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Why This Book Matters:
A People’s History of the United States takes us through history from the perspective of minorities and others who were alienated.
The Big Takeaways:
- Historians generally do not touch on the fact that America has put natives through genocide.
- If History is often written from the perspective of the “winners,” or those who have prevailed.
- The United States government was built by wealthy landowners for themselves and that tradition continues today.
- Much of the constitution consists of protecting landowners and does not even mention those other than wealthy, white men.
- Women were treated horribly in the early days of America, but eventually began to rally.
- Post Revolution, women began learning how to read and write, and doubled their literacy rate to 80% within a few decades.
- The Civil War was fought to maintain the status of the country, not to end slavery.
- Former slave owners were compensated for the loss of slaves, while former slaves were left to fend for themselves.
- Rather than liberating the oppressed, the American government answered the civil rights movement with suppression.
- Laws that were eventually passed still discriminated against minorities, specifically African Americans.