Whose America

Author: Jonathan Zimmerman
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674045446
Format: PDF, Docs
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What do America's children learn about American history, American values, and human decency? Who decides? In this absorbing book, Jonathan Zimmerman tells the dramatic story of conflict, compromise, and more conflict over the teaching of history and morality in twentieth-century America. In history, whose stories are told, and how? As Zimmerman reveals, multiculturalism began long ago. Starting in the 1920s, various immigrant groups--the Irish, the Germans, the Italians, even the newly arrived Eastern European Jews--urged school systems and textbook publishers to include their stories in the teaching of American history. The civil rights movement of the 1960s and '70s brought similar criticism of the white version of American history, and in the end, textbooks and curricula have offered a more inclusive account of American progress in freedom and justice. But moral and religious education, Zimmerman argues, will remain on much thornier ground. In battles over school prayer or sex education, each side argues from such deeply held beliefs that they rarely understand one another's reasoning, let alone find a middle ground for compromise. Here there have been no resolutions to calm the teaching of history. All the same, Zimmerman argues, the strong American tradition of pluralism has softened the edges of the most rigorous moral and religious absolutism.

Civil Rights Culture Wars

Author: Charles W. Eagles
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 1469631164
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Just as Mississippi whites in the 1950s and 1960s had fought to maintain school segregation, they battled in the 1970s to control the school curriculum. Educators faced a crucial choice between continuing to teach a white supremacist view of history or offering students a more enlightened multiracial view of their state's past. In 1974, when Random House's Pantheon Books published Mississippi: Conflict and Change (written and edited by James W. Loewen and Charles Sallis), the defenders of the traditional interpretation struck back at the innovative textbook. Intolerant of its inclusion of African Americans, Native Americans, women, workers, and subjects like poverty, white terrorism, and corruption, the state textbook commission rejected the book, and its action prompted Loewen and Sallis to join others in a federal lawsuit (Loewen v. Turnipseed) challenging the book ban. Charles W. Eagles explores the story of the controversial ninth-grade history textbook and the court case that allowed its adoption with state funds. Mississippi: Conflict and Change and the struggle for its acceptance deepen our understanding both of civil rights activism in the movement's last days and of an early controversy in the culture wars that persist today.

Culture Wars

Author: Roger Chapman
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317473515
Format: PDF, Docs
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The term "culture wars" refers to the political and sociological polarisation that has characterised American society the past several decades. This new edition provides an enlightening and comprehensive A-to-Z ready reference, now with supporting primary documents, on major topics of contemporary importance for students, teachers, and the general reader. It aims to promote understanding and clarification on pertinent topics that too often are not adequately explained or discussed in a balanced context. With approximately 640 entries plus more than 120 primary documents supporting both sides of key issues, this is a unique and defining work, indispensable to informed discussions of the most timely and critical issues facing America today.

A War for the Soul of America

Author: Andrew Hartman
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022625450X
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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What were the culture wars all about? Through the 1980s and 1990s, politics, art, media, schools, and the culture at large were roiled by seemingly unending public battles over gender, race, sexuality, music, and religion.A War for the Soul of America is the first full-scale intellectual history of this period, tracing the histories and influences of key figures, institutions, publications, and alliances--from the Moral Majority and the NEA Four to Madonna and William F. Buckley. Hartman argues that these conflicts were not cynical sideshows that obscured larger economic and political revolutions; rather, he sees them as the key ways in which Americans came to terms with changing demographics, communities, and conceptions of American identity. Hartman's balanced and fair-minded assessment of the time before Fox News and Lady Gaga will change the way you look at public controversies of all kinds.

Classroom Wars

Author: Natalia Mehlman Petrzela
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199358478
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The schoolhouse has long been a crucible in the construction and contestation of the political concept of "family values." Through Spanish-bilingual and sex education, moderates and conservatives in California came to define the family as a politicized and racialized site in the late 1960s and 1970s. Sex education became a vital arena in the culture wars as cultural conservatives imagined the family as imperiled by morally lax progressives and liberals who advocated for these programs attempted to manage the onslaught of sexual explicitness in broader culture. Many moderates, however, doubted the propriety of addressing such sensitive issues outside the home. Bilingual education, meanwhile, was condemned as a symbol of wasteful federal spending on ethically questionable curricula and an intrusion on local prerogative. Spanish-language bilingual-bicultural programs may seem less relevant to the politics of family, but many Latino parents and students attempted to assert their authority, against great resistance, in impassioned demands to incorporate their cultural and linguistic heritage into the classroom. Both types of educational programs, in their successful implementation and in the reaction they inspired, highlight the rightward turn and enduring progressivism in postwar American political culture. In Classroom Wars, Natalia Mehlman Petrzela charts how a state and a citizenry deeply committed to public education as an engine of civic and moral education navigated the massive changes brought about by the 1960s, including the sexual revolution, school desegregation, and a dramatic increase in Latino immigration. She traces the mounting tensions over educational progressivism, cultural and moral decay, and fiscal improvidence, using sources ranging from policy documents to student newspapers, from course evaluations to oral histories. Petrzela reveals how a growing number of Americans fused values about family, personal, and civic morality, which galvanized a powerful politics that engaged many Californians and, ultimately, many Americans. In doing so, they blurred the distinction between public and private and inspired some of the fiercest classroom wars in American history. Taking readers from the cultures of Orange County mega-churches to Berkeley coffeehouses, Natalia Mehlman Petrzela's history of these classroom controversies sheds light on the bitterness of the battles over diversity we continue to wage today and their influence on schools and society nationwide.

Lost Battalions

Author: Richard Slotkin
Publisher: Henry Holt and Company
ISBN: 1466860936
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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"A work of stunning density and penetrating analysis . . . Lost Battalions deploys a narrative symmetry of gratifying complexity."—David Levering Lewis, The Nation During the bloodiest days of World War I, no soldiers served more valiantly than the African American troops of the 369th Infantry—the fabled Harlem Hellfighters—and the legendary 77th "lost battalion" composed of New York City immigrants. Though these men had lived up to their side of the bargain as loyal American soldiers, the country to which they returned solidified laws and patterns of social behavior that had stigmatized them as second-class citizens. Richard Slotkin takes the pulse of a nation struggling with social inequality during a decisive historical moment, juxtaposing social commentary with battle scenes that display the bravery and solidarity of these men. Enduring grueling maneuvers, and the loss of so many of their brethren, the soldiers in the lost battalions were forever bound by their wartime experience. Both a riveting combat narrative and a brilliant social history, Lost Battalions delivers a richly detailed account of the fierce fight for equality in the shadow of a foreign war.

Schools

Author: Sandra Mathison
Publisher: Greenwood Publishing Group
ISBN: 9780313339417
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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No topic sparks an argument faster among the American public, even with relatively apolitical people, than how their children are taught. In schools across the country, school boards, parents, teachers, and students themselves debate issues ranging from charter schools, to the first amendment rights of students, to the efficacy of the No Child Left Behind Act. School districts in Georgia and Pennsylvania have seen battles over the teaching of evolution; places as diverse as Colorado, Washington, and Kentucky have had debates over how best to protect children while at school. Battleground: Schools provides an in-depth, balanced overview of these controversial topics and enables teachers, students, and their parents to better understand the foundations of these conflicts.

Classroom Conversations

Author: Alexandra Miletta
Publisher: The New Press
ISBN: 1595585613
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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In Classroom Conversations, two generations of educators—a mother and daughter—point us to the great thinkers who have shaped their beliefs and practices in education, and who continue to influence teachers today. Nineteen essays by educators from Dewey to Delpit offer parents and new educators an education degree in a nutshell. The Milettas frame these touchstone texts with commentary explaining why these writers resonate for them, sharing not only the personal meanings they have derived from the selections but why these writings have endured in the field over time. Brief biographies set each author in context for the lay reader. As educational fads and jargon come and go, parents and teachers alike will appreciate and find value in the wisdom distilled here. Classroom Conversations will help experienced teachers find renewed meaning in these seminal essays and will help younger teachers discover just how important the work they do can be. For parents, the book will inform and enrich their understanding of their children’s educational experience.

The American Culture Wars

Author: James L. Nolan (Jr.)
Publisher: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 9780813916972
Format: PDF, Docs
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Even though the majority of Americans hold moderate views on issues such as abortion, homosexual rights, funding for the arts and public broadcasting, and multicultural education, extremists tend to dominate public debate. James Davidson Hunter explained this polarization of American politics and political discourse and popularized the term culture wars in his best-selling book Culture Wars: The Struggle to Define America. The eleven contributors to The American Culture Wars analyse these and other heatedly contested issues. In addition, they examine new developments in the culture wars. Together the chapters of this book illuminate current cultural conflicts and offer clues as to where the next American culture wars may be waged.