Con Respeto: Bridging the Distances Between Culturally Diverse Families and Schools: An Ethnographic Portrait / Edition 1by Guadalupe Valdes
Pub. Date: 10/01/2003
Publisher: Teachers College Press
Con Respeto is the story of ten Mexican immigrant families and how each goes about the business of surviving and learning to succeed in a new world. Guadalupe Valde's brings to life the everyday worlds of these families and describes in detail how they viewed themselves as parents as they tried to adjust to a new life and prepare their children to become competent adults. She examines what is commonly believed to be a disinterest in education by Mexican parents and shows, through extensive interviews, as well as first-hand observation, that these hardworking families are both rich and strong in family values and bring with them clear views of what constitutes success and failure.
- Teachers College Press
- Publication date:
- Edition description:
- New Edition
- Product dimensions:
- 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.60(d)
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This book was assigned reading for a university course in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). It accomplished the goal of providing insight to the situation and culture of recent immigrants, albeit immigrants living close to the Mexican border. Fortunately, the professor encouraged us to consider the differences with recent immigrants living 1500 mile from the border. My major criticism is that the author was dismissive of other theories without building a case. From her standpoint as a Mexican-American, the genetic argument theory is patently wrong and hurtful, but a couple of paragraphs about why people once subscribed to it would contribute to the intellectual status of the book. Same thing for the cultural argument, which still has some good-faith supporters. The book is also getting a little dated. I wonder if the bureaucracy is so bad 19 years after it was written. There is no reference to the growing importance of Latin immigrants to the economy of the non-border states both as willing workers and participants in the American dream.
This book provides many insights regarding not only the diversity within Mexican-American culture, acculturation processes, language and education, education policy, bilingualism... but also connects these issues to pre-immigration issues, such as the Mexican education system, variability within Mexican culture, etc. Anyone working with Mexican-American children (whether first, second or third generation...) MUST read this book.