Clark Merrefield: Inside Howard Zinn's FBI Files





[Clark Merrefield is a reporter, researcher and writer based in New York.]

The historian and activist died in January, but the 400 pages the FBI compiled on him over 25 years are just being released. Friends Noam Chomsky and others tell Clark Merrefield what they mean.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation’s 423 pages on historian and self-described “democratic socialist” Howard Zinn, released Friday morning, outline a record of investigation spanning 25 years, beginning in 1949 with his alleged involvement in communist front groups.

Zinn, who died in January and was best known for his influential A People’s History of the United States, was studying at New York University on the GI Bill when J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI opened its first files on him. He was working as vice chairman for the Brooklyn branch of the American Labor Party and living at 926 Lafayette Avenue in what is an area now considered the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood in Brooklyn....

Full text of the FBI files on Howard Zinn is available here.



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