important act of citizenship. I decided to challenge that idea in this column, which appeared in the Boston Globe at the start of the election campaign of 1976.
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