This Isn't the America I Thought I'd Find: African Students in the Urban U.S. High School / Edition 1by Rosemary Traore, Robert J. Lukens
Pub. Date: 05/04/2006
American society has long placed high expectations on our schools to advance this nation's prospects or to help resolve many of its ills. Throughout America's history, however, immigrant children have experienced difficulties adjusting to their new lives in our schools. This experience has been the fate of many African students who come to America with hopes of
American society has long placed high expectations on our schools to advance this nation's prospects or to help resolve many of its ills. Throughout America's history, however, immigrant children have experienced difficulties adjusting to their new lives in our schools. This experience has been the fate of many African students who come to America with hopes of securing an excellent education, a better future, and a chance at the American dream; instead, they frequently find disappointment. Much of this frustration stems from the marginalization of African and African-American history and cultural studies in the curriculums of many American schools. The absence of any realistic exploration of Africa or Africans in American society has led to cases of harassment, teasing, and racially charged environments. This Isn't the America I Thought I'd Find explores the African student experience and offers advice for teachers seeking to facilitate a deeper appreciation of the emotional and historical connections between people of African descent and all Americans.
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- Edition description:
- New Edition
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- 6.44(w) x 8.96(h) x 0.74(d)
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 List of Tables Chapter 2 Foreword Chapter 3 Preface Chapter 4 Acknowledgements Chapter 5 Introduction Chapter 6 1. "The Darkest Thing About Africa is America's Ignorance of It" Chapter 7 2. African Students ProfilesPrevious and Current School Experiences Chapter 8 3. Myths and Misperceptions about Africa, or "I Don't Live in the Jungle" Chapter 9 4. Expectations and Disappointments: Immigrant Life in AmericaBetter Education, Better Life, and "The Streets are Paved with Gold!" Chapter 10 5. Afro-American Student Profiles Chapter 11 6. The "White Elephant in the Room," or How Come Some of These Students Don't Know They're African? Chapter 12 7. Afrocentricity: Theory and Practical Implications Chapter 13 8. Making the Connection / Sharing a Heritage Chapter 14 9. Afrocentricity and Education Reforms Chapter 15 Appendix Chapter 16 Notes Chapter 17 References Chapter 18 Index Chapter 19 About the Authors
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America, the land of opportunity, home of the free, sweet land of liberty doesn¿t exist for many Africans who come to live here. The American Dream is false for them. Traoré & Lukens have written an extraordinary book, unique in its perspective, using Africans as a lens for understanding many of Americas social and cultural issues such as immigration, socio-economically depressed inner city communities, and the failures of Afro-American students in the cities of America. Rosemary Traoré & Robert Lukens live with African Students in an inner city Philadelphia school (Jackson high school) and discover their struggles to relate to their Afro-American peers and the many trials these kids face. But the ¿Land of the Free¿ myth remains alive for most African immigrants and when dashed they are dismayed. Hence the derivation of the title of the book (pg. 59), ¿I can¿t seem to find the America I thought I¿d find.¿ The authors then embark on a miraculous journey with the African students who come face-to-face with some of their Afro-American peers and find they have a great and lasting bond: Afrocentricity is not just a word but a way for them to know who they are and where they come from, what heritage precedes them. By making the connection to their African heritage, the students come to understand that they have more in common than previously suspected by either group. If this book had only been available to me when I was teaching inner city (New York City) middle school students in 1985-88-these words are gold. This Isn¿t The America I Thought I¿d Find is one of Traoré & Lukens great gifts to the world. Readers will discover the enormous wonder, the tough road to awakening, that occurs between Africans and Afro-Americans, and the implications it makes to America to look toward Africa, and Afrocentricity.