Lies My Teacher Told Me

why do american history textbooks promote the analysis that the most important developments in the world history are traceable to Europe?

Chapter 2, Lies My Teacher Told Me, by James W. Loewen

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Loewen attempts to counter the perceived ideas that developments in history are traced to Columbus and European conquest. He maintains that most claims about European developments are exaggerated or just wrong. The archetypes of European advancement can be traced to cultures much older than Europe. 

Many of the American advancements- such as the idea of the right to life, liberty, and property in the declaration of independance- were concieved in europe. Because Europe, mainly western erope, was highly industrialized by the 19th and 20th centuries, along with the fact that they were very culturally advanced, with established governments and a critical way of looking at life and the accepted beliefs of the time, it is pretty logical to assume that they would be looked upon as the center for improtant developments. This is also upported by the fact that they were both technologically and politically advanced enough to take over and therefore spread thier beliefs and advancements with the rest of the world. Though important fundamental aspects of human life- such as a written language and an official set of laws were cocieved prior to Europe's power being established, many of the later advancements can be credited to europe.