Theory and research in social education

Theory and research in social education

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Theory and research in social education
National Council for the Social Studies -- College and University Faculty Assembly
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h e7ory &]?esearch in Social Education Volume XXII t Number 2 t Spring, 1994 In this issue . FEATURES George W Chilcoat Developing Democratic Citizens : Jerry A Ligon t The Mississippi Freedom Schools as a Model for Social Studies Instruction Theodore Kaltsounis Democracy's Challenge as the Foundation for Social Studies INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVES Jianping Shen t Ideological Management in Textbooks : A Study of the Changing Image of the United States in China's Geography Textbooks BOOK REVIEWS Andrew D Mullen t The Illusion of Coherence Ed Jadallah t Teacher Personal Theorizing Jean Fair t Thinking through Class Discussion


THEORY AND RESEARCH IN SOCIAL EDUCATION Volume XXII Number 2 s Spring, 1994 The Official Journal of the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies TRSE is the official journal of the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies Published quarterly, it is a general review open to all social studies educators, social scientists, historians, and philosophers A general statement of purpose may be found with submission, subscription, and advertising information at the end of the journal € 1994 by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies All rights reserved


THEORY AND RESEARCH IN SOCIAL EDUCATION Editor : Jack R Fraenkel Book Review Editor : Perry Marker Assistant Editor : Mary V Grant Editorial Assistant : Jean Cheng Theory and Research in Social Education (ISSN 0093-3104) is published quarterly by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies Membership is $40 .00 per year, $25 .00 of which is allocated for subscription to TR S E Institutional and non-CUFA subscriptions are $50 .00 per year Secondclass postage is paid at Washington, D .C ., and additional offices Back issues may be obtained for $10 .00 each when available Postmaster : Send address changes to Theory and Research in Social Education, 3501 Newark Street, NW, Washington, DC 20016 Address manuscripts and letters to the editor to : Dr Jack R Fraenkel Research and Development Center Burk Hall 238 School of Education San Francisco State University San Francisco, CA 94132 Address book reviews to : Dr Perry Marker School of Education Sonoma State University 1801 E Cotati Avenue Rohnert Park, CA 94928 Address correspondence related to permissions, subscription and membership, back issues, and change of address to : Membership Department National Council for the Social Studies 3501 Newark Street, NW Washington, DC 20016 Address correspondence about advertising to : Peter Stavros, Meetings and Marketing, at the NCSS address


REVIEWER ACKNOWLEDGMENT The editors would like to thank the following individuals for their time and for the attention they gave to the manuscripts they reviewed for this issue and upcoming issues of TRSE Susan Adler Beverly Armento Christine Bennett Don Bragaw Alan Brandhorst Margaret Branson Jere Brophy June Chapin Cleo Cherryholmes Jeff Cornett O L Davis Richard Diem Alberta Dougan Matthew Downey Lee Ehman Ronald Evans Jean Fair Jeff Fouts Jesus Garcia Richard Gross Carole Hahn Michael Hartoonian Marilyn Johnston Bill Joyce Clair Keller Nancy King Joseph Kirman Gloria Ladson-Billings A Guy Larkins James Leming Linda Levstik Wilma Longstreet Andra Makler Gerald Marker Peter Martorella Merry Merryfield Geoff Milburn Steven Miller Charles Myers Jack Nelson Murry Nelson Anna Ochoa Walter Parker Jeff Passe Paul Robinson John Rossi Peter Seixas James Shaver Robert Stahl William Stanley Lynda Stone Jan Tucker Bruce Van Sledright Michael Whelan


Volume XXII Number 2 Spring, 1994 IN THIS ISSUE . Editorial 127 George W Chilcoat FEATURES Developing Democratic Citizens : 128 Jerry A Ligon Theodore Kaltsounis The Mississippi Freedom Schools as a Model for Social Studies Instruction Democracy's Challenge as the 176 Foundation for Social Studies 194 INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVES Jianping Shen Ideological Management in Textbooks : Andrew D Mullen A Study of the Changing Image of the United States in China's Geography Textbooks BOOK REVIEWS The Illusion of Coherence 214 Ed Jadallah Teacher Personal Theorizing 221 Jean Fair Thinking through Class Discussion 234 Information for Authors 238


Editorial Although we did not intend to orient this issue around a particular theme, we were pleasantly surprised to discover one that emerged from the articles we have assembled here All of the articles presented in one way or another address the concept of democracy and how it relates to social studies instruction and practice George Chilcoat and Jerry A Ligon begin by providing a detailed account of the experiences of students and teachers involved with the freedom schools project organized by the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee in Mississippi during the summer of 1964 These authors cull a number of important principles from this experience and use it to construct a model to guide future social studies instruction Similarly, Theodore Kaltsounis offers a guide for social studies instruction based on democratic principles He asserts that previous models have failed largely because of their conception of democracy as static content rather than as a fluid approach to thinking Jianping Shen applies these ideas about social studies instruction toward an examination of Chinese geography textbooks and the ideological orientations they contain, as reflected in their portrayal of the United States He argues that the centralized system of textbook production and distribution in China creates a hegemonic context for ideological alignment The book reviews that follow also address questions of pedagogy and practice that stem from similar concerns about the development of thinking skills We believe that these are timely contributions to the field of social studies research and education, and we hope that you will enjoy what these authors have to say As always, your comments and responses are welcome Jack R Fraenkel May, 1994 127


Theory and Research in Social Education Spring, 1994, Volume XXII, Number 2, pp 128-175 € by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies DEVELOPING DEMOCRATIC CITIZENS : THE MISSISSIPPI FREEDOM SCHOOLS AS A MODEL FOR SOCIAL STUDIES INSTRUCTION' George W Chilcoat Brigham Young University Jerry A Ligon Eastern Illinois University Abstract In late 1963, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), a civil rights group comprised mostly of young black college students and graduates, designed several projects to involve white volunteers in assisting African American communities in Mississippi, one of which was the creation of freedom schools to ameliorate the inadequacies of the Mississippi public schools and to engage African American students in collective community, social, and political participation by linking education to their personal experiences An innovative instructional program was developed to enable student activity, expression, and critical thinking In this article, the authors describe the goals, curricular, instructional techniques, evaluation methods, and classroom management strategies used in these freedom schools, and axplore how teachers in five schools implemented the curricula in their classrooms and viewed the results of their teaching Suggestions as to how this project proves useful as a model for social studies instruction are also presented Introduction Several authors in this journal (Angell, 1991 ; Cherryholmes, 1978 ; Foshay & Burton, 1976 ; Kickbusch, 1987 ; Longstreet, 1985 ; 'We wish to thank Daniel Perlstein, Dan Hinman-Smith, Howard Zinn, Mary Grant, Sharon Black, and Cindy Chilcoat for their helpful insights and comments, as well as the personnel of the State Historical Society of Wisconsin Archive Collections and the University of Washington Archives, various freedom school teachers, and P J Van Huss and Ian Holt for their wonderful assistance 1 2 8


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools Oldendorf, 1989 ; Oliner, 1983 ; Popkewitz, 1977 ; Remy, 1978 ; Shermis & Barth, 1982 ; White, 1982 ; Wood, 1985) and elsewhere (Cherryholmes, 1980 ; Engle & Ochoa, 1988 ; Giroux, 1980 ; Goodman, 1992 ; Hepburn, 1983 ; Parker & Jarolimek, 1984 ; Parker & Kaltsounis, 1986 ; Shaver, 1981 ; Maxcy & Stanley, 1986 ; Strike, 1988 ; Wood, 1984) have discussed the concept of citizenship in social studies education extensively They frequently suggest that citizenship as an organizing principle for classroom practice is a problematic, illusive concept (Longstreet, 1985) As Hertzberg (1981) claimed, "The definition of the appropriate education of citizens has been one of the most vexing questions in social studies history" (p 172) Even so, these discussions have provided at least three perspectives on citizenship : as cultural transmission (Shermis & Barth, 1982) ; as reflective inquiry into social science knowledge (Kickbusch, 1987 ; White, 1982 ; Wood, 1984 ; ) ; and as democratic transformation (Wood, 1984) Briefly defined, citizenship as cultural transmission implies passive student participation ; content centered around positive knowledge and uncritical beliefs in loyalty and patriotism ; prepackaged textbooks using rote acquisition instruction ; reliance upon teacher control and authority ; and acceptance of existing or idealized social institutions (Goodlad, 1984 ; Shermis & Barth, 1982) Citizenship as reflective inquiry into social science knowledge, on the other hand, suggests active student learning ; development of critical decisionmaking skills ; and utilization of a social science knowledge base to test and resolve problems by collecting and using relevant data, formulating and testing hypotheses, and drawing conclusions (Barr, Barth & Shermis, 1977 ; White 1982) Despite its noble aims, the reflective inquiry approach tends to merely recycle the assumptions of citizenship transmission by using safe content that promotes an uncritical examination of established values and beliefs (Giroux, 1980 ; Kickbusch, 1987 ; Maxcy & Stanley, 1986 ; Wood, 1984, 1985), where "the selection of problems, the choice of relevant data and the conclusions, solutions or answers" are usually provided for students by curriculum experts, text writers, and teachers (Shermis & Barth, 1982, pp 31-32) Finally, citizenship as democratic transformation suggests a classroom climate that engages students in the "processes of critical thinking, ethical decision making and social participation" (Stanley & Nelson, 1986, p 532) in order to improve the quality of their lives and their communities (Goodman, 1992 ; Parker & Jerolimek, 1984 ; Parker & Kaltsounis, 1986 ; Wood, 1985) This view rejects both the cultural transmission and reflective inquiry approaches to citizenship as inappropriate because they maintain that democracy is a static quality rather than "a constant struggle for equality and justice," and they support a limited "socializing role of mainstream 1 2 9


Chilcoat & Ligon citizenship education" rather than classroom activities that lead "to civic empowerment and civic courage" (Kickbusch, 1991, p 176) Although the literature seems to reflect support for the theory of citizenship as democratic transformation, research (Cuban, 1991 ; Fancett & Hawke, 1982 ; Shaver, 1987) on the daily practices of social studies teachers reports that this philosophy is not practiced widely, particularly in comparison to use of citizenship as cultural transmission, which appears to permeate most social studies classrooms Partly because of unsupportive school environments, inadequate curriculum, skills, strategies, and the occasional inability to move beyond ideals or rhetoric with practical effect (see Kickbusch, 1987), teachers who seek to introduce elements of a more democratic citizenship instruction often are hindered by the paucity of exemplars to guide their efforts With few reported instances of democratic citizenship instruction (Wood, 1993), there is little "from which to draw conclusions about the potential influence of democratic schooling on democratic dispositions" (Angell, 1991, p 257) "There exists a general lack of available resources to inform the everyday practice of critical educators" (Teitelbaum, 1990, p 408) Teitelbaum (1990) suggests, however, that examining past school settings that introduced critical perspectives to classroom practice may prove useful In this spirit, this discussion includes a detailed examination of one such school experience that might have implications for democratic citizenship instruction in today's social studies classrooms ; namely, the Mississippi freedom schools The freedom schools were part of the civil rights movement in Mississippi during the summer of 1964 They provide a useful context for studying examples of democratic social studies instruction from the perspectives and experiences of volunteer teachers working under hostile conditions for approximately six to eight weeks These volunteers taught African American students using curriculum and instruction to promote equality, self-discovery, learning, social justice, and community activism (Perlstein, 1990) In this article, we examine the Mississippi freedom schools with respect to (1) proposed goals ; (2) curriculum ; (3) instructional behaviors ; (4) evaluation/assessment ; and (5) classroom management We then propose a social studies instruction model building upon the principles generated from these freedom school experiences Historical Background Active change in the white Southern social, political, and educational infrastructure began with the Supreme Court's 1954 landmark decision of Brown v Board of Education, and continued through limited federal intervention and active civil disobedience by 1 3 0


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools members of various civil rights groups organized around the goal of eliminating white social and political injustice The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) formed in 1960 was one of the most effective of these groups (Forman, 1972 ; Sellers, 1973 ; Zinn, 1965) As the first organization of the civil rights movement controlled by university students, SNCC was committed to nonviolent, direct action for social change (Sellers, 1973) Its leaders staged numerous sitins at all-white eating establishments and participated in freedom rides to Alabama and Mississippi to protest segregated bus terminals Between 1961 and 1963, SNCC focused on the political and social life of Mississippi's African American communities by instructing residents on community planning and voter registration Retaliation by whites was swift and brutal, manifested by arrests, beatings, prison sentences, and even the murder of African American community leaders and SNCC activists (Zinn, 1965) Responding to increased white repression as well as fragmentation and competition among several civil rights organizations, SNCC helped organize in 1963 the Council of Federated Organizations (COFO), an umbrella organization that coordinated activities of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) In November of that year, members of COFO and SNCC conceived the Mississippi Freedom Summer Project, a major political action program involving approximately 1,000 chiefly white volunteers (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee [SNCC] Papers, 1982, Reel 38) designed to promote African American equality and basic democratic rights through a variety of strategic activities :  t A massive drive for voter registration among disenfranchised African Americans ;  t A mock election in defiance of an all-white state Democratic party run by the newly created Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP or FDP) to represent African Americans in the upcoming national Democratic convention ;  Community centers providing weekly instruction and entertainment for African American adults and preschool children ;  A summer school program providing teenage African American students with a richer educational experience than was available in schools and hopefully commiting these students to become a force for social change in Mississippi (State Historical Society of Wisconsin 1 3 1


Chilcoat & Ligon [SHSW], R Hunter Morrey Papers ; SHSW, Rev Richard Gould Papers ; Rothschild, 1982 ; Perlstein, 1990) Charles Cobb (SHSW, Henry Bowie Papers ; SNCC, Reel 68), a field secretary for SNCC, proposed the idea of freedom schools as a war against academic poverty He claimed that the Mississippi school system was the worst in the nation, and that the segregated black schools were the worst in Mississippi He also claimed that these schools were intellectual wastelands with "a complete absence of academic freedom" meant "to squash intellectual curiosity" (SHSW : Henry Bowie Papers, unpaginated) 2 Cobb advocated an educational system for African American students that related to everyday experience He also conceived of schools as a political organizing tool to train students to become local civil rights workers and organizers (University of Washington Libraries, Otis Pease Papers) Freedom schools were designed to "offer young black Mississippians an education that public schools would not supply ; one that both provided intellectual stimulation and linked learning to participation in the movement to transform the South's segregated society" (Perlstein, 1990, p 297) To make these schools a reality, the National Council of Churches sponsored a curriculum conference in New York during March, 1964 (Fusco, 1964 ; SNCC, Reels 67, 68, 69) Approximately 50 people participated, including SNCC staff members ; public school teachers from the New York Federation of Teachers Union who had participated in a small-scale freedom school project in Virginia during the summer of 1963 ; Myles Horton, director of the Highlander Folk School, who had helped organize citizenship schools in black Sea Island communities off the coasts of South Carolina and Georgia ; Noel Day, a junior high school teacher who had organized and designed curricula for one-day residential freedom schools during the 1963 Boston schools boycott ; and Staughton Lynd, professor of history at Spellman College, who later was appointed coordinator of the freedom schools The major focus of this conference was formulating a core civic curriculum to prepare young African Americans for full citizenship in a democracy (SNCC, Reel 35) The four main components of the studentoriented curriculum were :  t Problem-solving case studies that related political, economic, and social forces to direct experience ;  t A focus on discussion as means for achieving a new society ; 2 Many of the quotes from SNCC, SHSW, and UWL papers are unpaginated because these archival papers are collections of memoranda, letters, reports, photographs, mimeographs, dittos, correspondence, personal notes, etc ., that do not contain page numbers 1 3 2


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools  t Use of Guide to Negro History, a comprehensive survey of African American history ; and  t Reliance on personal experience as the basis for studying civic and social issues Because African American students were not offered a solid academic program in the segregated public schools, freedom schools were intended also to provide remedial reading and writing instruction ; a humanities curriculum emphasizing English, foreign languages, art, and creative writing ; and a general science and mathematics curriculum In addition, the conference recommended numerous progressive, democratic teaching techniques emphasizing selfdiscovery and self-expression and encouraging students to think critically, to question Mississippi's oppressive social order, and to participate in social change (SNCC, Reel 27 ; Lauter & Perlstein, 1991) Two week-long orientation meetings also sponsored by the National Council of Churches were held in June 1964 on the campus of Western College for Women at Oxford, Ohio, to train the freedom school volunteers (SHSW, Rev Richard Gould Papers ; SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers ; SHSW, Lise Vogel Papers) These volunteers included both teachers and nonteachers, all of whom received intensive course training in Mississippi politics, race relations, the SNCC philosophy of nonviolence as both a momentary tactic and a life commitment, practical safety procedures (Lake, 1964 ; Rothschild, 1982), pedagogical techniques, and use of the core curricula During this time, participants prepared for the specific situations they would encounter and examined the existing educational structure of African American schools On the last night of the orientation, Bob Moses, a SNCC field secretary, spoke to the teachers "about the prospects, the dangers, and the rewards that the summer might bring" (Rothschild, 1982, p 406) He implored them "to be patient with their students There's a difference between being slow and being stupid The people [the teachers would] be working with aren't stupid But they're slow, so slow" (Sutherland, 1965, p 39) On completing the orientation, volunteers traveled to locations throughout Mississippi to open their sixto eight-week freedom schools The organizers had planned initially for 20 schools with a total population of 1,000 students (SHSW, Robert Starobin Papers) ; however, the program met with unanticipated success and enthusiasm, resulting in 41 schools in 20 communities with a total of 2,165 students (SNCC, Reel 38) Although high school students were originally targeted, the project attracted a number of elementary and adult students as well (Holt, 1966) The following schedule for the Jackson, Mississippi school was typical for many of the other freedom schools throughout the state : 1 3 3


Chilcoat & Ligon Morning 8 :15-8 :30 t Freedom songs and devotions 8 :30-9 :20 t History of the Negro in America (on a rotating basis of two and three sessions per week per subject) 9 :30-10 :20 Citizenship curriculum (two general sessions per week and three small group discussions), also including films related to citizenship 10 :30-12 :00 t Special subjects Afternoon 1 :30-3 :30 t Afternoon activities : 1 Arts and crafts 2 Playwriting, producing, acting 3 Writing, editing, publishing the freedom school newspaper 4 Mondays-sessions on how to prepare and mimeograph leaflets for mass meetings, voter registration campaigns, etc 5 Typing, one hour per day, times to be arranged (SNCC, Reel 68) The culminating event for all freedom schools was a three-day statewide student convention held in August, 1964, in Meridian, Mississippi, planned and administered by student delegates, who formulated and adopted a detailed platform on issues ranging from job discrimination to civil liberties (SHSW, Robert Parks Papers ; SHSW, Howard Zinn Papers ; Grant, 1964 ; Lynd, 1965) This was the first time African American students from around the state had gathered to discuss common goals and concerns (SHSW, Jake Friesan Papers) Although the members of COFO and SNCC hoped that freedom schools would continue beyond the summer project, only a few were able to sustain enough study and activism to do so The original planners had not intended the schools to become permanent institutions, merely a vehicle for effecting immediate change (Lauter & Perlstein, 1991), but many students and teachers found that the short six-to-eight week freedom school experience had a significant impact on their lives In a newspaper interview (Millstone, 1964), Staughton Lynd, the freedom schools coordinator, voiced this impression : Mississippi is never going to be the same There are 2,000 youngsters who know now that they can relate with white people on the basis of equality These kids want to be educated ; they reach out for it If the Negro gets the vote, 1 3 4


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools these are the people who will be in the legislature in future years (p 6) Methodology Our purpose in conducting this study was threefold : (1) to explore examples of social studies instruction in the various freedom schools ; (2) to extract pedagogical principles from the freedom school experience as they relate to social studies instruction ; and (3) to construct a model from these principles for social studies instruction Data have been gathered from case examples of five Mississippi freedom schools Pedagogical behaviors including goals, curriculum, instruction, evaluation, and classroom management were examined using cross-case analysis For each, a set of organizing principles was distilled for the purpose of constructing an instructional model The five freedom school communities selected for this study-Holly Springs, Mileston, Jackson, Ruleville, and Gulfport-were chosen because of the availability of detailed information about their curricula and instructional behaviors as well as about teacher and student responses and reflections upon their experiences over the sixto eight-week period of participation Accounts of other freedom schools focus more on isolated events that contribute much to overall understanding of the freedom school effort, but do not lend themselves to comparison and analysis 3 A variety of primary sources was used to gather information for this study During the fall of 1991 and the winter of 1992, questionnaires were mailed to individuals who had participated as freedom school volunteers Nine participants were also interviewed for more in-depth information and detail Some interviewees who had developed and taught the curricula and instructional programs supplied original copies of printed materials News accounts, popular magazines, scholarly books, journals, and one master's thesis provided personal experiences of both teachers and students Archival collections constituted the primary resource for information on curricular development and instructional applications : the SNCC papers ; the Project South Collection, Stanford University ; the social action papers from the State Historical Society of Wisconsin ; and the Manuscripts and University Archives Division Papers, University of Washington For purposes of this study, information from these sources has been grouped into five categories of pedagogical behavior : goals, curriculum, instruction, evaluation, and classroom management Table 1 reports the use of these pedagogical behaviors in the five freedom schools included in this study 3 For information on other freedom schools, see Perlstein, 1991, and Hinman-Smith, in press 1 3 5


Chilcoat & Ligon Freedom School Gulfport Jackson Holly Springs Ruleville Milestone Goals : to develop academic skills, critical thinking, respect for human diversity, civic participation, selfidentity, selfdetermination All except respect for human diversity All All All All except respect for human diversity Curricula : academic, civic, based on student experience, designed by teacher All All All except student experience-based curriculum All All except academic curriculum Instructional strategies : discussion, singing, interaction with resource people, film viewing, role playing, creative writing, newspaper publication, community projects, limited lecturing All except art, resource people, and lecturing ; debates also used All except drama, art, and lecturing All except film ; lecturing also used All except film ; lecturing reported as storytelling All except art, resource people, film, and lecturing Evaluation No formal evaluation Informal evaluation Classroom management methods Curriculum and instruction emphasis ; no attendance sheets ; no report cards Classroom meetings implied as management strategy


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools Goals When asked if her efforts to help African American students learn to think for themselves and take control of their own lives constituted indoctrination, one freedom school teacher replied, "Yes, I suppose so But I can't think of anything better to indoctrinate them with Freedom Justice The Golden Rule Isn't there some core of belief a school should stand by?" (Zinn, 1964, p 374) This core was the driving force behind the freedom school experience, embracing an overriding desire for equity, justice, and social change with education as its medium By educating youth in new subjects, new attitudes, new methods, and new convictions of their own abilities and potential, SNCC hoped to provide them with the tools to change their world (SNCC, Reel 73) The general goal of the entire Mississippi Freedom Summer Project-the center of its core of belief-was to promote a new power structure, one based on equity and social justice (SHSW, Sandra Hard Papers) If any major changes were to take place in Mississippi, they would have to begin with African American youth (Howe, 1965) Freedom schools were intended to convert these young people from passive observers of their society to active, critical participants able to undertake solutions to community problems and to create a better society for both African American and white citizens (SHSW, Robert Starobin Papers ; Lauter & Perlstein, 1991) As Cobb wrote, "The overall theme of the school would be the student as a force for social change in Mississippi" (SNCC, Reel 27) The introduction to the citizenship curriculum stated it this way : "It is not our purpose to impose a particular set of conclusions Our purpose is to encourage the asking of questions, and hope that society can be improved" (SHSW, Christopher Hexter Papers) Asking questions became the vehicle for converting attitudes from passive to active ; questioning facilitated the core of belief On the simplest level, students needed to learn to ask questions in the classroom Liz Fusco said of the Mississippi black schools of the era : What . .[the students] learn in their schools is to be alert to what the authority [teacher] wants and to come up with that, and that is always a fact you can memorize So you learn to copy, you learn not to think, you learn not to ask a question that you don't already know the answer to or that you're not sure she knows the answer to, because the worst sin is embarrassing the teacher (SHSW, Liz Fusco Papers) Ingrained teaching and learning patterns are difficult to change ; however, for the goals of the freedom schools to be realized, change 1 3 7


Chilcoat & Ligon was imperative Jane Stembridge, who participated in organizing the curriculum conference, wrote to the freedom school teachers : This is the situation You will be teaching young people who have lived in Mississippi all their lives That means that they have been deprived of decent education, from the first grade through high school It means that they have been denied free expression and free thought Most of allit means that they have been denied the right to question The purpose of the freedom schools is to help them begin to question This is not an easy job Neither is it impossible Deep inside, these young people possess great creativity . the desire for knowledge . and the wild hopes of all young people You have to reach deep and tap these resources (SNCC, Reel 39) Freedom school teachers and administrators hoped that by learning to question freely and thoughtfully in the class situation, students would "develop a new way of thinking and be awakened to their powers of analytic reasoning" (SNCC, Reel 27) As one SNCC field secretary affirmed, "More students need to stand up in the classrooms around the state and ask their teachers a real question" (SNCC, Reel 27) Freedom schools enabled students to articulate the desire for change awakened by the questions they were now being empowered to ask (Noel Day interview) In addition, the civic curriculum was designed to give students respect for human diversity and dignity and an enhanced self-identity based upon an understanding of the roots of their oppression culled from their personal experiences and from black history (SNCC, Reels 27, 38) With these new perspectives and communication skills, African American teenagers were expected to return to their communities, teach other students (Fusco, 1964 ; SNCC, Reels 6, 65, 68), and hopefully form local and statewide student action groups for voter registration, school boycotts, and community leadership Expectations in the various schools ran high among the project organizers (Zinn, 1964 ; Gillard, 1965 ; SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers ; SHSW, Elizabeth Sutherland Papers ; Aviva Futorian interview) The organizers also realized that the volunteers would bring their own personal objectives for teaching in the freedom schools, and each individual would need to reconcile his or her personal goals with those prescribed by the curricula and the pedagogy (SNCC, Reel 67) Cohesiveness and cooperation among faculty, administrators, and other staff members was vital To promote this cooperation, freedom school staff needed to agree upon a set of goals that would pedagogically drive their respective schools "Hopefully, before the opening of each 1 3 8


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools school, there will be time for the staff to agree on overall aims and to apportion individual responsibilities" (SNCC, Reel 67) The Schools Gulfport Freedom School Within the core beliefs embraced by all of the freedom schools, Gulfport emphasized helping African American youth to discover themselves as human beings Teachers stressed racial pride, critical thought, and social action The school was "a place of social, political, intellectual, and recreational development," a place to "fill the large void in the Negro youth's life" (Gillard, 1965, p 24) The school also provided students with opportunities both in and out of class to examine the conditions in which they lived, to identify problems, and to develop better ways of life for themselves, their families, and the Gulfport community (Gillard, 1965) Jackson Freedom School Teachers in this school focused on changing the negative approach to education that was prevalent at the time Florence Howe (1965), a teacher at Jackson, asserted that some instructors in the public school system were ill-prepared, and as such were either timid or hostile, often dictatorial, and sometimes even vengeful toward their students Both timid and hostile instructors taught only rote learning and expected their classes to be passively receptive : "You learn this . .and you get along Get used to the violence, get used to being stuck, get used to taking orders, for that is the way life is on the outside" (Howe, 1965, p 145) Howe also noted that these teachers would not allow students to question the status quo or to protest the poor living conditions of the African American people In contrast, the Jackson teacher assumed the role of a student among students, acting as a concerned questioner and listener who did not always have the right answer, but who was anxious to help students control their own lives and contribute to self-determination in their communities (Howe, 1965 ; SHSW, Frederick Heinze Papers) Staff members reinforced this role when they stated that "academic experiences should relate directly to . real life in Mississippi and since learning that involves real life experiences is, we think, most meaningful, we hope that the students will be involved in the political life of their communities" (UWL, Otto Pease Papers) Holly Springs Freedom School Teachers at Holly Springs perceived two problems preventing changes in the oppressive power structure : (1) Students had repressed their mistrust and hostility toward whites, docilely addressing them as "Mr .," "Mrs .," or "Miss," and passively accepting a second-class position, after "years of being automatically second and automatically wrong" (SNCC, Reels 6, 65, 68) ; and (2) students had supressed their own ideas and feelings and as a result had little confidence ; thus, the teachers developed two major 1 3 9


Chilcoat & Ligon goals adapted from the core principles : (1) to help African American students and white teachers view each other as people whose sole difference was cultural experience and (2) to provide students with opportunities to practice creative thought through a variety of expressive outlets (SNCC, Reel 6) To assist in achieving the first goal, teachers asked students to address them by their first names (SNCC, Reels 6 & 65) They also shook hands with students to show a genuine concern for them as equal human beings (Pam Allen questionnaire) Many African American students were stunned by these verbal and physical symbols of friendship used to break down old prejudices and fears To overcome African American students' lack of confidence, Holly Springs teachers provided a number of creative, motivating opportunities for them to express themselves (SNCC, Reel 6 ; Pam Allen questionnaire ; Aviva Futorian interview) They wrote and published a freedom school newspaper containing their own articles, poems, news stories, and editorials These activities also extended beyond the school when students and teachers produced and staged a one-act play together ; it was performed a number of times in Mississippi and later in New York Ruleville Freedom School Within the core principles, Ruleville focused on education as a tool for solving problems and effecting positive change Dale Gronemeier, the school librarian, wrote to a friend that the school was intended "to remedy the educational dearth and brainwashing of Negro youth through genuine, progressive education" (SHSW, Dale Gronemeier Papers) As Kristy Powell, teacher and coordinator at Ruleville, wrote in one weekly report, the purpose of the school was to be a center for real education, not just an academic institution (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) Academics had its place-to provide students with solid research skills to solve problems-but if education was to have a lasting impact on African American students, they needed to apply what they learned in school to create positive change in their community True achievement in learning was considered to have occurred only if students were involved in exploring ideas, applying reasoned options to life's problems, making choices, and promoting community involvement To accomplish these objectives, teachers worked closely with students, both academically and socially, to solve problems and effect improvements Mileston Freedom School Like the teachers at Ruleville, the teachers at Mileston believed that the academic components of the project were important but not as important as the social and political changes they were charged to effect Mileston had a strong focus on political consciousness with an emphasis on the oppression experienced by African Americans (SNCC, Reel 65) These teachers felt that if students could understand how exploitation and injustice were blocking their personal and community development and could learn how the 1 4 0


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools white system worked, they would be able to engage in the kind of dialogue, cooperation, risk taking, and ultimately the democratic action necessary to initiate change (SNCC, Reel 65 ; SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) Curriculum The March 1964 Curriculum Conference sponsored by the National Council of Churches (SNCC, Reel 64) proposed two progressive curricula targeted to strengthen African American students academically and to prepare them for greater social and political activity Most African Americans had had limited exposure to most academic subjects ; many needed remedial help in basic reading, writing, and mathematics skills, and many had merely a flagging interest in learning due to their negative experiences in school ; therefore, an academic curriculum of reading, creative writing, mathematics, science, English, foreign languages, and art was created The major thrust of the freedom schools, however, was the civic curriculum designed to relate directly to student experiences and life situations It consisted of three components : (1) case studies of social issues, (2) the Guide to Negro History, and (3) a citizenship curriculum (Fusco, 1964 ; SHSW, Robert Starobin Papers) Case Studies The case studies were structured specifically to help African American students learn to contend with and solve problems in their communities Teachers were to focus not on teaching facts but on teaching students to draw upon their own experiences, to relate the case studies to current situations in Mississippi, and to derive suggestions to solving problems in their own area Writers of the case studies each agreed to outline a week's study (approximately 5 one-hour lessons) providing a set of concepts with material for each lesson relevant to each concept, to indicate sources teachers could utilize for further information, and to offer ideas for effective ways to present case content (SNCC, Reels 37, 67) Although 14 cases were originally planned, only 7 were developed fully due to time limitations The following case studies were incorporated in the freedom schools : (1) the impact of the congressional campaign of Fannie Lou Hamer, Ruleville resident and active member of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, on the Mississippi movement (Sugarman, 1966) ; (2) the impact of the Mississippi judicial system on African Americans ; (3) the Mississippi power structure ; (4) the ramifications of poverty for African Americans and whites ; (5) the parallel histories of Nazi Germany and the white 1 4 1


Chilcoat & Ligon power structure of the South ; (6) the Southern education system ; and (7) the passage of the Civil Rights Bill of 1963 (SNCC, Reel 64) Although all seven case studies were substantial lesson plans, pedagogical quality varied (Perlstein, 1990) ; for example, the case study on the power structure in Mississippi provided insightful information on the structure of the working class : blacks plowing, planting, and picking cotton, and poor whites working in factories It also included important features of dominant social, political, and economic policies and entities in the state : banks, utility companies, the White Citizens' Council, and the white Mississippi Democratic Party It did not, however, provide instructional guidelines ; thus, teachers received no help in presenting the information or in guiding students to use the information to improve their own lives under such a structure (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) In contrast, the case study comparing the Nazi German power structure and the power structure of the South (SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers) provided content, teacher guidelines, and suggestions for instructional strategies Teachers were given instructions on how to help students use historical experience to generate possible solutions to current situations Organized into five sections, this case study began with an overview comparing the power elite of Nazi Germany with that of Mississippi, noting the comparison of concentration camps to Mississippi's communities as closed societies and emphasizing the importance of active community resistance The remaining four sections provided historical narratives illustrating the major points of the lesson A discussion/role-play format gave teachers and students opportunities to explore ways that African Americans might avoid mistakes made by those who suffered under Nazi persecution Lesson designers hoped that students would develop critical thought in the following areas : (a) the danger of cooperating with persecutors ; (b) the importance of maintaining individual identity, exercising initiative, and resisting attempts to reduce race to group status ; (c) the goal of maintaining inner convictions and choosing one's own attitudes ; and (d) the significance of group solidarity, avoiding divisions manipulated by rewards or privileges (SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers) The Guide to Negro History The Guide to Negro History (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers ; SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers ; SNCC, Reels 38 & 67) was developed to teach African American students about their heritage so they could construct a positive image of themselves as a people with heroes and positive role models (Fusco, 1964), and realize that they were participating in a historical reform movement to achieve social, economic, and political justice (Gillard, 1965) Consistent with the overall freedom school goal of making learning meaningful in a real life context, lessons were 1 4 2


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools focused to help students understand the relationship of history to their daily lives Students could "grow and develop new insights as they (1) master relevant information ; (2) relate this new knowledge to the information they already have ; and (3) attempt to apply these insights to current problems" (SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers) The introductory lesson in the guide introduced students to black history by describing a slave revolt known as the Amistad incident, which occurred in 1839 Students then learned about a series of historical episodes comprising their heritage : the slave trade ; the institutionalization of slavery as reflected in the Constitution of the United States ; attempts at black resistance ; the Haitian revolution ; the abolitionist movement ; Southern reconstruction ; and the civil rights movement, emphasizing the role of the courts in enforcing civil rights laws These lessons also emphasized the positive changes that occur when people devote their time and energy collectively to causes of justice and equity The Citizenship Curriculum To help students examine their life situations critically in terms of what they wanted to achieve and how they could work toward a more just and equitable existence, the freedom schools implemented the citizenship curriculum (SHSW, Christopher Hexter Papers ; Noel Day interview) Teachers explored with their students two sets of questions that formed the foundation to understanding the content of the citizenship curriculum : Primary set of questions 1 .Why are we (teachers and students) in freedom schools? 2 .What is the freedom movement? 3 .What alternatives does the freedom movement offer us? Secondary set of questions 1 .What does the majority culture have that we want? 2 .What does the majority culture have that we don't want? 3 .What do we have that we want to keep? (SHSW, Christopher Hexter Papers) Lauter and Perlstein (1991) assert that these questions were essential to understanding and reshaping society-then and now-as they shift from an individual to a collaborative outlook : First, these questions do not ask "What does the majority culture have that I want?" but "What does the majority culture have that we want?" The distinction is critical and yet very difficult to comprehend within the framework of 1 4 3


Chilcoat & Ligon American educational institutions, for virtually everything in our schools and colleges, except for some team sports, is calculated to re-enforce the idea of individual advancement, private accumulation of knowledge, grades, degrees Freedom school students were quite clear about this matter [that] the discrimination they encountered every day had little or nothing to do with them as individuals ; . it had everything to do with them as black people And thus the question was not only the knowledge, the sense of self-an individual might accumulate . but also how the social definition . as an "ignorant nigger," or, more politely, a "culturally deprived" black, . .might be changed by joining with others who shared a similar fate (pp 4-5) The citizenship curriculum consisted of seven units Each lesson posed a series of questions to stimulate class discussion The first compared the lives of African Americans with whites in their community, including schools, housing, employment, and medical facilities The second lesson compared the lives and experiences of northern African Americans with southern African Americans, demonstrating that geographical region made little difference in the realities of black second-class citizenship, and students were urged to remain in Mississippi to work to change the reality rather than to leave the area in hopes of escaping it The third lesson examined some of the myths perpetuated by white culture to suppress African Americans through low expectations and negative self-images The two subsequent lessons deepened this exploration as students learned how some people profit at the expense of others, particularly how African Americans and poor whites were being exploited through money, power, fear, and inferior laws The sixth lesson, "Material Things versus Soul Things," and the first half of the seventh lesson taught the principles of nonviolence as a philosophy for personal life and as the dominant methodology of the civil rights movement Teachers presented various civil rights experiences as examples of ways in which nonviolence helped to create "the atmosphere in which reconciliation and justice become actual possibilities" (SHSW, Christopher Hexter Papers) In the second part of the seventh lesson, teachers urged students to participate actively in changing the existing society and described specific steps to effect change The curriculum committee stressed the concept that both the civic and the academic curricula should be applied constantly to existing conditions and events in students' lives (Howe, 1984) Although teachers were urged to use the designed curriculum, they were given the option of modifying or altering it if the existing situations or the experiences and abilities of the students warranted such change 1 4 4


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools (SHSW, Jerry Demuth Papers) Despite the fact that many of the volunteers were inexperienced teachers with inadequate knowledge of African American history and civil rights issues, the curriculum designers believed that they should have opportunities to make their own curricular and instructional choices (UWL, Otis Pease Papers ; SNCC, Reel 39) The Schools Gul fport Freedom School Gulfport offered the full curriculum advocated at the curriculum conference (SNCC, Reel 68), but from the first day of class, individual student needs, concerns, and desires demonstrated that modifications were necessary to increase its effectiveness ; for example, during one discussion in the citizenship curriculum students were asked about the weaknesses and needs of their own schools Students responded that school was a waste of their time, and they were not learning what they needed to qualify for jobs When the teacher pressed them to be more specific, they replied that they wanted clerical jobs, so arrangements were made to offer business courses, including typing, to all interested students (Gillard, 1965) Even the recreational program developed from student needs and experiences (Gillard, 1965) It was designed to provide enjoyable activities and to make students conscious of the differences between the African American and the dominant white Mississippi culture ; for example, to help students examine critically the conditions of their neighborhood, the teachers suggested a game of baseball The students readily agreed and took their teachers to their playing field-a rutted path running beside their homes After the game, the teachers guided the students in a discussion of why white children had playing fields and African American children played on a rutted road After the discussion, they went to look for a better field This activity was designed deliberately to lead students to think from a base of their own everyday personal and community experiences, to examine what was represented by these experiences, and ultimately to consider why and how their society needed to be changed Jackson Freedom School Reports (Howe, 1965 ; Zinn, 1964) on the Jackson school reflected a program containing the citizenship curriculum, the seven case studies, and African American history taught in the mornings with a series of elective courses including chemistry, biology, English, French, and typing taught in the afternoon An additional curriculum was designed around local conditions, events, and even movies as bases for discussion (Paul Lauter interview) Howe (1965) recalled a specific experience where she was able to apply the citizenship curriculum to local conditions with her 11to 14year-old students She asked them to describe their houses, comparing them to the houses of whites in Jackson and to the houses where they or 1 4 5


Chilcoat & Ligon their mothers worked as domestics Howe then asked what changes the children would like to make in their own homes Answers varied from adding rooms to increasing yard space ; however, the children did not want what they perceived to be the grand homes they described in the white community They perceived their own homes as comfortable When the discussion turned to public schools, the reaction was different ; they became angry Although their school was new, it was inferior to the white school The students resented the second-hand textbooks, the inadequate teachers, and the repressive atmosphere that permitted no questions or discussions about topics they felt were important Similarly, teachers in Jackson monitored local events to link the curricula and the goals of the freedom schools ; for example, a newspaper editorial charged that civil rights workers were teaching African American people to break the law After students read the editorial, the teacher asked them if they thought it was true, leading the discussion toward a purposeful learning experience An observer reported her words and the children's responses : "If you could write a letter to the editor about it, what would you say? . .Here's paper and pencil, go ahead We'll pick out one or two and really send them to the editor ." This was not education for grades, not writing for teacher's approval, but for an immediate use : It was a learning surrounded with urgency And the students responded with seriousness, picking apart the issues : Are we for the law? Is there a higher law? When is civil disobedience justified? Then the teacher explored with them the differences between statutory law, constitutional law, and "natural" law (Zinn, 1964, p 372) Applications of citizenship instruction to actual events extended beyond local conditions into national issues, policies, and events One teacher involved students personally, using the Civil Rights Bill of 1963 case study (Zinn, 1964) The reasons that Barry Goldwater, Arizona senator and Republican presidential candidate, gave for voting against the bill were listed on the blackboard : The bill was unconstitutional ; it would not end prejudice ; it could not be enforced ; and it violated what were considered to be states' rights The class then played out the arguments, one student acting as Goldwater and defending his viewpoint with vigor, while another classmate developed strong arguments against Goldwater's assertions Holly Springs Freedom School Holly Springs offered a variety of different elective classes based on the interests and needs of the individual students ; however, core classes of citizenship and African 1 4 6


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools American history were required of everyone, and teachers worked to help students experience racial identity and pride (Pam Allen questionnaire ; SHSW, Sandra Hard Papers) Curricula were scheduled as follows : 9 :00-9 :15 t Civil rights folk songs 9 :30-10 :30 t Core classes : Negro history and citizenship curriculum 10 :30-11 :30 t Choice of dance, drama, art, auto mechanics, guitar and folksinging, or sports 12 :00-2 :00 t School closed 2 :00-4 :00 t Classes in French, religion, crafts, music, playwriting, journalism 4 :00 Seminar on nonviolence Pam Allen recorded an experience while teaching a lesson from the Guide to Negro History that reflected her own and her students' feelings and reactions to a historical event about which her students knew nothing : Let me describe one of my first classes and one of my favorite classes I gave a talk on Haiti and the slave revolt that took place there at the end of the eighteenth century I told them how the slaves revolted and took over the island . how the French government (during the French Revolution) abolished slavery all over the French Empire . and . that the English decided to invade the island and take it over for a colony of their own . . They knew that the Negroes always lost to the Europeans And then I told them that the people of Haiti succeeded in keeping the English out . [that] Napoleon came to power, reinstated slavery, and sent an expedition to reconquer Haiti . . But when I told them that the French generals tricked the Haitian leader Toussaint to come aboard their ship, captured him, and sent him back to France to die, they knew that there was no hope . .Former slaves, Negroes, could not defeat France, which had the aid of England, Holland, and Spain, especially without a leader When I told them that Haiti did succeed in keeping out the European powers and was recognized finally as an independent republic, they just looked at me and smiled The room stirred with a gladness and a pride that this could have happened (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) 1 4 7


Chilcoat & Ligon Ruleville Freedom School Prior to the opening of the freedom school at Ruleville, the teachers decided that the overall curriculum should be structured cooperatively by the entire staff In addition to the required citizenship and black history curricula, each teacher had the right to develop his or her own curriculum (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) When school began, the initial class schedule was similar to that of the other freedom schools (SHSW, Jerry Tecklin Papers) ; however, the teachers soon realized that their classes were very academic and many students were not excited about most of them, so they decided to revise the curricula The citizenship curriculum remained, but three revisions were made to bring it closer to student needs and interests (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) First, they added a class in world geography (SHSW, Jerry Demuth Papers) The teachers chose Australia, Egypt, and Africa for study, emphasizing black cultures Second, they added a general motivational session prior to scheduled classes Speakers for this session included members of the freedom school staff, individuals involved with voter registration, and SNCC visitors who spoke on topics such as the white southerner, the black in Mississippi, Ghandi and nonviolence, and the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party The third revision was the most innovative The staff organized the freedom school into an active student forum for community change (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers ; SHSW, Jerry Tecklin Papers ; SNCC, Reel 40) One of the most striking activities developed from students' concern that the African American teachers in their public schools were afraid to register to vote, and thus could not take the lead in demanding better, integrated schools (SHSW, Ruby Davis Papers) Students wanted to picket their public school in order to help their teachers realize that they too could become active change agents Freedom school teachers helped students practice picket strategies and act out interviews with their public school teachers on how to register to vote Together they wrote a pre-picket letter to the public school principal and faculty presenting their demands, and they produced leaflets urging students in the public school to join the picket Although threatened with suspension, a number of public school students joined the freedom school students in a successful picket of the local high school Mileston Freedom School Even more sweeping changes in the freedom school format occurred at Mileston The goal of the teachers at this school was to create an active approach to developing student leadership for community activism (SNCC, Reel 65) As teachers and students worked, those activities began to take up a greater proportion of school time Utilizing their learning experiences from the citizenship curriculum and the Guide for Negro History, students wrote and produced a play promoting positive community change, created and 1 4 8


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools staffed a freedom school newspaper, and prepared and participated in a mock precinct meeting in preparation for the Meridian freedom school convention Because students wanted to spend more time implementing the civic lessons, the teachers decided that the short time they had to spend with the students would be better put to use for activist purposes than for passive study of the proposed academic curriculum ; therefore, the academic curriculum was eliminated Instruction Charles Cobb stressed that teaching methods should promote classroom activities and discussions as "an outgrowth of [student] experiences" (SNCC, Reel 27) Traditional teaching in Mississippi had served as a form of oppression Authoritarian in nature, it relied on rote learning where a teacher lectured and then tested solely on content Students were expected to be passive and subservient Under this form of education, African American youth learned not to trust others (particularly whites), to be cynical, and to expect inadequate preparation for functioning in society (SNCC, Reel 67) The possibility that students should someday serve as active agents for social change was unheard of-and it was undesired Such was the mentality of the black public education system and of the Mississippi society at large (Holt, 1966) In contrast, freedom schools rejected these practices and relied upon progressive instructional methods designed to promote "student participation in learning, a sense of the worth and equality among students, and the need to connect lessons to life ." (Perlstein, 1990, p 319) Freedom school teachers demonstrated that they could be trustworthy and honest in teacher-student relationships, and that they respected students and their experiences A handout entitled "Notes on Teaching in Mississippi" distributed to the freedom school volunteers prior to their teaching experiences included the following advice : What will they demand of you? They will demand that you be honest Honesty is an attitude toward life which is communicated by everything you do Since you, too, will be in a learning situation, honesty means that you will ask questions as well as answer them It means that if you don't know something you will say so It means that you will not "act" a part in the attempt to compensate for all they've endured in Mississippi You can't compensate for that, and they don't want you to try It would not be real, and the greatest contribution that you can make to them is to be real (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) 1 4 9


Chilcoat & Ligon Discussion Organizers suggested to teachers that discussion should form the basic method of instruction, and it was expected to promote effective, cognitive results among students (Holt, 1966 ; Noel Day interview) They praised this method for the following strengths : 1 t Encouraging expression ; 2 t Exposing feelings (bringing them into the open where they may be dealt with productively) ; 3 t Permitting the participation of students on several levels ; 4 t Developing group loyalties and responsibility ; and 5 t Permitting the sharing of strengths and weaknesses of individual group members (SNCC, Reel 39) Two volunteer teachers explained ways in which the freedom school discussions differed from traditional classroom recitations : In the first place, they were "open"-that is, there were no single, prepackaged answers that teachers were to listen for or to require students to memorize The idea was, indeed, that no one could have a single, ultimate answer to any or all of the questions, for the questions' purpose was to evoke not only response but also students' search for definition and identity In the second place, the questions were based on what the students already knew from their own livesthat is, they could begin to respond, and they were already equipped And third, essential to such questions and such response is the process of discussion itself The hidden assumptions behind a reliance on discussion are, first, that talk-saying the words-is a necessary step for discovery of self and social identity Further, the public discoverysaying the words in a group-might lead to action, if not at once, then later (Lauter & Howe, 1970, p 42) Creative Activities Combined with Discussion Other progressive methods were suggested, including drama, art, singing, films, guest speakers, role playing, creative writing (with an emphasis on poetry), school newspapers, and social action projects (Sutherland, 1965 ; SNCC, Reel 67 ; Paul Lauter interview ; SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) Discussion was used as a follow-up technique for these other methods "to make certain that the material has been learned" (SNCC, Reel 39) Role Playing Freedom school teachers found that role playing was very popular with students and very effective instructionally, because it brought out hidden attitudes that teachers and students could 1 5 0


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools then examine (SHSW, Sandra Adickes Papers) Pam Allen found in her teaching experiences that role playing would "permit the expression of a wide range of feelings by the students, involve their total selves, stimulate creativity, provide the teacher with insights about the students and at the same time get across the content material" (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) Others confirmed the potential of role play to measure comprehension, particularly of the civic curriculum (SNCC, Reel 67) In addition, role play was stressed as a means of developing critical consciousness (Zinn, 1964) Journalism Local newspapers published exclusively under white ownership often presented articles favoring white issues and condemning black civil rights (Mabee, 1964) In response, many freedom schools "spurred an indigenous black press" (Rothschild, 1982, p 407) One teacher in Clarksdale described the operation of the school's newspaper : Most of the week was spent working on the Clarksdale Freedom Press Getting all the interested kids in the basement of Haven Methodist Church, examining possible articles, editing them, typing them, etc ., was great! The place looked like a newspaper office with people running in and out, with typewriters going, and newsprint everywhere It was excellent experience for the kids too . . They did most of the work and made most of the decisions (Sutherland, 1965, p 97) Lecturing Occasional lecturing was suggested in the citizenship curriculum, but its role was limited (SNCC, Reel 67) Teachers were cautioned to use it rarely, and not allow it to replace the other methods Reports indicated that some teachers lectured for a variety of reasons At the New Bethel freedom school, lectures "gave out information-at a much faster rate" (SNCC, Reel 67), and teachers at Gluckstadt freedom school lectured primarily because of a lack of student materials and resources (SNCC, Reel 67) Clarksdale reported that one of its freedom schools was conducted "on a somewhat formal level, as opposed to roundtable discussions-but this does not seem to be particularly detrimental to the school" (SNCC, Reel 67) One school in Madison County devoted the first hour and a half of each day's schedule "to Negro history with the entire student body attending a lecture given by one teacher and then individual groups of students discussing the lecture with their respective teacher" (SNCC, Reel 68) In Pleasant Green, the school "experimented with letting the students take over the lectures and discussion-leading, and were excited by the good results" (SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers) 1 5 1


Chilcoat & Ligon The Schools Gulfport Freedom School At Gulfport, many of the suggestions from "Notes for Teaching in Mississippi" were incorporated (Gillard, 1965) Discussion and creative writing were the dominant modes of instruction, and students actively discussed, debated, and raised questions related to their way of life They became so enthusiastic and successful that debates were organized with other freedom schools Lively discussions on the theme of nonviolence as a philosophical approach to freedom followed film viewing To provide students a way to express deep feelings about their personal experiences, teachers encouraged creative writing, so that all could find their own voices To train them in more public, utilitarian forms of writing, the curriculum included opportunities for students to write letters to federal officials about the depressed conditions of the black communities As a specific training ground for active community participation, the school published a newspaper, The Press o f Freedom, containing student work including poetry, critical essays, editorials, personal experiences, and news reporting (SNCC, Reel 39) Working together, the students also created a short play entitled Memories of Freedom School, that emphasized one of their favorite activities-singing Singing songs about freedom and deriving lessons from songs were very important activities in the Gulfport freedom schools Teachers would begin classes each day by asking which freedom songs the students wanted to sing Students chose songs like "I Woke Up This Morning with My Mind Stayed on Freedom" ; "They Say That Freedom Is a Constant Struggle" ; and "Ain't Gonna Let No Segregation Turn Me Round" (Jones, 1964) Each session began with a different song, but at the close of school the song was always the same One observer described its significance : There was one special song, a very solemn song It requires everyone to gather in a circle and join hands for a time, each thinking in his own mind about the meaning of freedom and about people like Medgar Evers, Herbert Lee, and the three civil rights workers in Neshoba County, and all the other who have died fighting for freedom in Mississippi . . Someone begins "We Shall Overcome . . We are not afraid . . Truth shall set us free ." Everyone knows that overcoming will be difficult because there are many white and Negro people who are afraid of freedom The song lets students and teachers know the pattern of their lives, that all the great number of years which comprise a life isn't so many after all when there is freedom to be fought for (Jones, 1964, p 5) 1 5 2


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools Jackson Freedom School Discussion was the dominant instructional mode at Jackson (Howe, 1965), and it was based usually on varied learning experiences, i .e ., as a follow-up to films ; to readings of authors James Baldwin, Ralph Ellison, and Richard Wright ; or to presentations by guest speakers like Pete Seger, a nationally known folksinger who sang, taught, and discussed songs of other countries with the children To promote the discussion relationship, setting was important The traditional style of students sitting in rows with a teacher standing in front was inappropriate This not only interfered with free expression, it stressed inequality between teacher and students-a negative relationship that characterized the students' earlier experiences in the black public schools To break down the authoritarian tradition physically as well as emotionally, students and their teacher sat in a circle facing each other Discussions usually followed a three-step pattern after the teacher and students were seated comfortably in the circle (Howe, 1965) The teacher first asked introductory questions and then asked probing ones Finally, as the discussion progressed, the teacher would draw more critical thinking from the students : "How do you feel about his idea?" or "How do you feel about her experience?" Writing was also important in the political education of the Jackson student Writing experiences were structured to give students a feeling of self-worth, a sense of being in control, and an understanding of their power to achieve something These students also wrote and published their own newspaper Howard Zinn (1964) taught his students to react to news articles and editorials in a local newspaper by writing editorials of their own Florence Howe (1965) read and discussed poems by Langston Hughes and e .e cummings with her students, and encouraged them to express their personal reactions and feelings With this motivation in place, she taught them the elements of poetry and asked them to write individual and group poems based upon their personal experiences and aspirations Students shared these with one antoher, and intense discussions often followed The Jackson school not only encouraged students to express themselves, it urged them to become involved in their community "Students had direct evidence that their [freedom] school experience had led them to create something that was lasting and profound" (Howe, 1965, pp 156-157) ; for example, during the third week of freedom school it was announced that African American first-graders for the first time would be able to register to attend a formerly allwhite elementary school Apprehension ran high in the African American community To encourage parents to register their children, 36 local African American ministers announced that a prayer meeting would be held To prepare her own students to share in the experience, 1 5 3


Chilcoat & Ligon Howe (1965) initiated a discussion about the myth of black inferiority Her efforts, however, were greeted with silence Wanting her students to be honest about their feelings, Howe asked, "What am I going to say to my friends back north when they ask me why Negro mothers haven't registered their children in white schools? That they like things the way they are?" (p 186) Students then began to explore their real feelings and fears : Jobs might be lost, personal safety was threatened, and the possibility of failure in white schools loomed high After this, the discussion began to shift They began discussing reasons why first-graders should integrate the white elementary school One student suggested that class members go out into the neighborhood and talk to parents who were reluctant to send their first-grade children to the white school Howe suggested that they practice the dialogue they might have with hesitant parents In the practice conversation, the father wasn't convinced, but the mother thought that she would try to enroll her child Students then made plans to go out into the neighborhoods One of the freedom school teachers and a number of student volunteers spoke to over 70 families about attending the prayer meeting and provided transportation Although 27 parents agreed to go, only one mother came Undaunted, the freedom school students began revisiting the 70 families the next day Their efforts were rewarded ; 11 out of 43 eligible African American first-grade children in Jackson registered to attend the previously all-white public elementary school Holly Springs Freedom School A variety of teaching methods were used at Holly Springs Pam Allen, who taught the citizenship curriculum, religion, nonviolence, and also assisted in the drama class, shared her adaptation of the techniques : [Lectures] I shared what I was learning I am an excellent speaker, a storyteller actually . . I enjoyed the verbal sharing, and the girls' enthusiastic responses kept me at it [Stories] My lectures on Negro history were really telling students to share experiences, but we didn't tell myths or legends [Discussion] It was fun, very exciting and alive We always had discussion after my presentation I believe it was spontaneous and easy-no pulling teeth or trying to pull ideas out of the students [Creative writing] For self-expression and sharing 1 5 4


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools [Resource people] We utilized the voter registration men Someone spoke every morning before classes began [Drama] The kids developed their own play [They] chose the topic of the Medgar Evers killing, divided up the parts, and the characters role-played their parts [School newspaper] We mimeographed a newsletter made up of student writings [Community action] It's what the school was abouteducating students for involvement in changing the social conditions [The] main work was registering people into the MFDP (Pam Allen questionnaire) Through the freedom school newspaper, students had opportunities to express their personal feelings as well as their critical analyses of individual, community, and national experiences In addition, they honed their leadership skills and involved themselves in community affairs (Pam Allen questionnaire ; SHSW, Sandra Hard Papers ; Aviva Futorian interview) This first freedom school newspaper in Mississippi, The Freedom News, published four editions with students doing most of the work and making most of the decisions They published articles on national and community news, critical essays on why African Americans should vote and why whites ought to accept African Americans, and a feature article on the efforts of the Holly Springs mayor to discourage the freedom school volunteers They also published a story on how a local white businessman learned to accept African American workers as equals, a poem on the J F K assassination, and a tribute to the freedom schools Drama was also important to the development of students at Holly Springs and to their involvement in civil rights work Some became involved personally in the movement for the first time by writing, producing, and performing plays (Aviva Futorian interview ; Roy de Berry, Interview) One student recalled : "In fact, I'd say that was the first time I really became personally, deeply, emotionally involved in the movement Up to then, it was sort of a job, something that had to be done and so we did it But this was different" (Lukas, 1968, p 86) The idea of producing a play began in the writing workshop (SNCC, Reel 6) and the students chose to portray the life and death of Mississippi civil rights leader Medger Evers Deborah Flynn, a New York public school teacher, suggested that they develop the story and dialogue by improvising, a technique which their role-playing experience taught them to do well Flynn explained : 1 5 5


Chilcoat & Ligon The dialogue . except for the quotes, is indicated or simply outlined as a series of suggested ideas to carry forward the action of the play Dialogue in this type of play should never be considered as words to be studied by heart and repeated by rote This play form is particularly wellsuited to present ideas of action (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) Flynn provided the historical facts of Evers' life and death, and for two weeks the students acted out the story until the scenes were scripted During a class discussion, one of the girls remarked, "I don't think of him as really dead I feel that from his grave is growing a huge tree which is spreading seeds of freedom all over" (Lukas, 1968, p 84) Her analogy, the seeds of freedom, became the title of the play The 50-minute project began with the actor-students sitting in the audience, and entering the stage at designated times to portray their part in their own words The narrator tells the audience : And this is a play about freedom : .about us! Yes, us, because every step we take along the freedom road, every time we act, every time we do something to move forward-we plant a seed And seeds are blowing in the wind today (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) Ruleville Freedom School Many of the methods used at Gulfport, Jackson, and Holly Springs were used at Ruleville as well (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) Instructors here were focused on helping students prepare and carry out a protest picket against their public high school Artwork consisted of making picket signs ; creative writing took the form of designing and writing leaflets to persuade other students to join ; and letters presenting student demands were composed and sent to the school principal and teachers as well as to newspapers Role playing was used to practice picketing procedures and encounters, and an original play with a 20-member cast depicted the story of the picket proceedings One of the striking features of the Ruleville school was the number of outside resource people who participated in directing attention to civil rights issues ; for example, Caravan of Music, a touring group of folk singers, visited on six different occasions, providing entertainment and ideas as they sang songs about the movement On another occasion, 13 women from various national women's organizations gave a one-day workshop followed by a student discussion A particularly popular event was the presentation of a historical play, In White America, acted out on the back' porch of the freedom school building by the Free Southern Theater, a Mississippi 1 5 6


1 5 7 Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools touring company (SNCC, Reel 38 ; John O'Neal interview) Freedom school teacher Kristy Powell described the experience : The audience almost became a part of the play Small boys climbed on to the porch to go to the bathroom in the middle of a scene ; dogs and hens paraded in front of the stage, and there was an intimacy and informality about the performance that underlined for me the impression that the play was woven out of the very stuff of these people's lives (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) In her weekly report, Powell (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) provided a description of her own experience attempting to integrate a progressive curriculum with traditional teaching methods She taught two classes in African American history to 13and 14-year-olds and remedial reading to students at or above a fifth-grade reading level When teaching history, she introduced each topic by telling a story, showing pictures, and asking students then to read something on the subject She would find as many resources on the topic as she could and for the next two or three days, allowed the students to interact freely with the topic through these resources Some students, as Powell recounted, "did [some] historical [or] some creative writing ; some drew pictures, copied poems, or copied historical documents" (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers) At the end of each unit, she displayed all of the student work on the back porch of the school building Powell's remedial reading class exemplified the attempt to incorporate aspects of the civic curriculum in a class focused primarily on basic skills Her goal was to help students learn not only to read but to read critically and in so doing to examine pertinent issues of their society Content included African American history from Ebony (a popular magazine) ; articles by Frederick Douglas ; Martin Luther King Jr .'s "I Have a Dream" speech ; poems such as Margaret Burrough's "What Shall I Tell My Children Who Are Black?" ; and copies of the freedom school newspaper, Freedom Fighter Powell focused both the reading content and her teaching methods so that students participated in pertinent and relevant discussions comparing reading content to the conditions in Mississippi in which they lived Mileston Freedom School The theme that permeated Mileston's instructional methodology was collective student involvement (SNCC, Reel 65) Students wrote and published a school and community newspaper, created and performed a play for the community, recruited and registered African American adults to vote, and prepared themselves to participate in the Meridian student convention At least three fourto six-page editions of the school newspaper, the Mileston Minute, were published (SNCC, Reel 65) containing


Chilcoat & Ligon stories of local people involved in community work, critical essays about labor conditions for African Americans and poor whites, articles on African American history, editorials on beliefs and concepts of freedom, and poems ranging from thoughts on African American history to African American self-discovery Activities associated with the paper were designed deliberately to involve students : interviewing others, observing, and participating in community experiences Teachers hoped that by reflecting and writing upon these experiences, students would be able to serve the community more effectively The Mileston play, The American Negro, was meaningful for the students who produced it and it was well received by the community (SNCC, Reel 65) Presented as the culminating activity of a community meeting urging African Americans to become politically involved, the play depicted experiences and conditions of African Americans in a historical context The first scene showed a variety of native Africans-free, happy, and proud It then turned to the issue of slavery and depicted a mother and child chopping cotton, speaking of freedom, and being whipped for harboring such ideas Scenes moved from the Civil War to the segregated South, and then to the conclusions of both world wars-wars to make the world, but not the South, safe for equality and democracy The play then depicted two African American men talking of lost sons and lost freedoms as the Ku Klux Klan rushed into their shanty and killed them both At the end of the last scene, the narrator stepped onto the stage and spoke directly to the audience : I am the American Negro You have seen my past ; you have known my past And you have seen the trouble I've seen Today we have seen many men die Because they stood for their rights Today we have seen three men disappear For joining in our fight Tomorrow many more will die And many more will suffer, But we've begun and we are not turning back And someday, somehow, we shall overcome! (SNCC, Reel 65) The narrator then invited the audience to join in singing "We Shall Overcome ." Edith Black, a volunteer teacher who attended the performance, wrote that the audience was very moved (SNCC, Reel 65) Many Mississippi communities involved in the summer project were served by groups of both freedom school and voter registration volunteers In some communities, the two groups found themselves in 1 5 8


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools conflict as each accorded its own program the top priority (McAdam, 1988) This conflict did not exist at Mileston (SNCC, Reel 65) as both groups worked together to help the community overcome repression After classes, freedom school students canvassed African American neighborhoods, showing adults how to fill out voter registration forms and obtaining commitments to go to the courthouse and complete the registration to vote In class, students discussed the need to contact African American laborers on the plantations surrounding Mileston They organized the Mileston Action Group (MAG) to ensure that voter registration would continue after the summer volunteers had gone In preparing for the Meridian student convention, Mileston students found opportunities to develop leadership skills, including the ability to propose and implement change and the ability to articulate a variety of ideas (SNCC, Reel 65) The entire school worked to write a political platform for three chosen delegates to present at the convention To facilitate this, mock precinct meetings were staged in class so that students and teachers could discuss local conditions and political issues Small groups discussed, researched, and prepared motions on the issues that students felt were most important The small groups then merged into larger ones to debate positions and to construct a representative platform, one that was eventually presented, voted on, and accepted at the Meridian convention ; thus, the students practiced and honed the skills they would need for future political participation and, at least on this occasion, were rewarded with public success Evaluation Sandra Adickes (SHSW, Sandra Adickes Papers), a Hattiesburg teacher, claimed that one of the reasons freedom schools were such an exciting educational adventure was that there were no report cards The curriculum designers felt that traditional evaluation/ testing methods were as oppressive as traditional teaching methods because both caused fear, submissiveness, and loss of self-respect among students (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) Accordingly, one curricular report suggested that teachers not test students formally because it was not effective as a teaching device (SHSW, Pam Allen Papers) Another report adopted a different perspective, suggesting that testing was an unfortunate part of life for students ; therefore, it should be used to demonstrate the concepts of domination and submission, and teachers should help students learn to counteract test results (SNCC, Reel 67) Although freedom school teachers appeared to use little or no formal testing (see SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers ; Aviva Futorian interview), they did find it necessary to assess what students knew in order to help them build better lives (Sutherland, 1965) Deborah Flynn (SNCC, Reel 6) felt that she should evaluate student writing to 1 5 9


Chilcoat & Ligon help them increase their language and communication skills, and she involved her students in the evaluation process by having them critique each other's writing Placed in this collaborative role, her students helped strengthen their responsibilities for their own learning In addition to informal teacher and peer evaluation, some teachers stressed self-evaluation To promote growth, they felt that students needed to examine their ideas from different perspectives and in light of new knowledge Jerry Tecklin (SHSW, Jerry Tecklin Papers) explained this position with a specific incident One of his students, Deloris, writing on the topic "What are some problems Negroes will face in the future," expressed the opinion that if African Americans were to become equal and gain their freedoms, there would need to be a war Based on the principle that all people are created equal, "as written by Abraham Lincoln," she claimed that whites kept African Americans from being equal She wrote, "But when it [equality] does happen, it is going to be a lot of trouble in the state of Mississippi ." Tecklin made grammatical corrections and noted that "'All men created equal' [was] written by Thomas Jefferson," but his real concern was helping Deloris deal with her hostility He did not criticize her feelings, but asked her a number of questions to help her examine her thoughts critically : Is war between whites and blacks the only way to get your freedom? Do you know of another way? You have a good idea of what is wrong in Mississippi but might there be a better way of improving conditions? Why don't whites want Negroes to learn? Keep trying to ask yourself these questions (SHSW, Jerry Tecklin Papers) The teacher needed to confirm for Deloris that her feelings and opinions were valid, even though he wanted to correct some of her misconceptions By asking questions, Tecklin provided the necessary knowledge without making a judgment Deloris needed to make her own judgment and then make the corrections that this entailed The only freedom school that reported discussing the role of evaluation was Gulfport (Gillard, 1965) Although they had no formal evaluation procedures, teachers assessed student development using informal criteria that they considered to be more democratic : (1) teacher observations of changes in student behavior ; (2) public presentations of student work ; (3) evidence of student writing skills ; (4) debates and discussions showcasing speaking skills ; and (5) book reviews and discussions evidencing reading ability No formal examinations were given Although not formally described as an evaluative activity, the Ruleville freedom festival held on the last day of school might be 1 6 0


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools considered an informal assessment of what students had learned (SHSW, Staughton Lynd Papers ; SHSW, Jerry Tecklin Papers) The program included the following creative student presentations : (1) a puppet play in which the valiant knight Bob Moses (SNCC field secretary) fought the wicked witch Segregation ; (2) a student play, Uncle Tom's High School, telling the story of the Ruleville student protest and picket ; (3) choral readings of Eve Merriam's poems ; (4) three freedom songs written by students ; (5) two readings of student poems about the Montgomery bus boycott ; and (6) a finale in which everyone sang "We Shall Overcome ." Classroom Management Although little discussion of evaluation in the freedom schools took place, even less was articulated about classroom management Many teachers claimed that because the students were highly motivated, there was little need for discipline (Norma Becker questionnaire ; Francis Howard questionnaire ; Howard Zinn questionnaire ; Pam Allen questionnaire ; Aviva Futorian interview) Attendance was completely voluntary ; in fact, in some areas, freedom schools operated concurrently with public schools so students attended only if they wished to be there (Pam Allen interview) At first, many students sat passively as teachers taught, not knowing what to expect or how to act (Sugarman, 1966), but as they began to feel more at ease and free to participate, the curriculum and the teaching methodology appeared to occupy them and keep them motivated "Our school," noted Sandra Adickes, "was by any definition a fine school-no attendance sheets, absentee postcards, truant officers, report cards-just perfect attendance" (SHSW, Sandra Adickes Papers) Motivation and discipline problems did occur (SNCC, Reels 64 & 68), but some problems may have occurred because teachers attempted to be too strict ; for example, Joann Ooiman described a situation where three students protested a structured classroom environment in their freedom school as being a dehumanizing, authoritarian situation : One daytime encounter worth recording [is] that with two professional women teachers (late 20s) who have driven away two fellow teachers and are in deep conflict with a third They are disciplinarians, very structure-conscious and appallingly unsuited for a freedom school situation They've suspended three students Incredible They insist on a this-hour-we-do-this-and-as-the-next-hour-strikeswe-change-to-this setup The long-suffering fellow working with them now (only a college sophomore) promises not to quit, but neither will he remain silent in his protests, 1 6 1


Chilcoat & Ligon sticking up for the suspended students, arguing for a more flexible, relaxed program that won't smack so much of school in its formidable sense-[I have] very mixed feelings about those women (SHSW, Joann Ooiman Papers) No classroom management problems were reported in the five freedom schools described here, except for a minor incident at Jackson when two boys entered into a fist fight After they were separated, their teacher, Florence Howe, talked to them about resolving problems Her counsel typifies the classroom management outlook in the freedom school plan : "Now look here, we have few rules in this school, but we do have one important one, and that is we do not hit' each other-we talk Understand? We talk here . . Whenever you feel like hitting someone, remember to talk instead" (Howe, 1965, p 147) Organizing Principles for a Social Studies Education Model The purpose of freedom schools was to provide curricular and instructional opportunities to prepare African American students to promote change in their communities The developers chose pedagogical content and approaches that were antithetical to traditional, authoritarian methods prevalent in the public schools The repressive teaching that caused African American children to become submissive and dominated was replaced with progressive teaching to empower students to examine existing conditions critically, to gain the knowledge and confidence necessary to activate change, and to prepare themselves to contribute creatively and positively in their communities The methodology advocated by the founders and implemented in many of the schools stressed students developing an unquestioning belief in their own capabilities, an appreciation of diversity, and an acknowledgment of human dignity-all qualities that should be promoted in today's social studies instruction Examining accounts of the freedom school experiences allows us to extract useful principles from the goals, curriculum, instruction, evaluation, and classroom management techniques of the freedom schools From these, a proposed model for social studies instruction has been formed and is depicted graphically in Figure 1 Goals At least five general principles can be derived from a study of the aims and goals of the freedom schools : 1 Critical thinking skills are developed by examining existing conditions and experiences of individual communities ; such critical thinking constitutes the beginning of positive change 1 6 2


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools 2 Academic learning is the foundation for democratic living when focused on useful knowledge and on relevant social, economic, and political thought ; practical skills and systems are capable of effecting change 3 Students can learn to appreciate human diversity and to acknowledge the dignity of each individual, thereby working toward equality and justice for all humankind Figure 1 Social Studies Instructional Model Meaningful Academic Information Respect for Human Diversity and Dignity The Personal and Social Problems of the Students and Community Goa Is and Purposes Issues Curriculum t Democratic, Progressive Instruction I Students I Critical Thinking results that lead to a Increased personal awareness Social action for personaI as a competent, capable, and and community well-being social responsible person 4 Students must become aware of their own self-identity ; all students must become confident in expressing themselves and taking control of their own lives 5 Students should acquire the skills necessary to improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods, communities, states, and nation by participating actively together in meaningful tasks Curriculum At least six general principles underlie the freedom schools' progressive social studies curriculum : 1 Class content should relate directly to the situations and experiences of students SelEval nation identity & Classroom --Self-deterCommunity mination Management Active Collective Participation Collaborative I 1 6 3


Chilcoat & Ligon 2 Content should be drawn from a variety of sources 3 Content quality should be the same for all students, while difficulty may need to be modified for some 4 Teachers should be able to modify curricula as necessary to adapt to the existing needs of each particular community and group of students 5 Content should provide topics for in-depth study and insight development as students master relevant information, relate new information to what they already know, and apply new insights to current problems 6 Curricula should promote -knowledge, reasoning, and insights that focus on equality and social justice for all humankind Instruction At least six general principles are consistent with the freedom school conception of progressive social studies instruction : 1 Instruction should permit student participation, encourage students to reveal feelings, provide opportunities for expression, and develop a sense of group responsibility 2 Instructional techniques should help students gain the skills they need to improve their existing conditions 3 Instruction should instill and nourish democratic principles of equality, justice, and choice 4 Instruction should promote community involvement 5 Instruction should provide opportunities to develop and express democratic ideals through discussion, creative writing, art, drama, group projects, role play, music, and social/community action programs 6 Instruction and curricula should provide students and teachers with opportunities to work together as active agents for social change Evaluation At least six general principles are consistent with the freedom schools' methodology for social studies evaluation : 1 Evaluation should build students' sense of self-worth by allowing them to express their academic achievements and their sense of community application 2 Students should be given opportunities to evaluate their own and their fellow students' work, to build critical examination skills and promote personal growth 3 If formal examinations are given, students should participate in their development 4 Informal evaluation techniques should include teacher observations of student behavior and skills 1 6 4


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools 5 Final examinations should take the form of public presentation of student work 6 Evaluation should include assessment of community involvement Classroom Management Four principles are consistent with the freedom school conception of classroom management in the social studies area : 1 Classroom problems are minimized when curriculum is meaningful and when progressive, democratic instructional methods are employed 2 Classroom problems are minimized if teachers show genuine respect for and trust in their students 3 When a discipline problem occurs, students and teachers should talk through the problem rather than resorting to disruption or punishment 4 When disciplinary action is taken, students should be free to express their feelings and ideas ; teacher and students should work together to solve a disciplinary problem With imagination and commitment, social studies teachers can implement these freedom school principles into their classrooms, providing their students with knowledge, skills, and attitudes that will influence their potential to create social and democratic change The ideal use of these principles would give schools and teachers governing autonomy similar to that of the freedom school experience Conceptualizing the classroom as a laboratory of participatory democracy, students and teachers could "wrestle with the challenges of the democratic experience" and learn by attempting "many experiments in the process of education in and for democracy" (Purpel, 1989, p 49) Such schools and teachers do exist ; however, in most instances this is not the case Many of today's schools present a restrictive environment where prescribed curricula are valued, standardized exams are used to assess student achievement, and expository teaching is considered effective instruction What can a teacher do to implement a freedom school model in a traditional school environment? Harris (1988) has proposed that through an infusion approach, a democratic environment can be incorporated into existing social studies coursework He suggests that if teachers are required to teach preset curricula, they "can often alter those curricula to introduce new topics or develop new approaches, or even to initiate new programs" (p 38) Observers who have studied social studies classrooms note that teachers who are committed to a freedom school approach of democratic education can "raise questions, foster doubt, present competing views, challenge the ideas of students [and teachers] and promote rigorous and democratic dialogue" (Engle & Ochoa, 1988, p 162) Such democratic methods and attitudes can be infused with even 1 6 5


Chilcoat & Ligon the most traditional social studies content Infusion "does not require teachers to develop new courses" and "does not require getting permission from department heads or school administrators" (Harris, 1988, p 83) ; however, it does require desire, ingenuity, and some practice Conclusions The Mississippi Summer Project produced lasting changes in the lives of its participants as well as in the communities where they served In a sociological study of freedom summer volunteers that included both teachers and voter registrars, Douglas McAdam (1988) found that many remained socially and politically active through the antiwar and women's liberation movements and continue to be active today The number of nonteacher volunteers who later became teachers is not known Numerous nonteacher volunteers who were interviewed for this study are also currently involved in other careers or community activities Teachers The evidence suggests that most of those who were professional educators prior to the summer project returned to the profession Some, however, did not Aviva Futorian, a Chicago public school teacher, returned from her experience in Mississippi and enrolled in law school believing that she could make a stronger social and political impact as an attorney than as a teacher (Aviva Futorian interview) Those teachers who left Mississippi and returned to their former classrooms were changed by their experiences in the freedom schools Dan Hudson, a high school history teacher from Hartford, Connecticut, who taught in a freedom school in Belzoni, Mississippi, was impressed deeply by the impact of the civic curriculum and of the progressive instructional strategies on his Mississippi students He returned to his school with a personal commitment to adopt goals and implement strategies with his history students similar to those he had experienced in the freedom school Hudson stated : The SNCC . .approach will have some influence on my teaching I'll be getting away from an authoritarian lecture posture to some kind of attempt to create an atmosphere conducive to freer discussion It would be . the group working out problems and having discussions instead of my spoonfeeding them I'll certainly make a much greater attempt to incorporate Negro history into American history . . I want to work it in so it becomes clear and 1 6 6


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools natural that Negroes played a part in building this country (SHSW, Jerry Demuth Papers) Florence Howe (1972, 1984), trained and experienced as a teacher in the traditional sense, wrote that the curriculum and strategies of the freedom schools were a revelation to her ; they challenged and contradicted her understanding of teaching She was amazed by the physical arrangement of freedom school classrooms, with the teacher sitting inside a circle of students rather than standing in front of orderly rows, and she had to adjust to her new role as a resource drawing out student experiences and knowledge rather than reporting her own As she helped students find their identities, she found her own as well When she returned to teach in a women's college at the close of the summer, she began quickly to integrate many of the principles she learned in Mississippi into her women's studies and writing classes Her goals for her college students were similar to those of the summer project : to promote equity for women ; to build upon students' experiences as women ; to raise student consciousness of personal and social identity ; and to encourage her students to become agents for social change Howe created a meaningful curriculum for her students, choosing literature related to their lives, moving their chairs into a circle, asking questions based upon their experiences, and having them write creatively about who they were and what they read Looking back, Howe realized that her freedom school experience taught her that the classroom should function in response to the real-life needs and questions of the students Students The effects of the freedom schools on its students are difficult to discern Apparently no study has recorded subsequent events in their lives or detailed the influence of the summer experience Aviva Futorian (Aviva Futorian interview) has kept in contact with many of her students, and she believes that the freedom schools affected them positively Most have remained in Mississippi, although one who became a lawyer now lives in the North Most have remained socially active, and participate in a variety of political and educational matters One of Futorian's former students is director for Head Start in her county Another is in an advisory position to the governor of Mississippi When contacted by telephone, several of her students recalled positive memories of their freedom school experiences ; they believed that the freedom schools helped them develop active concern for the well-being of their communities and state Freedom school classes had an obvious immediate effect, as manifested in the community projects, the academic achievements, and the public activities such as production of newspapers, publications, and plays As Liz Fusco reflected : 1 6 7


Chilcoat & Ligon To think of kids in Mississippi expressing emotion on paper with crayons and in abstract shapes rather than taking knives to each other ; to think of their writing and performing plays about the Negro experience in America rather than just sitting in despairing lethargy within that experience ; to think of their organizing and running all by themselves a Mississippi Student Union whose program is not dances and fundraising but direct action to alleviate serious grievances ; to think even of their being willing to come after school, day after day when their whole association with school had been at least uncomfortable and dull and at worst tragically crippling-to think of those things is to think that a total transformation of the young people in an underdeveloped country can take place, and to dare to dream that it can happen all over the South (SHSW, Liz Fusco Papers) The experience of the freedom schools was exhilarating, but when most of the teachers returned north, some SNCC staff members wondered how lasting the effect would be on the lives of African American students Was a sixto eight-week period long enough to combat years of past oppression and to fortify students for years of oppression to come? Liz Fusco, who remained with a few other teachers to continue teaching in freedom schools through the fall and winter, believed that the summer freedom schools had a short-term positive effect, but she feared it would not be lasting, particularly in promoting community change Although deeply committed to the principles practiced in the freedom schools, Fusco maintained that to promote permanent change, at least one 9-month term was necessary Unfortunately, few of the students and teachers had this opportunity Social Studies Education The principles promoted and practiced by the freedom schools are not new in social studies education (see Tanner & Tanner, 1990) The fact that they were applied in unusual, often hostile circumstances is unique, however The public school system in Mississippi at the time was authoritarian ; textbooks were the dominant instructional tools, and teachers were the domineering authorities Discipline was structured to promote acceptance of and obedience to societal norms, and there was little or no promotion of active thinking or of other forms of inquiry Students were expected to memorize factual information, and they were tested and graded on what they could recall Mississippi schools were not the only such schools, however Cuban's (1991) study of social studies classrooms from 1900 to 1980 demonstrated that many 1 6 8


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools classrooms lacked any semblance of democratic teaching Teacher talk, textbooks, testing, and traditional chronological content were dominant far beyond Mississippi Shaver (1987) notes a number of reasons why social studies classes have been boring to many students Detriment, however, extends beyond boredom Students become passive and cynical when social studies classes have no meaningful connections to their own needs, interests, or community values (Shor, 1992) Indeed, these were the very concerns that prompted SNCC to create and operate the freedom schools in the first place (SNCC, Reels 27 & 68 ; Holt, 1966) Freedom schools provided a brief exception to this damaging pattern They exemplified a democratic approach to instruction that appeared to work on a short-term basis, and that may have worked with at least a few individuals on a long-term basis as well One can only speculate at the changes that might have occurred if the freedom schools had operated on a nine-month basis, as advocated by Liz Fusco, and had been sustained over a number of years The Future If social studies educators are truly concerned with helping students develop the critical and reflective skills necessary for full and meaningful participation in today's society, they must begin to question whether the present educational system has the capability of achieving this goal Perhaps the fundamental paradigm upon which social studies education is currently based should be revised extensively For six to eight weeks during the summer of 1964, freedom schools revised this paradigm in the intellectual wasteland of Mississippi, with a project designed to promote student self-discovery and to articulate a vision of social justice Abandoning the traditional approach to education, these schools focused on the minds and abilities of students, encouraged them to think, to express, and to participate, and offered them a chance to make a difference in their world : The students were taken seriously in the freedom schools They were encouraged to talk, and their talking was listened to They were assigned to write, and their writing was read with attention to idea and style as well as to grammar They were encouraged to sing, to dance, to draw, to play, to laugh They were encouraged to think (Fusco, 1964, p 18) The ideas of Charles Cobb and the other freedom school planners were not implemented consistently in every school, but within the overall experience, changes and achievements are evident that contain profound implications for social studies instruction today Howard Zinn 1 6 9


Chilcoat & Ligon (1964), one of the freedom school teachers, suggested that the freedom schools provide a model from which to scrutinize prevailing educational ideas and practices that are rooted in an unjust society : [The freedom school project] was an experiment that cannot be assessed in the usual terms of "success" and "failure," and it would be wrong to hail it with an enthusiasm which would then lead it to be judged by traditional criteria But that venture of last summer in Mississippi deserves close attention by all Americans interested in the relationship between education and social change (p 371) Zinn hoped that the freedom school concept could be applied more widely to correct antiquated beliefs concerning education and in turn to correct prevailing social ills : The freedom schools' challenge of the social structure of Mississippi was obvious from the start Its challenge to American education as a whole is more subtle There is, to begin with, the provocative suggestion that an entire school system can be created in any community outside the official order, and critical of its suppositions But beyond that, other questions were posed by the Mississippi experiment of last summer . . Perhaps people can begin, here and there (not waiting for the government, but leading it) to set up other pilot ventures, imperfect but suggestive, like the one last summer in Mississippi Education can and should be dangerous (Zinn, pp 374-375) Today in the 1990s, social studies education seems to have become listless, with little energy or direction A conservative historical movement dominates classrooms, and academic knowledge is dispensed and accepted with limited critical examination Dialogue between those who create academic policy and those who carry it out is limited To put a spur to this lethargy, we urge renewed discussion The freedom schools provide an example we should all explore Appendix Unpublished Document Collections State Historical Society of Wisconsin Archives (SHSW) : Sandra Adickes Papers Pam Allen Papers Jacqueline Bernard Papers Henry (Harry) Bowie Papers 1 7 0


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools COFO Papers Ruby Davis Papers Jerry DeMuth Papers Jake Friesan Papers Liz Fusco Papers Aviva Futorian Papers Rev Richard Gould Papers Dale Gronemeir Papers Sandra Hard Papers Fred Heinze Papers Christopher Hextor Papers Eugene Hunn Papers Staughton Lynd Papers R Hunter Morrey Papers JoAnn Ooiman Papers Robert Parks Papers Robert Starobin Papers Elizabeth Sutherland Papers Jerry Tecklin Papers Lise Vogel Paper Howard Zinn Papers Manuscript and University Archives University of Washington Libraries (UWL) : Otis Pease Papers Mary Aicken Rothschild Papers Interviews Noel Day Roy de Berry Aviva Futorian Paul Lauter John O'Neal Questionnaires Pam Allen Norma Becker Francis Harris Howard Zinn References Angell, A V (1991) Democratic climates in elementary classrooms : A review of theory and research Theory and Research in Social Education, 19(3), 241-266 1 7 1


Chilcoat & Ligon Barr, R D ., Barth, J L ., & Shermis, S S (1977) Defining the social studies Arlington, VA : National Council for the Social Studies Cherryholmes, C (1980) Social knowledge and citizenship education : Two views of truth and criticism Curriculum Inquiry, 10(2),115-141 Cherryholmes, C H (1978) Curriculum design as a political act : Problems and choices in teaching social justice Theory and Research in Social Education, 6(4), 60-82 Cuban, L (1991) History of teaching in social studies In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 197-211) New York : Macmillan Engle, S H & Ochoa, A S (1988) Education for democratic citizenship : Decision making in the social studies New York : Teachers College Fancett, V & Hawke, S (1982) Instructional practices in social studies In I Morrissett (Ed .), The current state of social studies : A report of project SPAN (pp 207-263) Boulder, CO : Social Science Education Consortium Forman, J (1972) The making of black revolutionaries : A personal account New York : Macmillan Foshay, A .W & Burton, W W (1976) Citizenship as the aim of the social studies Theory and Research in Social Education, 4(1), 1-22 Fusco, L (1964) The Mississippi freedom schools : Deeper than politics Liberation, 9(10), 17-19 Gillard, M L (1965) The concept of the Mississippi freedom school and its implementation in Gulfport, Mississippi Unpublished master's thesis, Newark State College, Newark, NJ Giroux, H A (1980) Critical theory and rationality in citizenship education Curriculum Inquiry, 10(4), 329-366 Goodlad, J (1984) A place called school New York : McGraw-Hill Goodman, J (1992) Elementary schooling for critical democracy New York : State University of New York Grant, J (1964, August 29) Freedom schools open a door to the world National Guardian, p 5 Harris, I M (1988) Peace education Jefferson, NC : McFarland Hepburn, M A (Ed) (1983) Democratic education in schools and classrooms Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Hertzberg, H .W (1981) Social studies reform, 1880-1980 Boulder, CO : Social Science Education Consortium Hinman-Smith, D (in progress) Does the word freedom have a meaning? : The Mississippi freedom schools, the Berkeley free speech movement and the search for freedom through education Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC Holt, L (1966) The summer that didn't end London : Heinemann 1 7 2


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools Howe, F (1965) Mississippi's freedom schools : The politics of education Harvard Educational Review, 35(2), 144-160 Howe, F (1972) Why teach poetry? An experiement In L Kampf & P Lauter (Eds .), The politics of literature (pp 259-307) New York : Pantheon Howe, F (1984) Myth of co-education : Selected essays, 1964-1983 Bloomington, IN : Indiana University Jones, F (1964, September 18) Freedom teacher New Zealand Listener, p 5 Kickbusch, K W (1987) Civic education and preservice educators : Extending the boundaries of discourse Theory and Research in Social Education, 15(3), 173-188 Lake, A (1964, November) Last summer in Mississippi Red book, pp 64-65,112-117 Lauter, D & Howe, F (1970) The conspiracy of the young New York : World Lauter, D & Perlstein, D (1991) Mississippi freedom schools : Introduction The Radical Teacher, 40, 2-5 Longstreet, W S (1985) Citizenship : The phantom core of social studies curriculum Theory and Research in Social Education, 13(2), 21-29 Lukas, J A (1968) Don't shoot-We are your children! New York : Random House Lynd, S (1965) The freedom schools : Concept and organization Freedom Ways, 5(2), 302-309 Mabee, C (1964, September 10) Freedom schools, north and south The Reporter, pp 30-32 Maxcy, S J & Stanley, W B (1986) Reflective inquiry, reconstructionism, and positivism : A re-examination of the process of social education Journal of Research and Development in Education, 19(3), 62-71 McAdam, D (1988) Freedom summer New York : Oxford University Millstone, J (1964, August 18) Mississippi's freedom schools to remain on permanent basis St Louis Post-Dispatch, pp 6-7 Oldendorf, S B (1989) Vocabularies, knowledge and social action in citizenship education : The Highlander example Theory and Research in Social Education, 17,(2) 107-120 Oliner, P (1983) Putting community into citizenship education : The need for prosociality Theory and Research in Social Education, 11(2), 65-81 Parker, W C & Jarolimek, J (1984) Citizenship and the critical role of the social studies Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Parker, W C & Kaltsounis, T (1986) Citizenship and law-related education In V .A Atwood (Ed .), Elementary school social studies : 1 7 3


Chilcoat & Ligon A research guide to practice (pp 14-33) Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Perlstein, D (1990) Teaching freedom : SNCC and the creation of the Mississippi freedom schools History of Education Quarterly, 30(3), 297-324 Popkewitz, T S (1977) The latent values of the discipline-centered curriculum Theory and Research in Social Education, 5(1), 41-60 Purpel, D E (1989) The moral and spiritual crisis in education : A curriculum for justice and compassion in education New York : Bergin & Garvey Remy, R C (1978) Social studies and citizenship education : Elements of a changing relationship Theory and Research in Social Education, 6(4), 40-59 Rothschild, M A (1981) A case of black and white : Northern volunteers and the southern freedom summers, 1964-1965 Westport, CT : Greenwood Rothschild, M A (1982) The volunteers and the freedom schools : Education for social change in Mississippi History of Education Quarterly, 22(4), 401-420 Sellers, C (1973) The river of no return : The autobiography of a black militant and the life and death of SNCC New York : Morrow Shaver, J P (1981) Citizenship, values, and morality in the social studies In H D Mechlinger & 0 L Davis, Jr (Eds .), The Social Studies (pp 105-125) Chicago : Univeristy of Chicago Shaver, J P (1987) Implications from research : What should be taught in social studies? In V Richardson-Koehler (Ed .), Educator's handbook : A research perspective (pp 112-138) New York : Longman Shaver, J P ., Davis, 0 L ., & Helburn, S W (1980) An interpretive report on the status of pre-college social studies education based on three NSF-funded studies In What are the needs in pre-college science, mathematics, and social studies education (pp 3-18 Washington, DC : National Science Foundation Shermis, S S & Barth, J L (1982) Teaching for passive citizenship : A critique of philosophical assumptions Theory and Research in Social Education, 10(4), 17-37 Shor, I (1992) Empowering education : Critical teaching for social change Chicago : University of Chicago Stanley, W B & Nelson, J L (1986) Social education for social transformation Social Education, 50(7), 528-530, 532-534 Strike, K A (1988) Democracy, civic education and the problem of neutrality Theory Into Practice, 27(4), 256-261 Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (1964, August 5) Mississippi freedom schools The Student Voice, pp 2-3 1 7 4


Developing Democratic Citizens : The Mississippi Freedom Schools Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (1982) The Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee Papers, 1959-1972 [Microfilm Reel No 6, 27, 35, 37, 38, 39, 40, 64, 65, 67, 68, 69, & 73] Stanford, NC : Microfilming Corporation of America Sugarman, T (1966) Strangers at the gates : A summer in Mississippi New York : Hill & Wang Sutherland, E (1965) Letters from Mississippi New York : McGrawHill Tanner, D & Tanner, L (1990) History of the school curriculum New York : Macmillan Teitelbaum, K (1990) 'Critical lessons' from our past : Curricula of socialist sunday schools in the United States Curriculum Inquiry, 20(4), 408-436 White, C S (1982) A validation study of the Barth-Shermis social studies preference scale Theory and Research in Social Education, 10(2), 1-20 Wood, G H (1984) Schooling in a democracy : Transformation or reproduction? Educational Theory, 34(3), 219-239 Wood, G H (1985) Education for democratic participation : Democratic values and the nuclear freeze campaign Theory and Research in Social Education, 12(4), 39-56 Wood, G H (1993) Schools that work New York : Plume Zinn, H (1964, November 23) Schools in context : The Mississippi idea The Nation, 199, 371-375 Zinn, H (1965) SNCC : The new abolitionists Boston : Beacon Zinn, H (1970) The politics of history Boston : Beacon Zinn, H (1990) The politics of history Urbana, IL : University of Illinois Authors GEORGE W CHILCOAT is Associate Professor of Social Studies Education at Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602 JERRY A LIGON is Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies at National-Louis University, St Louis Academic Center, St Louis, MO 63134 1 7 5


Theory and Research in Social Education Spring, 1994, Volume XXII, Number 2, pp 176-193 € by the College and Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies DEMOCRACY'S CHALLENGE AS THE FOUNDATION FOR SOCIAL STUDIES Theodore Kaltsounis University of Washington Abstract Social studies, especially at the practice level, suffers fr om lack of a clear and solid foundation The citizenship education movement failed to provide that foundation because it was defined either in too broad or too narrow terms The concept of democracy--relate knowledge, values, and practices--should be adopted as the foundation for the social studies and should be used to determine the content and the structure of the program Suggestions are provided for accomplishing this task without totally departing from the traditional scope and sequence, something that tended historically to alienate teachers A Lack of Identity Considerable testimony from within as well as without the profession suggests that social studies as a subject in the school curriculum lacks a solid foundation, and is therefore in a state of crisis Social studies educators have not been able to establish a clear identity for the subject For more than 50 years, terms and expressions such as ambiguity, inconsistency, confusion, contradiction, depression, divided purpose, lack of agreement, disarray, grab bag of current events, swamp, and tot sociology have been used to describe the nature and condition of social studies (Barth, 1993 ; Finn, 1988 ; Marker & Mehlinger, 1992 ; Mehlinger, 1981 ; Michener, 1940 ; Morrissett & Haas, 1982 ; Ravitch, 1987 ; Wesley, 1978) Attempts to explain the phenomenon or to overcome the lack of a clear purpose in social studies have not, at their best, been fully convincing or effective At their worst, they reflect the philosophical or ideological biases of those advancing some particular solution The following two examples illustrate this point 176


Democracy's Challenge Saxe (1992) attempts to explain the lack of focus in social studies He revealed recently that the term social studies was coined not by educators in 1916 as was commonly believed, but by social scientists -about 20 years earlier who wished to expand the scholarly orientation of the social sciences and highlight a social activist element In a sense, a social welfare movement among social scientists caused the genesis of social studies This signal event, however, was neglected totally by social studies educators As Saxe argues, "the social studies became entrenched in schools as a tradition of habit" (p 259) without a clear mission Would the social welfare orientation of the late 1890s and early 1900s have been adequate, had it been preserved, to give a clearer justification for today's social studies? The answer is not evident Leming (1992) proposed an interesting solution to the problem After finding certain philosophical differences between universitylevel social studies education instructors and social studies teachers, he abandoned any advances that might have been made in the field of social studies and recommended concentration in the field on development of loyalty and commitment to our nation through historical knowledge : "The development of an accurate knowledge of our American history, our traditions and social world should be the superordinate goal of social studies instruction" (Leming, p 310) Does this mean that social studies should return to the concept of "my country, right or wrong?" This can hardly be justified for a nation that has finally recognized its diversity, and now finds itself actively involved in a highly interdependent world Citizenship Education Has Failed The most significant effort to clarify the confusion and to find a meaningful direction for social studies was probably the citizenship education movement, whose general objective can be summed up with this statement by Oliver and Shaver (1966) : "We assume that structure can be provided for the social studies by careful consideration of the role of the citizen in the community, rather than by resorting to arbitrarily selected, and still fragmented, university disciplines" (p 6) After sponsoring a conference on citizenship education in 1976, the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) issued a special bulletin on citizenship education (Shaver, 1977), and became the movement's strongest advocate As we moved into the early 1990s, citizenship education remained in the forefront, but not without its critics There is a general agreement that the purpose of social studies is, to use Marker and Mehlinger's (1992) words, "to prepare youth so that they possess the knowledge, values, and skills needed for active participation in society" (p 832) 1 7 7


Theodore Kaltsounis Unfortunately, the citizenship education movement shed no light on the problem While authors of various NCSS documents (1979, 1984, 1993) have tried to tie citizenship education to democracy, they have not been able to affect practice As Leming (1992) discovered, significant differences between theory and practice continue to prevail, and Mehlinger (1992) notes, "the fact is that relatively few people appear satisfied with social studies as currently exists" (p 125) Brophy and Alleman (1993) argue that one of the reasons for the persistent dilemma rests on the fact that most social studies teachers do not have a coherent view of what social studies is all about As a profession, "we have lost sight of the major long-term goals that reflect the purposes of social studies education" (p 27) Moreover, judging from reactions to the last definition of social studies adopted by the NCSS Board of Directors (McBright, 1993), the purposes of social studies education themselves might not be that clear It is unfortunate that this definition did not put democracy first and then "the . study of the social sciences and humanities" (Task Force on Standards, 1993, p 213) In addition, the citizenship education movement defined the issue too broadly Marker and Mehlinger (1992) argue that the term citizenship education is so broad that it can claim the entire school program as its domain The broad nature of the concept also allows it to be applied to a variety of extremely different situations-to the point where it becomes practically meaningless ; for example, no one would deny that Fidel Castro provides citizenship education to Cuba's youth, but his type of citizenship education is diametrically opposed to the one we would advocate All of this can be confusing and risky Another problem, just as serious, is the tendency on the part of many social studies educators to confine citizenship education, intentionally or unintentionally, to very narrow practices and orientations In 1966, Oliver and Shaver defined it quite effectively, but they gave the impression that all of its objectives could be achieved merely by addressing public issues in the classroom This idea was advanced again more recently within the context of the issues-centered curriculum movement (Evans, 1992 ; Shaver, 1992) Introducing public issues into the classroom is very important, but there is a difference between addressing issues and teaching an issues-centered curriculum A sound social studies or citizenship education program must encompass more than just social issues Barr, Barth, and Shermis (1978) identified citizenship transmission as one of three approaches to social studies, and associated it with conformity to the status quo This has been confusing to many as they grapple with the concept of citizenship education To make matters worse, Shermis and Barth (1985) later accused citizen education advocates of engaging in indoctrination As argued elsewhere (Kaltsounis, 1987), this accusation was unfair because the term 1 7 8


Democracy's Challenge indoctrination is perceived in a variety of ways, and this type of criticism may confuse the legitimate approach of teaching democratic values in a rational manner with passive learning Engle and Ochoa (1988) concentrated on decision-making ability as the dominant quality for democratic citizens, but whether or not that is enough to teach democracy in all of its dimensions-knowledge, values, and skillsremains a question Even Civitas' (Quigley & Bahmueller, 1991) appears to be narrow in its scope Its objectives and proposed program are confined mainly within the context of the political domain, ignoring the social, economic, and much of the legal aspects Who can forget the domination of social studies during the 1960s and 1970s by a number of narrow movements-all in the name of citizenship education Newmann (1977) identified eight such movements-academic disciplines, law-related education, social problems, critical thinking, values clarification, moral development, community involvement, and institutional school reform-that addressed significant aspects of citizenship education All of them were eventually resented and in most cases rejected because they existed in isolation from one another No sound and clear framework of citizenship education was presented to encompass all of them Even multicultural education, a legitimate movement in our society with worthy objectives, is currently at risk of being driven by the Afrocentric movement (Asante, 1991) toward the service of narrow interests and away from democratic causes Justifiably so, a Eurocentric social studies curriculum has been proclaimed unfair and unacceptable for a multicultural society like ours, but so is an Afrocentric curriculum (Singer, 1993) Those enamored by the claims advanced in Black Athena (Bernal, 1987 & 1991) defy reputable historical interpretation, and are guilty of manipulating the facts for political purposes, as those who use the Bible to justify segregation are guilty of doing There is no question that multiculturalists began with good intentions when they advocated programs to empower people But if they wish to prevail (or even survive), they need to speak loudly against any narrowly conceived movements that would change history to achieve political gains They should have the courage to do so regardless of the origin of these antidemocratic and dangerous movements It is the only way to stop the attacks and the severe scrutiny that multiculturalism and the multiculturalists themselves, currently face (Brookhiser, 1993 ; Hughes, 1992 ; Kleg, 1993 ; Ravitch, 1990 ; Schlesinger, 1991 ; Singer, 1992) In sum, there is general agreement among social studies educators that social studies lacks identity and cohesiveness Even the citizenship education movement failed to serve as an adequate framework especially in practice, because either it was perceived too broadly and therefore not clearly, or it was applied in terms that were too narrowly defined As a result, most new directions fascinate the 1 7 9


Theodore Kaltsounis profession only for a short period of time The narrowness of the Afrocentric movement put even multicultural education in jeopardy There is no question that social studies continues to be in need of a sound foundation, one that can be understood and accepted by educators as well as by the public in general ; a foundation to illuminate current : social studies practice and assist in discarding what is useless, to retain what is meaningful, and introduce new, important elements Democracy's Challenge American social studies educators do not need to look far for a, strong foundation They have only to stop taking democracy for granted, and make its content, principles, practices, and history the main source,, inspiration, and substance for social studies I mean here that democracy should be offered not occasionally as a separate subject or unit, as is often the case, or only with its political manifestations ; ii : should determine and underlie all aspects of social studies education Everything included in the program should actively advance understanding of democracy and the values and behaviors associated, with it American schools must stop doing things in social studies because of habit or tradition (Saxe, 1992), and must provide America's youth instead with a truly democratic citizenship education If business people and school administrators turn to democracy for ideas on how to reform businesses and schools for success (Schmoker & Wilson, 1993, : Wirth, 1993), social studies educators have even more of a reason to do so, because their primary responsibility is to prepare the citizens of tomorrow for effective participation in our democratic system In order to succeed in making democracy the foundation for the social studies, a number of significant adjustments and additions must be made to the program as reflected in the following eight points :  t Democracy's importance at the policy level must also be made evident at the school practice level ;  t The broad term of citizenship education must be made more specific and redefined as democratic citizenship education ;  t The definition of democracy must be expanded to extend beyond the domain of politics and government ;  Basic democratic principles and values must be brought to the center of the social studies curriculum and must be considered as important as content ;  The common good should weigh more when faced with the dilemma of choosing between the needs of the individual and those of the community ;  t Democracy should be viewed as a process requiring skills, consistent with today's needs rather than as an ideology ; 1 8 0


Democracy's Challenge  t Educators must realize that teaching democracy through practice is more effective than talking about it ; and  t All teachers must be educated on the concept of democracy and its implications for everyday life Make Democracy Important at the Practice Level A quick review of social studies education methods textbooks or descriptions of district level social studies programs reveals that democracy is often present in general objectives statements As reported recently, "No vision, statement, or school plan lacks mention of the roles and responsibilities of individuals in a democratic society" (Leppard, 1993, p 23) The case is different, however, at the classroom practice level Democracy takes a back seat for a variety of reasons "Anyone who has spent any time in an elementary school," wrote Kornfeld (1993), "would agree that it is far easier to talk about the values of democracy than to instill them in students" (p 75) We expect children to study the Constitution and the nature of the U .S government when they are in the fifth grade, but it is never certain that they do Treatment of these is often very brief because the main thrust is on history and geography of the United States Democracy at the secondary level constitutes a narrow focus within the program and is usually taught in a separate course such as civics or government In addition, there is considerable evidence that the school, especially the high school, is not a conducive context for development of democratic citizenship objectives (Cusick, 1991) We need to move beyond paying lip service to democracy and we must try to influence practice As Hartoonian (1993) has suggested, "our work should illuminate the essential connection between social studies learning and democratic values" (p 59) The importance of this connection became strongly evident to me last summer when, in my seminar on the review of social studies research, I started with a rather extensive discussion on democracy and of an article by Giroux (1992) in which he writes about what is wrong with our democracy I asked the participants, most of them practicing social studies teachers, to review various aspects of social studies research and to identify ways suggested by their findings in which they as teachers could contribute to correcting the wrongs in our democratic system They recognized the connection between theory and practice, and knew exactly what changes they would need to initiate in their classrooms and schools in order to teach toward democracy and be able to make a difference Insist on Democratic Citizenship Education Elsewhere I have urged my colleagues in this country to make a conscious effort to think not just of citizenship education, but of democratic citizenship education (Kaltsounis, 1990) and by doing so, to 1 8 1


Theodore Kaltsounis place democracy at the center of citizenship education In other words, citizenship demands that the meaning of democracy permeate the entire program In light of democratic citizenship education, the primary goal of social studies as a subject should no longer be the study of social sciences and humanities, but the development of an understanding of democracy and an ability to function effectively in a democratic society Expand Democracy beyond Politics and Government Although politics and government are important, if democracy is to become the underlying element of the entire social studies program, a social view of democracy is unquestionably more significant As Dewey wrote in 1916, "A democracy is more than a government ; it is primarily a mode of associated living, of conjoint communicated experience" (p 101) Rawls (1971) refers to this as the union of social unions People live together in small or large groups and interact with each other as individuals or as groups The primary function of the interaction is to assist people in discovering mutual interests and in moving toward resolution of common problems in the political domain as well as in the economic, social, and legal domains of society As members of a society do this, they rely more and more upon mutual interests to achieve and exercise social control Based upon the above definition, the most fundamental precondition for a healthy democratic society is free interaction and communication between individuals as well as groups Communication should extend beyond articulation of positions, however, and involve a debate in which participants listen to one another and try to find common ground as they consider the various options available Clearly, dialogue is an essential element in a democratic society, and it must not be left to chance If it is to take place in a civilized manner, it must be taught Further, the ability of individuals and groups to adjust to new situations that develop from dialogue is essential These adjustments require new habits that must be developed through education Needless to say, dialogue, adjustment to new situations, and development of new habits are never-ending endeavors because consensus is rarely total and resolutions are final in a democracy The process goes on and on A view of democracy that extends beyond politics and government calls for knowledge, values, and skills often ignored by most practitioners It has tremendous implications for education and for social studies in particular Bring Democratic Values to the Center of the Program Much has been said and written about values and their place in schools during the last 20 to 25 years There were times when values were completely rejected in favor of values clarification and a value1 8 2


Democracy's Challenge free method of teaching (Raths, Harmin, & Simon, 1978) This disturbed those who felt the necessity for direct teaching of values "Moral education, without justified moral content," wrote Oldenquist in 1979, "is most likely to be perceived as a pointless game" (p 246) In fact, this is exactly what happened The public became fed up with values clarification to the point where anything related to values was dismissed Thoughtful educators became concerned and published articles with titles such as "Bringing the 'Moral' Back In" (Grant, 1989), and "Now Is Not the Time to Set Aside Values Education" (Fraenkel, 1981) Educators throughout the country finally realized that a society could not be held together without a common core of values "Core values are essential to participation in sociocivic affairs," wrote Michaelis (1992, p 368) Shaver (1985) pointed out, "Anthropologists have commonly noted that shared commitments are critical to the survival of any society" (p 194) But how can an increasingly diverse society like ours agree on a common core of values? The answer lies in our basic social contracts-the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights A number of attempts have been made to abstract the basic values of our system from these important documents for educational purposes (American Federation of Teachers, 1987 ; Butts, 1988) It should be remembered, however, that the values of a democratic system are neither absolute nor permanent People at any particular time can change the importance of certain values or introduce new ones through consensus ; for example, assimilation was considered to be a value in the United States for a long time Pressure from various ethnic and cultural groups has changed this and replaced it with diversity At the present time, voices are heard around the country arguing directly or indirectly for a return to assimilation (Ravitch, 1990 ; Schlesinger, 1990) Whatever happens, however, two very fundamental values cannot be violated These are the sovereignty of the people-collective self-determination (Gutmann, 1987)-and human rights In a democratic society, the people must develop "an intense persuasion that we (and here the first person plural is of indeterminate and changing breath) have rights-that when we are wronged there must be remedies, that patterns of illegitimate authority can be challenged, that public power must contain institutional mechanisms capable of undoing injustice" (Hertog, 1988, p 354) Democracy cannot exist without human rights Neither can it be taught in an environment where human rights are disregarded While the significance of directly teaching democratic values has been recognized at the theoretical level, most teachers are still reluctant to teach any values in practice Furthermore, parents resent educators teaching values because of negative past experiences with 1 8 3


Theodore Kaitsounis values clarification, which often deteriorated to interfering with a child's personal values This caused many parents to dislike social studies as a whole They may favor teaching of democratic values, however, because an overwhelming majority of Americans favor democracy in general Stress the Common Good Hartoonian (1993) recently proposed three fundamental principles as guides for redefining social studies The first is that "the quality of an individual's life is tied directly to the quality of the life of the whole community" (p 60) It is to advantageous for each and every citizen, therefore, to be concerned with the common good For Americans who pride themselves on their individualism, this is a very difficult concept to accept Such a dilemma reveals the most fundamental conflict of any democratic system The way to resolve this conflict is by developing a shared conception of justice-creating a feeling that everyone lives in a just community, one that exhibits the following conditions : (1) It is a union of social unions ; (2) the state is neutral about what constitutes the good life ; (3) the encouragement of transgenerational neutrality is evident ; (4) a belief prevails that dialogue is key to decision making ; (5) respect for and protection of freedom are important ; (6) respect for and protection of equality are emphasized ; (7) nondiscrimination is practiced and enforced ; (8) nonrepression is practiced and enforced ; (9) the fact that something is right is more important than the fact that it is legal ; (10) the definition of what is right is arrived at by the participation of all ; and (11) there is freedom of information (Rawls, 1971) People in such a community tend to show empathy toward one another and they demonstrate prosocial behavior : an inclination to care for others and a desire to reduce their distress (Scott, 1992) Update the Skills Needed to Function Effectively in a Democracy We in the social studies profession need to first make a distinction between skills that fall exclusively within the domain of social studies and those that can be developed within the context of any school subject, and then concentrate on the former In examining the lists of skills adopted by NCSS, for example, one author found that only a small portion of them, such as map skills and those related to interpersonal relations and social participation, could be classified as strictly social studies skills (Jarolimek, 1989) All others-reading, information, and thinking skills in addition to many others-despite their importance, are too generic to be labeled as social studies skills The lists need to be uncluttered in order to project and emphasize the proper skills adequately 1 8 4


Democracy's Challenge The most critical skills for social studies should be those required for effective democratic living Some are simple, usually taken for granted, while others are more sophisticated and have their roots in the democratic process itself Included in the first category are skills necessary to our everyday relationships with one another ; for example : waiting your turn to speak, getting in line, thanking others, respecting people's space or property, and so on These skills are learned at home usually very early in a child's life ; however, the school environment is different in many ways, and these skills need to be reinforced systematically in each environment The second category of social skills is fundamental for implementing the democratic process It includes the ability to engage in dialogue ; to express one's own convictions ; to compromise ; to adjust to new social situations ; to evaluate actions and situations on the basis of their contribution to the common good ; to apply sound decision-making skills to conflict resolution ; and the like In a book that addresses the rebuilding of America for the twenty-first century, Etzioni grouped the various social skills into two basic categories that he labeled mutuality and civility (1983) Mutuality is defined as the ability to get along with others, while civility is defined as the ability to relate effectively to one's community Social studies teachers need to develop these important abilities in young people Others speak about the development of civic intelligence (Mathews, 1985), or civic virtue (Parker, 1988 ; Quigley & Bahmueller, 1991)-the ability to see and do the right thing in social situations-as the ultimate goal to be developed through social studies Teachers should provide especially for the development of emerging social skills and abilities Writing about the globalization of the international system of economy, Reich (1992) contended that citizens need new skills in order to cope The capacity to collaborate is one of the most important of these skills Although collaboration in general is not new to social studies, its purpose as specified by Reich might be : to seek out problems and solutions deliberately, and then to achieve consensus on plans Collaboration is strictly a social studies skill and it is carried out in conjunction with the other three skills Reich favors : abstraction, system thinking, and experimentation None of these is developed adequately in schools Speaking specifically about collaboration, Reich remarked that "learning to collaborate, communicate abstract concepts, and achieve a consensus are not usually emphasized within formal education" (p 233) Teach Democracy through Practice Considerably knowledge exists that is related to democracy and democratic practice but in the final analysis, democracy is a way of 1 8 5


Theodore Kaltsounis life Knowledge alone is not enough to ensure a democratic way of life This is especially true of the knowledge conveyed through the current social studies curriculum : "The formal social studies curriculum has little appreciable effect on civic attitudes and behavior" (Ferguson, 1991, p 392) On the other hand, reviews of research reveal that hands-on activities, open discussion and appraisal of public issues, and the climate or ethos of the school contribute significantly to the development of democratic attitudes and behaviors (Patrick & Hoge, 1991) In addition, "It is generally accepted that student participation in extracurricular activities of the school is positively related to the development of political efficacy and propensities for participation in civic life outside the school" (Patrick & Hoge, 1991, p 433) Educate All Teachers on Democracy and Its Implications Teachers need to understand and commit themselves to democracy if they are to teach in ways that will promote democratic attitudes and behaviors In reviewing the curricula of various teacher education programs throughout the country, Goodlad found that statements of the role of schools and teachers in a democracy were missing usually (1990, p 251) Based on findings like these, he called for the development of a moral dimension in teacher education Part of this dimension, especially for social studies teachers, should be a course on democracy Teachers cannot be expected to pursue the development of democratic citizenship traits in young people if they themselves have never had systematic exposure to the knowledge, values, and behaviors associated with the idea of democracy In addition to understanding the concept of democracy and developing a commitment to it, teachers need to expand their traditional teaching methods-mainly lecturing, memorization, and textbook use (Cuban, 1991)-and exhibit teaching qualities that are more conducive to the development of democratic attitudes and behaviors among students (Battistoni, 1985 ; Dynneson, 1992 ; Leming, 1991) Paramount in this context is the teacher's ability to develop an appropriate classroom environment and to involve students in meaningful and well-designed community activities A Social Studies Program Based on Democracy One of the encouraging aspects of this proposal is that it can be implemented without drastic changes in the current scope and sequence of the social studies program This is important because teachers have persisted in refusing to explore new concepts Children in the primary grades can continue to study the traditional topics of self and others, the school, the family, the neighborhood, and the community but not from the point of view of simply trying to learn more about them All of 1 8 6


Democracy's Challenge these entities should be viewed as social settings within which children exist and function Children should learn as much as possible about these subjects, but more importantly they should develop the values, social skills, and abilities necessary to participate effectively School, family, neighborhood, and community should constitute opportunities for children to begin learning how to live democratically As they advance to the intermediate grades, children could continue learning about their state, region, country, and world but again from a participatory point of view The fundamental task for students at this level is not only to learn about the people and the institutions within these contexts, but to develop ways in which they should relate to them ; for example, children should learn about the diversity of the people in our society, but they should also learn how to accept, respect, and get along with everyone Children should not just learn abstract principles of justice and the democratic process ; they should be able to practice and to strive constantly to apply legal and peaceful ways to make sure others do the same An elementary social studies program based on democracy can be an interdisciplinary curriculum taught in a dynamic and active way Social settings should not be viewed as objects to be studied passively, as is often the case (Finkelstein, Neilsen, & Switzer, 1993), but as reallife situations with which the children interact Because of this interactive element, topics of study for each grade should be stated and taught in a manner that reflects the interaction One recommendation is to refer to the child into each topic title : Grade K : t My Friends and Me Grade 1 : t My Family and Me Grade 2 : t My Community and Me Grade 3 : t Other Communities and Me Grade 4 : t My State and Region and Me Grade 5 : t My Country and Me Grade 6 : t My World and Me Social studies courses at the secondary level generally deal with American history and geography, world history and geography, the economy, and political and governmental systems (Jarolimek, 1989) In view of unsuccessful past attempts to change the prevailing scope and sequence to other, more acceptable frameworks (Joyce & Wronski, 1991), the general areas represented by these courses can remain the same, but the main focus should be democracy and the democratic way of life At the same time, courses should be arranged in a meaningful way to prevent repetition The secondary program may begin appropriately in the seventh grade with the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, emphasizing the meaning of these documents for each one 1 8 7


Theodore Kaltsounis of us as citizens, while including the geographic and historical settings of their development As a result of the bicentennial, there was a recent surge of interest regarding the Constitution ; however, we should not wait to study this marvelous document only once every century Studying the Constitution is imperative for all U .S citizens It should be taught and celebrated along with the Declaration of Independence each year It is a good substitute for the current eighth-grade U .S history course that students often perceive as a repetition of what they learned in the fifth grade Beginning with the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution makes sense because these provide the appropriate framework for introducing political and governmental systems in the eighth grade and our economic system in the ninth grade The major emphasis in these courses, however, should be not only on understanding the basic political, government, and economic concepts and processes, but on teaching students to find their place in these systems in order to satisfy their needs and make whatever contributions they can toward improvement Consequently, an important component of these courses must be enabling students to become involved and to be constructively critical of political and economic policies and practices In the 10th grade, student attention should be turned toward world geography and history The approach, however, should be based on triumphs and setbacks of democratic movements throughout history, beginning with the birth of democracy in Athens 2,500 years ago and ending with the current attempts throughout the world to replace dictatorships and communist systems with democratic ones One emphasis of this course would show the close interrelation of the various nations and peoples, the logic of peaceful cooperation, and the importance of human rights A good follow-up in my view would be a course for 11th graders on the U S and how it relates to the world This course would consist of a critical review of U .S foreign policy over the years The 12th grade should be reserved for studying critical issues in the United States and the world A good portion of the 12th-grade social studies program should be devoted also to a well-organized community service program closely related to the critical issues under study Related activities should be selected with the participation of the students ; otherwise, community service will become a meaningless routine that the students will come to dislike In summary, the outline of the recommended secondary social studies program would be as follows : Grade 7 : t The Declaration of Independence and the U S Constitution Grade 8 : t Our Political and Governmental Systems 1 8 8


Grade 9 : t Our Economic System Grade 10 : t World Geography and History Grade 11 : t United States and the World Grade 12 : t Critical Issues in the United States and the World, and Community Service Summary and Conclusion Democracy and democratic citizenship education are offered as the most logical foundation upon which to structure the social studies program Americans cannot continue to take democracy for granted, especially now that signs of deterioration in our democratic system are quite obvious As the family unit in American society becomes weaker, democracy needs the support of the school Educational programs "can become part of a collective effort to build and revitalize a democratic culture that is open rather than fixed, disputed rather than given, and supportive rather than intolerant of cultural differences" (Giroux, 1992, p 8) There could be no better mission for social studies and for schools as long as teaching is open, respects scholarship and the rational process, and does not deteriorate into slogans and propaganda By adopting democracy as its foundation, the social studies program would not need to depart drastically from its current scope and sequence Important steps, however, are necessary in order to make democracy the focal point of the program in all of its manifestations These steps would involve efforts to (a) make the importance of democracy evident at the practice level ; (b) define and promote citizenship education specifically as democratic citizenship education ; (c) expand the definition of democracy beyond the political domain by also applying it to social, economic, and legal domains ; (d) teach democratic values directly ; (e) place the common good above individual interests ; (f) stress development of the most fundamentally traditional as well as emerging democratic skills, including simple, everyday social skills ; (g) emphasize the teaching of democracy through practice ; and (h) require that all teachers take a course on democracy References American Federation of Teachers (1988) Education for Democracy : A Statement of Principles Washington, DC : American Federation of Teachers Asante, M K (1991) The Afrocentric idea in education Journal of Negro Education, 60(2), 170-180 Barth, J L (1993) Social studies : There is a history, there is a body, but is it worth saving? Social Education, 57(2), 56-57 Democracy's Challenge 1 8 9


Theodore Kaltsounis Battistoni, R (1985) Public schooling and the education of democratic citizens Jackson, MS : University of Mississippi Bernal, M (1987) Black Athena : The Afro-asiatic roots of classical civilization, volume 1 : The fabrication of ancient Greece, 17851985 New Brunswick, NJ : Rutgers University Bernal, M (1991) Black Athena : The Afro-asiatic roots of classical civilization, volume 2 : The archeological and documentary evidence New Brunswick, NJ : Rutgers University Brookhiser, R (1993, March 1) The melting pot is still simmering Time, p 72 Brophy, J E & Alleman, J (1993) Elementary social studies should be driven by major social education goals Social Education, 57(1), 27-32 Butts, F R (1988) The morality of democratic citizenship : Goals for civic education in the republic's third century Calabasas, CA : Center for Civic Education Coulter, E M (1987) Principles of politics and government (3rd ed .) Boston : Allyn & Bacon Cuban, L (1991) History of teaching in social studies In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 197-209) New York : Macmillan Cusick, P A (1991) Student groups and school structure In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 276-289) New York : Macmillan Dewey, J (1916) Democracy and education New York : Macmillan Dynneson, T L (1992) What's hot and what's not in effective citizenship instruction, The Social Studies, 83(5), 197-200 Engle, S & Ochoa, A (1988) Education for democratic citizenship : Decision making in the social studies New York : Teachers College Etzioni, A (1983) An immodest agenda : Rebuilding America before the twenty-first century New York : McGraw-Hill Evans, R W (1992) What do we mean by issues-centered social studies education? The Social Studies, 83(3), 93-94 Ferguson, P (1991) Impacts on social and political participation In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 385-399) New York : Macmillan Finkelstein, J M ., Neilsen, L E ., & Switzer, T (1993) Primary elementary social studies instruction : A status report Social Education, 57(2), 64-69 Finn, C E ., Jr (1988) The social studies debate among the educationaloids The American Spectator, 21(7), 15-16 Fraenkel, J R (1981) Now is not the time to set aside values education Social Education, 46(2), 101-107 1 9 0


1 9 1 Democracy's Challenge Giroux, H A (1992) Educational leadership and the crisis of democratic government Educational Researcher, 21(4), 4-10 Goodlad, J I (1990) Teachers for our nation's schools San Francisco : Jossey-Bass Grant, G (1989) Bringing the 'moral' back in N .E .A Today, 7(6), 5459 Gutmann, A (1987) Democratic education Princeton, NJ : Princeton University Hartoonian, M (1993) A guide for redefining social studies Social Education, 57(2), 59-60 Hartog, H (1988) The constitution of aspiration and the rights that belong to all of us In D Thelen (Ed .), The Constitution and American life .(pp 353-374) Ithaca, NY : Cornell University Hughes, R (1992, February 3) The fraying of America Time, pp 44-49 Jarolimek, et al (1989) In search of a scope and sequence for social studies : Report of the National Council for the Social Studies Task Force on Scope and Sequence Social Education 53(6), 376387 Joyce, W W & Wronski, S P (1991) Scope and sequence, goals, and objectives : Effects on social studies In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of Research on Social Studies Teaching and Learning (pp 321-331) New York : Macmillan Kaltsounis, T (1990) Democracy and democratic citizenship education The Social Studies, 8(5), 190-193 Kaltsounis, T (1987) Teaching social studies in the elementary school : The basics for citizenship (2nd ed .) Englewood Cliffs, NJ : Prentice-Hall Kleg, M (1993) On the NCSS curriculum guidelines for multicultural education Social Education, 57(2), 58-59 Kornfeld, H J (1993) Teaching for democracy in the social studies classroom Theory and Research in Social Education, 21(1), 75-83 Leming, J S (1992) Ideological perspectives within the social studies profession : An empirical examination of the 'two cultures' thesis Theory and Research in Social Education, 20(3), 293-312 Leming, J S (1991) Teacher characteristics and social studies education In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 222-235) New York : Macmillan Leppard, L J (1993) Discovering a democratic tradition and educating for public politics Social Education, 57(1), 23-26 McBright, L W (1993) Could this be the end of history? Social Education, 57(6), 282-284 Marker, G & Mehlinger, H D (1992) Social studies In P W Jackson (Ed .), Handbook of research on curriculum (pp 830-851) New York : Macmillan


Theodore Kaltsounis Mathews, D (1985) Civic intelligence Social Education, 49(8), 678681 Mehlinger, H D (1981) Social studies : Some gulfs and priorities In H D Mehlinger & O L Davis (Eds .), The social studies : Eightieth yearbook of the National Society for the Study of Education .(pp 244-269) Chicago, IL : University of Chicago Mehlinger, H D (1992) The National Commission on Social Studies in the schools : An example of the politics of curriculum reform in the United States Social Education, 56(3), 149-153 Michaelis, J U (1992) Social studies for children (10th ed .) Boston : Allyn & Bacon Michener, J A (1940) The P E A report Social Education, 4(8), 530531 Morrissett, I & Haas, J D (1982) Rationales, goals, and objectives in social studies In The current state of social studies : A report of Project SPAN (pp 15-19) Boulder, CO : Social Science Education Consortium National Council for the Social Studies (1979) Revision of the NCSS curriculum guidelines Social Education, 44(4), 261-278 National Council for the Social Studies Citizenship Committee (1984) Essential characteristics of a citizenship education program Social Education, 49(6), 408-409 National Commission on Social Studies in the Schools (1989) Charting a course : Social studies for the twenty-first century Washington, DC : Author Newmann, F M (1977) Building a rationale for civic education In J P Shaver (Ed .), Building rationales for citizenship education (pp 1-33) Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Oldenquist, A (1979) Moral education without moral education Harvard Education Review, 49(2), 240-247 Oliver, D W & Shaver, J P (1966) Teaching social issues in the high school Boston : Houghton Mifflin Parker, W C (1988) Why ethics in citizenship education Social Studies and the Young Learner, 1(1), 3-5 Patrick, J J & Hoge, J D (1991) Teaching government, civics, and law In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of Research on Social Studies Teaching and Learning (pp 427-436) New York : Macmillan Quigley, C N & Bahmueller, C F (Eds .) (1991) Civitas : A framework for civic education Calabasas, CA : Center for Civic Education Raths, L E ., Harmin, M ., & Simon, S B (1978) Values and teaching (2nd ed .) Columbus, OH : Merrill Ravitch, Diane (1990) Diversity and Democracy : Multicultural Education in America American Educator, 14 (1), pp 16-20 and 46-48 1 9 2


Democracy's Challenge Ravitch, D (1987) Tot sociology The American Scholar, 56(3), 343354 Rawls, J (1971) A theory of justice Cambridge, MA : Harvard University Reich, R B (1992) The work of nations New York : Vintage Saxe, D W (1992) Framing a theory for social studies foundations Review of Educational Research, 62(3), 259-277 Schlesinger, A ., Jr (1990) When ethnic studies are un-American The Social Studies Review, 5, 11-13 Schmoker, M & Wilson, R B (1993) Transforming schools through total quality education Phi Delta Kappan, 74(5), 389-395 Scott, K P (1991) Achieving social studies affective aims : Values, empathy, and moral development In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 357-369) New York : Macmillan Shaver, J P (Ed .) (1977) Building rationales for citizenship education Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Shaver, J P (1985) Commitment to values and the study of social problems in citizenship education Social Education, 50(3), 194197 Shaver, J P (1992) Rationales for issues-centered social studies education The Social Studies, 83(3), 95-99 Shermis, S S & Barth, J L (1985) Indoctrination and the study of social problems : A re-examination of the 1930s debate in the social frontier Social Education, 49(3), 190-193 Singer, A (1992) Multiculturalism and democracy : The promise of multicultural education Social Education, 56(2), 83-85 Task Force on Standards for Teaching and Learning in Social Studies (1993) A vision of powerful teaching and learning in the social studies : Building social understanding and civic efficacy Social Education, 57(1), 213-223 Wesley, E B (1978) Foreword In R Barr, J L Barth, & S S Shermis (Eds .), The nature of social studies (p iv) Palm Springs, CA : Etc Publications Wirth, A G (1993) Education and work : The choice we face Phi Delta Kappan, 74(1), 361-366 Author THEODORE KALTSOUNIS is Professor of Education at the University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195 1 9 3


Theory and Research in Social Education Spring, 1994, Volume XXII, Number 2, pp 194-214 € by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies IDEOLOGICAL MANAGEMENT IN TEXTBOOKS : A STUDY OF THE CHANGING IMAGE OF THE UNITED STATES IN CHINA'S GEOGRAPHY TEXTBOOKS 1 Jianping Shen University of Washington Abstract An analysis of China's geo$raphy textbooks reveals an explicit ideological orientation that reflects China s policies Because the system of textbook writing, publishing, and distribution in China is centralized, textbook content is influenced primarily by the state and specific methods of ideological alignment are exployed This article examines the changing ideological orientation of China's perspective of the U .S as reflected in its geography texts and also provides suggestions for future textbook development Introduction Since the 1970s an increasing amount of research on the textbook has focused on issues such as race, ethnicity, gender, and social values as well as on the international context and ideological dimensions of the textbook industry In examining ideological issues, some researchers analyze the textbooks themselves and their role in cultural and social reproduction (Apple, 1979, 1982 ; Apple & Christian-Smith, 1991 ; Giroux, 1981, 1983) Others probe the ideological environment in which textbooks are written, selected, and distributed (English, 1980 ; Fleming, 1992 ; Keith, 1985, 1991 ; Powell, 1985 ; Wong & Loveless, 1991), while 1 I would like to thank Stephen T Kerr and four anonymous TRSE reviewers for their insightful comments 1 9 4


Ideological Management in Textbooks still others explore a framework for inquiring into the textbook by applying the critical inquiry approach (Sirotnik, 1991) These studies contribute to our understanding of textbooks ; content is no longer considered neutral, legitimate knowledge Anyon (1978, 1979) argues that social studies texts offer a planned socialization agenda that encourages students to accept social norms uncritically, achieved through selective emphasis of certain interpretations, omission of others, and portrayal of social and historical events as uncontroversial FitzGerald (1979) studied the content of history textbooks, and found that pressure in American society results in history texts that reflect less than the best scholarship in the field Both Anyon's and FitzGerald's research findings have been confirmed by the work of Apple (1979, 1982), Giroux (1981, 1983), Aronowitz and Giroux (1990), and Apple and Christian-Smith (1991) Inquiry into the environment within which textbooks are written, selected, and circulated reveals that textbook decision making is political In reviewing and synthesizing the literature, Wong and Loveless (1991) found that textbook decisions are made largely within the context of institutional politics, where the expert-publisher network functions as an autonomous decision-making entity, and where disagreements between the expert and the publisher are less publicized and can be resolved through compromise Wong and Loveless also found that when de-institutional politics occur, textbook decisions become politically salient, and controversies are prolonged and require arbitration from higher authorities In summarizing all of the above research, one may conclude that the seemingly legitimate knowledge in textbooks is, after all, in Bourdieu's (Bourdieu & Passeron, 1977) and Bernstein's (1977) language, the cultural capital of dominant classes and class segments Methodology of the Study The aforementioned research on the ideological dimension of textbooks is based upon textbook practice in Western countries, particularly in the United States ; however, textbook practice is not the same in countries such as the People's Republic of China and the Commonwealth of Independent States America's textbook industry is more decentralized with publishers operating in a competitive market, and American consumers having relatively more selections available Some researchers argue that because of this competitive market, the political conservatism and ideological orientation embodied in avoidance of conflict may be a marketing strategy (English, 1986 ; Schomburg, 1986) In contrast, textbook practice in China is situated in a highly centralized context supervised by the State Education Commission 1 9 5


Jianping Shen Textbooks are uniform across China, since the private sector is not allowed to enter this arena Furthermore, China's political and social systems are quite different from those of the United States Probing into the ideological dimension of the textbook in China enables us to discover whether or not research findings in the West apply also to the Chinese context, and if so, what similar characteristics exist This study addressed the following research questions : Are there any ideological orientations in China's geography textbooks? If so, how are they constructed? What are the characteristics of the ideological dimension manifested in China's geography textbooks? This study is an examination of 22 geography textbooks in the Educational Resource Center at the East China Normal University in Shanghai Fifteen have a chapter or a section on the United States The remaining seven are basic geology texts Given the center's extensive textbook collection, these 15 geography textbooks published between 1948 and 1991 form a comprehensive data set for this study Of these 15 texts, eight are for elementary schools, five for junior high schools, and two for senior high schools Geography Textbook (1981), World Geography Textbook (1989), Geography Textbook (1990), and World Geography Textbook (1991) are still in use The technique of content analysis was employed in this study The analysis was focused on the image of the United States represented in these textbooks, beginning with a critical examination, then a gradual construction of patterns, and finally verification of the patterns identified in the textbooks The translations appearing in the following sections are those of the author A note on the history of the People's Republic of China (PRC) is needed here to contextualize the analysis of China's geography textbooks Although it is widely held that the history of the PRC can be divided into approximately six stages (Shen, 1994), China's policy toward the United States remained basically unchanged until 1978 Before the third plenary session of the 11th congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in 1978, the CPC's policy was to facilitate social development through class struggle ; therefore, the United States was viewed as reactionary politically, culturally, and militarily Geography textbooks in turn depicted the United States as an imperialist enemy With the subsequent shift of policy from class struggle to economic development, the advanced American economy became the goal toward which China now struggles Nonetheless, the CPC's aim has been to develop "a socialist market economy" that sets the political parameters of current reform Differences between the social systems of China and the United States persist, and the metamorphosis of the CPC's policy provides a perspective to study the changing image of the United States in China's geography textbooks 1 9 6


Ideological Management in Textbooks The Changing Image of the United States It is logical to assume that due to ideological hegemony, the image of the United States will change along with China's policy towards it The Chinese ideological superstructure changed significantly over the years, but the attitude and policy adopted toward the United States did not change until 1978 when the open-door policy was implemented This transition is manifested in the textbooks Here is a section introducing the location of the U .S in the world : The United States is the worst imperialist country in the world It is in North America ; however, it ran all the way to Asia, invading Korea and Vietnam and occupying our territory Taiwan Along with India and Japan, the United States established an anti-China community so as to further invade our country It established thousands of military bases and other facilities overseas, with a total of more than one million military personnel on these bases In the past 20 years, the United States invaded many countries It supported reactionary governments in many countries by providing dollars and weaponry It is the international military police that suppresses the liberation movement It intends to redivide the world along with the socialist imperialism [which refers to the former Soviet Union] "The American imperialism is the worst enemy of the people of the whole world ." [emphasis in original ; quotation from Mao Zedong .] It is the current source of war (Geography Textbook, 1972, p 15) The textbook from which this paragraph is taken was published in 1972 Although China and the United States established formal diplomatic relations that year, its tone is understandable given the time lag for publication and the basically unchanged ideological orientation This paragraph introduces the geographic location of the United States in the world ; however, only one sentence-"It is in North America"-actually does that, with the remaining sentences attacking America's so-called aggressive behaviors The following is another paragraph on America's geographic location : The United States is in the middle of North America, sharing boundaries with Canada in the north and Mexico in the south It faces the Atlantic Ocean in the east and the Pacific Ocean in the west The total territory is 9,360,000 square kilometers Alaska, which is in the northwest of North America, and Hawaii, which is in the Pacific 1 9 7


Jianping Shen Ocean, are both America's territory (Geography Textbook, 1981, p 41) The tone of this paragraph, published in 1981, is completely different from the previous one The transition is due to China's changed policy in economic development and foreign affairs In the 1983 and 1989 versions (World Geography Textbook, 1983, p 75 ; World Geography Textbook, 1989, p 64), the paragraphs introducing the location of the United States remain the same It would be helpful to develop a chart that illustrates the content covered in all textbooks and, therefore, the evolution of the image of the United States Because the 15 textbooks studied are compiled for three different grade levels, a comparison may not be valid due to the fact that text lengths on a given topic vary from one paragraph to 52 pages ; however, textbooks written for the same level of schooling can be compared to illustrate the changing image of the United States The following is a comparison of two textbooks for senior high schools published in 1952 and 1991 Among the 15 textbooks studied, these have the longest sections of texts on the United States : 52 and 21 pages, respectively The 1952 Geography Textbook for senior high schools has the following subheads : (a) the basic geography of the United States, specifically topography, rivers and lakes, climate, natural resources ; (b) the founding of the United States, the United States and its federal system, ethnic composition, and problems ; (c) the development of capitalism in the United States, current trends, the United States in the post-World War II era ; (d) the economy of the United States, its characteristics, and major sectors ; (e) an overview of America's major regions ; (f) the colonies and imperialism of the United States The 1991 World Geography Textbook for senior high schools covers the following areas : (a) location and territory ; (b) population distribution and ethnic composition ; (c) superior geographic location and climate ; (d) abundant natural resources ; (e) highly advanced capitalist economy ; (f) agricultural modernization and regional specialization ; (g) modern industry and its distribution ; (h) welldeveloped transportation systems ; (i) the capital and major cities In addition to the fact that both textbooks cover topics regarding America's topography, climate, natural resources, and major economic sectors, two themes emerge from contrasting the two editions First, there is no subhead on America's political system in the 1991 edition, whereas in the 1952 edition, the sections on America's polity and imperialism comprise one third of the text Second, without discussing the paragraphs following the subheads, it is interesting to notice in the 1991 edition such complimentary adjectives as superior, abundant, highly advanced, modern, and well developed that are completely 1 9 8


Ideological Management in Textbooks absent from the 1952 edition By describing America's achievements in areas such as agriculture, industry, and transportation, the 1991 edition sets a goal for China's reform agenda The change in images of the United States is also obvious in geography textbooks for junior high schools The 1973 edition has two subheads : (a) highly monopolized capitalist economy, which conveys a negative image through its emphasis on monopoly and capitalism, and (b) the revolutionary struggle of the American people, which describes social instability in the United States and concludes that American capitalism is dying The six-page text on the United States ends with a quotation from Mao : "The American imperialism is threatened by an active volcano that consists of irreconcilable domestic and international contradictions The American imperialism is sitting on this volcano" (Geography Textbook, 1973b, p 139) The World Geography Textbooks (1983 & 1989) for junior high schools have the following subheads : location and population, natural conditions, highly advanced capitalist economy, industrial distribution and major cities, and major agricultural regions A positive image is constructed in comparison to the 1973 edition It is interesting to note that the subhead of the section on the economy has been changed from "highly monopolized capitalist economy" in 1973 to "highly advanced capitalist economy" in both the 1983 and 1989 editions The elementary school geography textbooks mirror these metamorphoses ; the change is even more pronounced than in textbooks for junior and senior high schools because of some rhetorical devices used for elementary students The United States is described as "Kuomingtang and Jiang Kaishek's foreign father" in the 1949 Geography Textbook (p 34), and "the worst imperialist nation in the world" in the pre-1978 Geography Textbook (1962c, p 57 ; 1972, p 51) In the 1981 Geography Textbook, the United States is lauded for its advanced economy and scientific achievements There are no attacks on America's political system in the post1978 geography textbooks Although "racial prejudice" and "environmental pollution" are mentioned as negative aspects in the five latest editions (Geography Textbook, 1981 ; World Geography Textbook, 1983 ; World Geography Textbook, 1989 ; Geography Textbook, 1990 ; World Geography Textbook, 1991), the chapters on the United States are remarkable chiefly for their mention of its natural resources and advanced industry and agriculture In each of the five recent textbooks, more than 70% of the text on the U .S is devoted to explicating America's advanced industry, agriculture, communication systems, and so on It is interesting to find that the words capitalism and capitalist appear only twice in the 1,928 character text (equivalent to about 1,200 English words) of the 1990 edition for junior high schools, 1 9 9


Jianping Shen compared with 15 times in the 1,458 character text (equivalent to about 900 English words) of the 1973 edition for junior high schools Textbook illustrations also reflect the evolution of the image Table 1 lists all illustrations other than those maps pertaining to topography, climate, administrative regions, agricultural /industrial/ population/distribution, and natural resources It is clear that in the pre-1978 textbooks, the illustrations show nothing positive In contrast, illustrations in the post-1978 textbooks (except for "Job losers in a black neighborhood") depict a positive image-the modernized United States-a goal that China endeavors to achieve Title of Illustration The Korean and Chinese people fighting American aggressors The Wall Street and a ghetto in New York The revolutionary blaze set by black rebels burning exploiters' houses and stores in Los Angeles The White House The United Nations building in New York The American flag job losers in a black neighborhood Using machinery to pick cotton The famous Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco Although the images constructed in the preand post-1978 textbooks are quite different, there still exists a common phenomenon in 2 0 0 Edition Page Number 1962a p .10 1962b 1973a 1973b p 74 p 72 p .136 1972 p 53 1981 1990 p 42 p 62 1989 p 69 1990 p 57 1990 p 60 1990 p 61 1990 p 62


Ideological Management in Textbooks China's geography textbooks-alignment with the prevailing ideology How do China's geography textbooks concur with the prevailing ideology in the process of textbook development and distribution? What are the mechanisms for ideological alignment in geography textbooks? Ideological Alignment Under the influence of the former Soviet Union, the Chinese education community developed three terms to describe curricular development at different stages : the educational program, the instructional program, and the textbook The educational program is an official document that describes which subjects should be offered, when and in what sequence they should be offered, and how much time should be devoted to each There are three educational programs, developed for elementary, junior high, and senior high schools respectively On the basis of the educational programs, a set of instructional programs are then developed for each subject to define the aim, units, and outline of a course A textbook is then written within the confines of the instructional program The educational program is subject to rewriting according to political, social, and economic situations (Guo et al ., 1989, pp 553-559 ; Zhang & Zhou, 1985) The instructional program and the textbook, in turn, are then also revised In this manner, alignment of the educational program, the instructional program, and the textbook is achieved ; for example, the Elementary Educational Program issued in 1950 stipulated that world geography should be offered at the fifth grade The instructional program for the course was then written, and one of the aims was stated as follows : to let children acquire basic knowledge about world geography ; to understand that the living standards of the people of socialist countries, led by the Soviet Union, have been improved greatly, the force for peace is stronger than ever before ; to understand that the living standards in imperialist countries led by the United States are decreasing, the force of aggression will eventually die ; and to nurture the international spirit of fighting for world peace (A Compilation of Instructional Programs for Geography, 1990, p 1) Correspondingly, the outline of the unit on the United States reads : the United States as the leader of the capitalist countries Industry Agriculture The great gap between the rich and the poor Racial prejudice The expansion 2 0 1


Jianping Shen policy toward the outside (A Compilation of Instructional Programs for Geography, 1990, p 5) One might easily imagine that a textbook based on the above aim and outline would create a negative image of the United States, depicting the country's dark side in order to instill the tenet that capitalism is evil As far as adherents to this program are concerned, indoctrination of ideological belief is more important than transmission of basic knowledge and skills This is apparent in the teacher reference book that was written concurrently to explain content and to guide the instructor in using the text The following is found in the teacher reference book : The section on North America is mainly on the United States to let children acquire some geographic knowledge about the United States and to make children realize the corruption of the American social system, to understand that the United States is the leader among imperialist countries and the enemy of the people of the whole world, and to cherish bitter hatred for the American imperialism This is a text full of political implications (Teachers' Reference Book for Elementary Geography, 1952, p 145) The reference book also suggests that the focus should spotlight the waste of natural resources, overdevelopment of the military industry, racial prejudice, exploitation of working-class people by capitalists, and the expansion of territory "By focusing on these topics," the authors observed, "the evil nature of the American imperialism will be systematically exposed" (Teachers' Reference Book for Elementary Geography, 1952, p 145) The analysis noted above reveals the phenomenon of ideological alignment in China's geography textbooks From the aim and outline of the course to the textbook and the teacher reference book, ideological orientation is rigidly constructed and strictly followed Textbook authors have a clear mission to support this indoctrination To infuse the aim of the instructional program into textbooks, the authors of the texts examined in this study used several different approaches as described below Because of the ideological hegemony of the CPC (Kwong, 1979) and the centralized system for textbook writing, publication, and distribution, ideological orientation in China's textbooks is more explicit than in American textbooks In the United States, as Anyon (1978) illustrates, ideological orientation is reflected usually through inclusion and exclusion of certain topics and explanation of events from 2 0 2


Ideological Management in Textbooks a certain point of view Covering different topics and providing alternative explanations alters ideological orientation In contrast, Chinese textbook writers do not have the authority to decide which topics should be included, and they have no editorial autonomy Ideological alignment in China's geography textbooks thus relies on a number of different mechanisms Employment of Value-laden Words Rhetorical devices including the use of value-laden words are very important in setting the tone of description and interpretation, conveying connotations, and creating an expected image (Orwell, 1968) In China, some ideologically related words have extremely negative connotations because of the accumulated influence of political propaganda The most frequent, pejorative words used in discussions of the United States are capitalism, American imperialism, economic invasion, enemy, corrupted system, exploitation, suppression, racial prejudice, aggression, among others In a textbook for junior high schools, the opening paragraph of the section on the United States begins with "U .S .A is the abbreviation for the United States of America It is the worst enemy in the world" (Geography Textbook, 1962c, p 67) In a 1962 elementary geography textbook, there is only one paragraph on the United States : United States : The U .S is in the middle of North America, with a territory of 9 .3 million square kilometers and a population of 170 million Washington, D .C is its capital The U .S is ruled by a small number of monopolizing capitalists It is the worst imperialist country in the world It is the world headquarters of reactionary forces and an enemy of the people of the world American monopolizing capitalism cruelly exploits and suppresses American people and invades other countries It has occupied Taiwan, which is a part of our motherland It has also established military bases in many countries in order to launch a new world war The aggressive behaviors of the U .S have been criticized by people all over the world (Geography Textbook, 1962c, p 57) In this paragraph, the image of the United States is shaped by such words and phrases as worst imperial country, headquarters of reactionary forces, aggressive behaviors, cruelly exploit, and suppresses This image is extremely negative when these words and phrases are understood in the particular Chinese context This negative 2 0 3


Jianping Shen conception was conveyed to children because it was the only official and legitimate description of the United States available The word capitalist has a special political connotation in China Before 1978, anything that was modified by the adjective capitalist was the target of criticism With the development of China's de facto capitalist economic reform, the term appears less frequently in the geography textbooks The 1983 and 1989 editions of World Geography Textbook for junior high schools are identical except for minor changes in wording The first sentence introducing America's agriculture was changed from "America's agriculture, with a high level of mechanization and electrification, has entered the stage of modern capitalism ; modern technologies have been widely applied" (1983, p 78) to "America's agriculture is highly modernized ; modern technologies have been widely applied" (1989, p 67) The word capitalism has been deleted Nonetheless, although the term has been used less frequently, connotation of the dichotomy between capitalism and socialism is still embedded in the text, with a new definition of capitalism from the perspective of politics rather than the economy Generation of Propaganda Propaganda is another frequently used mechanism, and can appear in the form of providing false or exaggerated information and making unwarranted conclusions and predictions The propaganda in China's geography textbooks may appear ridiculous in retrospect ; however, in circumstances where there is no other source of information, it can be very effective in ideological management Propaganda is found throughout these textbooks Here is an example : The success of the Chinese revolution drove American imperialism out of mainland China ; however, American imperialism did not recognize its failure It intended to occupy Korea and then invade our motherland In June 1950, American imperialism, along with its allies, invaded the People's Democratic Republic of Korea (Geography and History Textbook, 1962a, p 9) This information on the beginning of the Korean War is a serious distortion, and fails to mention North Korea's role in initiating the war Orientation to political systems is the core of any ideology Information on the American political system is provided with a commentary in pre-1978 geography textbooks In the 1952 geography textbook for senior high schools, for example, the paragraph on the American political system reads : 2 0 4


Ideological Management in Textbooks American people belong to the state in which they reside and the federal republic as well Both the state and the federal government exert power over the people Therefore, there are dual systems, which is the characteristic of the American political system This system seems to be democratic in form ; however, because the nature of this country is capitalist and the United States is in the advanced stage of capitalism, the political power is in the hands of a few monopolizing capitalists The political system is, by nature, not only centralized but also fascist (Geography Textbook, 1952b, pp 23-24) To label the American political system centralized goes against common sense In addition, if the American political system has been depicted as such in China's highly centralized and hegemonic context, these concepts describing the American political system are even further from fact A second type of propaganda involves making unwarranted conclusions Here are two separate examples : Since 1927, the number of immigrants has been limited to 150,000 every year, and therefore, the number of immigrants from China and other countries has been decreasing The limit is still in effect today The U .S is actually sparsely populated, with an average of 17 persons per square kilometer This figure is far below the world average, and is not comparable to that of Western Europe To limit immigrants is an important policy of American imperialism ; however, this policy reveals that the American capitalism is dying because of its inherent contradictions (Geography Textbook, 1952b, p 27) The American industry continues to shrink The production index dropped from 203 in 1945 to 169 in 1949 (The average from 1935 to 1939 was 100 .) Six million people are unemployed, eight million are semiunemployed, with a total unemployment figure of 14 million This figure indicates that the United States has gone into an economic crisis The golden age of the economic superpower is gone The United States is on the edge of bankruptcy (Geography Textbook, 1952b, p 31) 2 0 5


jianping Shen The text attributes economic recession and a strict immigrant policy to dying American capitalism This conclusion dogmatically follows Marxist social development theory, according to which society develops in primitive, slavish, feudal, capitalist, socialist, and communist stages Socialism, which appears after capitalism in this theory, is considered a more advanced stage of social development According to this logic, since socialism has appeared, capitalism is doomed to extinction The geography textbooks, therefore, become a vehicle to disseminate social development theory Use of One-sided Explanations It is true that different explanations can exist for a given phenomenon This is especially the case in social sciences ; however, those texts that continuously view questions from one perspective and provide only a single explanation reveal their ideological orientations (Spring, 1991) Here are two such examples : Because the American economy is so huge there is a "surplus phenomenon" for the United States in international trade ; . however, with the large amount of hard currency coming into the United States, the buying power of other countries has declined After World War II, the United States implemented a "foreign aid" policy in order to stimulate recovery of the international market Nonetheless, there is an inherent dilemma in the American "foreign aid" policy If the economy of other capitalist countries becomes prosperous due to American economic aid, these countries will compete against the United States for the international market In fact, the economy of those countries that accepted economic aid has become worse and worse . . The economic aid to Western Europe consists of 3 percent machinery and other goods for developing the economy, and 97 percent pure consumer goods This is the evidence that the "American economic aid" is not aid at all It is economic invasion (Geography Textbook, 1952b, pp 44-46) Although the American economy is advanced, it is monopolized by a few capitalists Capitalists reduce workers' wages and increase prices to make more profit As a result, the American people cannot afford the necessary consumer goods Capitalists, however, store the goods until they become rotten or even dump goods into the sea Many factories go bankrupt, and the workers become unemployed The people are exploited so much 2 0 6


Ideological Management in Textbooks that half of the households do not have enough income for food and clothes Therefore, capitalists try to expand territory, initiate international war, and enlarge their military industry so that new markets can be created This is the very reason why the American capitalists participated in the two world wars, initiated the Korean War, occupied Taiwan, armed Japan and West Germany, and actively prepare for the third world war (Geography Textbook, 1952a, pp 42-43) The first example interprets American financial aid as economic invasion without mentioning positive aspects such as the economic development of Japan and of the former West Germany The second paragraph is a good example of an explanation based on false or exaggerated information It begins by describing the so-called economic crisis and then interprets the economic situation as the cause of America's expansion and aggression policy America's own economic interests are viewed as the motive for its participation in both world wars without discussing the concept of justice or the complicated context within which the United States entered those world wars The explanations are obviously one sided In the pre-1978 geography textbooks, there are in many cases more explanations than descriptions In the post-1978 textbooks, there are few explanations and these are often blended with descriptions ; however, the explanations are still biased In the 1991 edition, for example, after describing "the most advanced economy in the world," the text continues, "America's economy is extremely unstable Economic crisis, stagnation, and recession, which are results of production surplus, occur frequently" (World Geography Textbook, 1991, pp 280-281) In addition to exaggeration, explaining economic crisis, stagnation, and recession solely as the result of production surplus reveals the direct application of Marx's theory of political economics Limited End-of-Text Exercises Commonly, exercises at the end of a text section illustrate important points of learning and instruction ; therefore, decisions about exercise questions reflect the assumptions of textbook writers and censors about what content is more important In China's geography texts, some of the questions asked in end-of-text exercises have a strong ideological orientation The following are two examples from texts published in 1962 and 1973 : Exercises : (1) Discuss how American monopolizing capitalists destroy the natural environment (2) Recapitulate the characteristics of the American 2 0 7


jianping Shen economy and the unbalanced geographical distribution of industry and agriculture (3) Draw a contour of the U .S and mark the following on the map : the Appalachian Mountains, the Rocky Mountains, the Mississippi River, the Great Lakes, Washington, D .C ., New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Boston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco (Geography Textbook, 1962b, p 75) Thinking and exercise : (1) What is the nature of the American political system? What are the main industrial divisions and agricultural products in the U .S .? (2) Discuss the diplomatic difficulties of American imperialism (Geography Textbook, 1973a, p 73) Fewer than half of the items included in these exercises pertain to geographic knowledge about the United States The answers to most of these questions are intended to construct a negative image of the United States by referring to environmental devastation, unbalanced distribution of industry and agriculture, the capitalist nature of the social system, and diplomatic difficulties The questions in these books usually refer to the dark side of American society, with a particular focus on false and exaggerated information Fostering children's ideological orientation becomes all important, and mastering geographical knowledge is delegated to second place Exercises in the post-1978 textbooks demonstrate a shift of emphasis Note the following : Thinking and exercise : [The first four are questions about Canada .] (5) Describe the characteristics of topography and climate with the help of a map of the U .S (6) Draw out the major agricultural regions in the U .S ., mark the names of these regions with their major cities, and briefly discuss the advantages associated with the specialization of each agricultural region (7) Name the major industrial cities and discuss the characteristics of the industrial distribution in the U .S (World Geography Textbook, 1989, p 72) Thinking : (1) Why does the U .S have a very big agricultural output despite the fact that the agricultural sector employs a small number of workers? (2) Why do many Americans move to the west and the south? (Geography Textbook, 1990, p 63) 2 0 8


Ideological Management in Textbooks The focus of these questions is apparently on economic development, which is different from the exercises in the 1962 and 1973 textbooks, but is consistent with the new ideology of the reform era Some of these questions try to draw student attention to America's high agricultural productivity, a big concern for and an obstacle to China's economic development In so doing, studying the geography of the United States becomes relevant to student lives and indoctrinates them in the values of the reform era Conclusion It is clear from the above analysis that China's geography textbooks have a clear ideological orientation, and that the ideological orientation changes with China's policy toward the United States Because textbooks are written and distributed in a highly hegemonic context, textbook writers employ four mechanisms to realize the aim that is stipulated in the instructional program There is an ideological alignment in the decision-making process regarding textbooks Concurrent with shifts in the CPC's ideology, geography textbooks manifest the evolution of images of the U .S as they become an instrument for ideological dissemination As Kwong (1985) concluded in her study of China's language textbooks, "They [language textbooks] reveal political reality as the leaders would like the young to view it The texts communicate the politicians' goals as aspirations of the young They tell the young of their roles in the country's future, and mobilize and prepare them in ways to facilitate the fulfillment of these roles" (p 207) Textbook writing in China is not driven by the market Chinese textbook writers are not concerned about the sale of a textbook, for it will be adopted eventually by the State Education Commission and distributed to schools and colleges The State Education Commission has the authority to demand revision of a textbook if it finds any incongruity with the current ideological orientation ; therefore, ideological orientation in geography textbooks is created through censorship by authorities, and their orientation is determined before writing begins In China, the state is the sole actor in deciding ideological orientation while in the United States the state is diffuse and conglomerate The dichotomy of institutional politics and deinstitutional politics as described by Wong and Loveless (1991) does not apply in the Chinese context Ideological orientation in China's geography textbooks is straightforward, and there seems to be no salient conflict in the process of textbook writing, production, and distribution 2 0 9


Jianping Shen This study, as well as other research on the ideological dimension of the textbook, has theoretical and practical implications Before this body of research appeared, textbook writing was assumed to be based largely on principles of subject matter structuring and of child development The first principle focuses on the logical unfolding of subject matter ; the second examines the psychological foundation of textbook writing Attention should now be called to a third principle, i .e ., the ideological dimension of textbooks Textbook writers, teachers, parents, and even students should be made aware of the ideological orientation in textbooks Textbooks should become an instrument for liberating rather than enslaving people This study also raises the practical question of how to improve textbook practice, and in this case how to construct a more comprehensive and authentic image of the United States in China's geography textbooks Given the existing system in China, the following strategies and conditions will positively influence textbook production and use in China First, decentralization will decrease the hegemony of textbook development and distribution The State Education Commission recently delegated authority to three cities and provinces to write as many sets of textbooks for economically developed, developing, and undeveloped regions in China Decentralization permits some deviance from the present monolithic ideological alignment Second, intended curricula are not necessarily relevant to student experience Many factors, including teacher choices, might influence the process by which intended curricula are implemented (Goodlad, et al ., 1979) Although Chinese textbooks are accompanied by reference books that outline instructional objectives and strategies, instructional initiatives may change the intended curriculum Due to the relaxation of political control and the increased number of informed classroom teachers, actual classroom practice is becoming one of the most promising areas for improving curricular practice in China Finally, with the development of China's open-door policy and its increasing participation in the international community, the ideological extreme in China's geography textbooks has been and will continue to ease To engage China in international affairs will provide the Chinese people with easier access to information, and will ultimately break the ideological hegemony of the state Nonetheless, as research in different contexts reveals, the question of ideological orientation is perennial References A compilation of instructional programs for geography (1990) Shanghai : the Task Force on Textbook Writing of the Shanghai Education Bureau 2 1 0


Ideological Management in Textbooks Anyon, J (1978) Elementary social studies textbooks and legitimating knowledge Theory and Research in Social Education, 6, 40-55 Anyon, J (1979) Education, social structure, and the power of individuals Theory and Research in Social Education, 7, 49-59 Apple, M W (1979) Ideology and curriculum London : Routledge & Kegan Paul Apple, M W (1982) Education and power : Cultural and economic reproduction in education Boston : Routledge & Kegan Paul Apple, M W & Christian-Smith, L K (1991) (Eds .) The politics of the textbook New York : Routledge Aronowitz, S & Giroux, H A (1990) Postmodern education : Politics, culture, and social criticism Minneapolis : University of Minnesota Bernstein, B B (1977) Class, codes and control [Vol 3] London : Routledge & Kegan Paul Bourdieu, P & Passeron, J C (1977) Reproduction in education, society, and culture London : Sage English, R (1980) The politics of textbook adoption Phi Delta Kappan, 62 275-278 English, R (1986) Can social studies textbooks have scholarly integrity? Social Education, 50 46, 48 FitzGerald, F (1979) America revisited : History schoolbooks in the twentieth century Boston : Little, Brown Fleming, D B (1992) Social studies textbooks : Whose priorities? In J G Herlihy (Ed .) The textbook controversy : Issues, aspects and perspectives (pp 55-60) Norwood, NJ : Ablex Geography textbook [for elementary schools] (1949) Shenyang : New China Bookstore in the Northeast Geography textbook [for senior elementary schools, Vol 4] (1952a) Shanghai : People's Education Geography textbook [for senior high schools] (1952b) Shanghai : Chinese Bookstore Geography and history textbook [for senior elementary schools] (1962a) Shanghai : Shanghai Education Geography textbook [for junior high schools, Vol 4] (1962b) Shanghai : Shanghai Education Geography textbook [for elementary schools, Vol 2] (1962c) Shanghai : Shanghai Education Geography textbook [for elementary schools, Vol 2] (1972) Shanghai : Shanghai Education Geography textbook [for elementary schools, Vol 2] (1973a) Shanghai : Shanghai Education Geography textbook [for junior high schools, Vol 2] (1973b) Shanghai : Shanghai Education Geography textbook [for elementary schools, Vol 2] (1981) Shanghai : Shanghai Education 2 1 1


jianping Shen Geography textbook [for junior high schools] (1990) Beijing : Beijing Education Giroux, H A (1981) Ideology, culture, and the process of schooling Philadelphia : Temple University Giroux, H A (1983) Teacher education and the ideology of social control : The politics of the hidden curriculum In H Giroux & D Purpel (Eds .), The hidden curriculum and moral education (pp 403425) Berkeley : McCutchan Goodlad, J I ., et al (1979) Curriculum inquiry : the study of curriculum practice New York : McGraw-Hill Guo, S et al (1989) Forty years of education in new China Fuzhou : Fujian Education Keith, S (1985) Choosing textbooks : A study of instructional materials selection processes for public education Book Research Quarterly, 1,24-37 Keith, S (1991) The determinants of textbook content In P G Altbach, et al (Eds .), Textbook in American society : Politics, policy, and pedagogy (pp 43-59) Albany : State University of New York Kwong, J (1979) Chinese education in transition : Prelude to the cultural revolution Montreal : McGill-Queen's University Kwong, J (1985) Changing political culture and changing curriculum : An analysis of language textbooks in the People's Republic of China Comparative Education, 21, 197-208 Orwell, G (1968) Politics and the English language In S Orwell & I Angus (Eds .), The collected essays, journalism and letters of George Orwell [Vol 4] (pp 127-140) New York : Harcourt, Brace & World Powell, D A (1985) Selection of reading textbooks at the district level : Is this a rational process?" Book Research Quarterly, 1, 2335 Schomburg, C E (1986) Texas and social studies texts Social Education, 50, 58-60 Shen, J (1994) Educational policy in the People's Republic of China : A political influence perspective Journal of Education Policy, 9, 1-13 Sirotnik, K A (1991) Critical inquiry : A paradigm for praxis In E C Short (Ed .), Forms of curriculum inquiry (pp 243-258) New York : State University of New York Spring, J (1991) Textbook writing and ideological management : A postmodern approach In P G Altbach, et al (Eds .), Textbook in American society : Politics, policy, and pedagogy (pp 185-198) Albany : State University of New York Teacher's reference book for elementary geography (1952) Shanghai : Shanghai Education Wong, K & Loveless, T (1991) The politics of textbook policy : proposing a framework In P G Altbach, et al (Eds .), Textbook in 2 1 2


Ideological Management in Textbooks American society : Politics, policy, and pedagogy (pp 27-41) Albany : State University of New York World geography textbook [for junior high schools, Vol 2] (1983) Shanghai : Shanghai Education World geography textbook [for junior high schools, Vol 2] (1989) Shanghai : Shanghai Education World geography textbook [for senior high schools] (1991) Beijing : Beijing Education Zhang, J & Zhou, Y (1985) Education of the People's Republic of China In C Dong, et al (Eds .), The Chinese encyclopedia o f education (pp 553-559) Beijing : Chinese Encyclopedia Author JIANPING SHEN is a doctoral candidate in the Center for Educational Renewal, College of Education, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195 2 1 3


BOOK REVIEWS ESSAY REVIEW The Illusion of Coherence Openshaw, R (Ed .) (1992) New Zealand social studies : Past, present and future Palmerston North, New Zealand : Dunmore 201 pages ; $19 .95 paper, ISBN 0-86469164-5 Review by ANDREW D MULLEN, Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, NY Reflecting on American social studies educators in his introduction to Teaching Social Studies in Other Nations, Howard Mehlinger (1979) notes an interesting irony For all of our professed concern to cultivate an international perspective in students-for all of our concern to reduce ethnocentrism and national chauvinism-when it comes to understanding our own field and profession as practiced in other parts of the world, we are distressingly provincial Language, of course, represents a frequent barrier to our understanding of social studies abroad In the case of New Zealand, we do not have that excuse Perhaps only the dearth or inaccessibility of scholarly literature on the subject can justify our limited understanding A Familiar History In New Zealand Social Studies : Past Present and Future, Roger Openshaw brings together a diverse sampling of pertinent scholarly writing, rendering the field more accessible to an audience, both local and international Apart from purely regional interest, however, the volume offers a perspective on issues in the social studies that transcend national boundaries American readers of New Zealand Social Studies will find much that sounds familiar : a long and continuing struggle to define the social studies, schisms within the field, and resistance from the social science disciplines So striking are the similarities that Samuel Shermis is led to conclude somewhat hyperbolically that "the main difference between the social studies in the two societies reduces to the fact that workbooks are used in the United States and copybooks in New Zealand" (p 101) 2 1 4


The Illusion of Coherence A high degree of similarity is not surprising, given the American origin of social studies and the common cultural heritage of both nations Both countries have their political origins in the British Empire and have been dominated by immigrants of European descent Both have disadvantaged minority groups, and have struggled in this century over issues of inclusion, cultural pluralism, and national identity At 12 percent of the population, New Zealand's native Maori roughly parallel in proportionate terms the position of AfricanAmericans in the United States Contrary to what one might anticipate from its subtitle, the book is divided into two parts rather than three : 1) an examination of the subject's origins and 2) present attempts to translate theory into practice The editor argues that a better understanding of the former is necessary to ensure the subject's survival Openshaw writes that at present, social studies in New Zealand is "grossly undertheorized," a condition that has contributed to a "flavour-of-the-month mentality," professional isolation, and continued failure to attract widespread support at the university level (pp 14-15) Coherence without Substance The section on origins, while necessarily constituting but a fragmentary history of the field, provides for the outsider a sense of the overall development of social studies in New Zealand As a recognized field, social studies is of considerably more recent vintage there than it is in the United States Authors in this section emphasize its origins, at the prescriptive level at least, in the Thomas report (1944) While establishing social studies as a required subject in secondary schools, the Thomas report was, according to Openshaw and Archer, sufficiently vague as to have but minimal immediate impact on classroom instruction Given teachers' university backgrounds in the more established disciplines of history or geography, given the hostility of professionals in such disciplines toward what they perceived as an upstart subject, and given the lack of guidance or support from the national education department, the reader is not surprised to learn that by the early 1960s, social studies had not developed in the way curriculum reformers of the 1940s had hoped ; that is, as "'an integrated course of history, civics, and geography where the subjects were directed towards the common purpose of increasing human understanding" (p 55) What ultimately triumphed was social studies as an autonomous field freed from its disciplinary predecessors Somewhat ironically, the success of reformers on the Thomas committee in liberating social studies from the restrictions of university entrance examinations served to weaken early efforts to implement their vision of an integrated subject As examinations 2 1 5


Andrew D Mullen continued to be offered only in traditional history and geography, it was easier for teachers committed to traditional models to justify resistance to the new conception of their subject The initial chapter by Archer and Openshaw, "Citizenship and Identity as 'Official' Goals in Social Studies," presents a particularly insightful argument for the continuity of the old history and the new social studies-a continuity linked, the authors believe, to the national character Given the nation's long-standing emphasis on consensus and conformity, underlying objectives for the old history and new history, they claim, have in one respect remained virtually unchanged In both cases, "'desirable' citizenship values are preselected and promoted in much the same way" (p 19) In terms of the three historical traditions that Barr, Barth, and Shermis (1977) perceive within American social studies, the chief conflict in New Zealand social studies has been within a single, dominant citizenship associated with the British Empire This gave way in the 1930s to a tradition defined by a liberal-progressive establishment : changing the orthodoxy, but not altering the fact that there was an orthodoxy Likewise, contemporary critics of the schools on both right and left fall into this mold In recent conservative initiatives which the authors perceive as "hollow echoes of the older Imperialist" tradition, and among proponents of biculturalism, Archer and Openshaw recognize a similar desire to impose a particular conception of citizenship on the nation as a whole Roy Shuker's chapter on "Social Studies as Curriculum History" emphasizes the failure of the social studies to establish itself in the secondary schools even 20 years after the Thomas report His conclusion that "little real curriculum change is achieved merely by passing legislation and gazetting syllabus regulations" (p 44) may be valid for the period he examines Later developments reported by Keen (1977), Low-Beer (1986), and indeed other chapters in this volume suggest an alternative interpretation : that there is a lag between prescription and practice, or that long-term effects of curricular changes at the prescriptive level may not be immediately apparent Joseph Diorio's "Developmental Social Studies and the Conflict Between Efficiency and Reform" considers New Zealand social studies curricula in terms of American origins, with particular reference to Herbert Kliebard's (1986) categories of curricular reformers While the link between efficiency theorists and developmentalists was especially strong in the United States, New Zealand has been dominated by an alliance of social meliorists and developmentalists Diorio implies that the field of social studies in New Zealand even more than in the United States has been characterized by a suspicion of prestructured subjects or disciplines (p 85) 2 1 6


The Illusion of Coherence The final chapter in this section on origins is Samuel Shermis' "Social Studies in New Zealand and the United States : A Crosscultural Comparison ." Shermis notes basic similarities and differences between the two societies, emphasizes the difficulties both countries have experienced in defining the field, and develops themes articulated in Archer and Openshaw's opening chapter He is particularly sensitive to the tensions between social studies language-as found in prescriptive documents and syllabi-that might be classified in the reflective inquiry tradition, and actual classroom practice, which in both countries tends toward a tradition of cultural transmission Taken as a whole, the first half of New Zealand Social Studies serves to illuminate reasonably well the early years of social studies at the secondary school level It has far less to say about social studies at the primary school level, and it offers relatively little perspective on developments in secondary schools since the 1960s A recent proposal for re-emphasis on history and geography is mentioned briefly, but it is not altogether clear to the reader at what point these subjects were no longer emphasized The entire relationship of social studies as currently conceived and traditional history and geography at either the theoretical or practical level is, at best, underdeveloped (see LowBeer, 1986, for a perspective on this relationship from outside the social studies) Scattered clues would tend to confirm Knight's (1993) observation that in an integrated model of social studies, geography and history are in fact "washed out," but this development is never made explicit Most of all, what is lacking in this first section is any sense of coherence and any clear understanding of what New Zealand social studies is or is supposed to be It is difficult to determine if this is chiefly a reflection on the book itself, or if it has more to do with the actual state of the subject the book attempts to describe Hazel Hertzberg (1981) once criticized an American social studies document of the 1970s for having "an illusion of coherence without its substance" (p 135) In this survey of social studies development in New Zealand, we are not even given the illusion Ambiguity in the Social Studies If the first section of New Zealand Social Studies suggests the subject's potential for ambiguity and confusion, the highly eclectic latter section leaves the reader with no doubts The diversity and range of author concerns represented here, predictable as they may be from an American perspective, illustrate clearly the editor's observation that the subject's boundaries remain permeable They also illustrate how far the subject has moved from the days when it consisted largely of traditional history and geography under a different rubric 2 1 7


Andrew D Mullen The first chapter in the "Theory into Practice" section is notable for its almost utter neglect of the latter James Collinge's chapter on peace education exemplifies the shift in New Zealand away from a conception of social studies linked to traditional academic content and disciplines The chapter also brings into focus a larger issue for social studies educators-conflict for the teacher between objectivity and indoctrination While the author vigorously denies any advocacy of indoctrination, his chapter suggests at the very least the difficulties inherent in balancing objectivity and commitment, as well as the potential for sacrificing the former Given American interest in promoting multicultural perspectives, Stephen May's chapter on a holistic approach to multicultural development is of particular value The school May describes, Richmond Road, moves beyond a superficial benevolent or naive multiculturalism to create an entirely different structure that takes into consideration larger questions of language and power Reflecting upon the school's success in achieving its stated goals, May calls for the implementation of multicultural theory at the level of entire schools, rather than continuing to tinker with particular subjects or classrooms Philippa Anne Smith's chapter on sexism illustrates that feminist educators in New Zealand share the many concerns of feminists in this country Unfortunately the chapter is rather general, full of what we in the United States from the perspective of the 1990s might label truism ("The sexism that pervades our society is inevitably reflected in the content and processes of education" [p 137)) Smith calls for raising consciousness and making "deep structural changes" in society and in the curriculum, but contributes relatively little in terms of particular implications for the social studies curriculum The "feeling for" approach to social studies, developed by Kelvin Smythe and described in Successful Social Studies (1988), is the focus of two chapters : a forum involving Smythe and critic Rex Bloomfield, and a practitioner's description of implementing the approach Smythe's concern is for children to become familiar with the lives of other people through photographs and other resources, and in the process, challenge stereotypes about other groups Mary Faire provides a detailed account of a unit focusing on the life of a 12-year-old girl in rural China She emphasizes that the feeling for approach does not mean studying people's feelings, but rather developing holistic understanding Finally, to round out an already motley collection, the volume includes two samples of contemporary research In his chapter "The Social Concepts of Children," Kelvin Smythe reports on interviews conducted to probe children's understanding of selected social studies concepts He reiterates his emphasis from a previous chapter on student's active construction of understanding and the need for curriculum developers to understand that process in designing 2 1 8


The Illusion of Coherence materials Clive McGee provides highlights from a survey conducted by the New Zealand Department of Education in 1981-1982 on existing practice in the social studies and related subjects McGee's analysis is skimpy unforunately, and his conclusions are arrestingly bland ; e .g ., "the report has provided . teachers with a good deal to think about" (p 178) Searching for Historical Roots In the introduction to this volume, Openshaw writes that "those with an interest in social studies have a great deal to do if they wish to ensure the survival of the subject beyond the 1990s" (p 14) Limiting ourselves for the moment to New Zealand, the 12 subsequent chapters under review clearly support such a suggestion At the theoretical level, it seems imperative that greater consensus be achieved on defining social studies Shuker attributes the failure of social studies in its early years partly to teacher confusion over the aims of the subject Whether in fact social studies failed or simply took root slowly, teacher confusion does appear to have been an issue Judging from the present volume, teachers may yet have good reason for their confusion If Shermis is correct, educators in both New Zealand and the United States have a tendency to discuss social studies in language that is "vague, rhetorical, unclear, cliche-ridden, and incapable of being put into operation" (p 96) Continuing empirical investigation of current exemplary and nonexemplary practice would complement efforts to articulate clear philosophical goals and to define the theoretical field The current volume devotes relatively little to the description of actual classrooms or of social studies teachers in action One potentially fruitful agenda for future research would also include investigation such as that reported in the United States by Wineburg and Wilson (1988), Brophy (1990), and Thorton (1990) Finally, social studies professionals in both New Zealand and the United States would do well to note a recurring theme in this volume-the need to develop a greater historical perspective within our own field There is insight as well as irony in Archer and Openshaw's perception that "far too many people in social studies remain ahistorical in outlook" (p 29), and in Openshaw's recognition of a "deadly spiral of historical blindness and undertheorization" (p 15) If the field of social studies, in New Zealand at least, has exulted in its liberation from the shackles of traditional history but has looked on its own historical roots with disdain, one might reasonably expect to find the field adrift and groping for identity Historical awareness after all, as the editor of this volume has discovered, is not the enemy of 2 1 9


Andrew D Mullen social studies or critical perspectives, but serves as an intrinsic component of both References Barr, R D, Barth, J L ., & Shermis, S S (1977) Defining the social studies [Bulletin 51] Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Brophy, J (1990) Mary Lake : A case study of fifth-grade social studies (American history) teaching [Elementary Subjects Center Series No 261 East Lansing, MI : Michigan State University, Institute for Research on Teaching, Center for the Learning and Teaching of Elementary Subjects Hertzberg, H W (1981) Social studies reform, 1880-1980 Boulder, CO : Social Science Education Consortium Keen, D S (1977) History in secondary schools : A year's survey The New Zealand Journal of History, 11, 180-189 Kliebard, H M (1986) The struggle for the American curriculum, 18931958 New York : Routledge Knight, P (1993) Primary geography, primary history London : David Fulton Low-Beer, A (1986) The eclipse of history in New Zealand schools New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies, 21, 113-122 Mehlinger, H D & Tucker, J L (Eds .) (1979) Teaching social studies in other nations [Bulletin 60] Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Thorton, S J ., & Wenger, R N (1990) Geography curriculum and instruction in three 4thand 5th-grade classrooms Elementary School journal, 90,15-531 Wineburg, S S & Wilson, S M (1988) Models of wisdom in the teaching of history Phi Delta Kappan, 70, 50-58 2 2 0

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ESSAY REVIEW A Call for a Dialectic in the Social Studies Ross, W E ., Cornett, J W ., & McCutcheon, G (Eds .) (1992) Teacher personal theorizing, State University of New York $16 .95, paper, ISBN 0-7914-1125-7 Review by ED JADALLAH, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio Teacher personal theorizing is a way of knowing, a way that teachers make sense out of what it means to teach and what it means to learn It is a way to analyze the assumptions, values, and beliefs that shape curricular and instructional decisions, and it is a distinctive way of knowing because knowledge about teaching and learning evolves from one's personal interpretation of the educational events occurring in the classroom This concept differs from a traditional top-down model where knowledge about teaching and learning is generated and verified by educational researchers outside of the classroom and published as professional knowledge In the traditional model, the teacher is perceived as a consumer of knowledge, whereas in teacher personal theorizing the teacher is perceived as a creator of knowledge Teacher Personal Theorizing is an inquiry into the nature of this idea, and makes explicit the ideas, beliefs, issues, and concerns that characterize its conceptualization and application The authors of this text provide a broad overview regarding many pertinent ideas and issues relevant to teacher theorizing A Conceptual Framework Teacher personal theorizing is grounded in the principles and ideas inherent in a constructivist philosophy of learning As a constructivist learner, one analyzes the interrelated nature of teaching, learning, and schooling reflectively to develop meaningful understandings that guide instructional practice In this sense, teachers actively build theories about teaching as they interpret the interactions that occur within their classrooms and school contexts (O'Loughlin, 1989, 1992) The editors of this book present a constructivist view of learning as an epistemological basis for teacher theorizing, by contrasting the interpretive and process-product research paradigms that have dominated the way knowledge about teaching has evolved over the past 25 years In their discussion, the interpretive research paradigm is presented as a major framework for teacher 2 2 1

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Ed Jadallah personal theorizing The assumptions and principles regarding the way knowledge is constructed and made meaningful in this paradigm provide a rationale for teacher theorizing as a valuable way of knowing Interpretive research in education is basically an exploration of the educational process through the eyes and minds of individuals actively engaged in teaching and learning Its emphasis is on how participants in the process interpret classroom and school environments and how these interpretations affect curricular and instructional decisions The reality of what happens in the context of classroom and school is based on the interactions and varied perspectives of many participants It is through a reflective analysis of these personal perspectives that educational events are given meaning Insight into the individual and collective consciousness of participants in a particular educational context provides information for the interpretive researcher, who adheres to the idea that theoretical knowledge is constructed on the basis of past and present experiences Teachers and students use experiential knowledge as a frame of reference to interpret and interact within the constraints and opportunities of a particular educational context Developing meaningful understandings from the construction and reconstruction of these experiences provides knowledge that teachers use to guide their curricular and instructional decisions Consequently, teacher personal theorizing, consistent with the interpretive research paradigm, is the construction of knowledge about the educative process through an ongoing reflective analysis of experiences Fundamental to the process of personal theory construction is this specific conception regarding the interrelated nature of knowledge and learning Research on social and cognitive mediation of teaching has been conducted by two separate communities of researchers ( Ross et al ., 1992, p 9) The distinction between these two groups is found in the particular focus of their studies The first, cognitive process research, tends to focus on a specific "element of the teaching task in isolation from others and has been heavily influenced by psychological research models" (p 9) The second, which has evolved from curriculum research and teacher education, focuses on teachers' practical knowledge and theories, and provides the theoretical framework for teacher personal theorizing This type of research does not isolate teaching into educational elements ; rather, it focuses on "social mediation and the influence of social and institutional contexts of teaching" (p 10) The editors make this clarification to emphasize that teacher personal theorizing cannot be compartmentalized into specific elements or categories for the purpose of study Reducing teaching to disparate components contradicts a primary constructivist learning principle that knowledge evolves from the meaning one constructs and reconstructs 2 2 2

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A Call for a Dialectic in the Social Studies from experiences that evolve through interactions within the social and institutional contexts of teaching To understand the relationship between teacher theorizing and teaching practices requires one to understand the many diverse and complex interrelations that occur simultaneously within the context of a particular classroom of a particular school district in a particular community The most direct application of this type of interpretive research is presented by Sharon L Pape in her chapter "Personal Theorizing of an Intern Teacher ." She grounds her research in constructivist theory that evolved from Jean Piaget, George Kelly, and William Perry : From a constructivist frame, interaction between individuals and their environment provides opportunities for their meaning making Integration is required for individuals to fit together past and present experiences to build a repertoire of understandings for future experiences . . Teachers' personal theories about the nature of classrooms, students, and curriculum constitute maxims and principles of "good teaching" that guide teachers' professional actions In short, these personal theories learned through experience constitute professional knowledge (p 69) Pape, as well as many of the other authors, emphasizes the significant role of experience in the development of personal theories Experiences developed through interacting within varied social, political, cultural, and institutional environments provide a frame of reference for interpreting new situations This process of constructing meaning from experiences provides teachers with knowledge to guide teaching and curricular practices It is essential to the teacher theorizing Lynda Stone, in her chapter "Philosophy, Meaning Constructs, and Teacher Theorizing," explains that teachers develop foundational meanings that serve as the values and beliefs that "implicitly influence their practical, personal theorizations" (p 19) She refers to these foundational meanings as meaning constructs that are "founding, ideational, multiple, and fluid structures that when explicated help to make sense of more specific beliefs, ideologies, theories, practices, and institutions" (p 26) In other words, knowledge about teaching cannot be constructed and prescribed from outside a teacher's frame of reference Teaching experiences are constantly filtered through meaning constructs that have evolved and continue to evolve through varied social, political, cultural, and institutional experiences To understand teacher decision making one must unravel the foundational meanings that serve as the basis for a teacher's practical knowledge and personal theories 2 2 3

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Ed Jadallah This focus on individual, subjective interpretation as a primary source of teacher knowledge is consistent with current insights into multiple ways of knowing Interpretive research of teacher personal theorizing evolved from the ongoing debate between positivist and postpositivist philosophers of science Educational researchers have participated in this debate by arguing the principles and assumptions of quantitative and qualitative research From an educational research perspective, Smith and Heshusius (1986) trace the debate back to the "late nineteenth century and the development of an interpretive approach to social inquiry" (p 4) Dilthey's interpretive or hermeneutical approach to what was then referred to as cultural or moral sciences offered a direct challenge to positivism (Ermarth, 1978 ; Hodges, 1944, 1952 ; Hughes, 1958) He argues that there is a fundamental difference in subject matter between the natural and social areas Whereas physical sciences deal with a series of inanimate objects that can be seen as existing outside of us (a world of external, objectively knowable facts), moral sciences focus on products of the human mind with all its subjectivity, emotions, and values From this he concluded that since social reality was the result of conscious human intention, it is impossible to separate the object of investigation from the investigator There is no objective social reality as such, divorced from the people, including investigators, who participate in and interpreted that reality (Bergner, 1981, p 5) True to Dilthey's claims, the interpretive research studies and the conceptual discussions of teacher personal theorizing in this book emphasize an interrelationship between teaching and the perspective of those who interpret the reality of teaching, learning, and schooling This is very evident in William Ayers' chapter "Teacher's Stories : Autobiography and Inquiry ." Ayers discusses the autobiographies of Jamie Escalante, Sylvia Ashton-Warner, Herb Kohl, and Eliot Wigginton to explore meanings that these teachers developed from their varied experiences His purpose clearly is not to discover and define cause and effect relationships that will lead to the identification of effective teaching practices Instead, he indicates that autobiography allows one to become aware and to analyze reflectively the beliefs, values, and perceptions that structure teaching theories He emphasizes that "there is no story that could tell all there is to know of teaching Teaching is not a single story ; the attempt to pursue the perfect study of teaching that will once and for all sum it up is a fool's errand" (p 44) Reflective analysis of one's own autobiography and the autobiographies of others facilitates an understanding of personal theories that guide curriculum and instructional practices In autobiography, the social reality of teaching is constructed within the mind of individual teachers and in the context of different educational 2 2 4

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A Call for a Dialectic in the Social Studies realities Acknowledgment of such personal theorizing as an important way of knowing allows educational research to move beyond the false dichotomy that has separated theory from practice Rather than viewing theoretical knowledge as information developed only by those in designated positions of expertise, we now recognize that such knowledge is constructed, applied, and reconstructed by teachers as they work within their varied educational settings In this sense, teacher personal theorizing is emancipated from the assumptions and principles of positivism The constructivist philosophy of learning that guides teacher theorizing promotes what Dilthey called "the products of the human mind with all its subjectivity, emotions, and values" (in Smith & Heshusius, 1986, p 5) Constructivism requires one to acknowledge both the social reality of past and present experiences and the meanings that are derived from one's personal interpretation of those experiences Gail McCutcheon in "Facilitating Teacher Personal Theorizing" further emphasizes the significance of experience in the development of teacher theories : A teacher's theory of action consists of sets of beliefs, images, and constructs about such matters as what constitutes an educated person, the nature of knowledge, the society and the psychology of student learning, motivation, and discipline Because of differences among teachers, these theories vary from one teacher to the next One difference is in their personal experiences before becoming teachers Through such experiences, people make sense of the world, and the reservoir of these experiences is one source of teachers' theories of practice (p 191) As stated earlier, teacher personal theorizing is a way of knowing that guides curricular and instructional decisions The old adage "It sounds good in theory, but it doesn't work in practice" is often found to be true when teaching theories and corresponding curricula are developed and prescribed without consideration for the social, political, cultural, and institutional realities of individual teachers in particular school contexts An example of this is found in Walter Parker and Janet McDaniels' chapter "Bricolage : Teachers Do It Daily ." These authors emphasize the effect of particular school contexts and experiences on teacher interpretation and application of a critical thinking skills program Mediation of this curricular program was found to be "bound up in school structures, practices, and tools ; was improvisational rather than formal ; and was an instantiation of bricoleur's praxis" (p 98) The term bricolage is used here to emphasize the practical, experiential nature of teacher personal theorizing The significance of this study lies in the finding that teachers' personal 2 2 5

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Ed Jadallah theories are a very influential force in mediating curriculum and instructional practice Such interpretive research on teachers' practical knowledge and theories is beginning to bridge the long-standing gap between theory and practice One important thing to note is that the focus is not on linking theory to practice, where theoretical knowledge is perceived as information from outside sources, but rather on generating and verifying theoretical information through a teacher's reflective analysis of personal experiences Implications for Teaching, Learning, and Schooling One of the more promising suggestions that has evolved from current educational reform efforts is the idea that teaching is a reflective practice-reflective in the sense that a teacher is thoughtful and perceptive about issues, problems, and questions relevant to the educational process On a very basic level, a reflective teacher seeks to understand and manipulate the forces and factors that affect how individual students learn ; explores and discovers what is most relevant and meaningful for students to learn ; and examines the implications that curriculum and instructional decisions have on student and societal welfare Reflective thinking challenges one to examine the beliefs, values, and ideas that shape conceptual and operational definitions of teaching and learning The assumption here is that teachers who reflectively analyze their practices will come to an insightful understanding of their curricular and instructional decisions This, in turn, will lead to continued development and reconstruction of teacher theories so that theory and practice evolve simultaneously Although this appears to be a rather straightforward endeavor, the realization of reflective practice by educators has proven to be elusive One reason for this can be traced to use of the term reflective thinking in the context of varied educational and social philosophies Zeichner (1990) and Zeichner and Liston (1990) exemplify this point by contrasting use of reflective thinking as it has been associated with the social efficiency and social reconstructionist movements The social efficiency conception of reflection is preoccupied with the technical functions of teaching It emphasizes scientific principles of positivism to identify specific teaching skills that promote student learning In this context, teachers are trained to analyze how to use effective teaching skills Susan Adler (1991) identifies Cruickshank's and Schon's uses of reflective teaching as examples of a social efficiency philosophy and a technical rational approach to teacher education : "The emphasis is on doing the job effectively That which is open to question is one's technical practice, 2 2 6

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A Call for a Dialectic in the Social Studies the implementation of curriculum, not the goals embedded in the curriculum, nor the school structure itself (p 147) In contrast, the social reconstructionist view of reflective thinking as advocated by Giroux, McLaren, Shor, and Zeichner emphasizes a more holistic concern with the social, political, cultural, and institutional aspects of teaching "Reflection at this level asks that teachers become in Henry Giroux's (1988) terms 'transformative intellectuals' who are capable of examining the ways in which schooling generally, and one's own teaching specifically, contribute or fail to contribute to a just and humane society" (Adler, 1991, p 142) It is from within this perspective that the reflective analysis of one's teaching theories achieves maximum potential and value The depth of this reflective thinking moves well beyond questioning how to implement curriculum and instruction to asking why curriculum and instruction are relevant and meaningful for individual students The implications for teaching, learning, and schooling are found in the basic principles that support the idea of teacher personal theorizing through reflective practice Teacher theories evolve from the meanings that are constructed through interacting in varied formal and informal educational settings They are also influenced by one's beliefs and values regarding human nature, the purpose of education, the image of what a teacher is, the nature of knowledge and learning, and how the organizational and administrative structures of schools should facilitate education Nevertheless, teacher theories on these issues may be acquired through a socialization process based on tradition and habit rather than on a reflective analysis of one's beliefs, values, and teaching theories Thus in this sense teacher theorizing could simply contribute to perpetuating the status quo of existing curricular and instructional practices The true value of teacher personal theorizing is achieved when these theories are subjected to reflective analysis Through a reflective process, teacher theories are examined by exploring and questioning educational practices In this manner, teachers begin to examine the consistency between their teaching practices and their educational beliefs and values As they develop a critical awareness of their theories and practice, they are empowered to be proactive in developing educational environments that are conducive for learning Teachers who do not reflect on their practices may simply be acculturated into an existing educational framework where they perpetuate the status quo without questioning the inherent value and meaning of instructional decisions Without reflective analysis, a teacher's theories and practices may be habitual reactions that stifle opportunity for further professional growth and understanding 2 2 7

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Ed jadallah Reflective practice involves teachers in the "active, persistent, and careful consideration of any belief or supposed form of knowledge in light of the grounds that support it and the further conclusions to which it tends" (Dewey, 1933, p 46) This oft-quoted definition provides the essential goal and meaning for teacher theorizing through reflective practice Theories should not be perceived as conclusive ideas but rather as assumptions and principles that need to be examined with regard to new and changing knowledge In any classroom, there will be a variety of interrelated characteristics that will affect how students learn These may include cultural and socioeconomic background, cognitive and social development, previous knowledge and experiences, personal motivations and interests, and countless combinations and variations of these and many other influences A teacher who seriously acknowledges the complexity of the classroom learning environment will seek to understand the particular needs of each classroom setting The reflective teacher does this by deliberating on the relevance and meaningfulness of subject matter to student lives, by analyzing how and why interrelated characteristics of the classroom and school environment influence student learning, and by applying these insights to curricular and instructional decisions An important point that needs to be re-emphasized is that reflective practice does not focus simply on technical skills or on what might be perceived as a social efficiency model for teacher education Teaching requires an in-depth understanding of the factors that affect teaching and learning Within the context of this broader educational framework, teachers develop and analyze the theories that guide their practice This is not to say, however, that teaching skills are irrelevant When reflective practice is perceived as an either/or proposition where social efficiency and social reconstruction are placed on opposite ends of a continuum, the understanding and application of reflective practice are impeded Teacher theorizing promotes a participatory democracy where teachers are actively involved in the construction of knowledge, skills, and attitudes Within the context of a participatory democracy we find the relevance that teacher personal theorizing has for social studies education Teacher Personal Theorizing and Social Studies Education The main purpose of social studies education is to provide students with a learning environment that is conducive to developing the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that will enhance one's participation in a constantly changing democratic and global society Successful attainment of this goal has been hindered by lack of a clear 2 2 8

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A Call for a Dialectic in the Social Studies identity for social studies as a school subject Van Sledright and Grant (1991) accentuate this point : Shaver (1977) and Shermis and Barth (1982) caustically assert that the social studies has failed its citizenship education mission by promoting "passive citizenship ." More recently, Leming (1989) has argued that an ideological fracture within the social studies profession creates barriers to the proper social education of the nation's youth (on this criticism, see also Shaver, 1981) Other critics (e .g ., Longstreet, 1985) wonder whether the profession has the ability to create an adequate justification for its existence as a school subject, much less develop enough consensual support to produce a viable, well-organized social studies curriculum The current debate surrounding the release of the National Commission on Social Studies in Schools report (1989), Charting a Course, may well be a case in point (p 284) The apparent identity crisis in social studies education, similar to the varied interpretations of reflective practice, evolves from assumptions and principles grounded in disparate educational and social philosophies The beliefs and values of the social efficiency and social reconstructionist traditions undergirds much of the debate regarding the definition and purposes of social studies education For example, whereas Leming (1992) appears to advocate a "cultural transmission" approach that basically socializes students with mainstream historical knowledge, core culture, and democratic values, Parker (1991) advocates curricula and instruction that promote the understanding of democratic processes through active participation and careful deliberation These differences are not unlike those of the debate that occurred among social reconstructionists in the 1930s, where Counts (1932) believed that teachers and teacher educators should indoctrinate students with the ideas and values of socialism and Holmes (1932) and Bode (1935) argued against a predetermined social program and advocated social improvements through an education that involved students in experimentalism and reflective inquiry of the social order (Zeichner & Liston, 1990) (For a more in-depth discussion of social reconstructionism and its relevance to social studies educational practice, see W Stanley, 1992, Curriculum for Utopia : Social Reconstructionism and Critical Pedagogy in the Postmodern Era) It is obvious that the debate on what constitutes social studies education in the 1930s or the 1990s is very complex with many explicit and implicit values and beliefs undergirding the various theories Such dialogue and personal expression is inherent to social studies and is 2 2 9

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Ed Jadallah essential for developing meaningful understandings regarding social reality ; however, if a primary goal for social studies education is to help students become informed and intelligent participating citizens of a constantly changing global society, we need to evaluate these theories and the related curricular and instructional practices according to their consistency and relevancy toward affecting this goal The ideas, beliefs, and values that support and/or refute various theories of social studies education need to be examined and debated in all educational arenas The identity and continued development of social studies education will not be determined and prescribed solely by academicians in the College and University Faculty Assembly (CUFA) of the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) Rather, the meaning and purpose of social studies education needs to evolve continually through a dialectical process that also involves preservice and inservice teachers It is through reflective analyses and shared discussions of educational theories that a meaningful understanding and practice of social studies education will be constructed The ideas of teacher theorizing expressed by the various authors in this book provide direction for developing and defining social studies First, teacher theorizing explored through interpretive research establishes a very relevant epistemology for social studies education The nature of social studies subject matter allows for varied interpretations of content and instructional practices Interpretive research of teachers' practical knowledge and theories will provide insight into how social studies teachers make curricular and instructional decisions and what the reasoning is for their decisions Such research will be extremely beneficial to understanding perspectives of the teachers who ultimately define and compose social studies education for classroom instruction Although the value of this research in helping to clarify and define social studies is evident, it has not been a large part of contemporary social studies discourse Marilyn Johnston (1990) underscores this point in one of the few interpretive research studies conducted on teaching elementary social studies : Increasingly, researchers are turning their attention to the influence of teachers' background knowledge, beliefs, and attitudes on teaching In the Second Handbook of Research on Teaching (Travers, 1973), Lortie commented, "We have too few studies which explore the subjective world of teachers in terms of their conceptions of what is salient" (p 490) In the Handbook of Research on Teaching (Wittrock, 1986), an entire chapter is devoted to studies that "seek to understand how teachers make sense of their work" (p 505) In social studies, however, relatively little attention 2 3 0

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A Call for a Dialectic in the Social Studies has been paid to teachers' backgrounds and beliefs as they influence the teaching of social studies (p 207) Jeffrey Cornett (1990) expresses a similar conclusion regarding research on secondary social studies education : With the exception of these findings, little is known about the beliefs that guide the actual classroom practice of secondary social studies teachers Perhaps this is because of the lack of utilization of naturalistic research methodology (Lincoln & Guba, 1985) and of other interpretive approaches by social studies researchers (Armento, 1986 ; Evans, 1988) Naturalistic investigations can be designed to portray the beliefs of teachers and the manifestation of these beliefs in practice Such research requires extensive field work in the actual classroom and intensive interaction with the teacher to portray this personal theory and practice connection (p 250) The second value of exploring teacher theorizing is in the inherent designs of interpretive research Interpretive research could bring together preservice teachers, inservice teachers, and teacher educators to discuss, communicate, and clarify their ideas In this sense, the interpretive research process serves as a forum for the expression, critique, and ongoing construction of knowledge This is very consistent with the concept of reflective thinking advocated by Dewey (1910) and the many educators who integrated his ideas into social studies education, including Bode (1940), Griffin (1942), Hunt and Metcalf (1955), Massialas and Cox, (1966), as well as Oliver and Shaver (1966) Throughout the interpretive research process, participants are involved in reflectively analysis of teaching theories that guide practice Ideas, issues, problems, and questions are exposed and critiqued for their meaning and value to social studies education Knowledge and practice of social studies education is constructed and reconstructed ongoingly on the basis of experience and new insights from dialogue and reflective practice An interpretive research agenda of teacher theories and practices would provide a relevant epistemology for defining and developing social studies education This way of knowing allows social studies to be consistent with an identity that indeed focuses on the interrelationships and interactions that are characteristic of humanity It allows and encourages the subjective interpretation of varied social, political, cultural, and institutional contexts that affect the goals and purposes of a social studies education Theory and practice would no longer be perceived as separate entities ; instead, 2 3 1

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Ed Jadallah they would be analyzed and evaluated for relevance and consistency Knowledge about teaching is constructed through a dialectical process that involves teachers and teacher educators in a reflective analysis of their theories and practices In this way, a community of educators can share, critique, and evaluate theory and practice with a common goal of restructuring and improving education The result is not definitive of social studies education, but allows it to continue evolving through democratic processes into what it ought to be for a particular context and time References Adler, S (1991) The reflective practitioner and the curriculum of teacher education Journal of Education for Teaching, 17(2), 139150 Bode, B (1940) How we learn New York : Heath Cornett, J W (1990) Teacher thinking about curriculum and instruction : A case study of a secondary social studies teacher Theory and Research in Social Education 248-273 Dewey, J (1933) How we think : A restatement of the relation of reflective thinking to the education process Boston : Heath Griffin, A (1942) A philosophic approach to subject-matter preparation of teachers of history Unpublished doctoral dissertation, the Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio Hunt, M & Metcalf, L (1955) Teaching high school social studies New York : Harper & Row Johnston, M (1990) Teachers' backgrounds and beliefs : Influences on learning to teach in the social studies Theory and Research in Social Education, 28(3), 207-233 Leming, J S (1992) Ideological perspectives within the social studies profession : An empirical examination of the 'two cultures' thesis Theory and Research in Social Education, 20(3), 293-312 Massialas, B G & Cox, B (1966) Inquiry in social studies New York : McGraw-Hill Oliver, D W & Shaver, J P (1966) Teaching public issues in the high school Boston : Houghton Mifflin O'Loughlin, M (1992) The discourse of pedagogy and the possibility of social change (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No ED 332 956) O'Loughlin, M (1989) The influence of teachers' beliefs about knowledge, teaching, and learning on their pedagogy : A constructivist reconceptualization and research agenda for teacher education (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No ED 339679) 2 3 2

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A Call for a Dialectic in the Social Studies Parker, W C (1991) Renewing the social studies curriculum Alexandria, VA : Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development Ross, W E ., Cornett, J W ., & McCutcheon, G (Eds .) (1992) Teacher personal theorizing : Connecting curriculum, practice, theory, and research New York : State University of New York Smith J K & Heshusius, L (1986) Closing down the conversation : The end of the quantitative-qualitative debate among educational inquirers Educational Researcher, 15(1), 4-12 VanSledright, B A ., & Grant, S G (1991) Surviving its own rhetoric : Building a conversational community within the social studies Theory and Research in Social Education, 19(3), 283-304 Zeichner, K M & Liston, D P (1990) Traditions of reform in U .S teacher education (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No ED 320905) Zeichner, K M (1990) Educational and social commitments in reflective teacher education programs (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No ED 344 855) 2 3 3

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ESSAY REVIEW Thinking through Class Discussion Durkin M C (1993) Thinking through class discussion : The Hilda Taba approach Lancaster, PA : Technomic 113 pages, paperback, ISBN 1-56676-055-0 Review by JEAN FAIR, Professor Emerita, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan Twenty-five years or more have passed since Hilda Taba, on her own or with colleagues, published an extensive array of concepts in Curriculum Development This publication is fast becoming a classic, and many offices and libraries also possess A Teachers' Handbook to Elementary Social Studies, based on what was developed and used in the Contra Costa County (California) schools Taba's ideas remain remarkably enduring, and are often renamed, transformed, and enriched even in practice, without recognition of their origin Little by little, however, Taba's materials have become less readily available Fortunately, Mary Durkin, one of Hilda Taba's colleagues in the Contra Costa project, has written a slim paperback, Thinking Through Class Discussion, that relates to their work together Readers should not expect a summary, revision, or evaluation of Taba's work, however ; for a thoughtful and respectful consideration of her ideas, educators should turn again to Jack Fraenkel's article in Social Education (March 1992) Both Durkin and Fraenkel see Taba's ideas as still useful Whereas Fraenkel presents a decently comprehensive overview, Durkin intends her book to be a manual for exactly what the title states, promoting thinking through class discussion in the elementary grades Although these strategies can be extended to other fields, in this volume they are embedded in social studies, and although this booklet may seem to be a new edition to some readers, Durkin has developed it to practice what she and Taba preached Format This volume begins with brief statements of several basic ideas about curriculum, learning, affective areas, and classroom climate It then moves directly to short explanations of identified kinds of thinking and affective capabilities and classroom discussion strategies for developing them : 1) developing concepts, 2) inferring and generalizing, 3) applying generalizations to new situations, 4) 2 3 4

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Thinking through Classroom Discussion retrieving, keeping necessary information in mind, 5) dealing with interpersonal difficulties, 6) analyzing values, and 7) exploring feelings Each of the strategies is outlined in a chart which lists the elements in sequential order, and makes teacher and student actions explicit Although these charts are well known by now, many educators will welcome their reproduction Also included are charts to exemplify recording and organizing information, to follow progression of thought, and to raise the level of thought Each strategy is followed by a transcript of an actual, illustrative classroom discussion and a "Points for Thought" section in which readers and serious users of the book are asked to analyze and interpret the preceding dialogue This format reflects Taba's principle of establishing an ample supply of particulars out of which readers/learners develop meaning for themselves, meaning that is likely to involve some version of major principles The booklet also introduces short sections on student/teacher roles, evaluation, and on peoples' comments about the movements within discussions Salient Points This volume reprints brief examples of class discussions that promote thinking, a popular emphasis in schools these days and properly so Many other schools could profit from these examples by learning what such classroom situations look like and how to go about fostering them Transcript analysis is helpful To be sure, watching these examples on video comes closer to the actual classroom ; reading, however, allows us to pause and to consider at our own pace Transcripts in print have their own place These strategies contain explicit patterns for developing identifiable behaviors in thinking Their use with children need not mean adhering doggedly to inflexible structures Moreover, thinking is tied to content Conceptualizing, inferring, and applying generalizations are not skills to be taught in some fashion separate from substance, but as integral parts of curriculum Underlying these strategies is the principle that thinking should be taught directly, not haphazardly Although thinking may occur naturally, happenstance is insufficient Thinking must be built into curricula in quasi-formal ways Of course, there are stimulating and thoughtful classrooms in which students study significant matters and in so doing, learn to think Direct teaching of thinking skills is hardly evident Such classrooms are to be encouraged, although perhaps our major efforts should be focused on stimulating curricula and thoughtful classrooms So much is to be learned in the field of education that either/or choices are hardly warranted Teaching thinking does not preclude thoughtful classrooms 2 3 5

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Jean Fair Taba's strategies are not the only effective approach, but they are one method Isolated pieces of information are rarely significant in themselves Facts are the base from which concepts are developed, and ideas that encompass broadly and deeply give us intellectual power Learners must develop and apply these large concepts, or in present-day terminology, construct their own meanings Not any old distorted construct will do simply because it is student developed Taba includes tactics for clarifying, challenging, and revising discussion to recognize the importance of active involvement in fostering ideas as learners make them their own Careful readers will note that some items in the transcripts of classroom discussions may seem out of date because they are taken from earlier guides ; for example, today camels are less important and gasoline more so in the trade between Middle Eastern desert nomads and oasis/urban residents Although the facts have changed, the concept they support has not : interaction between people and their environment influences what people do (in this case, what Bedouin herders do) It might have been better to substitute transcripts of more modern discussions ; however, relying on older discussions highlights the point that the aim of learning should be on key concepts rather than on particular items of information Each of the illustrative classroom segments takes a fair amount of time in practice Stated otherwise, classrooms should emphasize depth in learning instead of coverage By extension it can also be said that curriculum should include the most significant learnings and only what is necessary Facts are the basis for key concepts Facts must be available, and learner comprehension is vital Nevertheless, learners need not acquire all the facts first, before thinking can occur ; for example, poor readers and/or slow learners may be involved in thoughtful class discussion at an early stage Learners rely upon many sources of information, not print materials alone Learning requires a classroom climate in which all children feel comfortable enough to participate Children and especially teachers will need to shift among role-clarifier, synthesizer, and supporter to maintain progress and to raise the level of thought In such productive classrooms, children and teachers can carry on their own evaluations Frequent and formal tests and grades are unnecessary Conclusion This volume is not the complete Taba It barely reminds its readers that these strategies did indeed promote elementary children's thinking when they were embedded in the appropriate curriculum and the other aspects of practice of the far more extensive Taba project 2 3 6

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Thinking through Classroom Discussion This is not an account of research as expected by TR S E readers typically It is a guide, a sophisticated manual, for improving thinking in elementary classroom discussion College/university and school educators might do well to use it with in-service and perhaps preservice teachers Professional educators often speak and write about theoretical ideas, but translating them into practice proves difficult to do Somebody must try if anything at all is to be accomplished Perhaps Mary Durkin's book will encourage a wider use of Taba's strategies, and encourage others to take on the demanding task of realizing theory in practice In this work, Durkin herself is on firm ground References Taba, H (1962) .Curriculum development : theory and practice New York : Harcourt, Brace, & World Taba, H ., Durkin M ., Fraenkel, J ., & McNaughton, A (1971) A teachers' handbook to elementary social studies : an inductive approach (2nd ed .) Reading, MA : Addison Wesley Taba, H ., Levine, S ., & Elzey, S (1964) Thinking in elementary school children [Cooperative Research Project No 1574] Washington, DC : U .S Department of Health, Education, & Welfare Fraenkel, J (1992) Hilda Taba's contributions to social studies education Social Education 56(3), 172-78 2 3 7

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INFORMATION FOR AUTHORS Theory and Research in Social Education is designed to stimulate and communicate systematic research and thinking in social education Its purpose is to foster the creation and exchange of ideas and research findings that will expand knowledge about purposes, conditions, and effects of schooling and education about society and social relations Conceptualizations and research from all of the social sciences, philosophy, history, and the arts are needed in clarifying thinking and practice in social educaton Manuscripts are welcomed on topics such as those that follow : € t Purposes of social education ; € t Models, theories, and related frameworks concerning the development, diffusion, and adoption of curricular materials ; € t Instructional strategies ; € t The relation of the social sciences, philosophy, history and/or the arts to social education ; € t Alternative social organizations and utilizations of the school for social education ; € t Comparative studies of alternative models of social education ; € t Models of and research on alternative schemata for student participation and social action ; € t Relationship of different preand in-service patterns of teacher training to social education ; € t Models of the utilization of objectives in social education and related research findings ; € t Implications of learning theory, child development research, socialization and political socialization research for the purposes and practice of social education ; € t The relationship of different independent, explanatory variables to educational achievements in the area of learning about society and social relations ; € The social climate and cohesion of schools and other school characteristics as independent, explanatory variables predicting general achievement In most cases, submissions will be reviewed blind by a panel of at least three reviewers When we send a manuscript out for review, we ask reviewers to judge the author's work in terms of six criteria : 2 3 8

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Theory and Research in Social Education t Spring, 1994 € t significance (the contribution of the manuscript to knowledge about the human condition) ; € t scholarship (the accuracy and thoroughness reflected) ; € t methodological sophistication (the adequacy of the author's research design) ; € originality (the uniqueness of the manuscript) ; € t lucidity (the clarity of the author's writing) ; € t timeliness (whether or not the manuscript is up-to-date) Submission of Manuscripts All manuscripts submitted will be considered for publication Manuscripts (five copies) should be addressed to : Dr Jack R Fraenkel, Editor Theory and Research in Social Education Research & Development Center School of Education (Burk Hall 238) San Francisco State University San Francisco, CA 94132 In addition, please send a 3 .5" disk containing your manuscript (including tables), formatted in Microsoft Word 4 .0 or 5 .0 ; the disk will be used in the final editing of your manuscript for publication Manuscripts are considered for publication with the understanding that they are original material and have not been submitted elsewhere for publication Ordinarily, manuscripts will not be returned TRSE is a refereed journal Manuscripts are sent to outside reviewers This is a time-consuming process Reviewers of individual manuscripts remain anonymous, although outside reviewers are identified in each issue of the journal Specifications for Manuscripts All material submitted for publication must conform to the style of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association : Third Edition (1983) Abstract All manuscripts should be sent with an abstract of 100150 words Typescript Manuscripts should be typed on 85 x 11-inch paper, upper and lower case, double-spaced, with 15 inch margins on all sides Subheads should be used at reasonable intervals to break the monotony of lengthy texts Only words to be set in italics (according to the APA style manual) should be underlined ; sentence structure-not italics or 2 3 9

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Theory and Research in Social Education t Spring, 1994 quotation marks-must be used for emphasis Abbreviations and acronyms should be spelled out at first mention unless found as entries in their abbreviated form in Webster's Ninth Collegiate Dictionary (e .g ., IQ needs no explanation) Pages should be numbered consecutively Length Manuscripts should typically run between 12 and 30 pages in typed length Author Identification The complete title of the manuscript and the names of the author(s) should be typed on a separate sheet to assure anonymity in the review process The first text page of the article should have the complete title of the manuscript, but no list of the author(s) Subsequent pages should carry only a running head The first-named author or the co-author who will be handling correspondence with the editor should submit a complete address and telephone number Footnotes and References Footnotes are explanations or amplifications of textual material They are distracting to readers and expensive to set ; accordingly, they should be avoided whenever possible When they must occur, they should be typed on a separate sheet and numbered consecutively throughout the manuscript A reference list contains only those references that are cited in the text Their accuracy and completeness are the responsibility of the author(s) Tables, Figures, and Illustrations The purpose of tables and figures is to present data to the reader in a clear and unambiguous manner Authors should not describe the data in the text in such detail that illustrations or text are redundant Figures and tables should be keyed to the text Tables should each be typed on a separate sheet and attached at the end of the manuscript Figure captions also should be typed on a separate sheet All figures and tables must be included on the Microsoft Word disk that accompanies the manuscript Photocopies may accompany the additional copies of the manuscript 2 4 0

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Theory and Research in Social Education t Spring, 1994 Book Reviews Book Reviews (five copies) should be sent to : Dr Perry Marker School of Education Sonoma State University 1801 E Cotati Avenue Rohnert Park, CA 94928 The length may vary from 500 to 3,500 words The format for the top of the first page is as follows : Author (last name first) Date of publication (in parantheses) Title (in italics) City of publication : Publisher, total number of pages, list price (for both hard and softcover, if available), ISBN # Reviewer's name, followed by institutional address, complete with zip code Like all manuscripts, book review manuscripts should follow the guidelines described above 2 4 1

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Theory and Research in Social Education Spring, 1994 James L Barth Purdue University Jane Bernard-Powers San Francisco State University Allan R Brandhorst University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Ambrose Clegg Kent State University Richard A Diem University of Texas at San Antonio James Eckenrod San Francisco, CA Ronald Evans San Diego State University Jesus Garcia Indiana University Nancy R King Towson State University Gloria J Ladson-Billings University of Wisconsin Linda Levstik University of Kentucky Eric Luce University of So Mississippi Peter H Martorella No Carolina State University John R Meyer University of Windsor Ontario, Canada Merry M Merryfield Ohio State University Stuart B Palonsky University of Missouri at Columbia Walter C Parker University of Washington Wayne Ross State University of New York at Binghamton Sam Shermis Purdue University Robert J Stahl Arizona State University William B Stanley University of Delaware Lynda Stone University of Hawaii-Manoa 2 4 2

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Theory and Research in Social Education Margaret Laughlin (1994), Chair University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Program in Education Green Bay, WI 54311 (414) 465-2057 Wayne Ross (1993), Immediate Past Chair SUNY-Binghamton School of Education Binghamton, NY 13902-6000 (607) 777-2478 (2727) Linda Levstik (1995), Chair-Elect 114 Taylor Education Building University of Kentucky Lexington, KY 40506 Walter Parker (1995), Secretary University of Washington 122 Miller, DQ-12 Seattle, WA 98195 (206) 543-6636 Dorothy J Skeel (1996) Peabody College of Vanderbilt Box 320 GPC Nashville, TN 37203 (615) 322-8100 2 4 3 Mary Haas (1994) West Virginia University College of Education Morgantown, WV 26506-6122 (304) 293-3442 Clifford T Bennett (1996) 246 Ruffner Hall Curry School of Education University of Virginia Charlottesville, VA 22903 (804) 924-0841 Patricia Marshall (1995) Elementary Education North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC 27695 (919) 515-1780 Jeffrey Cornett (1994) University of Central Florida College of Education Orlando, FL 32816 407-823-2161 Jack Fraenkel, Editor-TRSE San Francisco State University School of Education (BH 238) San Francisco, CA 94132 (415) 338-2510 Spring, 1994

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Theory and Research in Social Education t Spring, 1994 The National Council for the Social Studies 1993-1994 Officers Denny Schillings, President Homewood-Flossmoor High School 999 Kedzie Avenue Flossmoor, IL 60422 (708) 799-3000, ext 596 Robert J Stahl, President-elect Secondary Education Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85287-1911 (602) 965-7101/4601 Michael Hartoonian, Vice President Social Studies Education Supervisor State of Wisconsin 125 S Webster Street Madison, WI 53702 (608) 267-9273 (608) 233-1643 1994 CUFA Program Chair Valerie Pang School of Teacher Education San Diego State University San Diego, CA 92182-0002 (619) 594-6286 2 4 4

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7 eo7y &Resee in Social Education NCSS 3501 Newark Street, NW Washington, DC 20016 Second Class Postage Paid at Washington, D .C and additional mailing offices


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