Wise Up Journal

From the book Underground History of American Education
By John Taylor Gatto (Three times New York teacher of the year)

The Ideology Of The Text [Chapter 3]

Looking back on the original period of school formation in her study of American history textbooks, America Revised, Frances Fitzgerald remarked on the profound changes that emerged following suggestions issued by sociologists and social thinkers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The original history of our institutions and the documents which protect our unique liberties gradually began to be effaced. Fitzgerald raises the puzzle of textbook alteration:

“The ideology that lies behind these texts is rather difficult to define…. it does not fit usual political patterns….the texts never indicate any line of action….authors avoid what they choose to and some of them avoid main issues….they fail to develop any original ideas….they confuse social sciences with science….clouds of jargon….leave out ideas….historical names are given no character, they are cipher people….there are no conflicts, only ‘problems’. [emphasis added]”

Indeed, the texts may be unfathomable, and that may be the editorial intent.


George Orwell, 1984 (1949): “Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.”

Rhodes Scholar Professor Arnold Toynbee’s paraphrase of Orwell’s insight: “Whoever controls the image and information of the past determines what and how future generations will think; whoever controls the information and images of the present determines how those same people will view the past.”

Countless manufactured events of the past benefited a leisure class, a managing/controlling elite. What provoked a reaction before on human mass psychology can be used again to provoke the same reaction. If the public are not told real history they’re doomed to be fooled again.