Literacies of Power: What Americans Are Not Allowed to Know

Overview

Challenging conservatives like Allan Bloom and E. D. Hirsch, Macedo shows why so-called common culture literacy is a form of dominant cultural reproduction that undermines independent thought and goes against the best interests of our students. Offering a wide-ranging counterargument, Macedo shows why cultural literacy cannot be restricted to the acquisition of Western heritage values, which sustain an ideology that systematically negates the cultural experiences of many members of society—not only minorities but...

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Overview

Challenging conservatives like Allan Bloom and E. D. Hirsch, Macedo shows why so-called common culture literacy is a form of dominant cultural reproduction that undermines independent thought and goes against the best interests of our students. Offering a wide-ranging counterargument, Macedo shows why cultural literacy cannot be restricted to the acquisition of Western heritage values, which sustain an ideology that systematically negates the cultural experiences of many members of society—not only minorities but also anyone who is poor or disenfranchised. Macedo calls on his own experience as a Cape Verdean immigrant from West Africa who had to surmount the barriers imposed by the world’s most entrenched monolingual system of higher education. His eloquence in this book is testimony to the very idea that critical thinking and good education are not and must not be culturally or linguistically bounded.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813322537
  • Publisher: Westview Press
  • Publication date: 12/28/1994
  • Series: Edge Series
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 206
  • Lexile: 1570L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.05 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Donaldo Macedo is Professor of English and Distinguished Professor of Liberal Arts and Education at the University of Massachusetts Boston. He is a leading authority in language studies and has published extensively in the areas of Creole languages, critical literacy, biligualism, and multiculturalism. His publications include Literacy: Reading the Word and the Word (with Paulo Freire, 1987), Dancing with Bigotry: Beyond the Politics of Tolerance (with Lilia Bartolome, 1999), Howard Zinn on Democratic Education (with Howard Zinn, 2005) and Globalization of Racism (edited with Panayota Gounari, 2005). He is a collaborator with Noam Chomsky on the recently published book, Chomsky On Miseducation. His published work has been translated into several languages.

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Table of Contents

Foreword
Series Editors' Foreword
Acknowledgments
Introduction 1
1 Literacy for Stupidification: The Pedagogy of Big Lies 9
The Instrumentalist Approach to Literacy 16
The Barbarism of Specialization, or the Specialization of Barbarism 19
The Illiteracy of Literacy of the Gulf War 25
2 Our Common Culture: A Poisonous Pedagogy 37
Western Heritage Versus Multiculturalism 49
What All Americans Need to Know 65
3 Our Uncommon Culture: The Politics of Race, Class, Gender, and Language 91
4 English Only: The Tongue-Tying of America 125
The Role of Language in the Education of Linguistic-Minority Students 131
A Democratic and Liberatory Education for Linguistic-Minority Students 133
5 Educational Reform: Literacy and Poverty Pimps 137
Educational Reforms That Deform 152
The Choiceless Choice 165
The Method: Fetish of Reform 173
Notes 185
About the Book and Author 197
Index 199
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2004

    An Extremely Important and Relevant Book

    Macedo's Literacies of Power remains a very important book about education, culture, and politics. The book seems more relevant now than ever as the kinds of jingoistic patriotism discussed in the book have resurged with a vengeance.

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