Analysis Of The Book ' Columbus '

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According to Howard Zinn, his main purpose for writing A People’s History of the United States was to give a detailed and more accurate account of the history of America. He wanted to give the history from the victim/native’s point of view. Instead of covering up the stories of the different people that weren’t included in our history lessons, he wants them to be able to be recognized as more than just the people that were eliminated by foreigners.
Zinn’s thesis for pages 1-11 was that Christopher Columbus was not the storybook hero that many textbooks portray him as. Instead, he is more of a dishonest explorer who wasn’t truthful with those who supported him. Columbus wasn’t correct in his explorations either. He didn’t discover what he …show more content…

But, he still goes on to say that Columbus is a good man despite his flaws. Zinn doesn’t agree that one can be a good man and still commit such vicious crimes on native people.
Bartolome de las Casas brings up the issue of how the natives are treated. He discussed how the Spaniards had no problem cutting up the Indians simply to test the sharpness of their blade.
Columbus felt the need to oppress indigenous peoples because they were going to ultimately lead him to the wealth. He believed that the natives were the only people that knew where the gold was. The gold was considered a sign of wealth. Columbus also wanted to find a shorter route to India. Much like finding the gold, Columbus assumed that the indigenous people could show him the way.
When Columbus found the Arawak Indians, he kept them as prisoners on a ship. He believed that they were going to lead him to gold. The majority of Arawak’s died on the ship because of the cold, but two Indians were stabbed on the ship because they didn’t trade as many swords as Columbus had wanted them to. Many of the Indians were given impossible jobs and later killed when they couldn’t complete them. While others were killed when Columbus promised the king gold and slaves. Eventually the entire population died out.
What was significant about Quetzalcoatl was that the Aztecs thought that Cortes may have been Quetzalcoatl

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