Howard Zinn and Big Think

Click here to listen to one of the most influential and popular contemporary U.S. historians.

Howard Zinn, 1922-2010 was an activist, historian, political scientist, social critic, playwright, and  author of the bestseller A People’s History of the United States

Zinn has been active in the Civil Rights, anti-war, and many other progressive movements in the United States. His work approaches United States history from a different perspective, focusing largely on the history of class struggle throughout our nation’s story. The original “People’s History,” has expanded in many ways including, Voices, which acts as a companion text full of primary source information and personal accounts of U.S. History, and A Young People’s History of the United States. His work is considered a must read for anyone seeking to analyze bias and perspective in our history, as well as anyone who is interested in activism or social awareness beyond the medium of traditional text books.

The Big Think blog aims to provide “a forum where top experts explore the big ideas and core skills defining the 21st century.”

The following is excerpted from their site’s ‘About Us’ page…

“In our digital age, we’re drowning in information. The web offers us infinite data points—news stories, tweets, wikis, status updates, etc—but very little to connect the dots or illuminate the larger patterns linking them together. Here at Big Think, we believe that success in the future is about knowing the ideas that allow you to manage and master this universe of information. Therefore, we aim to help you move above and beyond random information, toward real knowledge, offering big ideas from fields outside your own that you can apply toward the questions and challenges in your own life.

Every idea on Big Think comes from our ever-growing network of 2,000 Big Think fellows and guest speakers, who comprise the top thinkers and doers from around the globe. Our editorial team regularly sources ideas from these experts, asking them about the most important ideas in their respective fields. Our editors then sift through the submitted ideas and determine which qualify to appear on Big Think, subjecting each to our simple, three-pronged standard geared to your interests:

a) significance — how will this idea change the world and impact your life?

b) relevance — what groups and individuals does this idea most affect?

c) application — how can this idea change the way you think or act?

Big Think’s editorial team then packages and presents these ideas to you, our users, using the range of multimedia tools the Internet makes possible, with the aim of distilling each idea to its essence. We think of it as optimizing the “speed of knowledge,” conveying ideas’ value as efficiently and effectively as possible, so you have the time to explore, and absorb, more of them.

Because as we move from the information age to the knowledge era, the more ideas you command, the more you will be able to guide the course of your own life and positively impact the lives of those around you.

That’s our big idea.”



About Cliff

Hi, my name is Cliff Des Marais and I teach 7th and 8th grade Social Studies at Bellows Falls Middle School in Bellows Falls, VT.
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