What sort of view of our history do we get from Hollywood movies? Why are some stories told and others not? Howard Zinn’s People’s History of the United States helped to enlarge our sense of history to include the stories of women, minorities, labor struggles and others forgotten or removed from official histories. In this informal talk given at the Taos Film Festival, Zinn turns his attention to Hollywood, the stories it tells and the ones it doesn’t. He tells the stories of wars from the point of view of disillusioned deserters, of the differences between All Quiet on the Western Front and Saving Private Ryan, of railroad strikes and the Haymarket Affait, Eugene Debs and the real story of Helen Keller, socialist and anti-war agitator. Mother Jones leads a march of 11 and 12-year-old textile workers from Pennsylvania to Roosevelt’s vacation home in Oyster Bay to demand better working conditions in the textile mills then at age 85 is thrown in jail for leading the Colorado Coal strike of 1913-4. A spellbinding and provocative talk by America’s most beloved historian.
The first Howard Zinn CD A People’s History of the United States has sold over 10,000 copies! Also, People’s History of the United States is now in development as an HBO feature film with Ben Affleck & Matt Damon as co-producers.