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

Written by:
James Loewen
Narrated by:
Brian Keeler

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
June 2004
14 hours 29 minutes
This national best-seller and American Book Award winner is an entertaining, informative, and sometimes shocking expose of the way history is taught to American students. James W. Loewen, a distinguished critic of history education, puts 12 popular textbooks under the microscope. What he finds is a proliferation of blind patriotism, mindless optimism, misinformation, and flat-out lies filling the pages.
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Myron W.

Author was on a mission to tell his view and distorted many facts to support his opinion. As a Four year Vietnam veteran I know from personal experience many of his facts supporting his opinion on that war were inaccurate. I felt those inaccuracies may have bled into the other examples of our country’s tarnished history.

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Joseph Basralian

If you've been to school, you probably need to re-learn American history. The author diagnoses 10 widely-used American history textbooks and shows how much of our history, impacting millions and millions of people, is omitted and dismissed. Why? (1) Because textbook-purchasing authorities and thus authors want to create blindly 'patriotic' citizens rather than intelligent witnesses to the world around them. (Plus, textbook authors habitually cut-and-paste the received dogma.) (2) Because these authorities feel somehow threatened by the historical people and movements that mitigated, modified or distributed the accumulated economic power and influence of those people who already had it, and by extension, of the people who have it today. For how else can we explain textbooks' lopsided downplaying of just how oppressive were labor conditions, treatment of women, the betrayal of the natives, the treatment of African Americans and crushing of anti-war activists? How else can we explain the omission and skewing of the major American heroes we never learned about but who triggered the movements against these many wrongs? This book will help you move beyond the childish 'American history' exercise of brainwashing into blind patriotism, and help you become a more fully-reasoning citizen, and thus one who can reach a greater appreciation of our nation in a way that can move the U.S. toward wiser and stronger in the future.

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Jamie Z.

Agreed, a must-read book. So much we aren't taught, or are taught with such white man, pro-go-USA bias. All of American history needs to be revisited and retold, so we cna have an honest understanding of what's gone on and how we got to where we are today with so much racism, classism, sexism, oppression in our democracy meant to be so special and great - so that we could and can actually live up to the promises of equality and liberty for all. I wish the book could be updated in an edition including the last 20 years. And would soak up addressing so many more eras and areas of American history, with more linkages to what's going ont oday. Highly recommended!

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donald carson

Great read. Renewed my interest in history.

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Philip H.

I was amazed all the false stories I was told about history. Upon checking references, the author's information can be confirmed on Google. When a student I didn't enjoy history and now I really like it. The author explains how history books are boring and predictable and don't encourage curiosity or questioning the stories. I recommend this book for adults and students because it stimulates curiosity about everything I was taught about history. Students should be careful questioning their teachers with the facts, because tests will be based on the history taught and probably not on available research.

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Very good information that most folks don’t know about. It was an eye opener for me at least. He who writes the history controls the narrative. Because it is after all his story.

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Jose N.

great book

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Brock Liden

It is an enlightening book. There is always a lot more to every part of history. I love the details and read about most things at a deeper level. The only issue I have is that the details he dig into would be full classes in collage to get all the information

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A.D. Lee

equally parts devastating, empowering, and entertaining!!!

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Terri M.

very well done

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Wow!!! I can actually believe it. Especially after reading 1984.

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Vasilije S.

Must read! Well narrated.

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Michael K

Absolutely a must listen. The information shared by the author is an eye opener to anyone interested in American society, history, and how our society was shaped. I learned more in those 14 hours than any previous history survey.

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