Rating College History Textbooks, Part I: The Least Biased Books

“The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.” Abraham Lincoln

The purpose of this website, as regular readers know, is to point out the liberal bias that permeates college history faculties and the textbooks they write. To that end I study and footnote seven of the most widely used freshman history textbooks. Every other week I post a new column about the biased way in which most of these textbooks cover some important topic in American History.

After doing this for over a year I’ve begun to notice patterns in the various books. While all of them reflect a left-leaning world view, some are certainly more biased, and less accurate, than others. In today’s column I will rate the three textbooks that show the least flagrant bias, starting with the one that comes closest to offering an even-handed representation of American history. Future columns will address the other four.

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Race and Party Politics, Part II – Senator Fullbright and Justice Black

How many legs does a dog have if you call the tail a leg? Four. Calling a tail a leg doesn’t make it a leg.” Abraham Lincoln

In describing the history of the Civil Rights Movement, left-leaning college professors tend to portray it as a battle between liberals and conservatives. The principle of equal justice for all is depicted as something that only liberals believed in. Anyone who supported segregation is described as “conservative.” Professors, in other words, give all the credit for ending institutionalized racism to people like themselves.

Facts that undermine this viewpoint, plentiful as they are, rarely show up in mainstream history books.

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