Common Schools/Uncommon Identities / Edition 1

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Overview

One of the most hotly debated issues in contemporary education concerns the tension between the demands of such groups as blacks, Latinos, gays, women, and the handicapped for a curriculum that recognizes their particular identity-and the competing position that the role of public education is to infuse children with a common American identity. In this book, a distinguished philosopher of education takes on that debate, indicating the underlying ethical issues on each side and showing how schools can promote both national and cultural identities.
Walter Feinberg develops a theory of education that is twofold: it is sensitive to the concerns of parents and community members who want the public schools to reinforce their particular values and group identity, and it also maintains a commitment to the "principled reasons" for public education-the general ideals that public education shares with a liberal political philosophy, particularly equality of educational opportunity, freedom of association, and individual development. Feinberg develops an understanding of basic principles that schools should use in addressing cultural differences, tests these and shows how liberalism is indeed compatible with cultural recognition.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
How far should public schools go toward promoting a certain cultural group? Should negative aspects be left out so that children of a certain culture can feel good about themselves? And how can schools instruct students about other cultures and value systems without stepping on parents' toes? These are some of the questions philosophy of education professor Feinberg (On Higher Ground: Education and the Case for Affirmative Action, Teacher's Coll., 1997) tries to answer. He discusses the differences between pluralism and multiculturalism and advocates "an inclusive national identity" that addresses the concerns of both the pluralist and the multiculturalist. He feels the function of the "common school" is to teach students how to think for themselves while respecting the ideas and practices of other cultures. Feinberg's arguments are sound and should be given thoughtful consideration. Recommended for academic libraries, larger public libraries, or those with an emphasis on education.--Terry A. Christner, Hutchinson P.L., KS
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780300082920
  • Publisher: Yale University Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2000
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 276
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
1 Education: Cultural Difference and National Identity 1
2 Nature of National Identity and Citizenship Education 31
3 Cultural Difference 59
4 The Possibility of Moral Education in a Liberal Society 93
5 Aims of Multicultural Education 123
6 Uncommon Identities: Hard Cases 158
7 On Robust Recognition and Storytelling 190
8 Citizenship Education and the Multicultural Ideal 203
9 Conclusion: Common Schools and the Public Formation 229
Notes 247
Index 261
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