Magazine article Radical Teacher

Songs of Protest

Magazine article Radical Teacher

Songs of Protest

Article excerpt


Rhino Records CD (1991), $11.98.


Volume 1 of 2 from Mark Best, $11.95 for tape, $16.96 for CD, plus $3.95 shipping/handling. (The two songs mentioned below also can be downloaded from

One of the current lies that has been repeated so often that many assume it true is that Vietnam was the only war Americans protested. Even when history textbooks do not state this explicitly, they often make the point through silence about protests except when covering the Vietnam War.

I did the following while teaching high school American history in an inner city magnet school in Oklahoma City. I asked how many had heard or believed that the only protested war was the Vietnam War. Many held their hands high. I asked students to remember back to our study of World War I and to offer statements of what they had learned. After this opener, I handed out the lyrics (available from Mark Best) to two World War I era songs, "I Didn't Raise My Boy to be a Soldier" and "Stay Down Here Where You Belong." We discussed the importance of songs to people. We discussed the different technology available then to record music. …

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