Monday, March 23, 2015

The Untold History of the United States (Young Readers Edition, Volume 1, 1898-1945 by Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick - OPTIONAL

Stone, Oliver and Kuznick, Peter The Untold History of the United States (Young Readers Edition, Volume 1, 1898-1945), adapted from the adult text by Susan Campbell Bartoletti NON FICTION 400 pgs. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2014. $19.99.  Language: PG; (8 swears 0 Fs) Mature Content: PG; Violence: PG (some disturbing photographs of bomb victims and other photos of war)

It’s all the fault of the Capitalists! The common story of American History is biased and told from the viewpoint of the American Government which protects itself from damaging press by determining what version of the story is told and how much information the public receives.  Recently, previously sealed documents have come to light which changes the perspective on American History (as we know it). Movie director and historian Oliver Stone presents this version of the 1st half of the 20th Century.

It is shocking, but it feels very inflammatory.  Using phrases like hatched plans, orchestrated, and extorted, we are certainly getting the untold story, but without acknowledgement of the other side, it reads like propaganda. Billed as a “crucial counterpoint to America’s textbooks” it’s not balanced.  8 pages of source material, 6 of them are internet sources. None of the sources are attributed to their reference in the text, instead the reader is referred to the adult version of the text.  I can see why it is considered controversial. 

HS - OPTIONAL Lisa Librarian

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