Lies My Teacher Told Me About Christopher Columbus

What Your History Books Got Wrong

The American Book Award winner’s long out-of-print myth-busting poster book, sure to be of interest to the million-plus buyers of Lies My Teacher Told Me

“A perfect antidote for the nonsense about Columbus conveyed to our children for generations.” —Howard Zinn, author of A People’s History of the United States

In Lies My Teacher Told Me About Christopher Columbus, the bestselling author of Lies My Teacher Told Me offers a graphic corrective to the Columbus story told in so many American classrooms. First published over fifteen years ago and long out of print, the poster and accompanying paperback book sum up the mis-tellings—and reveal the real story—in a graphically appealing and accessible format.

In vintage Loewen fashion, the poster juxtaposes short quotes from a range of high school textbooks currently in use, with excerpts from primary sources that clearly show how textbooks have “lied” by knowingly substituting crowd-pleasing myths for grim and gruesome historical evidence.

In fact, these textbooks intentionally omitted every important detail that we do know about Columbus’s fateful voyage to the Americas. Among countless other facts, Loewen demonstrates that Columbus and his men were far from the first to set foot in the “New World,” and that the peoples he encountered there did not submit to the “godlike” authority of him and his crewmen, but rather to the deadly forms of smallpox and bubonic plague they brought with them from Europe.

In concise, deeply engaging prose, Loewen expands on these little-discussed facts, putting them in the larger context of a discussion of “truth” and revisionist history.


“Absolutely indispensable for at least the next hundred years. This book is a real Discovery and a real Exploration.”
—Ariel Dorfman, Walter Hines Page Chair of Literature and Latin American Studies, Duke University
“Every teacher in America could benefit by reading this fine work.”
—Bill Bigelow, co-editor of Rethinking Columbus

News and Reviews

Lies My Teacher Told Me Reader's Guide

The New Press is pleased to share a Reading Group Guide for Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen.


Read an excerpt from James W. Loewen's Lies My Teacher Told Me About Christopher Columbus on Alternet.

Books by James W. Loewen

Lies My Teacher Told Me: Young Readers’ Edition
Everything American History Textbooks Get Wrong

James W. Loewen

Lies My Teacher Told Me
A Graphic Adaptation

James W. Loewen, Nate Powell

Lies Across America
What Our Historic Sites Get Wrong

James W. Loewen

Lies My Teacher Told Me
Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong

James W. Loewen

Goodreads Reviews