Reddit Reddit reviews Lies My Teacher Told Me : Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong

We found 52 Reddit comments about Lies My Teacher Told Me : Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong. Here are the top ones, ranked by their Reddit score.

United States History
American History
Lies My Teacher Told Me : Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong
Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong is a 1995 book by James W. Loewen, a sociologist.
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52 Reddit comments about Lies My Teacher Told Me : Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong:

u/gospelwut · 208 pointsr/todayilearned

I know that feel bro.

I argued with my 3rd grade teacher that tomatoes were fruits, or at the very least classifiable as both. She insisted I was wrong because they were... in salads. My distrust of institutionalized education began that day, you stupid fucking cunt Mrs. Stevenson.

Relevant: Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong [Paperback]

u/unikcycle · 99 pointsr/AskReddit

I like how this author puts it. He wasn't the first to discover the America's. He was the last. He was the most historically important because of the impact he had on the America's. Also in the book they talk about the many African boats that sailed the ocean and landed on the southern end of the continent. I believe he wasn't even the first European but he did make it profitable and that's what really mattered.

u/vfr · 77 pointsr/atheism

That search is what made me atheist. The truth is that there is no true history of the bible. It's long lost, a mystery. For instance, we have no idea who wrote the gospels.. .totally anonymous. We don't know who wrote the OT... At best we know Paul's letters and a few other books, and we know when certain things were added or changed (for instance the famous John 3:16 was added by a monk later on).

If you want some insight into the history of Christianity, here are some links. It's a messy world filled with 2000 years of apologetics muddying the waters. (specifically this one: Examining the Existence of a Historical Jesus: ) (responsible for converting most of Europe... by the sword. Dealth penalty for having any pagan items, sacked whole villages, etc). more:

Now, if you want some good books... I recommend:

Any other questions?

u/jt004c · 66 pointsr/AskReddit

Sorry but if you think the GOP was transparent and honest in 1994, and that America had been the historical good guys up until recently, all that says is how naive and uninformed you were up until recently.

I'm not about to type out the recent history of GOP practices and motivations here, but rest assured that the GOP has been serving the same masters for many, many years, and the "freaking cool" contract was just more of that.

As for the "USA is the world's good guy!" narrative, that's just patriotic propaganda. Yes there is much good, but there is also much bad in our history. Our pioneering use of slavery, genocidal treatment of native americans, exploitation of natural resources, and manipulation of smaller nations' governments for commercial gain, have been with us since the founding days of our nation. Torture, genocide, and untold unnecessary suffering have been the regular result of these national actions. Many of our problems today result directly from obliviousness to the realities of our own history. We can't avoid repeating it if we willfully forget it.

US History textbook authors are one of the biggest promoters of this narrative, so it's understandable that it pervades the national consciousness, but also sad.

Read Lies My Teacher Told Me for a good discussion of this.

u/UncleJesticle · 45 pointsr/AskReddit

That Robert E. Lee was an honorable fellow, and that the South was fighting for states' rights. If you're interested in this stuff, you should really read Lies My Teacher Told Me

u/antonbe · 21 pointsr/books

Thanks for this... have you read "Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong"?

Great book that highlights a lot of missing or flat our false information our textbooks are shoving down kids throats. Often in blatant attempts to actually change history or just ineptitude.

Going to give your book a read now. Thanks!

u/FalconFlight17 · 15 pointsr/todayilearned

This sounds like another one of the Lies my Teacher Told Me

u/Maxamillionaire · 11 pointsr/AskReddit

Almost everything mention in this book.

u/MRRoberts · 7 pointsr/AskReddit

Lies My Teacher Told Me is a fantastic resource for this sort of thing. He explicitly mentions Wilson's resegregation in the opening chapter.

>IMO, he makes G W Bush look like a saint.

Let's not be hasty.

u/Early_Deuce · 5 pointsr/AskReddit

Also good: James Loewen's Lies My Teacher Told Me.

Topics that US history textbooks always get wrong (Reconstruction, settler-Native American interactions, deification of American heroes) or leave out (minorities, the Vietnam War).

u/HijodelSol · 5 pointsr/AskReddit

There is short book I read to that effect. "Lies My Teacher Told Me" Good, interesting bits of history that you won't get in high school. Which is where I assume most of us stop studying history.

u/HotRodLincoln · 5 pointsr/AskReddit
u/BLORTH · 4 pointsr/AskReddit

Howard Zinn is one of the best writers when it comes to history and if you let him, he'll change your concept of history.

Check out Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen, we used it alongside some of Zinn's material when I was still beginning my college career. :)

u/jwmida · 4 pointsr/AskHistorians

I recommend Lies My Teacher Told Me or Bryson's Short History of Nearly Everything. If you are looking for something a little more scholarly and drier then I suggest A History of Knowledge by Van Doren. As a world history teacher myself, I loved all of these books.

u/homsar96 · 4 pointsr/worldnews
u/cuberail · 3 pointsr/AskReddit
u/BTfromSunlight · 3 pointsr/politics

I teach college courses on writing, social justice, and activism. My students read the intro and the chapter on Columbus every Columbus day.

I'd also recommend Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Loewen.

u/keryskerys · 3 pointsr/booksuggestions

"Bravo Two Zero" or "Immediate Action" by Andy McNab.

"Supernature" by Lyall Watson. An old, but interesting and thought-provoking book.

"Hyperspace" by Michio Kaku.

"Lies My Teacher Told Me" by James Loewen.

"People of the Lie" by M. Scott Peck.

Edit: I was going to suggest "The Hot Zone" as well, but Amberkisses got there ahead of me, so I upvoted him/her instead.

u/uep · 3 pointsr/politics

It's funny that you call it self-imposed, but let me ask you... where did you learn the majority of your history? Did you research it yourself, or did you learn it in school?

If you learned it in school... is it the student or the teacher that is to be blamed? Come on, there are books written on the inaccuracy of the American Textbooks!

u/[deleted] · 3 pointsr/gaming

Man, that shit was so funny....back in 1992.......and then I stopped watching BET because I grew up and knew better.

Oh, wait, that's right-it was only sort of funny, and then I started to read a bit more and watch a documentary or two. Of course, in the mind of the racist/troll, this can't happen, becuase black people can't possibly read since all they've ever done is rap and play sports, right?

-American/African/Puerto Rican

-Jokes are cool, but can we do something that's actually an intelligent joke concerning ethnic background instead of perpetuating bullshit?

-This goes double when the same trolls bitching about being guilty of being white are the same ones perpetuating the stereotypes and then telling people not to get "so uptight about stuff over the internet!", and to "get over it!" while they speak about how "it doesn't bother me!"-yeah, well, you're not getting looked at like the above stereotype based on a skin color and locked out of a job opportunity over it. If you fall under what I just described, you're a hypocrite.

u/ReggieJ · 2 pointsr/todayilearned

>I really dislike this need for a perfect, Platonic ideal of a hero.

This book handles the concept really well. I think the argument Loewen is making is that we actually, in some way, diminish the accomplishments of great people by presenting them as completely entirely flawless, rather than human.

u/DesCo83 · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

Angels and Demons.

I kid I kid. My favorites are probably:

Lies My Teacher Told Me


A peoples history of the United States

u/SalBass · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

If you find a people's history to be slow reading, try this:

It's a smaller book broken up into different chapters about different things, you can read it on the shitter.

It should help get you jazzed up to read *A People's History

u/Something_Isnt_Right · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

Lies My Teacher Told Me has everything you need to know. I'm sure you can find a free copy online.

u/piecrazy47 · 2 pointsr/todayilearned

Lies My Teacher Told Me is where I learned it, Woodrow Wilson was also a racist prick.

u/freakscene · 2 pointsr/IAmA

I second the reading idea! Ask your history or science teachers for suggestions of accessible books. I'm going to list some that I found interesting or want to read, and add more as I think of them.

A short history of nearly everything by Bill Bryson. Title explains it all. It is very beginner friendly, and has some very entertaining stories. Bryson is very heavy on the history and it's rather long but you should definitely make every effort to finish it.

Lies my teacher told me

The greatest stories never told (This is a whole series, there are books on Presidents, science, and war as well).

There's a series by Edward Rutherfurd that tells history stories that are loosely based on fact. There are books on London and ancient England, Ireland, Russia, and one on New York

I read this book a while ago and loved it- Autobiography of a Tibetan Monk It's about a monk who was imprisoned for 30 years by the Chinese.

The Grapes of Wrath.

Les Misérables. I linked to the unabridged one on purpose. It's SO WORTH IT. One of my favorite books of all time, and there's a lot of French history in it. It's also the first book that made me bawl at the end.

You'll also want the Adventures of Tom Sawyer, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Great Gatsby, The Federalist Papers.

I'm not sure what you have covered in history, but you'll definitely want to find stuff on all the major wars, slavery, the Bubonic Plague, the French Revolution, & ancient Greek and Roman history.

As for science, find these two if you have any interest in how the brain works (and they're pretty approachable).
Phantoms in the brain
The man who mistook his wife for a hat

Alex and Me The story of a scientist and the incredibly intelligent parrot she studied.

For a background in evolution, you could go with The ancestor's tale

A biography of Marie Curie

The Wild Trees by Richard Preston is a quick and easy read, and very heavy on the adventure. You'll also want to read his other book The Hot Zone about Ebola. Absolutely fascinating, I couldn't put this one down.

The Devil's Teeth About sharks and the scientists who study them. What's not to like?

u/woggietree · 2 pointsr/History_Bookclub

Lies My Teacher Told Me is intriguing because it touches more on how and why American History text books have been redefining our history to neglect the mistakes and injustices society and governments have been a part of since the discovery of the New World. While it may not go into great detail about any one historical instance it does reveal plenty on the subjects of Columbus and the New World, Indian relations, the first Thanksgiving, the war of 1812, the Civil War, racism, civil rights, and other topics that have been white washed to make American students unaware of our sometimes bloody and racist history.

u/chefranden · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

Yes Zinn is legit. It is your HS texts that got it wrong.

u/marx051 · 2 pointsr/bestof

Unlike everyone on Reddit who is always in love with Morgan Freeman this time of year, I disagree with your comment and his views. To me US history is not respective of Black history. Too ethnocentric. Good counter arguments in here if you need them. That's why I advocate for Black History Month.

I would also argue that its impossible to be blind of race, however well intentioned it is. I mean can you be gender blind too? People of color see there race everyday and (most) embrace it, thus you need to realize that this argument is hurtful to some. In addition, the idea that having everyone treat everyone equal based on appearance would be good, but we cannot forget the socioeconomic factors and the ugly repercussions of Jim Crow (and slavery, racist gov. policies, etc.). The civil rights movement was something that only came into effect in the 60s and 70s and however radical this process is, the repercussions come very slowly.

u/kyzf42 · 2 pointsr/AskReddit

Pretty much everything in this book: Lies My Teacher Told Me.

u/twentyfourseven · 2 pointsr/AskReddit
u/zerro_4 · 2 pointsr/pics

I would like skroobles to explain what he meant by "arrogant." But I can guess it would be something along the lines that Western history, as told from a Western perspective, as currently presented is arrogant in its assumptions and conclusions.

I don't think skroobles meant that the white man and Europeans fucked everything up everywhere they went. But presenting history in such a way that it was only natural and right that Europeans spread out and colonize is arrogant. Also arrogant in the omissions and whitewashings of mistreatment and abuses of natives and others.

Read this and you will better understand what I am trying to say. History did not, and does not, play out like the narrative presented in schools today.

u/Spacebrother · 1 pointr/books

Lies My Teacher Told Me, it's a fascinating view into American History Textbooks, or rather, their inadequacy both as teaching aids and also in attracting children to the subject of history.

For me it was a real eye opener as it encouraged the reader to think skeptically and also "do history" for themselves (i.e. investigate primary sources and draw their own conclusions) as well as highlighting potentially how much patriotic nonsense has been fed into the hearts and minds of young children.

u/smacfarl · 1 pointr/obama

>I'm speaking about his tactics

Really? What are they? Because at this point it looks like the tactics are; let Obama supporters make up pleasant fantasies about what they think he should be doing, so they can impose them over the reality of what he clearly is not doing, and in the process distract themselves from noticing their own lack of participation.

These Tea-Baggers are 3rd rate rent a thugs. You are going to tell me that

> the Consortium of Behavioral Scientists, a secret advisory group of 29 of the nation's leading behaviorists

couldn't anticipate this entirely predictable tea-bagger faux outrage, and that they therefore couldn't have gotten the Obama Base active in May in anticipation to completely blanket the media on this issue? Are you kidding me? Given how well this machine worked last year, how is it that everyone involved wasn't sounding alarm bells months ago when the campaign organization was put out to pasture this spring?

You don't suddenly go from being the Harlem Globetrotters to being the Washington Generals, without consciously deciding to do so. eg. It looks like we are being Woodrow Wilsoned.

u/IConrad · 1 pointr/atheism

> in atheist circles when one refers to religious indoctrination, does your definition apply?

You just changed the question. Now, you tell me: given "Instruction in the rudiments and principles of any science or belief system; information." -- is or is not religion a belief system?

> I'm afraid I don't recollect you saying anything of the sort, unless I am missing one of your responses.

Then I'm afraid you weren't reading. It was directly implicit in this comment.

> Now, in educational "indoctrination", the facts are placed before you and you are often times required to find the evidence yourself.

That, sir, is a bald-faced lie. Elsewise This book could not exist.

> Any member of any scientific community will never be chastized or ostracized for further inquisition on any evidence, no matter how factual it may be perceived, provided they substantiate their findings.

Of course not. But there is a radical difference between what goes on in the scientific community and what goes on in a child's classroom.

Case in point: Multiplication tables. Children are all too often taught to memorize what the 144 entries on the table are, rather than how to rapidly derive those answers.

> Hopefully now you see where neither of us is incorrect technically.

Bull-fucking-shit do I see anything of the sort. I see that you are now attempting to rephrase your original statement now that you have entirely failed to eliminate my definition.

You started out by saying that scientific education is not indoctrination because it is scientific and not religious.

I called you on that bullshit and you're still not admitting it.

u/CitizenCain · 1 pointr/Libertarian

Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong

My personal favorite book on the topic of whitewashing history. My all-time favorite teacher (A.P. European history, ex-Navy SEAL) recommended it to me, and my parents bought it for me as part of my Christmas present that year.

u/SomeRandomRedditor · 1 pointr/AskReddit

Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong might be a good start for you.

Also if you don't get more/better responses here, you might try an xpost to /r/booksuggestions

Edit: Nearly forgot, there's also /r/AskHistorians, /r/askhistory, /r/history, and /r/historyporn which you might find of interest.

u/Hikikomori523 · 1 pointr/skeptic

I don't think there's anything out there that's truely unbiased but if you were interested in learning things outside the status quo James W. Loewen has [Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong] ( and other books about the National Parks and Monuments etc that points out textbook inaccuracies.

I prefer austrian economics so I guess that's my bias. I would suggest or

Tom Woods Jr, has speeches on youtube about different historical economic events and phenomina that may open yourself to new thoughts economically.

I suggest Why You've Never Heard of the Great Depression of 1920 as well as his books

  • The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History

  • 33 Questions About American History You're Not Supposed to Ask

  • We Who Dared to Say No to War

  • Meltdown "A Free-Market Look at Why the Stock Market Collapsed, the Economy Tanked, and Government Bailouts Will Make Things Worse".

    While most take a look at history, they do include opinions about the economies of the time.
u/MensaDropout · 1 pointr/books

If you're in the US, definitely read Lies My Teacher Told Me. Great history book.

u/Gertiel · 1 pointr/AskReddit

You'd love this set of books about things conventionally taught wrong in the US school system.

One that always comes to mind for me is "Columbus discovered America in 1492". We had to memorize a short poem to that effect when I was in school.

u/robotfuel · 1 pointr/Austin

No problem. Lies My Teacher Told Me is also good.

u/glegleglo · 1 pointr/Christianity

There's a book Lies My Teacher Told Me that kind of goes into it. Like how Woodrow Wilson was incredibly racist and made a point to fire minorities who previously worked at the White House. I mean, white washing is nothing new and probably goes back to the earliest civilizations.

u/WeAreGods · 1 pointr/atheism

>convenient that, isn't it?

actually no, it sucks. I'm tired of being a world filled with greedy, selfish, and ignorant monkeys, I'd rather have a world filled with generous, selfless, and intelligent spiritual beings.

We all must become sovereign unto ourselves, until this happens we shall be ruled by tyrants. It has been said, be ruled by God or ruled by tyrants, it matters not if we change leadership without understanding this.

>Should I assume that you are an expert in neurobiology, physiology, psychology & quantum physics?

Assume nothing, but I've given you articles in science magazines that report on studies done by the leading edge quantum physics guys, it doesn't require expertise to understand what it said, and to make the implications of it. Yes, doubt everything, but go to source materials, those that where actually there.

>their peers agree that the proof is sound

Forbidden Archeology is a book that address specifically how this (peer review) process is used to remove unwanted research and cover up and disguise our past so that you would not question who and where you came from. Easter Island being a big one, the city in the ocean next to cuba (many think is atlantis, there was to be a special on National Geographic but it got cancelled.

I've found many, many, areas that have been erased from history books, one of my other favorite books was Lies my Teachers told Me.. in that book I found out that for seven years after the I had a dream speech by Martin Luther King Jr he worked for workers rights. Helen Keller was huge worker's rights advocate as well, this was also skipped over in my history lessons. There where five other big examples in the book that I've since forgotten, those two stuck out in my head.

Really I wish I was wrong, I've tried to pretend that what I have seen wasn't how it is.

u/Not_Steve · 1 pointr/AskReddit

Lies My Teacher Told Me

Covers a good portion of things that are falsely taught in American history classes. One of the things I learned from it was that Helen Keller was a communist and wrote love letters to Russia.

u/Grammar-Hitler · 1 pointr/funny

Yeah, it';s a good thing the victor's descendants got all bleeding-heart and started publishing alternative historical accounts.

u/Cilicious · 0 pointsr/history

Lies My Teacher Told Me by James Lowewen

I've read an enjoyed several of the books already mentioned in this thread (esp Tuchman). I bring up this book because I am a boomer and grew up with American history textbooks permeated with the Manifest Destiny attitude, and inaccuracies listed as facts. The author has an attitude of his own, and sometimes comes off as a bit strident, but he does an excellent job of illustrating the inadequacy of American history textbooks.

edited for typo.