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1. Zinn’s main purpose for writing “A People’s History of the United States” is to give people a side of the United States history from another viewpoint, in which there will be no identifying of heroes and victims, and accusing any bad people from the events that occured in the past. He says that he will give people fact informations in a way that they’re supposed to know.
2. Zinn’s thesis for pages 1-11 is to explain the events in which Columbus was included, from the time that he discovered the island where he met the Arawaks. Zinn described Columbus as a violent, cruel, and greedy person instead of recognizing him as a hero.
3. According to Zinn, Christopher Columbus was wrongly portrayed as a hero in traditional history book just because he was the one who discovered America. Despite the fact that Columbus did discover America, he did things that ruined the lives of Native Americans. He was abusive and violent towards them, he made them work excessively away from their family, and he would kill them if they don’t give him gold.
4. Zinn disputes Henry Kissinger’s statement: “History is the memory of states”, because in his opinion, he thinks that “people shouldn’t accept the memory of their nation as their own.” By clearly stating, “Nations are not communites and never been” in his book, it supports his opinion about Kissinger’s statement.
5. Zinn’s basic criticism of historian Samuel Elliot Morison’s book, Christopher Columbus, Mariner was that his way of telling the truth about Columbus in the first part of his book and then burying them by different informations that he thinks is more important to him is basically saying that he’s trying to mislead the readers by hiding the truth from them.
6. In Bartolome da las Casas’ first book, he described how the Indians were living in peace before Columbus still didn’t discover their island. He followed it by his second book, which consist of major issues regarding the Spanish expeditions in the Carribean. Las Casas tells in his book that the Spaniards weren’t considerate of the Indians and that’s why they’ve been really abusive and brutal when it comes to ordering the Indians to work for them. Also, the Indians suffered a lot and eventually died because they were overworked by the Spaniards. Las Casas wrote about how two Spaniards beheaded a native because they thought it was fun.
7. Columbus’ original motive was to find an alternative route to India for the trading of spices and metals. But after he discovered the Americas, his motive became finding gold, which made him greedy and drove him to oppress the native people.
8. The way of living of the Arawak Indians will never be the same again ever since Columbus discovered Hispanola. A lot of people were exploited, injured, and killed during the time that the Spaniards took over the Indians. They didn’t expect to be treated this way, so it was hard for them to defend themselves against the Spaniards.