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Taking It Personally: Racism In Classroom From Kinderg To College / Edition 1

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"When Sekani Moyenda, an African American elementary school teacher, accepted an invitation to speak at a graduate education class, neither the students nor Ann Berlak, their professor, could guess that her presentation would spark an outpouring of emotion and a reexamination of race from everyone involved. The "encounter" - as it was called - was an expression of Moyenda's anger at the institutionalized racism of our educational system, a system whose foundations are reinforced and whose assumptions about race are reproduced in the graduate school classroom. Forcing everyone involved to rethink their own race consciousness, Taking It Personally is a chronicle of two teachers and their own educational progress. In processing their own responses to the encounter, along with their students', Berlak and Moyenda meditate not only on their own ideas on teaching and learning, but also redefine the obligation a teacher has to his or her students."--BOOK JACKET.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Many readers will have difficulty appreciating a book that comes to the conclusion that "all white people are infected with racism." Relying heavily on opinion and often falling into overgeneralization, the authors (a university professor and an elementary school teacher) present a cautionary tale for teacher educators hoping to introduce their students to the tenets of "critical multiculturalism," i.e., an approach that "is structured to convey that the entire social order is shaped by institutions that tend to preserve and reproduce prevailing racial, gender, and class inequities." Hoping to find a place in the curriculum alongside the works of Jonathan Kozol (e.g., Savage Inequalities, LJ 9/15/91) and Lisa Delpit (Other People's Children, New Pr., 1995), the authors demonstrate that children of color are the victims of an institutionalized racism that affects the teaching they receive at every academic level. Unfortunately, this important message is obscured by the angry, self-righteous, and occasionally self-indulgent tone of this work. Recommended only for the most comprehensive academic collections related to multicultural education or teacher education. [With this title Temple University inaugurates their "Teaching and Learning Social Justice" series, which highlights educational practices that promote equality in multicultural societies. Ed.] Scott Walter, Washington State Univ., Pullman Fisher, Anne. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781566398763
  • Publisher: Temple University Press
  • Publication date: 5/18/2001
  • Series: Teaching/Learning Social Justi Series
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 232
  • Sales rank: 1,416,891
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2005

    library journal underestimates the racism that the book portrays

    As a person of color, a teacher, a graduate student, I found the book to validate my own struggles, having to face racism emitted by other teachers and teacher educators in this country's top teacher preparation schools. It is thought among some people that racism no longer exists, while the people of color know and feel it everyday that racism is everywhere. More disturbing fact is that there are teachers out ther who believe that they are not racists and they are race-neutral, yet have never faced their own internalized racism. And these people go into the classroom and pass on their internalized racism to their students--our children. This is a rare book in which a reader, whether a person of color or White, can and needs to read between the lines to face their own prejudices. This book is not only a recommended book for an academic bookshelf, but a must for those who claim to have a stake in today's education--students, parents, teachers, teacher educators and law makers--everyone.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 24, 2003

    Start "Taking It Personally"

    To me, this book was more direct than offensive, and more educational than self-indulgent. Moyenda and Berlak have an important point to make and apologies are not necessary. It's the uncompromised explanation of racism this book offers that will help us all understand what has been and needs to be done. Whether or not one can immediately agree with the premise of this book or what at first seems to be Moyenda's unclear professional credentials, her message is strong, authoritative, and very credible.

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