Theory and research in social education

Theory and research in social education

Material Information

Theory and research in social education
National Council for the Social Studies -- College and University Faculty Assembly
Place of Publication:
[Bloomington, Ind.?
College and University Faculty Assembly, National Council for the Social Studies] .
Publication Date:


Subjects / Keywords:
Social sciences -- Study and teaching -- Periodicals ( lcsh )
non-fiction ( marcgt )
serial ( sobekcm )

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of South Florida Library
Holding Location:
University of South Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
T01-v24n04_96fall-0000 ( USFLDC DOI )
t1.v24n04_96fall- ( USFLDC Handle )

Postcard Information



This item has the following downloads:

Full Text
xml version 1.0 encoding UTF-8 standalone no
record xmlns http:www.loc.govMARC21slim xmlns:xsi http:www.w3.org2001XMLSchema-instance xsi:schemaLocation http:www.loc.govstandardsmarcxmlschemaMARC21slim.xsd
leader nam a22 u 4500
controlfield tag 008 d19982002inu r 000 0 eng d
datafield ind1 8 ind2 024
subfield code a T01-v24n04_96fall-0000
1 0 245
Theory and research in social education.
n Vol. 24, no. 4 (fall 1996).
p (Download Complete Issue Adobe PDF version)
[Bloomington, Ind.? :
b College and University Faculty Assembly, National Council for the Social Studies] .
c fall 1996
Social sciences
x Study and teaching
v Periodicals.
National Council for the Social Studies.
College and University Faculty Assembly.
t Theory and Research in Social Education.
4 856

xml version 1.0 encoding UTF-8 standalone no
mods:mods xmlns:mods http:www.loc.govmodsv3 xmlns:xsi http:www.w3.org2001XMLSchema-instance xsi:schemaLocation http:www.loc.govmodsv3mods-3-1.xsd
mods:relatedItem type host
mods:identifier issn 0093-3104mods:part
mods:detail volume mods:number 24issue 4series Year mods:caption 19961996Month December12Day 11mods:originInfo mods:dateIssued iso8601 1996-12-01


Volume 24 In this issue . FEATURES Rahima C Wade t Community Service-Learning in the Social David W Saxe t Studies : Historical Roots, Empirical Evidence, Critical Issues Mark E Blum Continuity and Discontinuity, Change and Duration : Hobbes' Riddle of the Theseus and the Diversity of Historical Logics SYMPOSIUM Research, Instruction, and Public Policy in the History Curriculum Keith C Barton, Matthew T Downy, Terrie Epstein, Linda S Levstik, Peter Seixas, Stephen J Thornton, Bruce A VanSledright BOOK REVIEWS Linda S Levstik t Lies My Teacher Told Me : Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong Nancy Schniedewind The Dreamkeepers : Successful Teachers of African American Children Number 4 ~ eo 7^y & Researc a in Social Education t Fall 1996


THEORY AND RESEARCH IN SOCIAL EDUCATION Volume 24 t Number 4 t Fall 1996 The Official Journal of the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies Theory and Research in Social Education 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 can be found at the end of the journal Copyright 1996 by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies All rights reserved


THEORY AND RESEARCH IN SOCIAL EDUCATION € 1996 College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies No written permission is necessary to reproduce a table, a figure, or an excerpt of fewer than 500 words from this journal, or to make photocopies for classroom use Authors are granted permission, without fee, to photocopy their own material Copies must include a full and accurate bibliographic citation and the following credit line : "Copyright [year] by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies ; reproduced with permission from the publisher ." Written permission must be obtained to reproduce or reprint material in circumstances other than those just described Please direct requests for permission or for further information on policies and fees to the NCSS offices Theory and Research in Social Education (ISSN 0093-3104) is printed in the USA and published quarterly by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies, 3501 Newark Street, NW, Washington, DC 20016 Second-class postage is paid at Washington, DC, and additional offices Individual memberships in the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies are $35 .00 per year, $20 .00 of which is allocated for subscription to Theory and Research in Social Education Student membership are $10 .00 per year and include a subscription to Theory and Research in Social Education Institutional and non-CUFA subscriptions are $39 .00 per year Back issues may be obtained for $10 .00 each when available Postmaster : Send address changes to : Theory and Research in Social Education, 3501 Newark St ., NW, Washington, DC 20016 Editorial correspondence should be addressed to the Editor : E Wayne Ross, School of Education and Human Development, State University of New York at Binghamton, P O Box 6000, Binghamton, NY 13902-6000 Electronic mail : < w ross@binghamton .ed u > Correspondence related to subscription, membership, back issues, and change of address should be addressed to : Membership Department, National Council for the Social Studies, 3501 Newark St ., NW, Washington, DC 20016 Advertising correspondence should be addressed to : NCSS Publications, at the NCSS address


Theory and Research in Social Education Editor E Wayne Ross Book Review Editor Michael Whelan Editorial Board Susan Adler Ceola Ross Baber Jane Bernard-Powers Kathy Bickmore Marilynne Boyle-Baise Jere Brophy Jeffrey W Cornett O L Davis, Jr Terrie Epstein Ron Evans Stephen C Fleury Geneva Gay S G Grant David Hursh Marilyn Johnston Gloria Ladson-Billings Linda Levstik Andra Makler Perry Marker Merry M Merryfield Petea Munro Susan Noffke Valerie Ooka Pang Walter C Parker Warren Prior Peter Seixas William B Stanley Lynda Stone Stephen J Thornton Bruce VanSledright Rahima Wade Editorial Assistant Ellen Boesenberg State University of New York at Binghamton State University of New York at New Paltz University of Missouri, Kansas City University of North Carolina at Greensboro San Francisco State University University of Toronto Indiana University Michigan State University University of Central Florida University of Texas, Austin University of Michigan San Diego State University State University of New York at Oswego University of Washington State University of New York at Buffalo University of Rochester The Ohio State University University of Wisconsin, Madison University of Kentucky Lewis & Clark College Sonoma State University The Ohio State University Louisiana State University University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign San Diego State University University of Washington Deakin University, Australia University of British Columbia University of Delaware University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Teachers College, Columbia University University of Maryland, College Park University of Iowa


Volume 24 Number 4 Fall 1996 From the Editor 328 Rahima C Wade FEATURES Community Service-Learning in the 331 David W Saxe Mark E Blum Social Studies : Historical Roots, Empirical Evidence, Critical Issues Continuity and Discontinuity, Change 360 Keith C Barton and Duration : Hobbes' Riddle of the Theseus and the Diversity of Historical Logics SYMPOSIUM Research, Instruction, and Public Policy 391 Matthew T Downy Terrie Epstein Linda S Levstik Peter Seixas Stephen J Thornton Bruce A VanSledright Linda S Levstik in the History Curriculum BOOK REVIEWS Lies My Teacher Told Me : Everything Your 416 Nancy Schiedewind American History Textbook Got Wrong The Dreamkeepers : Successful Teachers of 421 African American Children 425 Information for Authors


FROM THE EDITOR THE ROLE OF THE SCHOLAR : FROM ACTIVISM TO EXPERTISM AND BACK "We must decide what ought to be the case We cannot discover what ought to be the case by investigating what is the case ." Paul Taylor Normative Discourse (1961) Last fall I found myself sitting on the stage of a school auditorium in a rural, upstate New York school district, along with two of my university colleagues and the district's shared decision-making committee There was a moderate size audience, more than I had expected, in attendance The agenda for the evening was a discussion of the federal government's role in education (particularly Goals 2000) and school-to-work initiatives The superintendent had invited my colleagues and me to address the committee and the community as "counter-point" to a talk the previous month by a retired Classics professor who, along with his conservative, grassroots organization, was campaigning against "outcomes-based education" and Goals 2000 as efforts by the federal government to undermine local control of the schools The three of us approached our task with similar two-part tactics First, we tried to provide a fair description and explanation of just what the matter was in order to increase popular understanding (This involved synoptic presentations on the role of state and federal governments in educational matters ; an overview of the history and content of Goals 2000 legislation ; and a description of recent arguments on the changing nature of work and the incumbent educational reforms .) Second, we presented a mixture of analysis and skepticism intended to assist the committee and the community in creating ways of thinking about these issues and engaging in improved educational practices While there was an obvious tension between the school administration and some community residents in attendance, the ensuing dialogue focused on the issues at hand and a number of conflicting perspectives were heard (including some combination of distrust of educational initiatives from Albany and Washington as well as professors from the state university) My colleagues and I, of course, had similar previous experiences and were quite aware that our talks at the shared decision-making committee meeting called for something quite different from the typical AERA presentation In the days that followed, as we debriefed our experience, the issue that came to the forefront was our role as scholars within academe versus our shared experience face to face with the public As Popkewitz describes in his book Paradigm and Ideology in Educational Research (1984) the academic disciplines have a strong reformist tendency, which as evolved over the years as various cultural, social, and eco3 2 8


nomic elements have shaped the professionalization of social science In his account of the development of the American academic expert, Popkewitz notes that the "belief that society as well as individuals could be emancipated through communities of competent professionals initially appeared outside the university" (p 111) The American Social Science Association (ASSA), which functioned from 1865 to 1909, helped to create communities of inquiry through its publications and other activities, and was also involved in the organizational development of historians, economists, and sociologists The founders of ASSA were genteel reformers who adhered to the idealism of Emerson and Hegel and reacted to the determinism of European positivism with an unwillingness to admit limits of human freedom and the maintenance of the theological distinction between people and nature The ASSA was concerned not merely with understanding society, but improving it and inquiry was conceived as having two dimensions : (a) understanding and explanation ; (b) the activity of reform, including popular education to obtain the allegiance of the masses Popkewitz argues that the reformist stance of the ASSA came into conflict with the emergent structure of the research university in the late nineteenth century Social scientists sought the institutional arrangements of the university but found that their incursions into public education created strains within the university and the business community The tradition of popular education to obtain the allegiance of the masses was dropped as a strategy of social science by the early 1900s and a strategy to influence policy-makers was adopted For example, Leading economists of the time rejected the notion that the social scientist could combine both investigation and popular education The public airing of disagreement was seen as hindering efforts to affect public policy Academic debates were to be internal to the professions, aired at professional organization meetings and in scholarly writing The more efficient means towards reform was through the role of expert-advisor to policy-makers (Popkewitz, p .115) While this shifting of strategy narrowed the audience for social science research findings, it did not insulate social science from its cultural, social and political location Social and educational researchers maintain a transformative role, but there are at least two significant developments that obscure the role of the scholar as activist First an "ideology of neutrality" has been internalized in the consciousness of most research communities The linkages between political agenda and research are blurred by the legitimation function of social and educational research As Popkewitz argued in these pages nearly twenty years ago, many educational research studies accept the objectives of pedagogical programs and are organized to "explain" how the objectives were 3 2 9


Theory and Research in Social Education reached (Popkewitz,1978) For example, research on "effective teaching" extols the value of direct instruction over teaching that promotes studentto-student interaction, democratic pedagogy and a learning milieu that values caring and individual students' self-esteem The results of such research do not question the assumed conception of student achievement-efficient mastery of content as represented by test scores Left unquestioned are such issues as : the criteria of content selection, the resultant mystification and fragmentation of course content, linkages between improved test scores and national economic prosperity, and the ways in which the social conditions of schooling might unequally distribute knowledge (see Hirsch,1996) A second, and related, obscuration is the merging of formal and public language and the scholar's loss of public vernacular This is a double edged sword On one edge, educational research findings can function to validate pre-existing beliefs about the standard operating procedures of schools and teaching-reinforcing the control mechanisms of schools, highstakes testing, and a testing drives the curriculum approach On the other edge, by defining their roles as advisors to policy-makers, researchers have largely abandoned the arena of public deliberation The historic demise of the public intellectual has been met with the rise of the pundit, with public discourse largely limited to soundbite scholarship in which ideologically driven research is presented as mere common-sense There is a need for us to move beyond the insular nature of scholarly conversation and rediscover the scholar's role as public educator in its most encompassing sense In reclaiming the scholar's role in public discourse we should carry with us a message from Peter Berger : "The world today is divided into ideological camps The adherents of each tell us with great assurance where we're at and what we should do about it We should not believe any of them" (1976, p .1) Perhaps this approach might set us on a course to undertake the challenge to decide what ought to be the case E W R References Berger, P (1976) Pyramids of sacrifice, political ethics and social change New York : Anchor Hirsch, E D (19%) Reality's revenge : Research and ideology American Educator, 20(3), 4-6,31-46 Popkewitz, T S (1978) Educational research : Values and visions of social order Theory and Research in Social Education, 6(4), 20-39 Popkewitz, T S (1984) Paradigm and ideology in educational research : The social functions of the intellectual New York : Falmer 3 3 0


Theory and Research in Social Education Fall 1996, Volume 24, Number 4, pp 331-359 € by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies Community Service-Learning in the Social Studies : Historical Roots, Empirical Evidence, Critical Issues Rahima C Wade University of Iowa David Warren Saxe Pennsylvania State University Abstract How are social studies educators to prepare future citizens for living in a society fraught with social, environmental, and economic problems? We propose that community servicelearning-the integration of service with academic skills and content-holds promise for enhancing students 'future involvement in the social and political life of their communities We discuss the historical roots of service in social studies education and offer a critical analysis of the empirical evidence on student outcomes in K-12 service-learning programs The discussion of critical issues centers on differing views of citizenship and the complexities of service and social action We conclude with recommendations for further research on service-learning programs Introduction How are social studies teachers to prepare future citizens for living in a society fraught with social, environmental, and economic problems? If the true mission of our profession is active citizenship, we must help our students learn the value of engaging in long-term efforts to revitalize our democratic society and, at the same time, assist them in developing the skills to respond compassionately to those whose daily needs cannot wait for societal transformation This paper is based on the premise that community activism holds a central place in social studies education Given the social studies' professed goal of active citizenship, "it follows that the success or failure of the social studies may be gauged by the extent to which 3 3 1


Wade & Saxe the citizenry takes a reflective and active part in the political and social life of the community" (Ferguson 1991, p 385) The central question guiding our investigation in this paper is the following : Is the inclusion of community service-learning in the social studies curriculum likely to contribute to students' future involvement in the political and social life of the community? Our answer to this question is a qualified and cautious "yes ." Following a brief definition of service-learning, we explore the potential service-learning holds for social studies education in contemporary U S schools Next, we trace the current interest in service-learning to the historical roots of civic involvement in the social studies The central part of the paper focuses on a critical evaluation of the research on service-learning in K-12 school programs Finally, we raise several critical issues for the practice of service-learning in social studies education and offer promising avenues for further research In addition to emphasizing the role of community involvement in the social studies, joining historical and empirical evidence in this paper makes an important methodological contribution to the social studies literature Historical researchers often stop short of providing key connections between past and contemporary educational efforts Likewise, empirical researchers often fail to plumb the historical mines for earlier work that would greatly inform their research We hope to interest other social studies researchers in blending both historical and empirical efforts for the benefit of both Our approach here illustrates how current interest in service-learning is not a new phenomenon, but rather a reconceptualization of a rich legacy of civic involvement throughout the history of social studies education in the United States Community Service-Learning : A Definition Community service is a long standing tradition in U .S society that has recently engendered great interest in the educational arena, notably through the blending of service and academics known as service-learning .l Service-learning can take a variety of shapes and forms, making its definition a challenging task In recognition of the need for a widely agreedupon definition and a set of standards by which to judge service-learning programs, a diverse group of service-learning educators formed the Alliance for Service-Learning in Education Reform (ASLER) ASLER's (1993) definition of service-learning is as follows : Service-learning is a method by which young people learn and develop through active participation in thoughtfully-organized service experiences : that meet actual community needs, that are coordinated in collaboration with the school and community, that are integrated into each young person's academic curriculum, that provide structured time for a young person to 3 3 2


Community Service-Learning think, talk, and write about what he/she did and saw during the actual service activity, that provide young people with opportunities to use newly acquired academic skills and knowledge in real life situations in their own communities, that enhance what is taught in the school by extending student learning beyond the classroom, and that help to foster the development of a sense of caring for others (p .1) Thus, service-learning must not be seen as an extracurricular volunteer activity ; rather, it is a pedagogical method in which service projects form the basis of learning Through careful planning on the part of the teacher and students, service-learning can be a vehicle for enriching the curriculum Service-learning can also address critical community needs, and in the process, help students make the school-to-life connections so vital to meaningful learning and democratic participation Many service-learning projects address the needs of the elderly, people with disabilities, animals, or the environment While these projects are all focused on active citizenship, social studies educators can also develop activities more suited to their curricular objectives For example, elementary students might study the historical buildings in their community and work on helping restore one site High school students might conduct a voter registration campaign, including making presentations to groups who are typically underrepresented in the voter pool As part of a unit on immigration and U .S citizenship, middle school students could interview recent immigrants in their community and take care of the children while their parents study for the U .S citizenship test All of these projects could involve academic study of related social studies topics The service experience then becomes the motivation and the central activity for connecting social studies knowledge, attitudes, critical thinking, and civic behaviors The Potential of Service-Learning The potential of service-learning must be situated within the context of our democratic society Democracy is characterized by both rights and responsibilities At its core, democracy upholds respect for the dignity of the individual and the right of all citizens to participate in decision making (Engle & Ochoa, 1988) A democracy in many ways should be an open society, where individuals have the right to dissent, where differences are accepted, and where efforts to change and improve the quality of life are commonplace While these ideals of democratic life have not varied much over more than two centuries, in practice our democracy has gone through numerous changes and transformations As the scale of our social and political organization has grown, the sense of our collective identity as a people with common needs and purposes has become more fragmented Bellah and 3 3 3


Wade & Saxe his colleagues (1985) noted that many Americans feel isolated from their institutions -schools, governments, and churches Institutional problems seem too large, too complex ; the result is frustration, lack of trust, and ultimately withdrawal from active involvement in the decision making process As just one example of this fact, the mean voter turnout for Presidential elections in the United States since World War II has hovered around fifty percent, the lowest percentage for any noncompulsory democracy in the West (Barber, 1984) A democracy lacking in participation by the majority of its constituents is a democracy at risk Unfortunately, U .S youth are not immune to apathy Since the mid1960's, there has been growing concern about young people's involvement (or lack of it) in the social and political lives of their communities "Charges of increased privatism, hedonism, and aimlessness among adolescents have become commonplace among findings that they feel powerless in relation to the larger society and have no sense of fulfilling a significant role in it" (Conrad 1991, p 541) Numerous studies confirm young people's disengagement from political involvement in particular For example, a 1989 study by People for the American Way found that youth equate being a good citizen with being a good person, rather than with being politically engaged They tend to see the political process and national affairs as alien to them and feel no compulsion to participate in politics Where do we turn then in our efforts to inspire youth to participate in democratic life? Given its purpose, one would hope that the social studies curriculum might help alleviate the apathy toward civic involvement among U .S citizens Results in this area, however, are decidedly disappointing Numerous studies have revealed that students find social studies boring or uninteresting (Morrisett, Hawke, & Superka,1980 ; Schug, Todd, & Beery, 1984 ; Shaver, Davis, & Helburn, 1979) Despite a variety of curricular innovations over the last twenty five years, the majority of efforts at teaching citizenship in the schools fall on the shoulders of narrowly conceived social studies courses that in most cases have failed to engender student interest, involvement, or competence in political life (Ferguson, 1991) Research on civic education generally shows that classroom climate and school governance have some positive effects on students' political attitudes and efficacy ; the effects of civics and government classes on these outcomes are largely negligible (Battistoni,1985 ; Ehman,1978 ; Hamilton & Zeldin,1987 ; Marker, 1980 ; Niemi & Junn,1993 ; Seigel,1987) How might service-learning address the ineffectual social studies curriculum and nation-wide apathy toward civic involvement? First, service-learning by its very nature involves students in their communities, working on issues of local concern, attempting to make a difference Habits of mind and heart as well as the skills needed for effective civic action are learned through real life efforts, rather than just read about in social studies texts Second, service-learning tends to break down the hierarchi3 3 4


Community Service-Learning cal barriers in schools and provides opportunities for youth to play a significant role in their own learning (Caskey,1991) Teachers, students, and community members are more likely to work together ; teachers serve as process facilitators rather than just information providers (Wade, 1995a) While service-learning can be included in many different subject areas, the social studies is in a unique position to take part in the growing national service-learning movement Although social studies educators differ in their opinions about what constitutes citizenship (Shermis & Barth 1982 ; VanSledright & Grant 1991), many have promoted citizenship as informed and active involvement in the social and political life of the community (Barber, 1989 ; Clarke,1990 ; Engle & Ochoa,1988 ; Parker & Jarolimek, 1984 ; Rutter & Newman,1989 ; Schug & Beery,1984 ; Thomas, 1984) Numerous National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) documents feature social and political participation as essential aspects of social studies instruction (NCSS 1979, 1980, 1989 ; Hartoonian & Laughlin, 1990) Most recently, the Curriculum Standards for the Social Studies (1994) includes an emphasis on civic participation in the Civic Ideals and Practices strand Key questions learners should confront in this strand include "What is civic participation and how should I be involved? . .What is the role of the citizen in the community and the nation, and as a member of the world community? How can I make a positive difference?" (NCSS 1994, p 30) It is important to note that interest in civic participation in the social studies is not a new phenomenon We turn now to an exploration of the legacy of community involvement in the history of social studies education Civic Involvement in the Social Studies : Historical Roots Social studies was specifically developed in response to the need for cultivating an active participatory citizenship (Dunn,1916) At the turn of the century, as the very real effects of shifting from an agricultural and rural society to an industrialized and urban society were more fully grasped, educators and civic leaders recognized the importance of an active citizenship education Today, while the rural to urban shift is no longer at issue, service-learning as a model to improve community life remains important The roots of participatory social studies were set down in the two decades before the mass European immigration at the turn of the 20th century (see Patterson, 1987 and Marker, 1980) With service-learning conceptualization in place and accepted by civic leaders by the 1910s, many educators moved to institute service-learning in urban schools It is important to note that the beginnings of service-learning and its subsequent history should be separated from the sort of social action programs more closely identified with social reconstruction programs dating from the 1930's Criticism of service-learning at that time is represented by the following quote from Paul Hanna's (1936) book Youth Serves the Community 3 3 5


Wade & Saxe Time and energy given to such superficial betterment [Hanna gives as an example making Thanksgiving baskets for poor families] could much more efficiently be spent in getting at the basic inhibiting influences which perpetuate a scarcity economy in the midst of abundance (Hanna as cited in Kahne & Westheimer, pp 596-7) Despite differences of opinion about the most effective forms of civic education, government and educational leaders clearly understood its importance as cities continued to parallel the growth of industry At the turn of the century, citizenship education was focused on an introduction into American government where the rather passive "how a bill becomes a law" type of learning was standard fare The idea of exploring community resources as part of a citizenship education program was not fully realized until the early 1900s Arthur Dunn (1906, 1915, 1916, 1922), who was later to serve on the seminal 1916 Social Studies Committee, offered community civics in Indianapolis schools as early as 1904 Dunn was one of the first public school educators to specifically require service-learning in his classes Dunn had students identify problems in the community Then, working in collaborative teams, Dunn's students developed solutions which they actually applied in the community Dunn's work caught the attention of civic leaders who were keenly interested in educational approaches to urban problems When Dunn joined the Social Studies Committee in 1915 he influenced members to include service-learning activities as an integral part of the developing social studies program The service-learning idea was incorporated into two social studies course offerings, Community Civics for ninth graders and Problems of Democracy for twelfth graders (Franklin 1986 ; Saxe 1991) Perhaps the earliest description of service-learning was written by the community civics subcommittee of the 1916 Social Studies Committee headed up by Dunn (Barnard et al 1915) The good citizen may be defined as a person who habitually conducts himself with proper regard for the welfare of the communities of which he is a member, and who is active and intelligent in his cooperation with his fellow members to that end (Barnard et al as cited in Saxe,1991 p .188) Service-learning, what the committee then called community civics, was to be offered throughout the grades with an intensive "five periods a week" course in the freshman year of high school The three "specific aims" of community civics were : (1) "to see the importance and significance of the elements of community welfare," (2) "to know the social agencies, governmental, and voluntary, that exist to secure these elements," and (3) "to rec3 3 6


Community Service-Learning ognize his civic obligation, present and future, and to respond to them by appropriate action" (Barnard et al ., as cited in Saxe 1991 p .191-192) It was quite clear that Dunn and his colleagues argued for active citizenship now as well as in the future (Dunn,1906,1922) Moreover, the committee members highlighted that "the teachers must help the pupil to express his convictions in word and deed He (the student) must be given an opportunity . .to live (italics from original) his civics both in school and in the community outside" (Barnard et al as cited in Saxe 1991, p .193) Some of the suggestions made by the subcommittee were drawn from Dunn's earlier works (1906, 1915) The focus of community civics was on community health, with the following noted as important : protection for food and drinking water, pure air, exercise, cleanliness, avoiding contagion, restriction on use of drugs, regulation of alcohol and tobacco, proper working conditions, shoveling snow, ambulance service, and child labor Students were also directed to protect younger children and older citizens The emphasis was clearly on "what the child can do (italics in original) for the community," not what the community can do for the child Children were encouraged to "observe, inquire, and discuss" problems of the community and ask themselves "what should be done?" As the concept moved from theory into practice, a number of textbooks were written for both Community Civics and Problems of Democracy (Barnard & Evans 1919 ; Burch 1921 ; Burch & Patterson 1919 ; Dunn 1922) The First World War also brought about further collaborative activities to benefit local communities For example, scrap rubber, metal, and paper drives were common among young people Other conservation efforts such as "grow your own" campaigns also encouraged active participation from school-aged children By the early 1920s, social studies became identified as progressive, egalitarian, and community-centered curricula (Cremin,1961 ; Drost,1967 ; Saxe,1991 ; Warren, 1989) In contrast to the progressive social studies, prevailing history-centered curricula, in place since the end of the 19~h century, were viewed by many as elitist, traditional, and non-activist (Rugg,1922) On the one hand, social studies as it was formulated encouraged teachers to implement the service-learning "community civics" programs On the other hand, as history supporters began to share curricular control (sometimes unwillingly) of school curricula by the late 1920s, social studies soon became the umbrella organization that included both community civics and the more passive traditional history and other subject-centered social studies In practice, service-learning soon became identified with only certain segments of the overall social studies program As noted earlier, the Community Civics and Problems of Democracy (POD) courses outlined in the inaugural social studies program (Dunn, 1916) were focused on community-based service-learning However, as these courses appeared in school curricula, coupled with the dramatic increase in high school enrollments, the focus on service-learning was soon dropped Although Community 3 3 7


Wade & Saxe Civics lasted less than a decade and POD largely disappeared by the 1950s, teachers (and administrators) ostensibly opted for the more passive, lecture-worksheet approach to citizenship education over service-learning It might be more accurate to state that service-learning did not survive the leap from theory into practice As early as 1928 Rolla Tryon (1929, 1935) noted that POD texts were focused on external political issues and analyses, not on participatory problem solving of local/ community issues Although World War II activated children again to contribute directly to the war effort with community based projects (Field, 1994), the notion of widespread systematic service-learning disappeared from social studies curricula The idea of service-learning was again seriously considered in the 1960s with a number of programs (Oliver & Shaver, 1967 ; Newmann,1975 ; Hunt & Metcalf, 1968), but again such programs were largely localized and teachers typically opted for more passive citizenship education (Shaver et al, 1991) Although schools did not typically practice service-learning for citizenship, the idea of service-learning was very much alive in NCSS publications (Hepburn, 1983 ; Parker & Jarolimek, 1984 ; Robinson, 1967 ; Rosenzweig, 1982 ; West, 1938), methods textbooks (Engle & Ochoa, 1988 ; Hunt & Metcalf,1955/1968 ; Newmann & Oliver, 1970 ; Saxe,1994, Wesley, 1937), and other publications (American Association of School Administrators, 1954 ; Bahmueller, 1991 ; Merriam, 1934 ; Ochoa & Manson, 1969, 1972 ; Rugg,1931) In the elementary schools, the progressive character of the "expanding horizons," once the center piece of elementary social studies curricula, also included an emphasis on the inclusion of service-learning projects (Wesley & Adams, 1946 ; Jenness,1991) Ultimately, while service-learning was explicitly called for by social studies theorists, it was (and still is) up to individual schools, administrators, and teachers to actively involve students in meeting community needs The question that emerges from this brief historical overview is why active service-learning did not take hold, or rather, why did most teachers and students appear to opt for other types of instruction? From an historical perspective, it is very clear that service-learning was promoted as an appropriate, if not desirable, pedagogical model for citizenship education Why do most social studies teachers fail to explore service-learning and how can curricular leaders motivate teachers to use more service learning in their classes? Part of the answers to these questions rests on making a case for service-learning that teachers will find reasonable and more importantly practical We now examine the empirical evidence on student outcomes in K-12 service-learning programs Empirical Evidence Thus far, we have explored the potential of service-learning for revitalizing social studies education and civic apathy as well as the historical 3 3 8


Community Service-Learning emphasis on civic involvement Both discussions provide a supportive backdrop to the question of whether or not service-learning is a viable approach to social studies education Ultimately, this question is best answered through a critical examination of empirical evidence If educators are to take the time and energy to include service-learning in their curricula, their efforts need to be substantiated by positive outcomes for their students In this part of the paper, we discuss the existing research on K-12 student outcomes in community service and service-learning programs Selecting Studies The choice of K-12 student outcomes as the focus in this review is informed by our belief that service-learning must be beneficial for K-12 students to be defensible in social studies K-12 and teacher education Thus, studies exclusively focused on college age students were not included in this review ; nor did we include studies focused solely on community outcomes or program quality The procedures used to select the studies included the following : ERIC searches on community service and servicelearning school-based programs, a search on the same topics conducted by the National Service-Learning Cooperative at the University of Minnesota, and a search through Dissertation Abstracts International for dissertations including community service or service-learning in the title We also located other studies through reviewers' recommendations, personal contacts, and conference attendance Studies of obviously poor quality, such as qualitative studies without systematic analysis or experiments that did not include pre and post-tests or a comparison group, were excluded from this review Limitations of Research on Service-Learning Before examining the research on K-12 service-learning programs below, the limitations of research on service-learning in general should be considered The limitations exist in three broad areas : 1) difficulties with assessing the effects of service-learning, 2) poorly designed research studies, and 3) inadequate reporting of research results, particularly in the context of literature reviews While these problems overlap and influence each other, for the purpose of clarity each is discussed separately below The primary difficulty in assessing the effects of service-learning is that the term encompasses a wide variety of practices with an even wider variety of purposes (Conrad, 1991 ; Hamilton, 19$1) Osipow (1979) further noted that "real effects of programs are obscured by the need to aggregate effects across individuals Distinct changes in many different participants may cancel each other out when lumped together in a program evaluation" (p 31) Related challenges include : different effects from different types of participation, difficulty in identifying the appropriate independent variables and appropriate research instruments and methods, outcomes focused on broad and stable personal characteristics that do not 3 3 9


Wade & Saxe change quickly and are not measured easily using surveys or questionnaires, and the likely atypicality of participants in voluntary programs (Conrad, 1991) In addition, researchers may choose to focus on specific outcomes or many outcomes that a program was not designed to achieve, and relatively brief duration of the service-learning program may make significant gains for students less likely than in longer programs, regardless of the objectives (Alt & Medrich, 1994) Hamilton and Fenzel (1988) noted additional difficulties related to the use of paper and pencil instruments, which often fail to confirm the positive judgements of both adult and student participants (Newmann & Rutter, 1983) Students in voluntary programs may begin with very high scores on certain characteristics, such as social responsibility 2 and thus there is the risk of a ceiling effect limiting the potential for significant impact Also, standard methods of measuring effects may not accurately reflect the changes that occur in student behaviors and motivations (Alt & Medrich,1994) All of these difficulties contribute to the challenge of designing quality studies to assess student outcomes in service-learning programs Many of the studies that might have been included in a review such as this one were eliminated from consideration due to one or more of the following : failure to include a comparison or control group in an experimental study, failure to include pre-testing in an experimental study, no description of the community activity (we could not discern if there was any service involved), only anecdotal evidence reported, or no means for determining if the changes could be attributed to the service component of the curriculum Often prior literature reviews can be helpful as a starting point in constructing a comprehensive, up-to-date review While we located a few such reviews which did point us toward a number of research studies, the reviews themselves were generally not very helpful Most were not critical in nature Some reviewers tended to highlight only positive findings from studies with mixed findings or studies that suffer from one of the problems cited above An examination of doctoral dissertations, in particular, often revealed more inconclusive findings than those cited by reviewers Given the relatively recent emergence of service-learning programs, older reviews often included studies on college students or studies on other types of experiential learning programs such as internships or community-based education The review in this article draws upon earlier works as well as recent doctoral dissertations and published research studies concerned with K-12 school-based community service and service-learning programs Potential Outcomes As a final preface to a discussion of the research, it is important to consider the potential outcomes of service-learning Service-learning ad3 4 0


Community Service-Learning vocates maintain that there are numerous benefits for students, schools 3 and communities 4 through collaborating on service-learning projects Student outcomes are generally presented in three major areas : social development, psychological development, and academic learning/ intellectual development (Conrad,1991) Educators have asserted that service-learning may positively influence the following aspects of student development : academic skills, problem solving skills, critical thinking skills, ethical development, moral reasoning ability, social responsibility, self esteem, assertiveness, empathy, psychological development, civic responsibility, political efficacy, tolerance and acceptance of diversity, specific skill acquisition relevant to the service tasks, and career goals and knowledge (Alt & Medrich, 1994) Service-learning is often expected to have other positive effects as well, including fostering a decrease in behavior problems, increased enthusiasm for school, and students serving as positive role models for other students A summary follows of the research on students in K-12 service-learning programs in four key outcome areas relevant to social studies education : 1) academic development, 2) social and personal development, 3) political efficacy and participation, and 4) future civic participation Academic Development Research evidence for the impact of service-learning on academic development is neither extensive nor conclusive Williams (1991) observed that few experiential education programs focus on improving academic achievement and Conrad (1991) noted that researchers studying experiential programs have tended to steer away from the acquisition of facts and concepts as a focus of inquiry A few studies, however, particularly those involving cross-age tutoring (one type of service-learning situated in the school), reveal some promising effects on academic development Two meta-analyses of studies on tutoring revealed that students benefited academically from having tutored, though the differences were not large (Cohen, Kulik, & Kulik,1982 ; Hedin, 1987) Dewsbury-White (1953) found that service integrated with classroom learning led to greater subject matter achievement than service without an academic component Several recent studies have attempted to discern whether or not service experience increases grade point average In a national study of Learn and Serve America middle and high school programs in four states, Melchior & Orr (1995) found no signficant impacts on grade point average, school engagement, or perceived educational competence Shumer (1994) found increases in grade point average among high school students in a community-based learning program but admitted that "we could not distinguish between purely service-related and career-related activities" (p 367) The program also made use of college tutors who, according to the 3 4 1


Wade & Saxe research on tutoring cited above, may have been instrumental in students' academic improvement Conrad and Hedin (1980, 1982) reported that students in a service program displayed better problem solving abilities than comparison students The greatest increase in problem solving skills occured when students experienced problems in their field placements similar to the problems they were asked to solve on a skill test and when they actually participated in problem analysis activities in the field The issue of the match between tests and the service experience may also help to explain the lack of academic gains in most studies "When the measuring test is a general test of knowledge there is usually no difference at all between students in service programs and those in conventional classrooms" (Conrad & Hedin, 1989, p 22) While general knowledge of students performing service does not usually differ from that of control students, it appears that service does not reduce knowledge, even though students are spending less time in the classroom (Alt & Medrich, 1994 ; Waterman,1993) Social and Personal Development Proponents of service-learning argue that placing students in challenging situations where they will need to face real problems and consequences is an effective means of promoting personal growth Conrad (1991) concluded that "the most consistent finding of studies of participatory programs is that these experiences do tend to increase self-esteem and promote personal development" (p .543) Overall, the literature suggests that personal and social development are the best documented outcomes of secondary school sponsored community service programs (Conrad & Hedin,1989 ; Williams, 1991) Alt and Medrich (1994) noted that while studies of voluntary service programs tend to show only small increases in selfconfidence and improved self-image, "these data confirm a consensus of opinion expressed by teachers and students about positive gains in this area" (p 9) Not every study has been positive (Kraft, Goldwasser, Swadener & Timmons, 1993 ; Krug, 1991 ; Malvin, Moskowitz, Schaps, & Schaeffer,1982) and neither tutors nor tutees make statistically significant gains in self-esteem as a result of cross-age tutoring programs (Cohere, Kulik, & Kulik, 1982) Yet numerous studies have noted gains in self-esteem, competence, or general self-worth (Conrad & Hedin,1982,1989 ; Hamilton & Fenzel, 1988 ; Hedin, 1987 ; Newmann & Rutter, 1983 ; Sager, 1973 ; Waterman,1993 ; Yates, 1995) Conrad and Hedin (1981) found modest gains in social and personal responsibility as measured by the Social and Personal Responsibility Scale as did Crosman (1989) who compared her high school sample to Conrad and Hedin's Newmann and Rutter (1983), using a modified version of the scale also found modest gains Their overall finding was that community service programs did have a positive impact on students' sense of social 3 4 2


Community Service-Learning responsibility and sense of personal competence as contrasted with comparison groups Hamilton and Fenzel (1988) found significant gains on the social responsibility subscale but not on the personal responsibility subscale ; gains were greater for students involved in community service A f ew recent studies have found less consistent gains in personal and social responsibility Melchior and Orr (1995) found statistically significant positive impacts for high school but not for middle school students in the areas of personal and social responsibility Williams (1993) found significant gains in personal and social responsibility for students who participated in more than 10 hours of required service (but not for those who did only 10 hours) Ridgell (1994), in a study of 204 students from 9th grade civics classes that focused on service-learning in three Maryland public high schools, found no statistically significant differences in personal and social responsibility Political Efficacy The findings on whether or not service-learning enhances political efficacy are mixed (Alt & Medrich, 1994 ; Conrad & Hedin, 1989 ; Furco, 1994) A study of high school students did not credit participation in service with changes in political efficacy, plans for future participation, or future social/institutional affiliation (Newmann & Rutter, 1983) Corbett (1977), in a study of a year-long community service program, also found no gains in political efficacy Three studies that do report positive effects on political efficacy are problematic for the reasons discussed below Conrad and Hedin (1982) found that students in service-learning programs showed larger gains in valuing community involvement than control students, though no indication was given of the magnitude of these changes and whether differences were significant or not Hamilton and Zeldin (1987) found that students who participated in local government internships increased their knowledge of local government and their sense of competence in political work more than students in traditional classes focused on local government ; however, the internship did not include service activities Button (1972) found that students who did fieldwork regarding the political structure of their city gained in political efficacy and became more interested in politics It is difficult, however, to attribute this finding to the fieldwork given that a) there is very little information about the nature of the fieldwork in the dissertation, b) Button indicates that not all students were able to follow through on this part of the curriculum, and c) in-class activities may have also been influential as they focused extensively on the topics of government, political change, and racism A few other dissertations offer more promising findings Using Campbell's Scale of Political Efficacy, Wilson (1974) found that students in a year long community-based alternative school who engaged in political and social action gained in political efficacy Following a year-long quali3 4 3


Wade & Saxe tative study of high school students' service-learning experience working at a soup kitchen, Yates and Youniss (in press) concluded that "service can stimulate reflection on society's political organization and moral order, as well as one's agency in relation to these domains" (p 10) Marks (1994) gathered survey data from participants and non-participants in 60 independent high schools While Marks did not incorporate a pre-post design in her survey study, she did institute various procedures to control for this omission Marks legitimately concluded that "participation in community service proved to have a small, but statistically signficant and positive effect on citizen efficacy" (1994, p .169) Future Civic Participation Perhaps the most critical question in regard to service-learning is : Will service-learning experienced in K-12 schools lead to future adult civic participation? Some studies have shown little or no connection between service-learning experience and the intent to participate in one's community in the future (Newmann & Rutter, 1983 ; Ridgell, 1994) while others have revealed positive impacts for high school students in regard to the likelihood of future service (Melchior & Orr,1995 ; Yates, 1995) While researchers are far from answering this question, a few additional studies provide food for thought on this issue Two studies by Independent Sector revealed that early community service experience is a strong predictor of volunteering for both teens and adults (Hodgkinson &Weitzman, 1992a, 1992b) Furthermore, the role of schools is critical Among teens who reported that their schools encouraged voluntary service, 75 percent volunteered "Regardless of race or ethnic background, if individuals are asked to volunteer they are more than three times as likely to volunteer than if they are not asked" (Schervish, Hodgkinson, Gates, & Associates, 1995) Another national survey of youth views further affirms the importance of the schools' role in encouraging community service-learning Many teens indicated that they do not volunteer because they do not know how to get involved (74%) or simply are never asked (60%) (Wirthlin Group, 1995) As in the Independent Sector studies, the Wirthlin Group (1995) found much higher involvement in youth community service when schools placed emphasis on its importance One group of researchers took an innovative approach to assessing the long range effects of community service programs Beane, Turner, Jones, and Lipka (1981) attempted to compare the attitudes and experiences of students who participated in a Problems of Democracy course in the 1940's with same year graduates who did not participate in the program ; the study was conducted 30 years later While the authors admit to flaws in the research (most notably a low survey response rate of 27 .5%), they did find support for their hypothesis that adults who participated in community service projects in high school demonstrate higher levels of community involvement than adults who did not engage in such projects in high school 3 4 4


Community Service-Learning A doctoral student working with Beane on a similar study, however, found mixed results when looking at gender differences and whether subjects stayed living in their original communities or not (O'Conne11,1983) Using a similar approach, researchers surveyed 628 students who graduated from high schools in Cleveland, Los Angeles, Edmonton, and a St Louis suburb in 1970 (Sturges, Barfoo, Friesen, Weaver, and Wood, 1977) They found that highly politically active high school students who protested school and societal issues are more politically active adults as indicated by voting, supporting candidates, and supporting issues not unlike those they addressed in high school (For an excellent review of similar studies on the relationship between social movement involvement and future civic participation, as well as a discussion of the common methodological flaws in such studies, see McAdam,1989) Discussion of the Research Findings What can one conclude from the findings presented here? To begin, we offer some general observations First, there is inconsistency in virtually all outcome areas This inconsistency can be explained in part by the quality of the service-learning program as measured by two factors : a reflection component and time spent on service Researchers have found that the presence of a reflective seminar is a critical factor in predicting student outcomes (Conrad & Hedin,1980 ; Krug,1991 ; Newmann & Rutter, 1983 ; Rutter & Newmann,1989) Some researchers also conclude that more time invested in service may lead to stronger gains for students (Hedin, 1980 ; Kraft, Goldwasser, Swadener, & Timmons,1993 ; Marks, 1994 ; Melchior & Orr,1995) Hamilton (1981) noted that "it would be unwise to attribute to all experiential learning programs results found in the very best" (p 33) Indeed, it is interesting to note that many of the strongest findings cited in the review here come from studies focused on selected exemplary programs with both considerable time spent in service activities and strong reflective components (Conrad & Hedin, 1980 ; Newmann & Rutter, 1983) Differences in student characteristics may also account for some of the findings ; for example, some studies have found greater gains for older students (Conrad,1982 ; Melchior & Orr,1995) and females (Patterson,1987 ; Hamilton & Fenze1,1988) There are also observations that can be made in each of the outcome areas discussed In regard to academic outcomes, there must be a good "fit" between the knowledge or problem solving skill gained through the service experience and the test used to assess knowledge gains For example, Dewsbury-White (1993) compared two instructional models for service-learning, one which integrated service into a class and one that didn't Students in the integrated model scored higher on a measure of subject matter achievement It is no surprise that tutoring is the type of service-learning activity showing the strongest academic gains, given the similarity between tutoring tasks and general academic testing We also 3 4 5


Wade & Saxe note that while it is positive that service-learning involvement does not detract from academic achievement, this finding alone does not provide a strong justification for service-learning programs, given the time and effort they require over more traditional forms of teaching In the area of personal and social development, we note that even the best programs are likely to result in only modest (albeit valuable) gains Still, significant effects on self-esteem and social responsibility are the strongest findings in this review This is not particularly surprising, given the fact that the primary motivations for teachers and students to engage in service-learning are self development and meaningful relationships (Boyte, 1991 ; Newmann & Rutter,1983) This last point also bears on the lackluster findings in the area of political efficacy When programs promote an individualistic, charitable conception of service and do not tie their activities to political issues or organizations, participants are unlikely to gain on this dimension Based on some of the findings cited in this review (Marks, 1994 ; Wilson, 1974 ; Yates & Youniss, in press), it is reasonable to assume that certain types of programs (i .e those focused on political issues, local government, and / or social action) are more likely than other types of programs to increase political efficacy The evidence indicates that it is possible, if not probable, that schoolbased service activities will lead to future adult civic involvement In this regard, the role of the school in encouraging and providing opportunities for service is important and perhaps essential for heightening the quality of democratic public life While more research is imperative in all of the outcome areas discussed here, we believe that the empirical evidence supporting servicelearning programs is strong enough to continue developing and evaluating such programs Newmann (1975) noted that "if schools had to postpone curriculum development until conclusive research answered all important pedagogical questions, curriculum development would come to a halt and schools would wait indefinitely for research to justify proposed programs" (p .109) The research on service-learning is far from conclusive at this point, yet we believe that findings from studies of high quality programs (e .g those with strong reflection components, considerable time spent in service, and focused program goals) are promising We also concur with Conrad (1991) who asserted that despite the discrepancies or vague support for certain outcomes, there is one salient finding of almost every study of service-learning programs : "Participants, their teachers, their parents, and their community supervisors overwhelmingly agree that their programs were worthwhile, useful, enjoyable, and powerful learning experiences" (p 545) However, if social studies educators hope to attain more than anecdotal and inconsistent findings to support the practice of service-learning, 3 4 6


Community Service-Learning they will first need to develop programs with focused, achievable objectives tied to the social studies curriculum, and second, conduct extensive research on the outcomes of such programs The first of these tasks is made problematic by issues surrounding competing views of citizenship, the complexities of service and social action, and the role of politics in the curriculum Following a discussion of these critical concerns, we conclude with recommendations for further research on service-learning outcomes Critical Issues The multitude of potential outcomes discussed previously suggests that a critical issue for service-learning practitioners is to determine the desired results of the service-learning activities at the program planning stage Kahne and Westheimer (1996) noted that various ideological, political, and social goals can be promoted by service-learning activities For example, an intergenerational project at a nursing home might focus on students improving communication skills, developing empathy, analyzing policies affecting the elderly, conducting oral histories, or exploring careers related to aging Newmann (1975) advocated that educators should first decide on objectives and second determine whether particular forms of community involvement might assist in their achievement As the review of research here revealed, no service-learning program outcome is a guarantee ; programs must be carefully structured to focus on desired effects Social studies educators, in particular, should be concerned with fostering political efficacy and future civic involvement and should structure service-learning experiences for their students accordingly While the goals of academic, personal, and social development may also be important to social studies professionals, outcomes directly associated with active citizenship are uniquely aligned with social studies' mission Newmann (1975), in his analysis of civic participation, asserted (and we concur) that involvement alone is not a defensible goal (e .g some projects can be morally questionable), nor is an increased sense of efficacy (e .g a high yet inaccurate sense of efficacy is not necessarily good) Thus, social studies educators must think carefully about their conceptions of citizenship and the types of community activities most likely to foster their ideals Kahne & Westheimer (1996) noted that there are two competing views of citizenship in the field of service-learning The first emphasizes civic duty, volunteerism, and the value of altruism The second view focuses on critical reflection about social policies and the acquisition of skills to exert influence in public affairs While the first view is undoubtedly more prevalent and less controversial, a number of educators have stressed the importance of the second perspective (Barber, 1992 ; Boyte,1991 ; Brandhorst,1990 ; Kahne & Westheimer,1996 ; Newmann,1975 ; Schneider,1995 ; Shultz,1991 ; Willison,1994) Newmann (1989) noted that a curriculum designed to pre3 4 7


Wade & Saxe pare youth for one type of civic participation (i .e community service) does not necessarily prepare them for others (i .e voting, political campaigning, advocacy, etc .) Thus, educators working within the context of their schools and communities must decide on the specific emphases of their programs, perhaps facilitating a goals consensus process in the community which includes service-learning as part of the package The complexities within the concepts of service as altruistic duty and service as social action are heightened when one realizes that these terms defy simple definitions Although some educators may tend to see "service" as a more conservative pursuit than "social action," indeed either can have conservative or liberal goals Social action often incorporates a service element when it is aimed at meeting a real need as well as changing institutions or public policies And, while some service projects focus solely on addressing a local environmental or social need, others involve students in critiquing current policies and advocating for changes in laws or institutional procedures While both service and social action can therefore be compatible, educators may at times experience tension in trying to decide how to approach a project focused on community change Following a brief critique of current service-learning practice, we present a further explication of this second, less prevalent "social action" perspective for educators' consideration in defining their service-learning program goals Boyte (1991) is critical of the current conception of service as it focuses exclusively on personal relevance and social membership Brandhorst (1990) noted that while there is evidence that young people are drawn to community service activities that involve caring about others and "feeling good" about oneself as a result, there appears to be little interest in public citizenship Service does little to connect students' everyday concerns with the political process Nor do service projects normally teach the political skills that are needed to work effectively toward solving society's problems : public judgment, the collaborative exercise of power, conflict resolution, negotiation, bargaining, and holding oneself and others accountable (Boyte,1991, p 766) Boyte further noted that most service-learning programs include little learning about the policy issues that students address in their personal efforts Participants rarely engage in reflection on the complex dynamics of power, race, and class Willison (1994) confirmed Boyte's position in his observations of students working in community feeding programs (soup kitchens, free lunch programs, food pantries, and the like) To counteract stereotyping and misinformation, Willison advocated in-class activities focused on examining poverty in a historical and contemporary context Learning about health care, child care, and other job-related and living expenses, as well as 3 4 8


Community Service-Learning other economic and social factors that influence poverty and homelessness, are important aspects of in-class education Schultz (1991) also pointed out the importance of examining the context in which the need for service exists He noted that it is possible to become so intent on the problems at hand that students "lose awareness of the larger historical and contemporary forces acting on the present situation This can lead to inappropriate action and an inability on the part of the student to generalize from present to subsequent action" (p 59) In too many service-learning programs, students simply accept societal situations they confront "as they are" without questionning what might be needed for broad-based social change or developing an imaginative vision of how we could all live together in more just and humane ways (Schultz,1991) Educators with a social action perspective on service-learning agree that the combination of service work and critical reflection is vital to promote interest in and insight into complex social issues Teachers must structure the analytic process carefully so that students will challenge their predispositions and self-interests and yet still be allowed to formulate their own views on public issues "Citizenship in a democratic community requires more than kindness and decency ; it requires engagement in complex social and institutional endeavors Acts of civic duty cannot replace government programs or forms of collective social action Citizenship requires that individuals work to create, evaluate, criticize, and change public institutions and programs" (Kahne & Westheimer,1996 ; p 597) In summary, according to the social action perspective, social studies educators should frame service-learning within the context of civic action and public virtue Students should be encouraged to look beyond their own individual interests and find themselves in the larger interests of the community Social studies teachers should incorporate the study of historical and societal issues in the service-learning project Students will need to be challenged to question the status quo, to examine stereotypes, to look beneath appearances in identifying causes, to seek out diverse opinions from varying information sources, and to be bold enough to envision more just and equitable ways of structuring our democratic society Furthermore, if political efficacy is an important program objective, students will likely be more successful if they engage in service activities dealing with government or political issues While it is easy to write about the importance of social action, oftentimes political issues can be controversial in the social studies curriculum This may be one likely reason why so few service-learning programs address the political, social, and economic dimensions of society that create the need for community service Indeed, the Corporation for National Service (1995) lists some types of political action as "prohibited activities" in their grant guidelines Program leaders need to be aware of parent or community opposition to some types of social and political action as well 3 4 9


Wade & Saxe The complexities within service and social action provide challenges for social studies educators to deal with when designing defensible service-learning programs Other issues within the practice of service-learning (e g, curriculum integration, meaningful reflection, time for service) and the logistics of public schooling in the U S (e g individualistic values, 50 minute subject periods, textbook orientation) must also be addressed The practice of service-learning will always remain problematic to some degree, given the structural and cultural obstacles of schooling which remain to be overcome Particular challenges exist within varied settings as well : urban, rural, multicultural, teacher education, etc There is also the issue of how participants' attitudes (e g condescending, prejudiced) can confound the effectiveness of service and the question of how much change can actually be accomplished through service-learning All of these issues are likely to contribute to service-learning being less popular in the social studies than one would hope These issues have been explored elsewhere (Wade, 1995b ; Wade & Anderson, 1996 ; Wade & Eland, 1995) and their relevance to the social studies will be the subject of a future publication (Wade, in press) We conclude here with recommendations for further research which will enrich our understanding of the practice of service-learning in the social studies Recommendations for Further Research Research on many aspects of service-learning programs is greatly needed In regard to student outcomes in the social studies, research on quality programs aimed at specific social studies goals and objectives would enhance our knowledge of effective practice Researchers should choose programs for study that do all of the following : (a) specify objectives based on meaningful service and student learning, (b) match objectives to service and learning activities, and (c) include considerable time to be spent on reflection and service Methods and tools for studying such programs should also be carefully matched with program objectives and activities In particular, studies focused on assessing political efficacy and the long range effects of service-learning programs on adult civic involvement would help social studies educators assess the viability of service-learning for their curricula Hamilton (1980) maintained that there are four questions which must be addressed to assess the effectiveness of any experiential education program First, do participants say they have been affected? Second, is there external evidence of the effects? Third, is there evidence that the program is responsible for the effects? And fourth, what is it about the program that was responsible for the effects? While question one has been answered in the affirmative in regard to service-learning, the other three questions cannot be answered conclusively at this point "Simply measuring some sort of change among program participants provides an inadequate basis for 3 5 0


Community Service-Learning inferring that the change resulted from participation in the program It is also necessary to compare program participants with nonparticipants using the measures ." (Hamilton, 1980, p .197) The fourth question is undoubtedly the most difficult to answer While we currently have some strong indications of program characteristics that make a difference (e g reflection, time) there have to date been very few studies comparing programs that are different in some dimensions and similar in others While these types of experimental designs are needed, researchers should not overlook the benefits of well-designed qualitative studies Yates (1995) noted that most studies provide little insight about the processes through which service is made meaningful and relevant to youth Yates' and Youniss' (1996) qualitative study analyzing high school students' reflective essays and comparing their ideas to Luckmann's (1991) "transcendant narratives" is one example of an approach that led to relevant findings about the process of service-learning Conclusion We began this paper with a question : Is the inclusion of service-learning in the social studies curriculum likely to contribute to students' future involvement in the social and political life of the community? We believe that this outcome is possible, perhaps even probable, but only if servicelearning programs are carefully planned around social studies objectives and implemented effectively in the school and community Attention must be paid to both how teachers can be supported in their service-learning efforts and how service-learning fits within the existing school culture and community Further, social studies educators must not neglect the thorny issues that can lead service-learning activities to result in "feel good" exercises rather than the means for learning about and embracing the notion of public virtue Each social studies educator involved in community activities needs to reflect on the complexities of service and social action, and decide if she or he wants to encourage students to question the status quo, meet a community need, and/ or study the contextual factors underlying social issues While there is considerable work ahead to effectively infuse servicelearning in the social studies and to assess the effects of such activities through quality research studies, these efforts are well-justified Community participation in a democratic society should not be simply an option ; it is both a right and a responsibility It is the schools' obligation and social studies' mission to develop students who have the skills, knowledge and attitudes to participate as informed, active, and ethical members of their communities and this democracy 3 5 1


Wade & Saxe Notes 'See, for example, educational reports calling for youth service initiatives (Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development, 1989 ; Sarason, 1991 ; William T Grant Foundation, 1991) Millions of federal dollars have supported service-learning activities in 48 states since the establishment of the Commission on National and Community Service in 1990 Service-learning has also been promoted by numerous private foundations and the endorsements of such educational organizations as the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and the National Association of Secondary School Principals ZHedin and Conrad (1980) found that students in service-learning programs had the highest pre-test scores on the Personal and Social Responsibility Scale as compared to students in other experiential education programs 3 For the school, the potential outcomes of service-learning include improvements in teacher-student relationships and teachers' collegial relationships as well as improved school climate (grill, 1994 ; Shumer, 1994) A third potential outcome for schools is the positive relationship formed with the community 4 Communities also benefit from students' contributions through service-learning programs People in need, such as the elderly or individuals with low income, receive direct aid The environment is enhanced as well when parks are cleaned, trees are planted, river water quality is tested Agencies benefit from the new ideas, enthusiasm, and extra help offered by student volunteers References Alliance for Service-Learning in Education Reform (1993) Standards of quality for school-based service-learning Chester VT : Author Alt, M N ., & Medrich, E A (1994, June) Student outcomes from participation in community service Prepared for the U .S Department of Education, Office of Research No MPR Associates, Berkeley, CA American Association of School Administrators (1954) Educating for American citizenship Washington, DC : National Education Association Bahmueller, C (Ed .) (1991) Civitas Calabasas, CA : Center for Civic Education Barber, B (1992) An aristocracy of everyone : The politics of education and the future of America New York : Ballantine Barber, B (1984) Strong democracy : Participatory politics for a new age Berkeley, CA : University of California Press Barnard, J L ., Carrier, R W ., Dunn, A W ., & Kingsley, C D (1915) The teaching of community-civics Washington, DC : Government Printing Office 3 5 2


Community Service-Learning Barnard, J L ., & Evans, J C (1918) Citizenship in Philadelphia New York : Appleton Battistoni, R M (1985) Public schooling and the education of democratic citizens Jackson, MS : University Press of Mississippi Beane, J ., Turner, J ., Jones, D ., & Lipka, R (1981) Long-term effects of community service programs Curriculum Inquiry, 11(2), 143-155 Bellah, R N ., Madsen, R ., Sullivan, W M ., Swidler, A ., &Tiptop, S M (1992) The good society New York : Knopf Boyte, H (1991) Community service and civic education Phi Delta Kappan, 72 (10), 765-767 Brandhorst, A R (1990) What can social science research tell us about community service and the social studies paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council for the Social Studies, Anaheim, CA, November 15 (ERIC Document Reproduction No ED 338 512) Burch, H R (1921) American economic life in its civic and social aspects New York : Macmillan Burch & Patterson (1919) Problems of American democracy : Political, economic, social New York : Macmillan Button, C (1973) The development of experimental curriculum to effect the political socializations of anglo, black and Mexican-American adolescents (Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Texas) Brill, C (1994) The effects of participation in service-learning on adolescents with disabilities Journal of Adolescence, 17 (4), 369-380 Cairn, R W ., & Kielsmeier, J (1991) Growing hope : A sourcebook on integrating youth service into the school curriculum Roseville, MN : National Youth Leadership Council Carnegie Council of Adolescent Development (1989) Turning points : Preparing American youth for the 21st century Washington DC : Author Casket', E (1991) A rationale for service-learning : Outcomes for students, school and community In R W Cairn &J C Kielsmeier (Eds .), Growing hope : A sourcebook on integrating youth service into the school curriculum Roseville, MN : National Youth Leadership Council Clarke, M (1990) A critically reflective social studies? History and Social Science Teacher, 25(4), 214-220 Cohen, P A ., Kulik, J A ., & Kulik, C .-L C (1982) American Educational Research Journal, 19, 237-248 Conrad, D (1991) School-community participation for social studies In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 540-548) New York : MacMillan Conrad, D ., & Hedin, D (1981) National assessment of experiential education : A final report St Paul, MN : University of Minnesota, Center for Youth Development and Research Conrad, D ., & Hedin, D (1982) Executive summary of the final report of the experiential education evaluation project University of Minnesota : Center for Youth Development and Research 3 5 3


Wade & Saxe Conrad, D ., & Hedin, D (1989) High school community service : A review of research and programs Washington, DC : Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No 313 569) Conrad, D ., & Hedin, D (1991) School-based community service : What we know from research and theory Phi Delta Kap pan, 72(10), 754-757 Corbett, F C (1977) The community involvement program : Social service as a factor in adolescent moral and psychological development Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Toronto Corporation for National Service (1995) Learn and Serve America : Higher education application guidelines Washington, DC : Author Cremin, L A (1%1) The transformation of the school New York : Knopf Crosman, M (1989) The effects of required community service on the development of self-esteem, personal and social responsibility of high school students in a Friends school Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Lancaster Theological Seminary, PA Dewey, J (1916/1966) Democracy and education New York : Free Press Dewsbury-White, K E (1993) The relationship of service-learning project models to the subject-matter achievement of middle school students Unpublished doctoral disseration, Michigan State University Drost, W H (1%7) David Snedden and the education for social efficiency Madison, WI : University of Wisconsin Press Dunn, A W (1906) Community and the citizen Indianapolis, IN : Echo Press Dunn, A W (1915) Civic education in elementary schools as illustrated in Indianapolis Washington, DC : Government Printing Office Dunn, A W (Ed .) (1916) Social studies in secondary education Washington, DC : Government Printing Office Dunn, A W (1922) Community civics and rural life Boston : Heath Ehman, L H (1978) What does political education research tell us about how to teach citizenship? Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council f or the Social Studies, Houston, November 24,1978 (ERIC Document Reproduction No ED 162 959) Engle, S H ., & Ochoa, A S (1988) Education for democratic citizenship : Decision making in the social studies New York : Teachers College Press 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 Field, S .L (1994) Scrap drives, stamp sales, and school spirit : Examples of elementary social studies during World War II, Theory and Research in Social Education, 22,441-460 Franklin, B F (1986) Building the American community London : Falmer Press Furco, A (1994) A conceptual framework for the institutionalization of youth service programs in primary and secondary education Journal of Adolescence, 17(4), 395-409 Hamilton, S F (1981) Adolescents in community settings : What is to be learned? Theory and Research in Social Education, 9,23-28 3 5 4


Community Service-Learning Hamilton, S F (1980) Experiential learning programs for youth American Journal of Education, 88(2),179-215 Hamilton, S F ., & Fenzel, L M (1988) The impact of volunteer experience on adolescent social development : Evidence of program effects Journal of Adolescent Research, 3(1), 65-80 Hamilton, S F ., & Zeldin, R S (1987) Learning civics in the community Curriculum Inquiry, 17(4), 407-420 Hanna, P (1936) Youth serves the community New York : Appleton Hartoonian, H M ., & Laughlin, M A (1990) Social studies themes and questions to reflect principles and practices in a democracy In Social Studies Curriculum Planning Resources Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Hedin, D (1980) Evaluating experiential learning Character, 1 (4), 2-7 Hedin, D (1987) Students as teachers : A tool for improving school climate Social Policy, 17(3), 42-47 Hedin, D ., & Conrad, D (1980) Study proves hypotheses and more Synergist, 9 (1), 8-14 Hepburn, M A (Ed .) (1983) Democratic education in schools and classrooms Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Hodgkinson, V A ., & Weitzman, M S (with Noga, S M & Gorski, H A .) (1992a) Giving and volunteering in the United States Washington, DC : Independent Sector Hodgkinson, V A ., & Weitzman, M S (with Noga, S M & Gorski, H A .) (1992b) Giving and volunteering among American teenagers 12 to 17 years of age Washington, DC : Independent Sector Hunt, M ., & Metcalf, L (1955/1968) Teaching high school social studies New York : Harper & Row Jenness, D (1991) Making sense of social studies New York : Macmillan Kahne, J ., & Westheimer, J (1996) In the service of what? The politics of service learning Phi Delta Kappan, 77(9), 593-599 Kraft, R J ., Goldwasser, M ., Swadener, M ., & Timmons, M (1993) First annual report : Preliminary evaluation : Service-learning Colorado Denver : Colorado Department of Education Krug, J L (1991) Select changes in high school students' self-esteem and attitudes toward their school and community by their participation in service learning activities at a Rocky Mountain high school Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Colorado Luckmann, T (1991) The new and old in religion In P Bourdieu & J S Coleman (Eds .), Social theory for a changing society Boulder, CO : Westview Press Malvin, J H ., Moskowitz, J M ., Schaps, E ., & Schaeffer, G A (1982) Evaluation of two alternatives programs for junior high school students (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No ED 221606) Marker, G W (1980) Goals for political and social participation Journal of Research and Development in Education, 13 (2), 72-81 3 5 5


Wade & Saxe Marks, H M (1994) The effect of participation in school-sponsored community service programs on student attitudes toward social responsibility Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Michigan McAdam, D (1989) The biographical consequences of activism American Sociological Review, 54,744-759 Melchior, A ., & Orr, L (1995) Overview : National evaluation of Serve-America (Subtitle B-1) Cambridge, MA : Abt Associates and Brandeis University Center for Human Resources Merriam, C (1934) Civic education in the United States New York : Scribner's Morrissett, I ., Hawke, S ., & Superka, D P (1980, November/December) Six problems for social studies in the 1980's Social Education, 44(7), 501569 National Council for the Social Studies (April 1979) Revision of the National Council for the Social Studies curriculum guidelines Social Education, 43, pp 261-273 Washington, DC : Author National Council for the Social Studies (1980) National Council for the Social Studies essentials of social studies Washington, DC : Author National Council for the Social Studies (1989) Social studies for citizens of a strong and free nation Report of the National Council for the Social Studies task force on scope and sequence Washington, DC : Author National Council for the Social Studies (1990) Social Studies curriculum planning resources Dubuque, IA : Kendall-Hunt National Council for the Social Studies (1994) National Council for the Social Studies curriculum standards for the social studies Washington, DC : Author Newmann, F M (1975) Education for citizen action Berkeley, CA : McCutchan Newmann, F M (1989) Reflective civic participation Social Education, 53(6), 357-366 Newmann, F M ., & Oliver, D (1970) Clarifying public controversy : An approach to teaching social studies Boston : Little, Brown Newmann, F M ., & Rutter, R A (1986) A profile of high school community service programs Educational Leadership, 43(4), 65-71 Newmann, F M ., & Rutter, R A (1983) The effects of high school community service programs on students' social development Madison, WI : Wisconsin Center for Education Research, University of Wisconsin Niemi, R G ., & Junn, J (1993) Civics courses and the political knowledge of high school seniors Paper presented at the American Political Science Association Annual Meeting, September, Washington, D C Ochoa, A ., & Manson, G (1%9) The world we live in Olympia, WA : Washington State Office of Public Instruction (ERIC Document Reproduction No ED 048 022) Ochoa, A & Madson, G (1972) Social issues, social action, and the social studies Elementary School Journal, 72 (5), 230-7 3 5 6


Community Service-Learning Oliver, D ., & Shaver, J P (1966) Teaching public issues in the high school Boston : Houghton Mifflin O'Connell, B E (1983) Long term effects of community service projects Unpublished doctoral dissertation, State University of New York at Buffalo Osipow, S H (1979) Evaluating experiential education : Which part of the elephant should we study? In M R Crowe & C A Beckman (Eds .) Perspectives on investigating the consequences of experiential education Columbus, OH : The National Center for Research in Vocational Education, The Ohio State University Parker, W ., & Jarolimek, J (1984) Citizenship and the critical role of the social studies Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Patterson, E W (1987) The effects of participation in required and not required community service programs on the process of self actualization in high school students Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Univesity of Florida People for the American Way (1989) Democracy's next generation : A study of youth and teachers Washington, D C : Author (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No ED 324 253) Ridgell, C E (1994) Student perceptions : Before and after student service-learning Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Maryland Robinson, D W (Ed .) (1967) Promising practices in civic education Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Rosenzwig, L (1982) Developmental perspectives on the social studies Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Rugg, H (1922) How the current courses in the history, geography, and civics came to be what they are In National Society for the Study of Education, Twenty-second yearbook Bloomington, IL : Public School Publishing Rugg, H (1931) History of American government and culture Boston : Ginn Rutter, R A ., & Newmann, F M (1989) The potential of community service to enhance civic responsibility Social Education, 53(6), 371-374 Sager, W G (1973) A study of changes in attitudes, values, and self-concepts of senior high youth while working as full-time volunteers with institutionalized mentally retarded people Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of South Dakota Sarason, S B (1991) The predictable failure of educational reform San Francisco : Jossey-Bass Saxe, D W (1991) Social studies in schools Albany : State University of New York Press Saxe, D W (1994) Social studies for elementary teachers Boston : Allyn-Bacon Seigel, E M (1987) Political education in the secondary schools Teaching Political Science, 14 (2), 89-92 Shaver, J P (Ed .) (1991) Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning New York : MacMillan 3 5 7


Wade & Saxe Shermis, S ., & Barth, J (1982) Teaching for passive citizenship : A critique of philosophical assumptions Theory and Research in Social Education, 10, 17-37 Schervish, P G ., Hodgkinson, V A ., Gates, M & Associates (1995) Care and community in modern society : Passing on the tradition of service to future generations Washington, DC : Independent Sector Schneider, J A (1995, Fall) Fostering equality through service-learning NSEE Quarterly, 21(1),10-11 Schug, M C ., & Beery, R (1984) Community study : Applications and opportunities Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Schug, M C ., Todd, R J ., & Beery, R W (1984) Why kids don't like social studies Social Education, 48(5), 382-384 Schultz, S K (1991) Whither civic education : Classics or community service? Education Digest 56(7), 56-60 Shaver, J P, Davis, O L ., & Helbum, S W (1979) The status of social studies education : Impressions from three NSF studies Social Education, 43, 150-153 Shumer, R (1994, August) Community-based learning : Humanizing education Journal of Adolescence, 17(4), 357-368 Sturges, A ., Barfoo, E ., Friesen, D ., Weaver, R & Wood, F (1977) High school graduates of the stormy 1960's : What happened to them? Paper presented at the Annual Conference of the Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development, Houston, TX, March 19-23 Thomas, G R (1984) Commitment and action : New directions in citizenship education research The History and Social Science Teacher, 19 (4), 238-9 Tyron, R (1929) Thirteen years of Problems of American Democracy in the senior high school Historical Outlook, 20(8), 380-383 Tyron, R (1935) The social sciences as school subjects New York : Scribner's 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, 19,283-305 W T Grant Foundation Commission on Work and Citizenship (1991) States and communities on the move : Policy initiatives to build a world-class workforce Washington, DC : Author Wade, R C (1995a) Contextual Influences on teachers' experiences with community service-learning Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association, April 15-20,1995, San Francisco, CA Wade, R C (1995b) Developing active citizens : Community service-learning in social studies teacher education The Social Studies, 86 (3),122-128 Wade, R C (in press) Community service-learning and the social studies : Challenges to effective practice The Social Studies 3 5 8


Community Service-Learning Wade, R C & Anderson, J (19%) Community service-learning : A strategy for preparing human service-oriented teachers Teacher Education Quarterly, 23(4), 59-74 Wade, R C ., & Eland, W M (1995) Connections, rewards, and challenges NSEE Quarterly, 21(1), 4-5,26-27 Warren, D (Ed) (1989) American teachers : Histories of a profession at work New York : MacMillan Waterman, A (1993) Conducting research on reflective activities in service learning In H C Silcox, Ed A how to guide to reflection Philadelphia : Brighton Press Wesley, E B (1937) Teaching the social studies New York : Heath Wesley, E B ., & Adams, M (1946) Teaching social studies in elementary schools Boston : Heath West, R (1938) Utilization of community resources in the social studies The Ninth yearbook of the National Council for the Social Studies Cambridge, MA : National Council for the Social Studies Williams, R (1991) The impact of field education on student development : Research findings Journal of Cooperative Education, 27, 29-45 Williams, R (1993) The effects of required community service on the process of developing responsibility in suburban youth Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Nebraska at Lincoln Willison, S (1994) When students volunteer to feed the hungry : Some considerations for educators The Social Studies, 85(2), 88-90 Wilson, T C (1975) An alternative community based secondary school education program and student political development (Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Southern California) Wirthlin Group (1995) The Prudential Spirit of Youth Community Survey Newark, NJ : The Prudential Yates, M (1995) vrnmunity service in adolescence : Implications for moral-political awarenss Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, Indianapolis, IN, March 30-April 2 (ERIC Document Reproduction No ED 382 358) Yates, M & Youniss, J (in press) Community service and political-moral identity in adolescents, Journal of Research on Adolescence Authors RAHIMA C WADE is Assistant Professor of Elementary Social Studies at the University of Iowa, Iowa City, 52242 DAVID WARREN SAXE is Associate Professor in the College of Education at The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, 16802 3 5 9


Theory and Research in Social Education Fall 1996, Volume 24, Number 4, pp 360-390 € by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies Continuity and Discontinuity, Change and Duration : Hobbes' Riddle of the Theseus and the Diversity of Historical Logics Mark E Blum University of Louisville Abstract Continuity and change in the narration of historical events are problematic concepts Thomas Hobbes presented their complexity in his riddle of the ship Theseus (1655) He argued against "one objective history" by illustrating how wholly differing visions of what constituted continuity or discontinuity in a state of affairs could be factually justified The recent national standards in historical thinking, articulated by the National Center for History in the Schools, ask students to demonstrate their comprehension of continuity and change in the construction of historical narratives This essay unpacks these concepts with the help of a revision of Hobbes's Theseus riddle so that teachers can more exactly comprehend their implications More importantly, this essay offers methods for discerning the differing understandings of continuity and change that students can bring to their interpretation of a state of affairs, and pedagogical suggestions for teaching history within the compass of multiple objectivities Introduction Among the essential competencies in historical thinking is the ability to order events in a narrative which identifies what was most salient in a historical episode and which also serves as evidence of its significance G R Elton, the Tudor historian, wrote in The Practice of History that written history is primarily the narrative of events This narrative is a tracking of change in the sense of recording "the movement from A to B" (1967, pp 10-11) How is this movement continuous or discontinuous? What changes and what endures? These become critical questions for the historian The recent formulation of standards of historical thinking by the National Cen3 6 0


ter for History in the Schools supports Elton's premise that written history is a narrative of events Moreover, it incorporates as a criterion in its articulation of such a standard the complexity of what narrative form a succession of events may take For example, one of the outcome measures of student achievement in grades 9-12 reads : "to demonstrate historical continuity and/or change with respect to a particular historical development or theme by reconstructing and analyzing the chronological succession and duration of events associated with it (1994a, p 22) ." In this essay, I explore the concepts of continuity and change, unpacking these succinctly stated notions in the spirit of offering more thorough definitions and other conceptual guides so that the historical thinking implicit in this standard and its supporting standards may be adequately taught Teaching students with this standard in mind is not unproblematic Thomas Hobbes, embroiled in the English Civil War in the mid-seventeenth century, recognized that there is little agreement among individuals as to what events constitute a cultural continuity or discontinuity As a product of his encounter with controversy over the state of affairs in England, Hobbes crafted a philosophical riddle to illustrate how differing interpretations of continuity or discontinuity and change or duration, exist about a common state of affairs I use this riddle to highlight the pedagogical issues that are associated with the previously mentioned standard which seeks to prepare students "to demonstrate historical continuity and/or change with respect to a particular historical development or theme by reconstructing and analyzing the chronological succession and duration of events associated with it ." The National Center for History in the Schools has created a K-12 sequence of related skills in historical thinking which provides a foundation for the essential ability of creating a historical narrative that imparts continuity or discontinuity Several of these skills focus upon an awareness of one's own manner of ordering historical events as well as a sensitivity to the manner in which others order events .1 These skills are also central to my argument because they introduce the variable of personal judgment into the construction of an objective history I am not sure if there was a deliberate decision by the National Center for History in the Schools to enable K-12 history teachers to introduce curricular approaches to foster and to clarify the role of personal judgment in historical narrative, but I argue the opportunity to do so is implicit and sometimes explicit in the standards Attending the critical role of personal judgment and the differences between individuals in their judgments supports attempts which enable students to construct sound historical narratives Contemporary historical practice has begun to acknowledge the centrality of an individual's meaning systems in the construction of what that person deems an 'objective' event This movement in the discipline is called the "linguistic turn" (Toews,1987) The linguistic turn is a catchword for a renewed attention to the problematic role of personal judgment in the formulation of histori3 6 1


Mark E Blum cal facts as well as in the interpretation of these facts Downey and Levstik (1990) with their recent overview of research into the teaching of history have clearly moved the variable of personal judgment in the construction of historical narrative into pedagogy Downey and Levstik refer to research that demonstrates the centrality of linguistic norms on one's conception of time (1990, p .401) Their article reviews research that investigates the "schemata" or "scripts" that guide each child's personal judgment in determining the parameters and significance of historical events (1990, p 401) Downey and Levstik underscore the metacognitive potential for pedagogy when they discuss the nature of the historical narrative that is generated by the time concepts" of each child : "(Historical narrative) flows on a chain of cause and effect and has a narrator who takes an aesthetic stance in regard to the elements of the narration (1990, p 401) ." Taking an aesthetic stance can be made a more conscious habit of mind for students who are aware of metacognitive strategies Helping the elementary and secondary school student become aware of his or her point of view is a metacognitive ability built into the National Center's K-12 standards Two of these standards in particular provide an invitation for the metacognitive awareness of one's own narrative choices and those of others : 1) to create a personal historical narrative in which a chronology of events is constituted from personal experiences that deliberate beginnings, middles, and endpoints (1994b, p 19), and, 2) to compare perspectives of continuity and change when considering differing historical narratives that have been generated about a common event (1994b, p 7) Although not explicitly stated, the latter competency implies that students should compare their own narrative perspectives of events with the perspectives of others Attention to the differing perspectives among students in relation to a state of affairs that all observe corresponds to contemporary historiographical awareness that the intentions and corresponding concepts of personal judgment constitute what we consider objective history This "linguistic turn" does not obviate objective history, rather it entertains the notion of competing, contrasting, or at times, complementing objective visions There is a pendulum motion in cultural thought which swings between an emphasis on what is objective or common to all, and what is subjective or particular to each individual to some degree The former emphasis assumes that all interpretations must be leavened within a common narrative The latter does not demand that there be one common narrative as the standard for each separate historical narrative When there is a shift towards the validity of each separate judgment, an age of "mulitiple objectivities" is the consequence Each pole of cultural emphasis has its own distinct value A common objectivity seeks to unify diversity The shift to the separate validities of personal judgment exposes culture to redress I contend that the present cultural atmosphere with its poststructural and feminist critiques of historical truth and the concern with the "linguistic turn" in historical thought are evidence of a pendulum shift towards 3 6 2


The Diversity of Historical Logics the recognition and increasing interest in the role of personal judgment in the construction of historical reality 2 Laurence Sterne formulated the subjective focus in 1759, quoting Epictetus : "It is not things that disturb men, but their judgments about things" (1980, p .1) A growing body of contemporary historical research agrees with Sterne Research on the historical thought of children has begun to probe dimensions of their logic and conceptualization that heretofore have been investigated solely in adult thinkers, and then usually only in either professional historians or significant thinkers in other fields Even before the present swing of the pendulum towards that which is subjective or singular to the individual in historical judgment, the generation between 1890 and 1930 conducted inquiry into historical consciousness from a similar viewpoint A significant feature of that age was a focus not only on the act of judgment as the formative moment of reality, but on an accompanying emphasis that each person's judgment had a singular character that persisted over a career of thought Individual style was a self-evident percept in considering how one thought about events Georg Brandes's turn of the century appreciations of ideational style in literature and politics (1880/ 1966 ;1922/ 1923) or Leo Spitzer's analyses of variations in the logical-grammatical style of writers (1988, 1961) are notable for erecting the idea that a person has a characteristic style of judgment Brandes and Spitzer studied exceptional mindsgeniuses As the pendulum of culture returns to the subjective focus of judgment, cultural analysts study 'everyman and everywoman' for evidence of characteristic styles of historical judgment Moreover, children are now treated as having highly complex minds with individual traits of judgment Nelson's (1981,1989) and Bloom and Hood's (1979) studies of individual differences in children's causal thought provide bases for comprehending how historical narrative differences emerge even in the youngest thinker Levstik and Barton (1994) have focused even more explicitly on the phenomena of "historical narrative" in elementary school children, research which is very pertinent to K-4 national standards in historical thinking, such as enabling the child to consciously develop his or her own historical narrative capability Neither Nelson, nor Bloom and Hood have considered the notion of an enduring style of historical judgment in the ordering of states of affairs, yet their research opens this conceptual threshold and its many pedagogical implications Levstik and Barton's pedagogical criticism and research, which are more proximate to historical learning than the cognitive-linguistic research of Nelson and Bloom, does consider the possibility of personal style in historical judgment, but explains the characteristic "scripts" chiefly as a social-cultural phenomenon (1994, p 3) Although the influence of one's social and cultural milieu is always a factor in historical judgment, my findings in this essay suggest that a personal style of historical judgment is highly individualized among children even from the same social-cultural milieus 3 A personal style can be gleaned from the logical relations which establish 3 6 3


Mark E Blum continuity or discontinuity, change or duration, among the events of one's historical narratives The balance of this essay is organized into six sections The first section presents preliminary definitions of the key concepts I develop The notions of continuity and discontinuity, duration and change in history are introduced I explain what I mean by "historical logic," "historical order" or "time stretch," and the "historical narrative" The second section considers Thomas Hobbes's riddle of the Theseus as a way of engaging the issue of personal historical narratives in the spirit of recognizing individual differences among students In this section I also introduce the major problem facing the project of a personal historical narrative, that of historical objectivity or as I argue "objectivities" The third section presents an updated version of Hobbes's riddle that I have used in teaching seventh and eighth grade, high school, and undergraduate students and which will shed increasing light upon the concepts of continuity and change as conceived in historical judgment This section includes an account of the methods I employed to collect evidence of historical judgment during the two year study of seventh and eighth grade students that is the major empirical focus of this essay The fourth section explores the nuances of the concepts of continuity and change as formal definitions, applying the concepts to historical examples which illustrates how historical "objectivities" can coexist among interpreters of the same phenomenon The fifth section reviews sample data of historical thought collected from the seventh and eighth grade children in order to show the persistence of personal style in historical narration Finally, I offer conclusions that explore the implications of a style of individual historical judgment for the teaching of history Preliminary Definition of Concepts The concepts of continuity and change can initially be understood in the same spirit offered by the National Standards ; that is as an intuitively self-evident polarity between those persons, places, things, and events that stay the same in some manner and those events that change In my discussion in this section and in the second section, I use the terms continuity and duration, change and discontinuity as synonymous sets Section four, however, will pose the polarity of continuity-discontinuity as genuses that express two diametricallly opposed philosophies of temporal flux in history Duration or change will be viewed as degrees of sameness or divergence perceived to occur in either of these governing perspectives In this section I will examine the premise that while each person is capable of comprehending continuity and discontinuity, duration and change, each individual will develop a point of view, a habit of mind, that stresses one perspective rather than another The philosopher Immanuel Kant called such an enduring habit of mind the "regulative idea" of the person (Kant, 1968, pp 547-548) 3 6 4


The Diversity of Historical Logics When I speak of the "logics" of history I refer to the diverse ordering of events that occur under the aegis of either a continuous or a discontinuous vision of the temporal-spatial flux that has either a durational or change aspect to its sequential moments Historical logic then will be the ordering of events by criteria that demonstrate varieties and degrees of continuing identity or constant diversity A historical narrative is an ordering of events, and thus will be considered an expression of historical logic When I say that one has a style of historical logic I mean that one orders events with a recurrent preference for continuity or discontinuity, duration or change One's "style of historical judgment" is a term that is synonymous with one's "style of historical logic" Defining "logic" as an ordering of temporal-spatial moments according to their continuous interconnectedness or their discontinuities is not arbitrary It adheres to Edmund Husserl's definition in his Logical Investigations that states logic is at its most fundamental level the relationships of parts and wholes to each other (1970, 2, pp 436-489) The quantitative and qualitative implications of such relationships fuel every higher order logical premise Considering a moment of interaction of persons in history as connected in an enduring manner to similar institutional purposes and values can be viewed as identifying those persons as "parts" of a greater "whole" Such an understanding promotes the notion of continuity in history Change for continuity thinkers will be most often understood as modification or augmentation On the other hand, considering the same persons as independent entities whose participation in an institutional setting is less significant than the freedom of their will, ideas, and abilities to move this institution in a wholly new direction may be viewed as conducive to a discontinuous view of historical events The independence of each person and each thing for discontinuity thinkers can be logically denoted as coequal "wholes" whose interactions can lead always to new directions Change for the discontinuity thinker signifies most often difference between what was and what is The relationship of the framers of the United States Constitution to English constitutional history and the American experience can be read in diametrically different ways within the locus of varying part-whole relationships John Adams always saw his revolutionary activity as a change continuous with the standards of the past His present was conceived as an interconnected continuum with what had been-particularly within the institutional history of mixed government as exemplified by England (Wood, 1969, p 13) Change for him was an incremental rather than a radical break Both he and his cohorts were conceived by him as being parts of a greater whole--institutional actors with deep roots in the cultural heritage His cousin, Samuel Adams, on the other hand, exhibited a conceptual preference for discontinuity in his vision of the historical flux (Adams, 1904-1908, 3 : p 21) Samuel Adams stressed a radical break with the immediacy of the institutional past in the establishment of American independence He conceived himself and his peers as 3 6 5


Mark E Blum essentially independent wholes who in the tradition of the early New England Congregationalists could choose to institute whatever new direction promised a better life Husserl argued that each configuration of a part-whole relationship implicated time itself How one related (part to part, or part to whole)either as something independent or something entailed-was in itself a "time stretch" of a certain character (1970, 2, pp 488-489) I call the "time stretch" a "historical order" ; the order in which parts are related to each other and the entailing or independent wholes create a distinct historical perspective--either that of continuity or discontinuity Within any field of particulars, one's grasp of relational factors are imputations of a certain connectedness or separateness among the entities deliberated that establish a past, a present, and a future of a distinct character Husserl helps one see that temporal movement in one's particular schema is conditioned by the kinds of part-whole relations that underlie the persons, places, and things which are the historical content A chain of parts linked in each sentence and between sentences to an overarching whole gives one a historical order among parts and wholes that is a continuity A setting side by side of independent entities or wholes in a sentence and between sentences that are not necessarily "of" each other in contrast creates a historical order of discontinuity Historical experience is fundamentally a product of one's notion of historical order Even more formal philosophies of history are based upon their creator's primary intuition of an historical order generated by either independent, interdependent, and dependent part-whole relationships among the persons, places, and things that constitute events Hobbes's Riddle of the Theseus and Historical "Objectivities" Thomas Hobbes's age was a time of conflict between those who preferred continuity and and those who preferred change in English institutions The growing tension between aristocratic fiat and parliamentary government that led to the English Civil War helped create an awareness that people's judgments of the same events were markedly different The character of the Royalist's historical order was normatively that of a strifefilled continuity, established by the interdependence between all persons who were "parts" of the same traditional order The Roundheads, on the other hand, perceived as a norm (especially as evidenced by the Putney Debate of 1647) the independence of each person, all prior to and apart from any entailing whole whatsoever The historical order of the Roundheads was that of radical discontinuity Such normative perspectives can be seen in the evidence of individual judgments In fact, an age will favor individuals whose historical logic corresponds to what the majority in the culture recognize as the most effective perspective for its immediate needs 3 6 6


The Diversity of Historical Logics Hobbes saw his reality as a fragile set of rules whose material outcomes were relative to the will of the populace Although Hobbes was an adherent to the traditional political-social order, he defended that order as an arrangement that had come into being at a given time in a willed contractual arrangement between the people and the monarch for certain purposes This hardly enamoured him to the future king, Charles II who, on the contrary, saw aristocratic authority as a natural phenomenon whose temporal origin was as unspecified and eternal as the God who had generated it After writing the Leviathan in 1651, Hobbes turned to an issuepersonal identity, that has resonance in an age that increasingly sees the change of rules as an option Hobbes recognized that societal rules influence how one understands self, as well as others The fragility of rules was echoed by the same nominal relativity in personal identity One's identity in time, or one's personal history, could be continuous or discontinuous depending upon how it was conceptually identified : . .whether a man grown old be the same man he was whilst he was young, or another man ; or whether a city be in different ages the same, or another city Some place individuity in the unity of matter ; others in the unity of form ; and one says it consists in the unity of the aggregate of all accidents together . .and from hence springs a great controversy among philosophers (Hobbes, 1655/1963, p 84) In other words, whether a personal history or a state of affairs is objectively a continuity or a change is an arguable matter, and as Hobbes begins to explore the controversy he shows us that there are at least several forms of logical conclusion that can be reached Given an event common to a number of historical analysts, this same event will be considered a duration of what has been or an inception of something new As Hobbes sees it, there is not one objective truth, rather there are differing objectivities whose bases are the several forms of historical order that emanate from the contrasting judgments of historians This entertaining of diverse objectivities puts into question the notion of one objectivity held in common Moreover, this conceptual position insists that each of the diverse objectivities is shared by all whether recognized by a particular individual or not No one of these perspectives is privileged The validity of a presumed objectivity relies on the coherence of its logical argument Cultural analysts in the early twentieth century similarly stressed the subjective role of judgment in constructing a world in common The reemergence of the notion of multiple objectivities is exemplified in Edwin Holt's "New Realism" For Holt, the variation in how a common state of affairs is ordered by different perceivers does not mean that objectivity is impossible Rather, each person's constitution of a shared event offers differing insights into that event Each person who 3 6 7


Mark E Blum exercises sound reasoning and judgement based upon evidence arrives at an objective position One can then integrate the differing points of view and arrive at a larger picture of what has transpired While individual differences in ascribing significance remain, a more complete picture of what transpires is possible by allowing the varieties of description to be considered as complementary insights (Holt, 1912/1970) Pepper (1942/ 1970), whose philosophical education was within this individualistic paradigm, argued later that each thinker had a habit of mind that was influenced by one of four styles of judgment, each with its own temporal-spatial implications (1970) Each "world hypothesis" as he termed the four options created its own objective claims 4 If we give some credence to Hobbes and his descendants who speak for multiple objectivities, in recognizing that a common objectivity is a problematic concept, we must question the assumption of the existence of a single common objective history that seems to be implicit in the new National Standards of historical thinking The problem of multiple objectivities was not considered, although the standard writers insisted upon cultivating the personal narrative of the student Will the teacher's judgment about whether Bismarck can be seen as a descendant of Metternich, or as a new order of statesman be the correct estimation of continuity or change? Should the American revolution be considered a continuity with the Puritan heritage or was it a sharp cultural change for the American spirit? If we agree with Hobbes, there is no privileged historical order that will satisfy every analyst Yet, to merely recognize the relativity involved in such a position is not an adequate solution for the teaching of historical consciousness The teacher must help the student recognize the range of historical orders that are conceivable and refine the student's own manner of marshalling evidence for his or her preference Hobbes's insight into the variety of possible historical orders in any state of affairs merely scratches the surface of possible categories according to which a historical flux may be defined and tracked The question is much more complex than Hobbes allows Yet, his taking into consideration the problem of multliple objectivities is a necessary inception if we are to adequately comprehend the problem Hobbes offers an ancient Greek riddle as a means of illustrating the manner in which a state of affairs may be seen as indicative of change or continuity : if . .that ship of Theseus, concerning the difference whereof made by continual reparation in taking out the old planks and putting in new, the sophisters of Athens were wont to dispute, were, after all the planks were changed, the same numerical ship it was at the beginning ; and if some man had kept the old planks as they were taken out, and by putting them afterwards together in the same order, had again made a ship of them, this, without 3 6 8


The Diversity of Historical Logics doubt, had also been the same numerical ship with that which was at the beginning ; and so there would have been two ships numerically the same, which is absurd But, according to the third opinion, nothing would be the same as it was ; so that a man standing would not be the same he was sitting ; nor the water, which is in the vessel, the same with that which is poured out of it Wherefore the beginning of individuation is not always tobe taken from matter alone, or from form alone (Hobbes,1655/ 1963, p 85) Hobbes uses the example of the ship Theseus as a thing in time to stand for any state of affairs, including an individual life What is change and what is continuity in relation to the Theseus? Hobbes gives us three sets of options The "repaired" ship is a continuity with the past if the criterion is the of the ship's form ; it is a change from the past if one considers the matter that constitutes it Conversely, for the "reconstructed ship" The third set of options goes beyond form or matter as criteria for determining continuity or change-one might call it simply "difference" : in the flux of temporal-spatial events no moments are ever the same, thus no object or person or other state of affairs is ever the same I will call this third option radical discontinuity in my augmentation of Hobbes's categories This third option is more evidently a philosophical preference It is difficult to believe that a person who chooses the third would ever argue for the first or second option Keep this in mind, for after presenting a greater array of options than Hobbes provides, I will suggest that each persons choice of answer does reflects a philosophical (or at least protophilosophcal) bias Generating Evidence of Styles of Historical Logic I have been interested in the differing perceptions of historical order among persons since I began teaching (Blum,1986) At the University of Louisville I taught an undergraduate course called Personal Identity in Western Culture for over a decade in which I developed methods for collecting evidence of personal styles of historical judgment (Blum,1983) As I became more cognizant of the recurrent presence of part-whole patterns in the thought of each student that generated a distinct historical order, I became interested in the age at which such a pattern could first be discerned in the individual I chose to look at a seventh grade advanced language arts class The class's instuction in grammar, and the conceptual as well as grammatical analyses of written compositions, enabled me to share my insights into the students' historical logic with them Chomsky has written that at age ten the child's command of language structure approaches that of the adult (1969) The logical thought of the child also is 3 6 9


Mark E Blum almost established in its adult range of competencies by ten years of age : part-whole relationships, cause-effect sequences, reciprocal relationships, and the constancy principle that underlies substance-accident judgments have been established (Piaget,1%4/ 1%8) Piaget does argue, however, that "formal reasoning"-the ability of the child to reason from hypothesesdevelops between the years of eleven and twelve (1964/1%8, pp 62-64) "Formal reasoning" is necessary for the child to maintain a consistent conscious idea and demonstrate it discursively Thus, by twelve years of age, the level for the present study, the child is potentially capable of reflecting upon his or her style of historical logic, and discussing its implications, as well as appreciating the implications of another's point of view Moreover, by the age of twelve to thirteen years, on the strength of the language arts curricula of the Louisville public schools, each child has exercised the broad range of syntactical competence that he or she must sufficiently possess to use what linguists call a "well-formed" sentence in articulating historical judgments My analysis requires well-formed sentences and the ability to develop a sequential argument It was understood that I would attend classes during the entire school year as often as I chose, but at least once a week The teacher introduced me as someone who would assist in instruction over the course of the year I oriented the students to the issue of differing historical logics in my first meeting with them by introducing Hobbes's Theseus Riddle The initial meeting took place in a room with tables that seated four or five children The seating plan was devised to encourage small group discussion of the differing answers among the children after the riddle was administered I distributed a different form of the Theseus instrument to each child at a table Each form had the same possible answers, but the list of answers was ordered differently to make it difficult for children to observe which answers were chosen by others The instruments were turned to their blank back, and the students were asked not to turn over the instrument I related the riddle orally, and asked the students to write a complete sentence on the blank side which indicated which of the two ships was the real Theseus, and why An answer in the student's own words is the most important evidence of their thought As I will illustrate in section five, the complexity of each person's own logical-grammatical expression is the most proximate account of his or her historical logic The list of answers provided by the Theseus instrument enables one to identify the preference for continuity or discontinuity in states of affairs, but this identification is only a beginning for an accurate comprehension of the nuances of a student's style Attention to the semantic choices and idiosyncratic syntactic preferences in the students own expository writing will secure a more complete understanding of his or her historical logic In my ongoing research in the history of ideas, my discrimination of historical order in the career of thought of significant historical personalities focuses upon characteristic sentence structure as well as their discursive concept development in de3 7 0


The Diversity of Historical Logics termining their historical logic (Blum,1995,19%) This Spitzer (1961,1988) inspired method of logical-grammatical analysis can be applied to the compositions of the students, as my discussion in section five will demonstrate Once their personal answers were written, I told the students to turn over the instrument and choose three answers from the list of eleven that best corresponded to their understanding of which was the real Theseus They were to write "1," "2," or "3," in descending order for the best and next best answers Three choices were requested because as I will demonstrate in section five a student's own words contain complexities that necessitate more than one logical option from the instrument's choices My version of the Theseus riddle follows I changed the name of the ship to the innocuous "Seapot" because it was a less obtrusive appellation for middle school youth A man owned a ship, designed and built by him, that he named the Seapot When time passed, as each part of the ship Seapot began to wear, the man replaced the old part with an identical new part After awhile, every old part of the ship had been replaced with an identical new part Then the man collected all of the old parts of the ship and put them together to reconstruct another ship Which ship is the real Seapot : the repaired ship made of the newer parts, or the reconstructed ship made from the old, original parts? There were eleven options on the instrument that broadly differentiated between continuity and discontinuity as historical perspectives A vision of continuity is offered by these options : (A) The repaired ship is the real Seapot because its form has been maintained (B) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because it was built first originally (D) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because it is the idea the owner made into the ship (E) The repaired ship is the real Seapot because the owner has kept up the idea of the ship (]) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because it has had the most experience at sea (K) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because the repairs were made by referring to its design The "time stretch" or "historical order" in each of these sentence options begins in the deep past of the original ship which was later reconstructed The present activity is inextricably linked to the origin of the original ship 3 7 1


Mark E Blum A vision of discontinuity is offered by these options : (C) The repaired ship is the real Seapot because it is the newest version (F) Neither ship is the real Seapot because both the reconstructed one and the repaired one are somewhat different from the original (G) Both ships may be the real Seapot because the owner has decided to keep both ships in working order (H) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because it is made of the original materials (I) The repaired ship is the real Seapot because it is more seaworthy, having newer parts Each of these answers depicts a state of affairs that has begun anew The "time stretch" design implies an acceptance of radical "breaks" between the original Theseus that was taken apart, and the new state of affairs Option "H" is somewhat problematic, as it allows the property of originality that dates from the initial ship-but it implicitly accepts the fact of its dissolution into parts Option "G" is considered discontinuity because personal agency to make radical departures is located in the will of the maker, who has demonstrated this capability I will discuss the minor variables of the concepts of "change" and "duration" which attach to these eleven options in section four Appendix A lists the correct answers in full for the eleven options My categorizations of continuity, discontinuity, change, or duration in relation to the eleven Theseus responses may be challenged The teacher who employs the Theseus riddle must feel free to make new discoveries of logical possibility Additional options based upon new insight can be written as part of the Theseus instrument Or the existing options can be explained as evidence of a differing logic than I suggest I always find new insight among my students as they debate which is the "real" Theseus I do hold that my range of options and my explanation of whether they evidence continuity, discontinuity, change, or duration are valid understandings, albeit not exclusive of other interpretations My experience with the riddle and its inexhaustible solutions reminds me of Noam Chomsky's comments on grammar-a finite cultural form with infinite applications The exercise of ascertaining the most fitting historical order for an answer to the riddle will sharpen one's sense of the many possible objectivities that are feasible I will discuss some of the alternative ways of understanding these answers in section four as I develop definitions of continuity, discontinuity, duration and change with more thoroughness In the initial meeting with students, the answers offered by the Theseus-Seapot instrument were discussed I entered into dialogue with the students to help them understand the correctness and value of each 3 7 2


The Diversity of Historical Logics person's answers I thus introduced the notion of multiple objectivities, which became during the subsequent school year a chief focus in the discussion of texts and student compositions on themes common to the whole class My activity in the class over the year was varied I helped the teacher by preparing discussion formats and topics in which the students could appreciate the differing points of views and the usefulness of their logic in addressing cultural concerns I suggested composition topics (see section five) that helped my observation of how differing historical logics took up a theme I took written notes on the correspondence between the style of historical logic of the students and their oral insights into subject matter during class discussions Central to my own theses was the premise that an individual gradually seeks ideas that confirm his or her historical logic This search and assimilation is continual Philosophers have called this search a "rational appetite" in the individual for the semantic and syntactic lexicon which convey one's inherent ideas (Blum,1996, pp 48-49) Learning from this point of view is highly individual Even grammatical error can be comprehended as the attempt to find grammatical forms that suit one's idiosyncratic needs 5 The second year of my study sought to broaden the exposure of the students to sources of idea that could enrich their lexicons I added a second day a week to my involvement in what was now the eighth grade advanced language arts class We visited the University of Louisville library two hours once a week The students were allowed to check out books, which became sources for individual compositions and reports The new students in this year were administered the Theseus-Seapot riddle as the class activities began Student leaders from the previous year helped the new students appreciate the "multiple objectivity" point of view taken in interpreting the answers to the riddle, and in the subsequent discussions of the texts and the student compositions throughout the year I must add that each of us is capable of appreciating the nature of a style of historical judgment different from our own What seems most evident, however, is our own style Pragmatists, such as William James, insist that one can move from continuity to discontinuity in judgment depending upon the circumstances and one's purposes at a certain time My evidence disputes this variation for an individual James offered a riddle of his own to demonstrate that how one conceives a state of affairs depends upon how one defines one's terms (1975, pp 26-27) .6 Hobbes would have agreed But, perhaps because of the turmoil of his times, Hobbes was more aware of the entrenched positions of persons with a distinct purview of continuity or discontinuity Continuity and Discontinuity, Change and Duration Continuity and discontinuity are concepts that indicate a fundamental difference in one's philosophical orientation to historical flux Those 3 7 3


Mark E Blum who see discontinuity in history tend to see periods and ages and epochs There are distinct cultural changes for which they may gather evidence There are for those with a historical logic of continuity no quantum singularities-no ages, epochs, or even separate periods, only small changes in the enduring variables or verities A historical logic of continuity will recognize political, social, and intellectual sameness in a culture or between cultures where the discontinuous logic sees only quantum differences Change and duration are descriptions of the flux of difference and sameness within the general fabric of continuity or discontinuity in history As aging and mortality as well as maturation and learning are inescapable evidence of differences in experience, there is no historical understanding that fails to see a temporal-spatial flux Moreover, even in a thinker who broadly sees radical discontinuities, certain durations will still be evident in the fabric of experience I will present an example of this point of view below in the economist James Buchanan who speaks of "relatively absolute absolutes ." Thus, change and duration play roles in every understanding Change can either be the eradication of a state of affairs, or its radical modification or augmentation For example, society's effort to end smallpox has led to its virtual eradication Here change is in the service of discontinuity Interestingly, those who wish to keep the smallpox virus even after the disease's eradication could possibly be individuals for whom continuity is central in conceiving historical options Duration is the continuance, indeed continuity of a thing or state of affairs Duration can be maintained by change that is limited to incremental modification or augmentation Often those interested in duration resist change of any sort An example of the latter position exists among fundamentalist approaches to the Bible, and the strict constructionist approach to the Constitution Even in these cases, some temporal alteration is recognized The appeal is to the "spirit" of the biblical word or the framers' intent which one can recover or discover in the present as the material differences between past and present can hardly be denied Both continuity and discontinuity thinkers may use durational thinking and strategies to support their values and aims How can that be when the very word seems to be the property of those who see continuity in states of affairs? Duration is almost synonymous with the notion of a conservation which maintains a continuous presence of something The most "conservative" vision, in the nonpolitical sense, of states of affairs is that which couples continuity with duration This purely formal definition of "conservative" has its echo in politics Conservative political thought tends to see every event as integrally related to those institutions that have always been in the foreground or background of culture For many of these conservatives, human nature in its predictable sameness guarantees this durational continuity One must be careful to avoid, however, identifying particular cultural values, such as political standpoints, with a historical 3 7 4


The Diversity of Historical Logics logic Many political conservatives do believe in history as discontinuity and also radical change These political conservatives see history as periods or ages-ones that are closer or farther from true cultural principles For these discontinuity thinkers a change of consciousness can help reestablish what should be conserved in the polity Durational values and strategies are used by political conservatives who are discontinuity thinkers to preserve consciousness of the standards which they wish to bring back Political liberals can also be either continuity or discontinuity thinkers who use change or duration to arrive at their ends Democrats who have a discontinuous logic may see Roosevelt and the New Deal as a period of truth which must be preserved in spirit by changes that address the new conditions of culture Then, there are continuity-oriented Democrats who see the New Deal as a cultural truth that has incrementally emerged in America, and which persists because of the very nature of the polity Norms must be maintained through durational strategies that limit change to at most modification or augmentation in order to maintain the verities of the New Deal One can see then that the many logical orders revealed by the Theseus riddle can occur in any political position as a study of the history of political ideas will evidence The above formal definitions of continuity, discontinuity, change, and duration can still be problematic in the face of an example, as the brief political illustrations should warn The logic evidenced by the options offered by the Theseus instrument may be discerned differently by those who select the option rather than my interpretation of the option's logic Remember, if my thesis is correct that each of us has a persistent logical style, the discontinuity thinker may read discontinuity into Theseus answers that I have indicated as having a logic of continuity Let us look at the first answer, for example : "A" The repaired ship is the real Seapot because its form has been maintained I call this the historical logic of continuity, with a salience of change Form appears as a continuous element in the Theseus This thinker sees that only by repairing the materials can the true form be maintained Perhaps one can see this vision as supportive of any active legal watchdog organization in a culture that supports a strong common law tradition Let us look for a moment, however, at a discontinuity thinker's possible selection of answer "A" If the contemporary political economist James Buchanan chose "A" as an answer, its meaning in relation to continuity and discontinuity would shift Buchanan speaks in his political economics of "the relatively absolute absolutes" in culture which are values and strategies born of an overarching form that guide everyday decision-making (1989, pp 2-46) Culture is always within a singular set of rules that constitutes it as a whole Each new form presents a wholly new set of life options Within this long-term form, short-term decisions which give the form duration must be made The "relatively absolute absolutes" produce durational strategies for maintenance of the overall form which gives 3 7 5


Mark E Blum definition to life in that time Buchanan would consider "A"-the maintenance of the form by reparation--a discontinuity, with a supporting strategy of duration Buchanan would see the repaired ship as a new form distinct from that of the reconstructed ship, but one that exists because of the constant repair which maintains that particular form The reconstructed form would be a proof to him that new forms emerge from the destruction of the old form Yet, Buchanan's first choice would probably not be "A" His first choice would probably be "G", given his orientation to change as a normal function of the human will : Both ships may be the real Seapot because the owner has decided to keep both ships in working order This answer suggests discontinuity, where change is as constant as the intentional choice of the historical agent Free will is the essence of history If something has duration, it is only because of choice In order to express fully the range of variables in his thought, Buchanan would need the several answers which included both change and duration This is why the self-formulated answer should precede the Theseus instrument with its eleven options The child must first be given the opportunity to think through the riddle within his or her own expression of historical order Examination of the Students' Historical Logic In this section, I examine representative responses of the seventh and the eighth grade students who participated in the longitudinal study I conducted over the two year period My intention is to illustrate the correspondence between a student's answer to the Theseus riddle and his or her historical logic discursively developed in essays written in this period For each child, every reflection that engenders a historical perspective will resonate with the same historical order In any essay, distinct part-whole relationships are apparent in a student's recurring style that have "time stretch" implications My analyses have shown me that the historical order conveyed by the part-whole delineations in any composition of the student is the same as either the historical order demonstrated in the personal answer to the Theseus riddle, or the implied historical order derived from the selection of answers from the Theseus riddle The essays written by the students during the two years I attended the advanced language arts classes varied in length and topic according to the teacher's curricular intentions I introduced several essay themes that! thought could help me examine certain historical logics more closely, but by and large I simply examined whatever writings emerged from the normal operations of the course My thesis, after all, is that the expression of a style of historical logic is constant Discerning it requires attention to part-whole delinea3 7 6


The Diversity of Historical Logics tions in any sentence or sequence of sentences that indicate either continuity, discontinuity, change, or duration The logical thread of recognition provided by the a student's answers to the Theseus-Seapot riddle will help the teacher-analyst become oriented to the presence of the characteristic historical logic in the student's discursive writings Robert, for example, conceives historical order as continuity His personal answer to the Theseus riddle offers the mix of ideas that will be reflected to a great degree by his choices from the initial presentation of the Theseus instrument His personal answer reads : The reconstructed ship is real because of the original parts The new ship couldn't be because it has no original parts to it The continuity of the original ship, its original parts, will be the criterion of what is real Part-whole delineation favors the notion of "parts" which by definition are dependent upon the existence of an encompassing whole that is an ongoing continuum With attention to "original" versus derived "parts", Robert maintains a vision of the authentic continuity of entities in history Choices must be made in each life situation between what can maintain an authentic existence, and what is a departure from the continuity of the real As Robert turns to the instrument, he seeks confirmation of his vision in his selections His first, second, and third choices, respectively, are : (K) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because the repairs were made by referring to its design (H) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because it is made of the original materials (E) The repaired ship is the real Seapot because the owner has kept up the idea of the ship There is an interesting violation of logical consistency by Robert in choosing "E" as his third possibility-holding that the "repaired ship" rather than the "reconstructed" is the real one This violation, which will appear in another continuity thinker I examine, helps to show in more depth one of the approaches to the temporal flux of history that is indicative of a continuity thinker By choosing "E", and thus stating that the repaired ship was the real one "because it kept up the idea of the ship", Robert has still preserved the original form in its presence as idea The apparent violation of logical consistency in changing from the reconstructed ship to the repaired ship as a preference has as its basis a trait of continuity as historical order that emphasizes an ever-moving temporal flux, a mene mene tekel as it were Option "E"s wording brings into view the temporal flux itself because of the verbal statement of successive change "kept up" Option "D" simply avers an idea that has a static presence-"The reconstructed 3 7 7


Mark E Blum ship is the real Seapot because it is the idea the owner made into the ship" Robert then is a continuity thinker who favors change in the service of continuity His still young thought can be likened in its logic to Albert Einstein's defense of the continuity of particle reality through changes of atomic state Einstein attacked Werner Heisenberg's vision of quantum change-a discontinuous model of physical existence Rather than a constant flow, the discontinuity thinker sees relative sameness, then a sudden, dramatic change to a new quantum order For Einstein, on the other hand, physical reality is an unceasing flux of particular particles that can be tracked in their incremental historical changes ; quantums are but apparent stages or phases of the atomic particle's career (Heisenberg, 1971, p 67) Robert's vision of history as imparted in essays corresponds to his answer for the Theseus riddle In an essay that asked each student to consider the merits of capital punishment versus life imprisonment, written several weeks after answering the riddle, Robert shows the value he places upon the continuity of form : I think that life in prison is better than capital punishment because you can give someone life without parole One thing people are always saying is that "they'll be able to go on parole in five years ." Robert prefers the continuing form of life in prison But, he is worried about the violation of that form by a premature release He infers that "something should be done", thus echoing his sense of "kept up" so that the form continues Interestingly, he translates the assignment topic of "life imprisonment" to "life in prison", thus changing the quantum, static nature of the topic with the prepositional phrase "in prison" to a state that implies temporal flux After a period of two years, Robert was given an essay assignment that asked "What is essential to me in culture?" This essay was suggested by me as its topic elicited the student's relation of the individual to society As I will demonstrate, a discontinuity thinker conceives culture as the volitional product of individual agency, whereas a continuity thinker like Robert sees culture as a greater whole that is represented by its parts His answer bases itself around a continuing form within which elements are in supportive flux of this whole-just as the original parts of the whole that is the Theseus : What is essential to me in culture? What's essential to me is fruits and vegetables so I can be healthy for my environment I also would have to communicate with my surroundings Music would be essential also Also things like T .V would help too People I know would have to be around me And besides walking, I would need something for transportation Like a bike 3 7 8


The Diversity of Historical Logics or something There's really not very much I would need because all of the things I've mentioned are around me now So, I guess I'm pretty happy how I am now That which has always been "around me" is the whole He wants only the preservation of the original parts that maintain this form Emily also has a historical logic of continuity Her personal answer to the Theseus riddle reads : The old one was made first which makes it an original The old one was built and designed by him using the same structure he wanted In these two sentences we have the notion of an original form that is maintained through its changing experience The "structure" is the form It begins its flux with the acts of being designed and built From a point in time, it continues its ever-moving flux into the present Its reconstruction is but another point in that flux of being built, taken apart, and put back together Emily in her logic of continuity shows individual traits that are somewhat different from Robert's .? Emily will emphasize the form as a flux in itself rather than the parts that form it Moreover, an element of personal will as an efficient cause will accompany her sense of the material whole Her integration of personal will and objective form is an amalgam she will bring to all historical judgments Her selections from the Theseus instrument that support this sense of original form in flux are : (K) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because the repairs were made by referring to its design (B) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because it was built first originally (E) The repaired ship is the real Seapot because the owner has kept up the idea of the ship Her choice of "B" reflects the continuity logic stress on incremental flux The number series is initiated with the notion of "first" Her other two choices have this same characteristic that is shared with the same choices by Robert Emily's proclivity to express the role of "will" in historical events may be said to exist in the selection of answers which balance the incremental flux of an objective reality with verbs that impart intentional choice (even "B" may be said to have that balance because of the verb/adverb "built first") Her essays at the beginning of the two year study and at the end express this same balance of objective continuity and intentional agency For example, as she writes on the impact of life imprisonment on the individual, one sees her sense of the incremental, temporal flux in its relation to personal agency in events : 3 7 9


Mark E Blum you can pay the price by living in jail for the rest of your life If that person does, generally, all the years of their life slowly but surely slips past which kills that person from everyday life The same logic of historical continuity interfacing with personal will is seen in her final essay on 'what is essential in culture' : Willingness is essential because without it no one would want to learn about all kinds of things or other people Willingness can help people overcome all the troubles from the past This connectedness to what has been is the striking feature of the continuity thinker Emily begins her essay on what is essential in culture with a recognition of the 'great chain' of historical being that provides a form continually for every act to fulfill : A sense of the past is essential for culture because without knowing about our ancestors we wouldn't know how to live according to our beliefs from generation to generation and how it would affect our way of thinking about others or a situation The discontinuity thinker, on the other hand, does not imbricate himself or herself with the past in this sense of being a link in a chain The past may serve as a disconnected analogue for the present, but a chasm exists between then and now Rebecca's approach to life imprisonment versus capital punishment expresses her conscious sense of quantum change : I think life imprisonment is better because people should be punished so they won't do whatever they did before Rebecca stresses personal agency as the lever of historical events, as did Emily However, she does not balance it with objective continuity Instead, a 'will' can institute whatever it chooses History is a resource for the present to shape Her personal answer to the Theseus riddle states : The new, repaired ship because people had to make it, and it is made of newer parts While Rebecca conceives of wholes made up of parts, these wholes, be they a society, an institution, or a thing, are the creations of individuals They begin and end with the will of the participating individuals Her essay on what is essential in culture stresses the personal agency of the person : "I think people are essential for my culture . .Just think, where would we be without . .people ." When Rebecca writes on the role of librar3 8 0


The Diversity of Historical Logics ies in culture, her answer does not present the institution as a threshold to the continuity of one's ancestral or cultural roots, rather as a resource for one's present activity : The word library refers to a collection of books gathered for purposes of reading, study, or reference The library plays a key role in many people's lives The older citizens who were inquired of say they go to the library for relaxation (One said) : "the library is a quiet, peaceful, and relaxing place to figure out your problems ." Many teenagers said they only go to the library for school purposes The logic of historical discontinuity imparts the marked difference between times because people create times and people are all somehow unique : "Because everyone is different in their own way There is not two same people in the world (sic .)" Thus, when she selects from the answers presented to her on the Theseus instrument she expresses her logic by choosing an answer that incorporates both functionality and singularity : (I)The repaired ship is the real Seapot because it is more seaworthy, having newer parts What of dialectical historical order? I had six of thirty three students in my study whose historical logic could be said to be dialectical My view of dialectical thought is that it is composed of quantum wholes that are discontinuous in their existence, yet related incrementally by some telos, thus expressing finally a continuity This is the situation of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis as articulated by Hegel and Marx There can also be dialectical thought without a telic direction White states in his Metahi story that dialectical thought is essentially a manner of deliberating problems, rather than a more formal historical logic (1973, p 428) Simply considering contrasting points of view and finding a synthesis is a mode of judgment all can exercise I consider dialectical judgment in its more formal teleological form in my own assessment of student work, as teleological judgment is more indicative of continuity \discontinuity issues .8 A dialectical thinker tends to see truth in objective forces that are superior to any individual will Change in history is always an objective reconfiguration of what has existed It is teleologically dialectical because an end state is sought through ones activity, ideally an end state that incorporates the several conflicting elements into one synthesis One of the above options that seems to touch upon the teleological, dialectical inclusion of both ships is "G"-"Both ships are real because the owner has decided to keep both ships in working order" The dialectical element is the sequence of differing activities and content that are unified by the constant intentionality of the owner Option "G", however, focuses solely upon the authority of a 3 8 1


Mark E Blum will, rather than any objective constraints Option "C"-"The repaired ship is the real Seapot because it is the newest version"-captures the moving truth of time and quantum change, but it lacks the telic nuance of a dialectical judgment Samuel may be seen as a dialectical thinker His personal answer to the Theseus riddle reads : The real ship was the repaired/ new parts The old ship was the reconstructed/was taken apart and put back together Samuel's grammatical struggle from the point of view of a logical style alerts a teacher not to grammatical error, rather to the grammatical experimentation required in finding a grammatically accordant form for one's logic (cf note 5) His use of the past tense is unusual when compared to the other students in this particular exercise The past tense will be salient in all his other essays when a present tense could be seen as a more normative expository expression For the dialectical thinker, if Hegel is correct, any judgment is inevitably "of the past" (Derrida,1982, pp 19-20, fn 23) His inclusion of evidence for a judgment after a slash reflects how a dialectical thinker uses temporal-spatial moments to complete a synthetic whole His delineation of separate quantum moments that are integrated into one synthetic whole is also seen in his essays For example, he writes on life imprisonment versus capital punishment : I prefer life imprisonment over capital punishment because I think your life should end naturally In this balanced, succinct sentence the reader is shown the two differing options which are both then artfully incorporated in the synthetic conclusion : "I think your life should end naturally ." Life imprisonment is life ending naturally, but the notion of mortality that is the onus of capital punishment is maintained as life ending in a more palatable form The priority of life in the face of death is reinforced by the next sentence : "Because we were not put on earth to die, and I think we should die naturally"-again a telic, dialectical progression, where contrasts of life, being "put on earth" and death are synthesized into a natural process and endpoint When he selects answers from the riddle options, he combines continuity and discontinuity answers in his effort to articulate the full range and implications of his thought : (I) The repaired ship is the real Seapot because it is more seaworthy, having newer parts (K) The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because the repairs were made by referring to its design 3 8 2


The Diversity of Historical Logics Samuel's ostensibly self-contradicting responses of "I" and "K" as judged within the logical norms of the excluded middle would necessarily draw harsh criticism upon him Just as in his personal answer where he seeks with grammatical license to combine alternating perspectives, he becomes vulnerable to condemnation as a thinker and syntactical stylist From the point of view of the variety of historical styles of judgment and the concomitant multiple objectivities that arise, Samuel must be understood as a young mind seeking through the manipulation of grammar to articulate his intuition of what exists in a dialectical reality The written and oral judgments of all students should be viewed in the light of their personal struggle to individuate a distinctive historical logic Undoubtedly, some of my interpretations of the statements of the above students will be challenged I welcome this response, just as! encourage each teacher to plunge into the complex waters of individual difference, seeking to comprehend each student's historical point of view in its singularity so that each student may realize this himself Pedagogical Implications of Diverse Historical Logics The growing influence of postmodern thought on the humanities and the social sciences has helped teachers become sensitive to the limited validity of "one size fits all" What I present in my discussion of the implications of the Theseus riddle both supports the postmodern emphasis on "difference" and augments its nihilistic relativity with the notion of different, but coherent "objectivities" Differing logics of history can be recognized as persistent styles of judgment Every child's sentences are somewhat different when describing a state of affairs that is mutually shared Attention to these differences in the light of the idea of multiple objectivities can direct a teacher towards further exploration of what the child indeed intends with his or her idiosyncratic statement One should follow Levine's recommendation that "synonymous" semantic and syntactic structures should be taught to offer as wide a range of choice as possible as children acquire language skills (1980) The enriched lexicon will enable the singularity of a child's style of historical judgment to manifest itself A teacher in the language arts as well as in history can offer each student kinds of evidence and models of apt expression that reflect each student's style I have given examples of historically significant continuity and discontinuity thinkers in this paper in part to model this possibility The teacher can begin an instructional year by administering the Theseus Riddle to students in order to gain an initial understanding of their historical logic (see Appendix B) The discussion of common texts can be conducted so that the points of view of students are compared and contrasted in terms of the historical logics, and the implications of these logics for life in culture explicated A greater comprehension of the students' historical logic can be won by close analysis of the logical-gram3 8 3


Mark E Blum matical style of their characteristic sentence construction and in their sequential development of an argument The type of analysis I conduct in my argument in section five can provide a guide for this further investigation 9 The effort to establish a metacognitive awareness of one's own style of historical judgment and that of others can benefit both ones self concept and generate accurate empathy The teacher can enable children to realize that each has a distinct point of view whose development can significantly individuate his or her thinking Moreover, this singular historical judgment can be shown as a way of thinking no other person can bring to the same state of affairs The teacher can enable each person to see the justice of other positions on common issues by referring to specific logical differences The consequences of such metacognition are significant for our present cultural effort to address racial and gender stereotypes, as the diversity of styles of historical judgment exist in all such groups Moreover, the pluralistic challenge of the present finds in the variety of historical logics a means of integrating differences into a complementary, common whole Each historical logic sheds a differing, valuable light upon an issue No one logic exhausts the many sides of an issue ; each augments one's understanding of the issue that is common to all This singularity can in its complementing potential help build a better world in common with others, because without each particular judgment the world would lack something Just as Thomas Hobbes, I feel a recognition of the coexistence of differing historical logics will help create through its metacognitive clarification of historical order a greater understanding of the day to day conflicts with our fellows Appendix A Answers to the Seapot Riddle An answer reflects a particular type of historical order The answers that imply a vision of continuity-either duration (d) or change (c)-are : A (c), B (d), D (d), E (c), J (d), K (d) The answers that imply a vision of discontinuity--wither duration or change-mare : C (c), F (c), G (c), H (d), 1(c) Appendix B Seapot Riddle A man owned a ship, designed and built by him, that he named the Seapot When time passed, as each part of the ship Seapot began to wear, the man replaced the old part with an identical new part After awhile, every old part of the ship had been replaced with an identical new part Then the man collected all of the old parts of the ship and put them together to reconstruct 3 8 4


The Diversity of Historical Logics another ship Which ship is the real Seapot : the repaired ship made of the newer parts, or the reconstructed ship made from the old, original parts? Directions : Below are listed several answers to the question asked above Please indicate three answers you think are the best by writing "1" for your best answer, "2" for your second best answer, and "3" for your third best answer Because every answer is correct in its own way, pick the three answers that suit you as being the best t A The repaired ship is the real Seapot because its form has been maintained t B The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because it was built first originally t C The repaired ship is the real Seapot because it is the newest version t D The reconstructed ship is the real Sea pot because it is the idea the owner made into the ship t E The repaired ship is the real Seapot because the owner has kept up the idea of the ship t F Neither ship is the real Sea pot because both the reconstructed one and the repaired one are somewhat different from the original t G Both ships may be the real Sea pot because the owner had decided to keep both ships in working order t H The reconstructed ship is the real Sea pot because it is made of the original materials t I The repaired ship is the real Seapot because it is more seaworthy, having newer parts t T The reconstructed ship is the real Sea pot because it has had the most experience at sea t K The reconstructed ship is the real Seapot because the repairs were made by referring to its design Notes For example, among the National Center for History in the Schools' standards of historical compehension for K-4 are "develop a beginning sense of hisorical time-past, present, and future-in order to identify the temporal sequence in which events occurred . .interpret and create time lines, and explain patterns of historical continuity and change" (1994b, p 6), "the ability to listen to and read historical stories and narratives with understanding, to identify the basic elements of the narrative or story structure ( . .sequence of events, their causes, and their outcome) ; and to develop the ability to describe the past through the eyes and experiences of those who were there, as revealed through their literature, art, artifacts, and other records of their time" (1994b, pp 6-7) Similar learning goals can be gleaned from several of the 5-12 standards, among them "students should be able to establish temporal order in constructing historical narratives of their own (1994a, p 21), "compare competing historical narratives," "consider 3 8 5


Mark E Blum multiple perspectives," and "evaluate major debates among historians" (1994a, p .19) 2 Poststructural historical criticism focuses upon the cultural relativity of conceptual categories and rhetorical strategies used to order and interpret historical events Structuralist tradition does not question the permanent validity of certain categories or narrative forms The study of language in its grammatical and stylistic norms is central to historical conceptions of "truth" and "objectivity" Paul Ricouer (1983/1984) presents the most thorough arguments in questioning the tradition of historical objectivity His two volume work includes a score of contemporary thinkers who have contributed to poststructuralist conceptions of historical narration Feminist criticism often adopts poststructuralist argumentation, as it enables the notion of "objective history" to be seen as an imposition of certain categories of explanation and certain forms of narrative order that have served male-oriented cultural dominance The introduction to Clark, Joeres, and Sprengnether's Revising the Word and the World, Essays in Feminist Literary Criticism (1993) explains quite well the contemporary feminist attention to how semantics and stylistics affect historical narration Michele Z Rosaldo's "Moral /Analytic dilemmas posed by the intersection of feminism and social science (1983/1987)" provides one of the more thoughtful deliberations of the questionable categories that have served as evidence for the quality and meaning of cultural history s All the children in my study over the two year period of seventh and eighth grade were of families ranked in the lowest socio-economic status on a five point scale determined by the location and real-estate value of their home The scale was constructed by the Jefferson County Public Schools (Louisville) in Kentucky A mixed race and gender group of fourteen children and gender were tracked in an advanced language arts class over their seventh and eighth grade years Nineteen more were tracked for one year solely in the eighth a de Analysis of their written work and the Theseus riddle evidenced ar during habit of mind in the style of historical judgment in the children The eleven possible responses on the Theseus riddle all came into play within this group There were no preferences that were grouped according to gender or race The study was not constructed to determine whether socio-cultural or psychogenetic causation were responsible for style The emphasis in my research thus far with children as well as adults has been to identify enduring, recurrent habits of mind, rather than to answer the profound question of cause a Most recently White (1973) constructed a theory of multiple objectivities of historical judgment based upon Pepper's work (1973) s I am suggesting that there is a nonconscious "parapraxis" in the grammatical error whose cause is the search for an apt expression for one's logical style Roger Brown and Ursula Bellugi (1964) describe the trial and error of children in assimilating cultural vocabulary to the logic of latent syntactical structures My augmentation of Brown and Bellugi's theory is 3 8 6


The Diversity of Historical Logics that the epigenetic process they describe may be also the same process for acquiring a grammar to express the proclivity of one's inherent historical logic Adine Levine (1980)in considering the teaching of grammar to children emphasizes conscious choice, but her deliberations stem from the recognition of differing "styles" of expression preferred by different individuals She recommends that children be exposed to diversity in grammatical expression so that each child will develop a broad palette of semantic and syntactical competence She writes : "stylistic choice involves grammatically optional selection There can be no question of style unless the speaker or writer has the possibility of choosing between alternative forms of expression" (1980, p 3) 6 William James's riddle involves a man who attempts to go around a squirrel on a tree who moves each time the man moves James points out that there are several answers as to whether the man achieves his goal of going around the squirrel, each depending upon how "go round" is defined One solution is that he can be said to have circumnavigated the squirrel by moving through all the directions of the compass round the tree The other is that he never actually circles the squirrel because it is always on the move The former solution relies on "go round" defined by a conceptual system of measure ; the latter defines "go round" by the actual movement The existence of nuanced differences in a shared historical logic, be it continuity or discontinuity, is testimony to the cultural tradition of "individuation theory" Leibniz postulated an ultimately singular idea in each person whose expression could be discerned in idiosyncratic expressions of grammar (1765/1916, pp 78-79, 304-305) I studied adolescents who were identical and fraternal twins with an interest in seeing whether they had the same historical logics Identical twins in every case had the same historical logic-either continuity or discontinuity-but, within this sameness were interesting grammatical differences that indicated a logical variation in considering the nature of the relationships of parts and wholes This study is as yet unpublished 8 I did not include sentences as options in the Theseus riddle that reflect teleological dialectical judgment The wording was always too complex For example, one wording might be : "The real Theseuses are both as without the repairs neither the new ship nor the old could coexist ." As my study was formative, I intended to add dialectically formulated options to the riddle if the need became apparent As I have stated, teachers interested in using the Theseus-Seapot instrument I reproduce above should consider adding other options reflective other other logical possibilities The instrument is only an entry guide to the variations of kinds of historical logic that may be discovered My identification of dialectical thinkers came in examining their essays Then, I tried to understand how their answers to the Theseus-Seapot riddle reflected a dialectical logic 3 8 7


Mark E Blum 9 A further guide to an analysis of the logical-grammatical construction of characteristic sentences that convey distinct historical orders is offered by my study of two national economists, Werner Sombart and Max Weber (Blum,19%) References Adams, S (1904/1908) The writings of Samuel Adams (Volumesl-4) (Harry Alonzo Gushing, Ed .) New York : G P Putnam's Sons Bloom, L ., & Hood,L (1979) What, when, and how about why : a longitudinal study of early expressions of causality Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 44 (no 6) Blum, M E (1983) Dialogue with autobiography : integrating through the study of personality Issues in Integrative Studies, 2, 75-92 Blum, M E (1986) Identifying historical vision : critical consciousness of the thought pattern of an individual In Lucy Cromwell (Ed .), Teaching critical thinking in the arts and humanities (pp 95-115) Milwaukee : Alverno College Blum, M E (1995) Paracelsus, Goethe, and C .G Jung : the logic of individuation and its implications for health care International Review of Comparative Public Policy, 6, 245-274 Blum, M E (19%) Breaks or continuity in Sombart's work : a linguistic analysis In Jurgen G Backhaus (Ed .), Werner Sombart (1863-1941) Social Scientist (Vol 3, pp 1-109) Marburg : Metropolis Brandes, G (1923) Creative spirits of the nineteenth century (Rasmus B Andersen, Trans .) New York : Crowell (Original work published in 1922) Brandes, G (1%6) Lord Beaconsfield : A study (Mrs George Sturge, Trans .) New York : Crowell (Original work published 1880) Brown, R ., & Bellugi, U (1964) Three processes in the child's acquisition of syntax Harvard Educational Review, 34,133-151 Buchanan, J (1989) Essays on the political economy Honolulu : University of Hawaii Press Chomksky, C (1%9) The acquisition of syntax in children from 5 to 10 Cambridge, MA : M .I .T Press Clark, V A ., Joeres, R-E B ., & Sprengnether, M (Eds .) (1993) Revising the word and the world Chicago : University of Chicago Press Downey, M .T ., & Levstik, L S (1990) Teaching and learning history In J P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 400-410) New York : Macmillan Elton, G R (1967) The practice of history New York : Crowell Heisenberg, W (1971) Physics and beyond, encounters and conversations (Arnold J Pomerans, Trans .) New York : Harper & Row Hobbes, T (1%3) The metaphysical system of Hobbes in twelve chapters from elements of philosophy concerning body (Mary Whiton Calkins, Ed .) (2nd ed .) LaSalle, IL : Open Court (Original work published 1655) 3 8 8


The Diversity of Historical Logics Holt, E P (Ed .) (1970) The new realism, cooperative studies in philosophy New York : Kraus Reprint (Original work published 1912) Husserl, E (1970) Logical investigations (Vols 1-2) (J N Findlay, Traps .) London : Routledge & Kegan Paul James, W (1975) Pragmatism Cambridge, MA : Harvard University Press Karat, I (1968) Immanuel Karat's critique of pure reason (Norman Kemp Smith, Traps .) New York : Macmillan (Original work published 1787) Leibniz, G W (1916) New essays concerning human understanding (Alfred Gideon Langley, Traps .) Chicago : Open Court (Original work published in 1765) Levine, A (1980) Synonymous structures as alternative forms of expression (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No ED 193 913) Levstik, L S ., & Barton, K (1994) They still use some of their past : Historical salience in elementary children's chronological thinking Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, Louisiana National Center for History in the Schools (1994a) National standards for world history, grades 5-12 (Expanded ed .) Los Angeles : University of California, Los Angeles National Center for History in the Schools (1994b) National standards for history for grades K-4 (Expanded ed .) Los Angeles : University of California, Los Angeles Nelson, K (1981) Individual differences in language development : Implications for development and language Developmental Psychology, 17(2), 170-187 Nelson, K (Ed .) (1989) Narratives from the crib Cambridge, MA : Harvard University Press Pepper, S C (1970) World hypotheses Berkeley : University of California Press (Original work published 1942) Piaget, J (1968) Six psychological studies (Anna Tenzer, Traps .) New York : Vintage (Original work published 1964) Ricoeur, P (1984) Time and narrative (Vols 1-2) (Kathleen McLaughlin and David Pellauer, Traps .) Chicago : University of Chicago Press (Original work published 1983) Rosaldo, M Z (1987) Moral/ analytic dilemmas posed by the intersection of feminism and social science In Paul Rabinow and William M Sullivan (Eds .), Interpretive social science, a second look (pp 280-301) Berkeley : University of California Press (Original work published 1983) Spitzer, L (1988) Representative essays Stanford : Stanford University Press Spitzer, L (1961) Stilstudien (Volumes 1-2) Munich : Max Hueber Sterne, L (1980) Tristram Shandy New York : W W Norton (Original work published 1760) Toews, J E (1987) Review article : Intellectual history after the linguistic turn : the autonomy of meaning and the irreducibility of experience The American Historical Review, 92(4), 879-907 3 8 9


Mark E Blum White, H (1973) Metahistory, the historical imagination in nineteenth century Europe Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press Wood, G S (1969) The creation of the American Republic, 1776-1787 Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press Author MARK E BLUM is Associate Professor in the Department of History at the University of Louisville, 40292 3 9 0


Theory and Research in Social Education Fall 1996, Volume 24, Number 4, pp 391-415 € by the College and University Faculty Assembly of the National Council for the Social Studies Research, Instruction, and Public Policy in the History Curriculum : A Symposium Keith C Barton, Matthew T Downy, Terrie L Epstein, Linda S Levstik, Peter Seixas, Stephen J Thornton, and Bruce A VanSledright Editor's Note As educators and policy-makers have attempted to reform or revitalize the school curriculum in the past decade, the history curriculum has been the subject of numerous research efforts and policy initiatives But, as several of these authors note, policy recommendations are rarely informed by careful attention to either research on historical thinking and learning or to the concerns of classroom teachers The following essays, which are based on a symposium held at the 1995 annual meeting of the College and University Faculty Assembly of NCSS, analyze the relationships among research, instruction and public policy regarding the history curriculum, and suggest ways of conceptualizing the future of history education THEORY AND RESEARCH IN SOCIAL EDUCATION encourages reader responses that sustain and extend the dialogue initiated by this set of essays See the Information for Authors in this issue for reply guidelines Contested Terrain : Public Policy, Research, and the History Curriculum Stephen J Thornton Teachers College, Columbia University With controversies ranging from the proposed Smithsonian exhibition on the "Enola Gay" to the national standards for United States history, it is no secret that public policy concerning the aims of history instruction is in the news But who participates in the formulation of public policy? Who ought to participate? Whose interests are, or are not, currently served by the process of formulating public policy? In particular, given what re391


The History Curriculum : A Symposium searchers of the teaching and learning of history have documented, how has, or should, this research inform the making of public policy? The foregoing questions are addressed in the brief essays that follow ; they are based on the remarks of participants in a CUFA symposium at the annual meeting of NCSS in November, 1995 These essays will not satisfy readers looking for quick answers Rather, they point to complex, and often controversial, issues for policy makers, researchers, teacher educators, and teachers of history alike In a nutshell, these essays present dilemmas more than they provide closure Although the authors do not speak with one voice, they all make clear that-unlike as few as ten years ago--there now exists a considerable body of research on teaching and learning history They also all address the significance of that research and its potential for informing curriculum decision-making In at least three respects, the following essays broach crucial issues about policies concerning history and the social studies more generally First, during the latter half of the 1980s, curriculum debate centered around "history versus social studies" (see Thornton,1990) In the 1990s, this debate has been relegated to a less central position in policy making This apparent shift in the debate, however, may not be as much of a shift as first meets the eye As Levstik (1996) notes elsewhere, the distinction between "history as a feature of cross-disciplinary citizenship education and history . .'for its own sake" has been "a specious argument" (p 23) The question has never truly been whether history serves citizenship aims ; rather the debate has been about whose conception of citizenship it serves History, like the rest of the social studies, has never been value-neutral, nor can it be In other words, history can be taught as cultural transmission or cultural transformation, or something in between Thus, as Gross (1958) once pointed out, a United States history curriculum can just as well be organized around current societal problems as a traditional, chronological survey Indeed, Gross observed, it is possible to combine both approaches (p 187) What is actually at stake in current public policy disputes about history curriculum is whose world view is presented by educating agencies in the United States In these circumstances, we should hardly be surprised that policy makers have largely ignored research which does not support their world view And even this assumes that policy makers are aware of the existence of such research and its potential relevance Second, some members of NCSS in general, and CUFA in particular, have in recent years lamented what they see as NCSS's insufficiently assertive role in curriculum policy making As the following essays illustrate, however, a more assertive role for NCSS would confront two formidable obstacles The first of these is, as is clear in more than one of the essays, that NCSS is only one of a number of competing, sometimes conflicting, voices in curriculum policy making These competing voices include such groups as NAEP, the national standards bodies, and the history learned societies 3 9 2


The History Curriculum : A Symposium Even if NCSS claimed a dominant role, it is by no means evident that other groups would grant legitimacy to such a claim The other obstacle to NCSS asserting itself is that the organization seldom speaks with one voice on many of the major curriculum issues of the day Since its founding in 1921 (Thornton,19%) until the 1990s (Risinger,1991), NCSS has functioned more as an umbrella type organization containing a wide variety of not always consistent views among its membership Finally, the manifest purpose of public policy making is, of course, to serve the public In terms of history curriculum, however, it is not at all clear that there is one public to be served, in the United States as well as other nations such as Canada Increasingly, it appears that there are "publics" rather than a public-and the views of these publics do not always coincide Under these conditions, consultations with all concerned parties in the formulation of public policy easily becomes more ritualistic than real As the following essays reveal, the socio-political context in which research is conceptualized, conducted, and sees the light of day goes along way towards determining if and in what ways it will be utilized Negotiating the History Landscape Linda S Levstik University of Kentucky As a participant in the NAEP U .S history assessment, the late national history standards, and the formulation of academic expectations for social studies at the state level, I have learned first hand that history is among the most controversial subjects in the curriculum While this does not come as a surprise-as Thornton (1992) notes, social studies as a field is closely aligned with disputes about values in American society-and the controversy is sometimes subdued at the classroom level (Goodlad, 1984), it becomes abundantly clear at the point where research, instruction and public policy intersect-or, more precisely, where they fail to intersect Sometimes researchers argue that if the policy makers would pay attention to the research there would be fewer silly recommendations for history reform (Grant & VanSledright,1995) Others suggest that if teachers had a firmer grasp of disciplinary content knowledge they would be more likely to implement effective instructional strategies (Wilson & Wineburg,1993) Both points make intuitive sense, but I would suggest that the issues are much more complex than either a failure to communicate or a lack of content knowledge First, and perhaps most fundamentally, policy makers, researchers, teachers of history, and the general public don't agree on the aims of teaching and learning history (Levstik,19% ; Lybarger,1991 ; Seixas,1993b) This, of course, has been a problem for social studies in general (Garcia & Buendia, 1995 ; Shaver, 1995 ; Thornton, 1992) Cultural transmission and cultural 3 9 3


The History Curriculum : A Symposium transformation aims have coexisted in history-as well as social studieseducation for some time, and various individuals hold both perspectives to some degree In 1912, James Harvey Robinson argued for a history that would illumine the present, investigate the conditions of everyday life, and be committed to social progress, social science, and education (Tyron 1934 ; Lybarger 1991) In 1982 James Banks, then President of NCSS, suggested that "educators should strive to attain a delicate balance between educating students to be bearers of a continuous cultural tradition and educating them to be social critics interested in social change" (Downey, 1982, p x) To some extent, NCSS has striven to reflect this balance among often contending perspectives (Levstik,1995) In the larger culture, however, a number of critics suggest that social studies, including history, is more often used to transmit a narrow band of culture than to transform anything (Asante, 1991 ; Downey, 1985 ; Holt, 1990 ; Jenness, 1990 ; Noddings, 1992 ; Tetreault,1986 ; Thornton,1992) A cultural transformation perspective would require a radical shift in both classroom practice and public policy At the classroom level, instruction would shift from an emphasis on "a story well told" (or, the story as told in a textbook), to an emphasis on "sources well scrutinized ." In other words, students would do history-pose questions, collect and analyze sources, struggle with issues of significance, and, ultimately, build their own historical interpretations As historian Tom Holt explains : In the process of doing history, one can be changed, transformed by what one learns Stories have power The power to change things Thus history is not dead but alive, alive in the sense that our collective memory is what provides the starting points for understanding our contemporary world Alive also in the sense that through these narratives we make accessible certain ideas about human possibilities and foreclose others . .In short, who we understand ourselves to have been plays a powerful role in shaping our ideas of who we might yet become (Holt,1990, pp 9-10) Obviously, it is possible to "do history" without transforming anything If the range of problems to be investigated and sources to be scrutinized provide little challenge to prevailing interpretations or assumptions, doing history may be simply a more interesting approach to cultural transmission Consider, for instance, the impact of using primary sources that emphasize the agency of some men-conquering the wilderness or leading social movements, perhaps-while presenting most women as acted upon-following husbands to new lands, and silent on public issues Particularly when such instruction matches school practice where girls are often taught to be passive and boys active, there is little modeling of alternatives for the future, nor can there be much expectation that such history 3 9 4


The History Curriculum : A Symposium will be transformative (Sadker & Sadker, 1994 ; Tetreault,1986) If, on the other hand, the problems and sources used in doing history challenge students and teachers to rethink their assumptions about the past and to reimagine both the present and future, history can be transformative (Gardner & Boix-Mansilla,1994 ; Holt,1990 ; Kammen,1991 ; Kessler-Harris, 1990) Such an instructional stance, however, is not well supported by public policy that assumes that history is a finished product rather than a work in progress-a policy that mires itself in arguments over how many times either Paul Revere or the KKK ought to appear in the curriculum, or over which women or people of color make the list As Linda Gordon (1990) notes, adding a few women or people of color to a list of decontextualized names, dates and events will not help much Lists are inherently misleading, separating people and events from the contexts and questions that make them historically significant Yet in some instances even these modest additions to the history curriculum are perceived as threatening (Cheney, 1995) A second, and related, issue that makes it unlikely that policy makers will attend to research on historical thinking is that those aspects of historical thinking such as perspective-taking, agency, and significance that interest researchers are likely to be perceived as threatening by policy makers In state after state, these are the aspects of curriculum reform that critics most vigorously attack, accusing curriculum reformers of revisionism as if interpretative revisions were anathema rather than the lifeblood of history (Appleby, Hunt & Jacob, 1994 ; Kammen,1991 ; Novick,1988) Of course, policy makers who live and die by sound bites and hark back to a mythological past might rightfully be made nervous by students who see themselves as having historical agency, and ground that agency in a knowledge of history and a healthy skepticism about its public uses Moreover, such a history curriculum is bound to be controversial, encouraging students to question historical interpretations long held sacrosanct (Kammen, 1991 ; Kessler-Harris, 1990 ; Levstik, 1996) In contrast, a single historical story has a good deal of appeal to policy makers and others who want to maintain the cultural status quo by controlling what children learn about the past But this is a stance that cannot serve us as members of the "global village ." As Diana Eck (1993) notes in regard to inter-religious relations, one of the implications of interdependence "is that we each depend upon the 'other' to know us as we would like to be known We are . .the keepers of another's image Yet . .we note how little, even now, we understand one another" (p 218) Part of the problem, from Eck's perspective, is how we respond to "the challenge of our encounter with real difference" (p 168) Among the possibilities are : an exclusivist response : Our own community, our tradition, our understanding of reality . .is the one and only truth, excluding all others Second, there is the inclusivist response : There are, 3 9 5


The History Curriculum : A Symposium indeed, many communities, traditions, and truths, but our own way of seeing things is the culmination of the others ; superior to the others, or at least wide enough to include the others under our universal canopy and in our own terms A third response is that of the pluralist : Truth is not the exclusive or inclusive possession of any one tradition or community Therefore . .diversity is not an obstacle for us to overcome, but an opportunity for our energetic engagement and dialogue with one another It does not mean giving up our commitments ; rather it means opening up those commitments to the give and take of mutual discovery, understanding, and indeed, transformation (p .168) Knowing each other, then, requires more than the transmission of a single cultural story, more than comforting historical mythology, and more than opening the cultural gates to include a few more women or people of color Instead, it requires a willingness to challenge the historical record, to rethink what it means to hold something as historically significant, and to engage students in the task of building interpretations, not just receiving them Third, and finally, academic and public policy debates over the aims of history often seem divorced from life in the classroom For teachers, these arguments are more likely to appear in the guise of demands for depth and authenticity on the one hand and coverage and accountability on the other How are teachers to make the curriculum meaningful to students, relate it to real-world issues, and help students to study history in depth, while also assuring the public that their educational investment is paying off in higher scores on a bewildering array of state and national tests? In my own state, I see reforms that began by using the available research to transform the curriculum stymied by just this conflict Teachers may struggle to make their instruction more substantive, but they must also struggle to prepare their students for high stakes assessment Sometimes these tests are silly-an assessment item for fourth graders, for instance, that asks students to chronologically order a group of historical figures, two of whom are contemporaneous and most of whom are unrelated to the kind of history fourth graders might be likely to study, either by tradition or using the available research on the development of historical thinking In other cases where teachers try to build a richer, more diverse and historically sound curriculum they find that the tests do not assess this content-test items relating to women, people of color, or more recent historiography often wash out in field testing because so few children can score well on them (Hammack, et al ., 1990) In still other cases, depth is sacrificed to time constraints and coverage-more material can be tested with short answer or multiple choice than with extended response items Finally, the really interesting questions-analysis of primary sources, 3 9 6


The History Curriculum : A Symposium conducting an investigation or developing an interpretation-are rarely used because they, too, take too much time and are too expensive to administer Too often, the message to teachers is to teach to the test, not to the development of anything approaching historical thinking Finally, it is the teacher who is on the front-line, faced with conflicting aims, contending with parents and students with a myriad of problems besides history It is easy to tell someone, for instance, to work towards a pluralist history curriculum ; it is considerably more challenging to pull it off in the face of exclusivist and inclusivist stakeholders, either at the policy-making level, in the community, or among the students Toward a Synthesis in History Education : Research, Instruction, and Public Policy Matthew T Downey University of Northern Colorado The purpose of this symposium is to discuss "the connection between research, instruction, and public policy in the history curriculum ." The panelists can be excused for not interpreting this charge literally, as that would make for a very brief session There is currently little connection between research, instruction, and public policy in history education This is not surprising to anyone familiar with the field These three categories of activities are represented by different groups of people They have quite different goals They are proceeding in divergent directions Classroom Instruction The group primarily concerned about instruction is composed of university and college history instructors and school teachers While this is a heterogeneous group, most of its members have at least two things in common They are primarily concerned about transmitting historical information to young people and they are focused on relatively short-term learning goals The reports in which they describe their most innovative teaching typically pay lip service to long-term learning objectives, such as the development of decision-making and critical thinking skills (Fazio, 1992) However, history instructors and teachers tend to think in terms of student performance on term papers and projects, quizzes and unit tests, and midterm and final exams They do not hold themselves accountable for what students retain beyond the semester or year in which they are enrolled in their classes In the articles published in Social Education and The History Teacher, they rarely cite research literature that raises questions about how students learn history Relatively little is know about what students learn in university and school history classrooms, as researchers, with a few notable exceptions, have largely ignored the typical classroom (Goodlad, 1984 ; McNeil, 1986) One suspects that history teachers are, by and large, successful in accomplishing their short-term 3 9 7


The History Curriculum : A Symposium goals At least, policy makers alarmed about the failure of students to learn history never cite as evidence high failure rates in history courses Research Research in history education is still a relatively new field It has emerged largely within the past two decades in British and North American universities (Downy and Levstik, 1991) Although many of its practitioners have degrees in history, most are based in colleges of education As a group, they have been heavily influenced by the work of cognitive and developmental psychologists Consequently, they are more concerned about how young people acquire historical knowledge and how children of different ages think historically than about what students learn or fail to learn in the classroom That is surely one reason that most classroom teachers have ignored their work The researchers also publish in journals that university history instructors seldom read and that are largely inaccessible to school teachers Public Policy In the recent past, history education has been the focus of public policy at two levels Beginning in the 1980s, California and several other states established state-approved frameworks that attempted to prescribe the content of the K-12 history curriculum (California State Board of Education, 1987) More recently, policy makers have worked to create state and national standards (National History Standards Project, 1994a, 1994b, 1994c) The public policy makers for history education are a diverse group composed of legislators, senior university professors, and representatives of teachers' professional associations As a group, they have paid little attention either to research findings or to what goes on in the classroom Neither seems particularly relevant to their major goal, which is to prescribe and standardize the content of history instruction They are driven by ideological commitments and by a perception that young people know little history That perception is based largely on student performance on National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) test scores, which tend to measure students' long-term acquisition of detailed historical information The policy makers assume that the poor test results reflect a lack of exposure to the information being tested They never question that the NAEP data may also reflect how students are taught and how they think historically The response by Ravitch and Finn (1987) to the mis-dating of the Civil War on the 1987 NAEP test is a case in point They found that only 32% of 17-year-olds who took the first NAEP history-literature test placed the Civil War in the correct half century (1850-1900) A larger number of students (38 .4%) placed this even in the half-century 1800-1850 Instead of asking why so many students selected that half century, Ravitch and Finn were "startled" and "shocked" by the high incidence of wrong answers It did not occur to them that high school students may not think in terms of precise dates or decades of fifty-year periods, but may "chunk" events in clusters that make sense to them It may make more sense to students to 3 9 8


The History Curriculum : A Symposium cluster the Civil War with the events of the first half of the century than with the second half However, public policy makers have focused not on what history 17-year-olds know and how this knowledge is organized, but on their wrong answers to the test makers' questions Toward a Research-Instruction-Policy-Making Synthesis That research, instruction, and public policy should be brought closer together goes without saying The question is how can this be accomplished? It will not happen if the people involved in each group continue moving in divergent directions We should try to create a common ground where people representing the three groups can begin to think and work together The problem is that there seems to be no existing research paradigm or public institution that can accommodate these diverse perspectives We clearly need a conception of research that accommodates all three perspectives The three groups need to focus on how young people acquire historical knowledge, what classroom settings facilitate historical learning, and what public policies best support this process Perhaps we also need new institutional arrangements, such as policy-and-practice-oriented research centers for history education Such a synthesis of research, instruction, and public policy might provide a future for history education that is not a repetition of the recurring crises and low test scores of the past Historical Perspective Taking Among Urban Adolescents : Differences in Black and White' Terrie L Epstein University of Michigan Ongoing controversies over the publication of National Standards in United States History (National History Standards Project, 1994b) indicate the degree to which differences in historical perspective taking dominate discussions about reforming the public school history curriculum 2 On one side of the political spectrum are those who advocate that United States history should emphasize the common ideals, laws, events and institutions which bound Americans together and provided the foundation for ever greater democracy and economic opportunity (Cheney,1994 ; Ravitch, 1994) At the other end of the spectrum (Asante, 1991 ; Berry, 1994 ; King, 1992) educators and historians have argued that traditional perspectives which emphasize commonality distort the history of a nation in which the enslavement of African Americans fueled economic expansion and the denial of democratic rights persisted until the latter part of the twentieth century Missing from the controversies, however, is the consideration of the historical perspectives of those whom curricular writers and critics presumably are attempting to influence Young people's perspectives on United States history are significant not just because they form the foundation for 3 9 9


The History Curriculum : A Symposium constructing connections among past experiences, contemporary circumstances and future possibilities They also provide a framework for relating conceptions of individual and group identities to narrative constructions of national history The research discussed in the following paragraphs demonstrates that young people's conceptions of their own and others' racial identities influence their perspectives on the meaning and significance of people, events and themes in United States history And in order to ensure equity, educators need to frame the history taught in the public schools so that diverse perspectives on the past are not merely mentioned but are incorporated into all the lessons on our nation's historical legacy For the past three years, my graduate students and I have worked with history teachers and students in an urban working class midwestern high school, with approximately a 50% African American and 50% European American student population During this period, we have asked over 90 eleventh-grade students enrolled in eleventh-grade history classes to select and explain important people and events in United States history 3 We also have asked them to describe the kinds of historical experiences family members have talked about at home From this, we have constructed individual and group profiles of the important historical actors, events and themes young people in this community have carried into and away from their eleventh-grade United States history classes Our preliminary analyses of the profiles suggest that the adolescents' constructions of their own and others' racial identities played a major role in shaping their conceptions of historical significance within the context of United States history European American students constructed a perspective on United States history organized either around the theme of the progressive development of the nation state, with the shameful exception of African American enslavement and inequality, or around the theme of a nation state which represented both positive and negative development and which included racial injustice As a group, however, European American students constructed a portrait of national development as having been directed and driven by European Americans They also described the Constitution and Bill of Rights as documents which "gave us our rights" and laid the foundation for "the rights we have today ." Unlike their African American classmates, European American students did not consider the limitations of the documents' guarantees to most Americans up until or throughout the twentieth century Finally, European American students constructed African Americans as passive victims of abstract historical forces, as if historical processes like enslavement and segregation "just happened" to African Americans and no humanly crafted practices or institutional policies were responsible for African Americans' oppression African American students, on the other hand, constructed a perspective on United States history framed either entirely by African Americans' struggle for and/or achievement of African American freedom and equality or partially by the struggle for African American equality and by the 4 0 0


The History Curriculum : A Symposium theme of the positive and negative course of national development As a group, however, their perspectives on United States history differed from their European American classmates in the following ways African American students constructed African Americans as active historical agents, oftentimes in interactions with European Americans They described the Constitution and Bill of Rights either as having "given people rights" or having given "white people rights," and did not describe either document as the foundation for contemporary rights (which many students believed still were denied to African Americans in contemporary society) The African American students also cited "white people" or European Americans as the perpetrators of racial exploitation and explained events like enslavement or segregation in terms of European Americans' desires to "keep black people down ." Differences in the adolescents' perspectives on historically significant people, events and themes in United States history represent the influence of racialized identities and experiences on adolescents' historical perspective taking Specifically, European American students' and their parents' experiences with racial privilege and the congruity between the historical perspectives students and their parents were exposed to through the schools and the mainstream media and public at large made them well disposed towards accepting versions of United States history in which European Americans are the major players responsible for many of the "positive" changes in the nation's history Although recognizing African American racial oppression, they did not acknowledge European Americans' part in creating that oppression or in benefiting from white racial privilege On the other hand, African American students' and their family members' experiences with racism contradicted or were incongruous with the versions of United States history and contemporary society the students learned about at school and through the mainstream media and larger culture These students considered the traditional and liberal perspectives on United States history they learned about at school as "white people's history" in which people of color are excluded or marginalized from the narrative on national development Racial group differences in historical perspective taking also resulted in significant differences in the two groups' ideas about the credibility of various sources of information on history Although the European American students believed that the textbook, teacher and library books were the three most credible sources for obtaining information on history, the African American students believed family members, the teacher and videos by or about African Americans were the most credible The African American students believed their 1982 history textbook was one about "white people's history" and that most teachers and textbooks only tell a partial story about the contributions and experiences of people of color Although it may be difficult to reframe the United States history curriculum to reflect the differences in perspectives young people of different 4 0 1


The History Curriculum : A Symposium races and ethnicities bring to historical inquiry, it seems a necessary condition for rebuilding a sense of trust and credibility with students whose historical perspectives are not well represented in most public schools Otherwise, debates and decisions about the content and character of the history curriculum will continue to be played out on political and not pedagogical fields of play "Everybody knows what history is . ." Keith C Barton Northern Kentucky University Alan Griffin pointed out that "a great authority on the teaching of history once said : 'Everyone knows what history is until he begins to think about it After that, nobody knows" (Griffin, 1959, p 3430) When I see the kind of history that continues to be recommended for the elementary grades, I can't help but think there are many people who haven't thought very much about what history is Despite a growing body of research on children's historical understanding, the kinds of history that elementary teachers are expected to cover seems to be based on a completely unreflective adherence to the content which has always been covered In some cases, it directly conflicts with what we know about children's developing understanding of history Let me point out two key examples First, elementary school history-especially in grades four through six-focuses primarily on legal, political, and economic developments, and simply takes for granted that children's understanding of those kinds of institutional forces is well-developed enough for them to make sense of it That is a serious mistake Research on children's knowledge of politics and economics has consistently demonstrated that their understanding of those topics is still shaky (at best) by fifth and sixth grades (Berti & Bombi,1988 ; Easton & Dennis, 1969 ; Greenstein,1969 ; Furth,1980 ; Hess & Torney,1967 ; Jahoda, 1984 ; Moore, Lare, & Wagner, 1985) Moreover, recent work on elementary children's historical knowledge indicates that they know the least about political and diplomatic history : wars, presidents, elections, and the like are the topics about which they are the most confused, whether before or after studying a topic (Barton, in press-a ; Barton & Levstik,19% ; Brophy, VanSledright, & Bredin, 1992a, 1992b ; 1993 ; McKeown & Beck, 1990) If fourth graders study the development of their state's constitution, for example, when their knowledge of government is rudimentary at best, or if fifth graders learn about the American Revolution when their understanding of taxation and representation is similarly vague, it's hardly surprising that they come away not knowing much more than when they started Research indicates that children's knowledge of social history, on the other hand-changes in material culture, as well as changes in social rela4 0 2


The History Curriculum : A Symposium tions such as race and gender-is much more well-developed, and that even primary school students know about these topics (Barton and Levstik, 1996 ; Downey, 1994 ; Levstik and Barton, 19%) From a cognitive standpoint, social history provides a defensible starting point for instruction-a set of understandings which can be built on and expanded Within the academic discipline of history social history is also extremely important, as is the connection between social and political history For curriculum designers to take it for granted that elementary school history should focus on political developments indicates a lack of consideration both of developments in the field of history and of classroom-based research evidence A second major problem in elementary school history lies in the tendency to think of history as "a story well told," a phrase we've all heard bandied about a great deal over the last decade From an academic standpoint, that's nonsense, of course History isn't a story ; stories are simply one way of talking about the past, and any single story invariably involves selection, simplification, and distortion (Danto,1965 ; Gallie,1964 ; H White, 1978,1984 ; M White, 1965) Much of the business of history, in fact, is argumentation over whose selective interpretation is best ; presenting history to children as "a story" independent of human intention is an unconscionable misrepresentation of how historical knowledge is created From a cognitive standpoint, the problem is even more serious : it is not that stories don't match students' understanding of the past, but rather that they match it all too well When students encounter historical information at school, they simplify it even further, and do so in very predictable ways (Barton, in press-b) They tend to see all historical developments as linear, so that they think, for example, that all immigration happened before the American Revolution, or that the Westward Movement took place before there were any cities in the United States Elementary school children also tend to think that historical changes come about because famous people solved problems (e .g ., "Martin Luther King made a speech, and so then blacks were treated equally") Their tendency to impose these simplified, story-like features on the past creates a series of systematic distortions and misconceptions in their historical understanding Instruction should counter-not reinforce-these misconceptions It should help students learn about the variety of experiences that existed at any one time in history, should expose them to the complexity and unevenness of change over time, and should help them see that any single story about the past is always selective-that is, that it is an interpretation History instruction which focuses on the unproblematic relating of narratives, particularly ones involving famous people, misrepresents the past and the ways representations of the past are constructed, and thereby plays into the shortcomings in young students' thinking 4 0 3


The History Curriculum : A Symposium National Standards, National Assessments, and History Education Research Bruce A VanSledright University of Maryland at College Park Thus far the 1990s have been a stimulating decade for those concerned about how the subject of history is taught and learned in the nation's public schools In the wake of schooland curriculum-reform recommendations during the late 1980s from the likes of the Bradley Commission (Gagnon, 1989a, 1989b), the National Commission on Social Studies in the Schools (1989), and the National Council for History Education (1989), we have seen surging interest in the fate of history education in this country In the first half of this decade, the Federal Government (hereafter, the FED) has played a surprisingly large role, both directly and indirectly, in keeping this interest alive Two of the more recent and visible attempts by the FED to influence the future of history education have been the release of the National Standards for United States History (National History Standards Project, 1994b) and the appearance of preliminary results from the 1994 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) on history Bad news on both fronts Almost immediately, the Standards became mired in criticism and since have been subjected to costly, time-consuming revisions The NAEP results, not unlike their late 1980s predecessors, purportedly demonstrated that secondary school students held only dim knowledge of their nation's past Because intense criticism (mostly from the political right) surrounded the release of the Standards, it blunted their impact on curriculum reform Even the future use of the revised versions remains in doubt And since the NAEP results are reported only in terms of a National Report Card, with state indicators identified but without individual school or student outcomes supplied, they are usually perceived as having low-stakes consequences in local school districts But despite these limitations, controversy and concern generated by the two Federally-funded efforts have served to keep the issue of history education "in the news" and within view of those who would improve its fortunes as a school subject A less visible but equally important effort undertaken by the FED has been research and development Two major research centers funded by the Office of Educational Research and Improvement (OERI) during the 1990s-the Center for the Teaching and Learning of Elementary Subjects at Michigan State University and the Learning Research and Development Center at the University of Pittsburgh-have pursued strands of research on history teaching and learning Compared to pre-1985 research, these strands generated a voluminous literature on what it means to teach and learn history The studies emanating from the two centers have reported on classroom-based practices, curricular designs, theories of learning history, and approaches to teaching the subject, ranging from the elementary 4 0 4


The History Curriculum : A Symposium to the high school level In less than 10 years, this research and development work has resulted in a significant increase in what is understood about how history education proceeds and how to go about improving it Equally important, this research work has been augmented by a wide range of excellent studies done by researchers independent of Federal funding All of this research has seen wide dissemination in Center reports, journal articles, books, and presentations at regional and national conferences These combined Federal initiatives--curriculum revision via the Standards, student assessment by way of the NAEP, and research and development through support of OERI Centers-have been expensive Since all of the efforts, in one form or another, were designed to improve the quality of the history education the nation's students receive, were reflective of an important monetary commitment, and were derived from a central funding source, one might reasonably expect to witness some coherence among them, or at least be able to see clearly the ways in which each affected and was affected by the others For example, in designing target goals for a national history curriculum, as the Standards' authors were charged to do, one might fairly assume that the Centers' research results (along with those of others) on how teachers teach and students learn history at various levels would prove to be exceptionally valuable in considering questions about historical time, use of chronology, the relationship between historical depth and breadth, how different ethnic groups perceive history, the view of history that teachers hold-to name but a few concerns thought to be salient to history education curriculum designers Similarly, in constructing a Federally-funded national assessment, consulting this same Federally-funded research again would appear to prove equally valuable, as would attempts to align it at least in some respect with the direction of a national history curriculum Expecting to see these linkages, at least in the first half of the 1990s-a period that witnessed the signing of the Goals 2000 : Educate America Act-was a reasonable expectation in a climate increasingly focused on using the FED to promote school reform However, none of these connections or linkages across the reform efforts are apparent in either the Standards or the National Framework for the 1994 National Assessment of Educational Progress (National Assessment Governing Board, 1994), the document that guided the construction of the assessments' item development Ironically, these two documents give no indication that the authors of one were aware of the other, nor do either refer to any of the research work produced by the Federally-funded Centers, or any other research for that matter That the Standards and the NAEP Framework omit acknowledging the work of the other or lack clear references to common assumptions about history teaching, learning, curriculum, and assessment can be understood in light of the fact that they were conceptualized simultaneously by different organizations (historians and their affiliates at UCLA, and the Council of Chief State School Officers under contract from the National Assessment Governing Board in Washing4 0 5


The History Curriculum : A Symposium ton, D .C .), and that their purposes were construed quite differently by their authors However, that neither cited, drew from, or built upon the wealth of existing research seems less understandable This raises fundamental issues of policy perspectives and decisions within Federally-funded reform and research-and-development initiatives It also can be thought of as substantial cause for lament within the history-social studies research community However, maybe this should not be seen as an occasion for mourning the lack of greater coherence and shared understandings and assumptions among these various Federally-funded efforts (particularly with respect to the influence and application that history education research might have) Perhaps this needs to be viewed instead as a clarion call to history and social studies researchers to engage in more empirical research, and to find ways to speak more directly about it to those in policy positions-those responsible for developing history reform documents and constructing assessment frameworks I am thinking here of the historians at UCLA and elsewhere, and the educators in organizations such as the Council of Chief State School Officers and the National Assessment Governing Board, as well as others Unless ways are found to generate this sort of discourse, to be more astute about putting research in the hands of those that might use it in these capacities, history and social studies researchers most likely will continue to talk only to themselves And, I ask, to what end? Our Place in the "Cottage Industry" of Collective Memory Peter Seixas University of British Columbia In 1985, David Lowenthal called it "astounding" that on a topic of almost universal concern, "how people in general see, value, or understand [the past]," there had been so little research (Lowenthal,1985, p xxvi) As recently as 1991, Matthew Downey and Linda Levstik noted "a disturbing lack of attention to what children do know and to how they came to learn what they know [about history] ." The situation-it can be bluntly stated-has changed dramatically The discussion among the contributors to this symposium could not have taken place without the outpouring of work on historical understanding that has occurred in the last few years This panel-all of whose members have close ties to NCSS and the field of social studies'-have made a substantial contribution to the new understanding of historical understanding (see, e .g ., Barton & Levstik,1996 ; Downey,1994 ; Epstein, in press ; Seixas,19% ; Thornton,1990 ; VanSledright, 1996) But it is important to remember that we represent only a small piece of the current activity In this short rumination, I would like first to suggest (in a most cursory way) the outlines of the larger body of work of which ours is a part Secondly, with the larger picture as context, I will return 4 0 6


The History Curriculum : A Symposium with a few questions addressed to those with the closest ties to the field of social studies-ourselves Historians are the first group we should consider As they became ensnared in the question of the history of history (Novick,1988), they came face-to-face with the problem of historical knowledge, perhaps taken more for granted by historians in other times This problem demanded a comparison of their own understandings to the understandings of those outside the academy (cf Becker,1932) Thus, historians have become very interested in Lowenthal's question of "how people in general understand the past ." Indeed, in a survey of recent work on collective memory (i .e ., the popular uses of the past) Michael Kammen notes the growth of a veritable "cottage industry" (Kammen,1995, p 261) Historians (oddly enough) tend to approach problems historically, and they have certainly done so with collective memory, asking how collective memory has changed over time Kammen's own multi-volumed history of how Americans have understood the past is exemplary of this genre (Kammen, 1991) By way of contrast, philosophical and theoretical explorations of collective memory, building on the work of Francis Yates and Maurice Halbwachs among others, include Patrick Hutton's History as an Art of Memory (1993), Michael Roth's The Ironist s Cage (1995), and JonathonBoyariri s RemappingMemory (1994) The interest in collective memory is by no means limited to the United States In England, Raphael Samuel, editor of the journal Past and Present, examines various forms of popular British explorations of (or obsessions with) the past in Theatres of Memory (Samuel, 1994) From France, Pierre Nora's seven-volume Les Lieux de Memoire, on the French national memory, is receiving its first translations into English, only a short time after its completion in French (Nora,1989) In Germany, the Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of Bielefeld sponsored a year-long series of conferences and fellowships on the topic of historical consciousness, under the directorship of philosopher of history, Jorn Risen, and plans are under way for multi-volume publication of these proceedings (For earlier work see Riisen, 1993) Connected with this project is the work of Bodo von Borries, who has assembled a massive comparative survey of historical consciousness among high school students throughout Europe Coordinating international work on collective memory is a daunting task, but a British team, well-versed in issues of history education, is attempting to bring together issues of collective memory and history education in the form of an annual International Yearbook of History Education (Dickinson, Gordon, Lee & Slater,1995) If this outpouring points to the important connections between history and popular consciousness, American historians' contributions to the debates over school curricula and other public policy questions might be seen as part of the same phenomenon (cf Seixas, 1993b) They have been centrally involved in high-profile projects such as the National Standards for U .S History, the California History-Social Science Project, the Ameri4 0 7


The History Curriculum : A Symposium can Social History Project ; and in disputes over the collective memory of Columbus, the West, and the Enola Gay (Rosenzweig, Brier & Brown, 1993 ; Thelen,1995) The American Historical Association has mobilized a corps of historians to supply news media, on short notice, with historical pieces contextualizing current issues and events Academic historians, then, have recently taken a major interest in the shape of contemporary collective memory, both among young people and the public at large They have intervened with public-spirited good-will, but with few specialized intellectual tools beyond their understanding of the discipline of history From a very different direction, other educational researchers not connected with NCSS, have taken up an interest in historical understanding They come from cognitive psychology, language education, or other fields in education In some cases, particularly where these researchers also have a deep understanding of the workings of history, their work has been seminal (e .g Wineburg, 1991) Many of them share the base in the British research on history education, which informs so much of our work (e .g ., Wineburg, in press ; Perfetti, Britt, & Georgi, 1995 ; Leinhardt, Beck, & Stainton, 1994) A relatively new and sprawling field of activity on historical understanding thus starts to come into focus Nodes of energy include historians writing histories of popular memory ; historians intervening in public debates on issues of history education ; a number of large scale, comparative projects on national memory ; educational researchers from various disciplines turning their gaze towards history ; and, of course, those of us whose interest in historical understanding is directly tied to social studies in the schools As promised at the outset, I would like to pose three questions, directed largely towards the last group, but with the whole field in mind The first is the historicizing one : why is this happening now? What is it about the contemporary era that stimulates such an interest in the past, and secondarily, such an interest in interest in the past Kammen, Samuel and Nora offer some of the most interesting speculations about this question These authors entertain a rough consensus that, at the moment when tradition's living past fades away, we self-consciously construct pasts for ourselves all the more frenetically As Nora (1989, p 7) puts it, "We speak so much of memory because there is so little of it left ." Exploration of this insight may help us to understand better what is at stake in debates over history curricula Second, what brings us (that is, those who are participating in this symposium) together, within the exploding field of research and writing on historical understanding? What are the particular contributions of those of us with close ties to school social studies? What are the strengths and liabilities of our modes of research, which I would characterize as smallscale, qualitative, and in-search-of-theory? How do our common commitments-to history as a discipline and to schools, teachers and students make our research different from that of historians and from researchers 4 0 8


The History Curriculum : A Symposium from other disciplinary backgrounds? How and where do we need them, and vice versa? What are the opportunities and constraints set up by our location in schools of education, within the nexus of schools, teacher education programs, state and provincial educational authorities, and university research communities? Are these different from historians' and other educational researchers, and how? Finally, I want to pose the test question Historians and teachers, largely without the insights of history education research (as Bruce VanSledright points out) have constructed National Standards If history education researchers like ourselves had the responsibility to develop prescriptions for and assessments of history teaching and history learning, how much better could we do, on the basis of our research? What kinds of research would we need in order to answer this question more confidently? And perhaps most pertinently, where, in the broad field of activity I have described, should we seek out research partners in order to conduct this work? Answers to these questions, from within the social studies community and from others who read our work, may help us gauge what kind of contributions we can make to a rapidly expanding conversation, what we need to do to make better contributions, and how far along we are towards developing genuinely useful research for history education Notes 'This research has been supported by funding from the National Academy of Education's Postdoctoral Fellowship Program, the Spencer Foundation's Small Grants Program, the University of Michigan's School of Education and Rackham School of Graduate Studies ZBy perspectives on history or historical perspective taking, I mean the set of assumptions, knowledge, and values historians and others bring to the tasks of historical inquiry Historians' perspectives on history shape their beliefs about the historical questions worthy of pursuit ; the credibility, weight and relevance of historical evidence ; and the theme or themes which frame a particular historical narrative (Cronon,1992, Holt,1990) 3 Currently, the articles in which these studies are discussed are under review for publication Anyone interested in receiving copies of the two papers on which this article is based can write to the author at School of Education, University of Michigan, 610 East University, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1259 References Appleby, J ., Hunt, L ., & Jacob, M (1994) Telling the truth about history New York : Norton Asante, M K (1991) The Afrocentric idea in education Journal of Negro Education, 60, 170-80 4 0 9


The History Curriculum : A Symposium Barton, K C (in press-a) "Bossed around by the queen" : Elementary students' understanding of individuals and institutions in history Journal of Curriculum and Supervision Barton, K C (in press-b) Narrative simplifications in elementary students' historical understanding In J Brophy (Ed .), Advances in research on teaching, vol 6, Research on history teaching and learning Greenwich, CN : JAI Press Barton, K C ., & Levstik, L S (19%) "Back when God was around and everything" : Elementary students' understanding of historical time American Educational Research Journal, 33, 419-454 Becker, C (1932) Everyman his own historian American Historical Review, 37, 221-236 Berry, M (1994) Black resistance, white law : A history of constitutional racism in America New York : Penguin Books Berti, A E ., & Bombi, A S (1988) The child's construction of economics New York : Cambridge University Press Brophy, J ., VanSledright, B ., & Bredin, N (1992a) Fifth-graders' ideas about European exploration of the New World expressed before and after studying this topic within a U S History course Elementary Subjects Center Series No 78, Center for the Learning and Teaching of Elementary Subjects, Institute for Research on Teaching, College of Education, Michigan State University Brophy, J ., VanSledright, B ., & Bredin, N (1992b) Fifth-graders' ideas about the English colonies in America expressed before and after studying them within a U S History course Elementary Subjects Center Series No 80, Center for the Learning and Teaching of Elementary Subjects, Institute for Research on Teaching, College of Education, Michigan State University Brophy, J ., VanSledright, B ., & Bredin, N (1993) What do entering fifth graders know about U S history? Journal of Social Studies Research, 16/ 17, 2-19 California State Board of Education (1987) History-social science framework for California public schools, kindergarten through grade twelve Sacramento, CA : California State Board of Education Cheney, L (1994, October 20) The end of history Wall Street Journal, p 22 Cheney, L (1995) Telling the truth : Why our culture and our country have stopped making sense-and what we can do about it New York : Simon and Schuster Council for Basic Education (1996) History in the making : An independent review of the voluntary national history standards Washington, DC : Council for Basic Education Cronon, W (1992) A place for stories : Nature, history, and narrative Journal of American History, 78,1347-76 Danto, A C (1%5) Analytical philosophy of history Cambridge : Cambridge University Press 4 1 0


The History Curriculum : A Symposium Dickinson, A ., Gordon, P, Lee, P, & Slater, S (1995) International yearbook of history education London : Woburn Press Downy, M (1982) Teaching American history : New directions (Bulletin No 67) Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Downy, M (1994, April) After the dinosaurs : Elementary children's chronological thinking Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Educational Research Association, New Orleans Downy, M T ., & Levstik, L S (1991) Teaching and learning history In James P Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 400-410) New York : Macmillan Easton, D ., & Dennis, J (1969) Children in the political system : Origins of political legitimation New York : McGraw Hill Eck, D (1993) Encountering God : Aspiritual journey from Bozeman to Bananas Boston : Beacon Press Epstein, T (in press) Sociocultural approaches to research on young people's historical understanding : Implications for reform Social Education Fazio, B (1992) Students as historians-Writing their school's history The Social Studies, 83, 64-67 Furth, H G (1980) The world of grown-ups : Children's conceptions of society New York : Elsevier Gagnon, P (Ed .) (1989a) Historical literacy : The case for history in American education New York : Macmillan Gagnon, P (Ed .) (1989b) Building a history curriculum : Guidelines for teaching history in schools Washington, DC : Educational Excellence Network Gallie, W B (1964) Philosophy and the historical understanding New York : Schocken Garcia, J ., & Buendia, E (1996) NCSS and ethnic/ cultural diversity In O L Davis (Ed .), NCSS in Retrospect (Bulletin No 92) (pp 21-34) Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Gardner, H ., & Boix-Manilla, V (1994) Teaching for understanding in the disciplines-and beyond Teachers College Record, 96,192-218 Goodlad, J (1984) A place called school : Prospects for the future New York : McGraw-Hill Gordon, L (1990) U S women's history In E Foner (Ed .), The new American history (pp 185-210) Philadelphia : Temple Grant, S G (1995) Nightmares and possibilities : A perspective on standard setting Social Education 59,443-45 Greenstein, F I (1969) Children and politics (Rev ed .) New Haven : Yale University Press Griffin, A (1959) History In The World Book Encyclopedia (Vol 8, pp 34303433) Chicago : Field Enterprises Educational Corporation Gross, R E (1958) United States history In R E Gross & L D Zeleny (Eds .), Educating citizens for democracy (pp 162-214) New York : Oxford University Press 4 1 1


The History Curriculum : A Symposium Hammack, D C ., Hartoonian, M ., Howe, J ., Jenkins, L .B ., Levstik, L S Macdonald, W B ., Mullis, I V S ., & Owen, E (1990) The U S history report card National Assessment of Educational Progress Washington, DC : Office of Educational Research and Improvement, U S Department of Education Hess, R D ., & Torney, J V (1967) The development of political attitudes in children Chicago : Aldine Holt, T (1990) Thinking historically : Narrative, imagination and understanding New York : College Entrance Examination Board Huggins, N (1995) Revelations : American history, American myths New York : Oxford University Press Hutton, P H (1993) History as an art of memory Hanover, NH : University Press of New England Jahoda, C (1984) The development of thinking about socio-economic systems In H Tajfel (Ed .), The social dimension : European developments in socialpsychology, Vol .1(pp 69-88) New York : Cambridge University Press Jenness, D (1990) Making sense of social studies New York : Macmillan Kammen, M (1991) Mystic chords of memory : The transformation of tradition in American culture New York : Knopf Kammen, M (1995) [Review of the book Frames of remembrance : The dynamics of collective memoryj History and Theory, 34,245-261 Kessler-Harris, A (1990) Social history In E Foner (Ed .), The new American history (pp 163-184) Philadelphia : Temple University Press King, J (1992) Diaspora literacy and consciousness in the struggle against miseducation in the Black community journal of Negro Education, 61,31740 Leinhardt, C ., Beck, E ., & Stainton, C (Eds .) (1994) Teaching and learning in history Hillsdale, NJ : Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Levstik, L (1996) NCSS and the teaching of history In O L Davis, Jr (Ed .) NCSS in Retrospect (Bulletin No 92) (pp 21-34) Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Levstik, L S ., & Barton, K C (19%) "They still use some of their past" : Historical salience in elementary children's historical thinking Journal of Curriculum Studies, 38,531-576 Lowenthal, D (1985) The past is a foreign country New York : Cambridge Lybarger, M B (1990) The historiography of social studies : Retrospect, circumspect, and prospect In J Shaver (Ed .), Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning (pp 3-26) New York : Macmillan McKeown, M C ., & Beck, I L (1990) The assessment and characterization of young learners' knowledge of a topic in history American Educational Research journal, 27, 688-726 McNeil, L A (1986) Contradictions of control : School structure and school knowledge New York : Routledge Moore, S W ., Lare, J ., & Wagner, K A (1985) The child's political world : A longitudinal perspective New York : Praeger 4 1 2


The History Curriculum : A Symposium National Assessment Governing Board (1994) U .S framework for the 1994 National Assessment of Educational Progress : NAEP U .S history consensus project Washington, DC : National Assessment Governing Board National Commission on Social Studies in the Schools (1989) Charting a course : Social studies for the 21st century Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies National Council for History Education (1989) Promoting history in school and society Westlake, OH : National Council for History Education National History Standards Project (1994a) National standards for history for grades K-4 : Expanding children's world in time and space Los Angeles : National Center for History in the Schools National History Standards Project (1994b) National standards for United States history : Exploring the American experience Los Angeles : National Center for History in the Schools National History Standards Project (1994c) National standards for world history : Exploring paths to the present Los Angeles : National Center for History in the Schools Noddings, N (1992) Social studies and feminism Theory and Research in Social Education, 20, 230-241 Novick, P (1988) That noble dream : The "objectivity question" and the American historical profession Cambridge, MA : Cambridge University Press Perfetti, C A ., Britt, M A ., & Georgi, M C (1995) Text-based learning and reasoning : Studies in history Hillsdale, NJ : Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Ravitch, D (1994, December 7) Standards in U .S history : An assessment Education Week, 40, 48 Ravitch, D ., & Finn, C E (1987) What do our 17-year-olds know? New York : Harper and Row Risinger, C F (1991) Unkept promises and new opportunities : Social studies education and the new world order Social Education, 55,138-141 Rosenzweig, R ., Brier, S ., & Brown, J (1993) Who built America : From the centennial celebration of 1876 to the Great War of 1914 [CD-ROM] Santa Monica CA : Voyager Riisen, J (1993) Studies in metahistory Pretoria : Human Sciences Research Council Sadker, M ., & Sadker, D (1994) Failing at fairness : How America's schools cheat girls New York : Scribner's Samuel, R (1994) Theatres of memory London : Verso Seixas, P (1993a) Historical understanding in a multicultural setting Curriculum Inquiry, 23, 301-327 Seixas, P (1993b) Parallel crises : History and the social studies curriculum in the USA Journal of Curriculum Studies, 25, 235-250 Seixas, Peter (19%) Conceptualizing the growth of historical understanding In D R Olson and N Torrance (Eds .), The Handbook of Education and Human Development (pp 765-783) Oxford : Blackwell 4 1 3


The History Curriculum : A Symposium Shaver, J (19%) NCSS and citizenship education In O L Davis (Ed .) NCSS in retrospect (Bulletin No 92) (pp 35-43) Washington, DC : NCSS Tetreault, M K T (1986) Integrating women's history : The case of United States history textbooks History Teacher, 19, 211-262 Thelen, D (Ed .) (1995) History and the public : What can we handle? Special Issue of Journal of American History, 82 Thornton, S J (1990) Should we be teaching more history? Theory and Research in Social Education, 18, 53-60 Thornton, S J (1992) Trends and issues in social studies curriculum In D W Cheek & S Kohut, Jr (Eds .), Social studies curriculum resource handbook : A practical guide for K-12 social studies curriculum Millwood, NY : Kraus International Publications Thornton, S J (19%) NCSS : The early years In O L Davis, Jr (Ed .), NCSS in retrospect (Bulletin No 92) (pp 1-7) Washington, DC : National Council for the Social Studies Tryon, R (1934) The social sciences as school subjects New York : Charles Scribner's Sons VanSledright, B (19%) Studying colonization in eighth grade : What can it teach us about the learning context of current reforms? Theory and Research in Social Education, 24,107-145 White, H (1978) Tropics of discourse : Essays in cultural criticism Baltimore : The Johns Hopkins University Press White, H (1984) The question of narrative in contemporary historical theory History and Theory, 23,1-33 White, M (1965) Foundations of historical knowledge New York : Harper and Row Wilson, S & Wineburg, S (1993) Wrinkles in time and place : Using performance assessments to understand the knowledge of history teachers American Educational Research journal ; 30, 129-169 Wineburg, S (1991) On the reading of historical texts : Notes on the breach between school and academy American Educational Research Journal, 28, 495-519 Wineburg, S (in press) The psychology of learning and teaching history In D C Berliner and R Calfee (Eds .), The handbook of educational psychology New York : Macmillan Authors KEITH C BARTON is Assistant Professor, School of Education, Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights, 41099 MATTHEW T DOWNEY, is Professor, Center for Teaching Social Sciences, University of Northern Colorado, Greeley, 80639 TERRIE L EPSTEIN is Assistant Professor, College of Education, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 48109 LINDA S LEVSTIK is Professor, School of Education, University of Kentucky, Lexington, 40506 PETER SEIXAS is Associate Professor, Faculty of Education, 4 1 4


The History Curriculum : A Symposium University of British Columbia, Vancouver, V6T 1Z5 STEPHEN J THORNTON is Associate Professor, Teachers College Columbia University, New York, 10027 BRUCE A VANSLEDRIGHT is Assistant Professor, College of Education, University of Maryland at College Park, 20742 4 1 5


BOOK REVIEWS Loewen, James W (1995) Lies my teacher told me : Everything your American history textbook got wrong New York : The New Press 372 pages, cloth $24 .95 ISBN 1-56584-100-x Review by LINDA S LEVSTIK, University of Kentucky, Lexington, 40506 Clearly, American history is controversial Pundits bemoan the poor showing of students on the history portion of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) on the one hand, and worry that Americans might learn too much history from the Smithsonian's The West as America or the uncensored Enola Gay exhibit on the other (Ravitch & Finn, 1987 ; U .S Congress, 1995 ; Linethal, 1995) Similarly, the developers of national history standards are excoriated for paying more attention to the KKK than Paul Revere, while at the same time teachers are told to attend to the complexities of the multicultural nature of the American historical experience (Cheney, 1994 ; Loewen, 1995) Even-or, perhaps, especially within the history profession there is ferocious debate about what constitutes American history For much of the twentieth century history instruction began with the assumption of a unified society, telling a broad story that tended to de-emphasize racial, ethnic, gender, and class distinctions As Eric Foner (1990) notes, however, "in the course of the past twenty years, American history has been remade (p vii) ." American historians have called into question conventional assumptions about the primacy of political history as well as the existence of some overarching historical synthesis (KesslerHarris, 1990) Rather than argue that some "objective" history lies waiting to be discovered, historians are more likely to suggest that history is experienced differentially, based in part on issues of class, race, gender, ethnic background and neighborhood or region (Appleby, Hunt & Jacob, 1994 ; Kessler-Harris, 1990 ; Novick, 1991 ; Takaki, 1993) All of this blurs disciplinary boundaries and threatens what Kammen (1993) has identified as Americans' desire for bland nostalgia rather than challenging history James Loewen places high school textbooks and the teachers who use them in the eye of this storm of controversy Loewen analyzes twelve high school American history textbooks and concludes that they "leave out most of what we need to know about the American past . As a result of all this, most high school seniors are hamstrung in their efforts to analyze controversial issues in our society" (p 5) In order to understand Loewen's argument, it is necessary, first, to consider his definition of history "History," he says, "is furious debate informed by evidence and reason" (p 5) This is a fundamentally different approach than that taken by the textbook publishers with whom he conducted interviews Their desire was to avoid controversial issues where possible, provide "reasoned judgments" when controversial topics were unavoidable, and present a text4 1 6


book that could pass muster from Texas to California, Ohio, Florida or Idaho From the outset, then, these textbooks were not likely to promote the kind of history or pedagogy suggested by Loewen's view of history But Loewen is concerned, not just with texts that present history as uncontested, but with texts that "lie ." In his review of these twelve texts, Loewen found errors of "omission and distortion" that, in his view, so misrepresent the past as to constitute lies Chapters One through Ten of his book document this assertion In Chapter One, Loewen begins with two examples of historical omission and distortion First, he presents the case of Helen Keller whose childhood experiences are documented in her autobiography as well as in a stage play and numerous biographies for children As Loewen points out, however, Keller lived sixty-four years beyond the moment when Anne Sullivan spelled out water in her hand During those latter years Keller was a socialist who championed women's suffrage, worker's rights, and the NAACP, and was a founder of the American Civil Liberties Union She went from being lionized for overcoming her disabilities to being denounced for her social and political views Yet in her incarnation as a historic figure, Keller's adult life and work are stripped from her and she is 'remembered' only as the subject of a morality tale for other children Loewen argues that this omission "exemplifies [a] . culture-serving distortion" (p 23) In particular, he suggests, the adult Helen Keller is doubly controversial, first for her radical politics, second because her critique of American society emphasized the impact of a cultural taboo social class Loewen's second example of omission and distortion is the treatment of Woodrow Wilson In particular, he discusses Wilson's racism Wilson, generally presented as an advocate of world democracy whose health was sacrificed in a futile attempt to get the United States to join the League of Nations, was also so racist that he presided over the segregation of federal government jobs, and "effectively dosed the Democratic Party to African Americans for another two decades and parts of the federal government remained segregated into the 1950s and beyond" (p 17) Although this information is neither new nor unavailable to textbook writers, only four of the twelve texts provided accurate accounts of Wilson's racial policies Loewen argues that the adulatory and largely uncritical treatment of historical figures in most texts perpetuate a "Disney version" of history that leaves students without realistic models to inspire them and no understanding of causality in history Instead of showing history as contingent, they present history as finished Indeed, texts too often present history as a morality tale rather than as questions and problems that do not lend themselves to shallow treatment Having established his premise, Loewen compares current historiography with the textbook treatment of nine other topics in American history These are presented somewhat chronologically, beginning with European and Native American contact, proceeding through chapters on the 4 1 7


Theory and Research in Social Education history of race relations, labor, the federal government and the myth of progress Each of these chapters presents a solid alternative to textbook treatments, along with suggestions about some of the different perspectives that might be brought to bear on each topic While some of this discussion will strike readers as old news, part of Loewen's point is that even old news is not making it into the textbooks-nor, by extension, into the classroom One of the most interesting chapters, however, is not about old news ; rather, it is about the disappearance of the recent past Loewen begins by using a distinction he attributes to some East African societies In these societies, he explains, a distinction is made between individuals who are dead, but whose lives and experiences are remembered by some of those now living, and events in the more distant past, beyond the memory of anyone still living The history of the recent past is read, not just as historical information, but as commentary on one's own experience This makes recent history more volatile and, apparently, more dangerous in a textbook According to Loewen's analysis, the textbooks averaged fewer than 35 pages to each decade after the 1940s, a drop of approximately ten pages from the 1930s and 1940s Perhaps more striking, however, are the images that accompany or don't accompany those pages In an age when the camera's gaze records the historic moment, textbooks exclude some of the most powerful images from the recent past As one example, Loewen uses the image of a naked child running away from a napalm attack in Vietnam, arguing in the words of one of his students, that this image "changes the entire meaning of that war to a high school student ." Yet it does not appear in any of the twelve textbooks By excluding the sights, sounds and feelings of the Vietnam era, these texts are, he claims, evasive -and leave students unable to take any reasoned stand on the issues involved, or make any sense out of current references to "another Vietnam ." If history is, as historian Joyce Appleby and her colleagues (1994) assert, "always someone's history," then the logical question at this point is, whose history is this? Loewen suggests that such a narrow history encourages ethnocentrism, fostering a world view that can have (and has had) disastrous consequences In the last two chapters of the book he discusses the political and social forces that encourage and thrive on this sort of history, ending with a number of interesting suggestions for teachers who "teach against the textbook ." Overall, then, this book includes an interesting critique of textbooks, useful information to counter at least some of the omissions and distortions commonly found in those texts, and reasonably practical ways for teachers to respond The footnotes are also invaluable, often giving readers detailed sources for more information or teaching suggestions As a reader I found the style accessible, lively and often funny I also share Loewen's perspective on the limitations of much of what passes as history in traditional textbooks Nonetheless, there is an underlying tone to this book that I find disturbing, beginning with the title Lies My Teacher Told 4 1 8


Fall 1996 Me is certainly provocative ; it is also inaccurate The book is a solid analysis of mistakes, misrepresentations and omissions made in textbooks, not by teachers The author spent twelve years conducting his analysis and has plenty of evidence to bring to bear on his critique of textbooks ; his analysis of teacher behavior is not equally thorough Thus the title misrepresents the thrust of the book, focusing not on the thesis of the largest proportion of the book, but on teachers' lies This term-lies-implies both knowing complicity, and an oppositional truth just waiting to be found Indeed, Loewen argues that because, in his view, there is historical objectivity, he is justified in using words like "truth" and "lies" in relation to history I do not share Loewen s faith in objectivity I think his suggestions make for a more supportable history in part because they present a more perspectival history-voices often left out of the traditional narrative are heard, questions often ignored by traditional history are asked (see also Appleby, 1994 ; Kammen, 1991 ; Novick, 1993) This is an ongoing debate, of course, and one that will not be resolved here Of more immediate concern, however, is the charge that teachers are lying to their students As Loewen admits in a chapter entitled, "Why do teachers teach like this?" the situation in most schools is considerably more complicated than teachers telling purposeful lies to adolescents In addition, a truncated history curriculum is not exclusive to pre-collegiate instruction, nor the fault of too few university history classes, as Loewen also implies The dismay he feels about student ignorance, and his willingness to lay the blame at the doorstep of the teachers who came before him is a common phenomenon, especially among university faculty Yet university faculty develop Advanced Placement history courses for high schools, they help write the textbooks that Loewen critiques, and they teach prospective teachers in their classes Surely they bear some responsibility for not modeling a more authentic approach to history? In fact, I would suggest that there is less difference between high school and university history instruction than Loewen might hope Professors of history may be more current historiographically, but I don't think they are much more likely to teach against the textbook than are high school teachers I think Loewen is correct in arguing that teachers have more curricular freedom than they sometimes think, but it is also true that the public can be extremely hostile to what they perceive as "revisionist" history I will use my own community as an example A sixth grade teacher who presented students with speakers from different perspectives on the Middle East both on religion and on an independent Palestinian state was told by a parent that her children could not participate because "I don't want my child to hear those ideas ." Another parent at the school requested that her children be exempt from Social Studies altogether because "history exposes children to violence and dangerous ideas ." In classrooms across the district parents regularly remove their children from discussions of Greek and Roman 4 1 9


Theory and Research in Social Education myths, human origins, and world religions because they do not want their children exposed to these perspectives Not surprisingly, teachers are often reluctant to focus on a perspectival history in the face of these objections Instead, they rely on textbooks whose "official story" is sanctioned by the school system and vetted by various committees and special interest groups It takes courage to challenge official stories, myths and assumptions, to ask sometimes uncomfortable questions, to demand support for assertions, and to develop supportable interpretations of the past In the current political climate, this is risky business While Loewen provides some guidance in meeting these challenges, he also adds to teachers' burdens by charging that they knowingly conspire to keep their students ignorant of their own history On the one hand, this sells the book ; on the other, it detracts from what is otherwise a thoughtful call for a more intellectually challenging and authentic history curriculum References Applebey, J ., Hunt, L ., & Jacob, M (1994) Telling the truth about history New York : Norton Cheney, L (1994, October 29) The end of history Wall Street Journal Foner, E (Ed .) (1990) The new American history Philadelphia : Temple Kammen, M (1991) Mystic chords of memory : The transformation of tradition in American culture New York : Vintage Press Kessler-Harris, A (1990) Social history In E Foner, (Ed .) The new American history (pp 163-184) Philadelphia : Temple Linenthal, E T (1994) Committing history in public Journal of American History, 81, 986-991 Novick, P (1993) That noble dream : The "objectivity question" and the American historical profession Cambridge : Cambridge University Press Ravitch, D ., & Finn, C .E (1987) What do our 17-year-olds know? A report on the first national assessment of history and literature New York : Harper & Row Takaki, R (1993) A different mirror : A history of multicultural America Boston : Back Bay Books U .S Congress, Senate Committee on Rules and Administration (1995) Hearings on the Smithsonian Institution : Management guidelines for the future 104 Congress, 1 session, May 11, 18 Washington, DC : Government Printing Office 4 2 0


Ladson-Billings, Gloria (1994) The Dreamkeepers : Successful Teachers of African American Children San Francisco : Jossey-Bass 187 pages, cloth $25 .00, ISBN 1-55542-668-9 Review by NANCY SCHNIEDEWIND, State University of New York, New Paltz, 12561 Gloria Ladson-Billings reminds us that the image of the dream holds an important place in African American culture "From the words of the Bible to the poetry of Langston Hughes to the oratory of Martin Luther King, Jr ., African Americans' struggle against all odds has been spurred on by the pursuit of a dream" (p ix) The Dreamkeepers documents the practice of teachers who are keeping the dream of stimulating, culturally relevant education alive for African American students It also exemplifies what truly meaningful social education can be for all students By soliciting nominations of excellent teachers from parents, principals and colleagues in a primarily low-income African American and Mexican American community, Ladson-Billings identified eight teachers named by all three groups to be involved in the project that was the basis of her book Five were African American, three were white ; all had strong ties to the community in which they taught After being interviewed, observed and video-taped, these teachers participated in a research collaborative in which they worked with Ladson-Billings to analyze and interpret their teaching The Dreamkeepers describes what they determined were important aspects of "culturally relevant teaching" and documents the practice of these exemplary teachers who work mainly with African American students Ladson-Billings defines culturally relevant teaching as "a pedagogy that empowers students intellectually, socially, emotionally and politically by using cultural referents to impart knowledge, skills and attitudes" (pp 17-18) While many students of color often feel forced to choose between academics and their racial identity, culturally relevant teaching, she maintains, makes it possible for students to achieve academic excellence and still identify with and affirm their African American culture Further, it enables them to understand and critique the existing social order Teachers employing culturally relevant practices acknowledge culture and color and use it in their teaching They believe that all students can be successful These teachers are passionate about education and build upon the knowledge that students bring to school from their culture and community to foster practical academic skills and tools for critical thinking Social interaction in the classroom is based on interdependence ; students see each other as part of a family and become responsible for each other Feeling a part of the local community, teachers see their work as a way of giving back to that community and encourage students to do the same 4 2 1

PAGE 100

Theory and Research in Social Education While the vignettes and interview data about all facets of culturally relevant teaching are engrossing, two stand out in regard to fostering social education : 1) the nature of a truly cooperative classroom community ; and 2) the development of students' critical consciousness in the context of linking the broader community with that of the classroom In Chapter Four, "We Are A Family," Ladson-Billings documents how culturally relevant teaching encourages a community of learners Students learn collaboratively and are responsible for each other so all can succeed Cooperation is much more than an instructional strategy ; it is an idea and value that is infused into the entire life of the classroom This reflects the spirit of the early days of cooperative learning, in contrast to much current practice in which cooperative learning is viewed more as a method for individual achievement than group success One teacher puts her students in "extended family groups" where they are responsible for monitoring one another's academic work and personal behavior and generally assisting each other as needed "When your 'family member' does a good job you're going to show him or her just how proud you are When someone doesn't do a good job, you're not going to laugh at him or tease him You're going to do your best to help him do better When one of us does well, we all do well When one of us fails, we all fail" (p 62) Ladson-Billings points out how this notion of extended family is based on an African understanding of self, a conception of the self as a consequence of the group's being Cooperation is a classroom norm Another teacher, for example, requires each student to have a study buddy "A lot of times when a student is having a hard time I'll call the buddy to my desk and really give him or her an earful 'Why are you letting your buddy struggle like this? What kind of partner are you? You're supposed to be the helper"' (p .72) Students feel psychologically safe and supported They come to learn that it is a breach of faith to work against the cohesiveness of the group The Dreamkeepers is rich with examples of this sort which illustrate how culturally relevant teaching fosters a collective effort designed to encourage academic excellence and cultural integrity "There is little reward for individual achievement at the expense of others Even when individuals achieve on their own inside or outside of the classroom the teachers frame that achievement in a group context By supporting the academic community in this way, teachers encourage the sense of belonging that young people crave The 'school gang' becomes a viable alternative to the street gang" (p .76) This sounds like social education at its best teachers and young people building a community of learners so all can succeed Ladson-Billings and her colleagues stress the importance of collaboration for the collective growth and liberation of children who must struggle to deal with social inequality Collaboration is also vitally important for those in the dominant culture who must learn to listen and to share power and privi4 2 2

PAGE 101

Fall 1996 lege in egalitarian, cooperative ways if together we seek to further the values of democracy and justice in our society The development of students' critical consciousness, in the context of an educational approach that links the classroom and the broader community, is a second tenet of culturally relevant teaching that informs a vision of social education which aims to do more than maintain the status quo "Culturally relevant teaching," Ladson-Billings writes (p .128), "is about questioning (and preparing students to question) the structural inequality, the racism, and the injustice that exists in society ." The teachers that Ladson-Billings studied, much as one would expect, held an independent, critical perspective themselves and sometimes worked in opposition to the system that employed them While many were active in their unions, they didn't hesitate to ignore or circumvent administrative rules or union guidelines that they felt would keep them from meeting the needs of their students They refused to use district-mandated curriculum, for example, if they weren't convinced that it would be effective with their students Instead they implemented methods and materials they knew would produce success Students were helped to make connections between their various community identities, whether local, national or global, and this heightened their critical awareness When tensions in the Middle East increased prior to the Gulf War, one teacher asked her students to think about what this had to do with them After a long silence one said, "Well, I think it affects us because you have to have people to fight a war, and since they don't have no draft, the people who will volunteer will be the people who don't have any jobs, and lot of people in our community need work, so they might be the first ones to go" (p 50) When another boy reported that his dad said African Americans and Mexican Americans were the first to go to Vietnam, the teacher taught the children about overrepresentation Discussion followed on the impact of young males leaving the community At the end of the lesson students were working in cooperative groups creating "causality charts" in which they listed various current events and the possible impact on their community Culturally relevant teaching empowers students to be critical thinkers and change-makers Another teacher used the novel Charlie Pippin as the focus of an interdisciplinary unit Since the main character made origami to sell, the teacher taught her students how to make cranes, and read them the story of Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes Ladson-Billings then describes subsequent student activity "The entire study took place against the backdrop of an impending war between the United States and its allies and Iraq Several of the students decided that, like Sadako, they could make paper cranes to symbolize their opposition to the war In a way, the students believed that their efforts might even prevent the war Although the teacher gave them no extra time to make their cranes, they found many opportunities to do so By January 15, the date then-President George Bush 4 2 3

PAGE 102

Theory and Research in Social Education had set to move into Kuwait, [the] class had folded and hung up in their classroom window, 1,039 paper cranes tiny paper birds that stood as a symbol of their commitment to peace" (p .110) At the end of The Dreamkeepers Ladson-Billings presents her vision of a culturally relevant school One important aspect is that students would be engaged in community service projects Whether participating in an Adopt-a-Grandparent program at a local nursing home, maintaining a community garden or working in the pediatric ward at the hospital, children of all ages would be involved In addition, students would work on solutions to community problems in the context of their curriculum Groups of students would focus on various issues including such things as the city's budget deficit, homelessness, the poor condition of roads, and drug-related crime Here again learning would link school and community ; students would learn to analyze problems and take action How do we prepare prospective social studies teachers for culturally relevant teaching? Ladson-Billings' suggests the following as key : recruit teacher candidates who have a desire to work with African American students ; provide educational experiences that help teachers understand the central role of culture ; and provide immersion in African American culture and opportunities for observing culturally relevant teaching Indeed, critical to the successful education of African American students, Ladson-Billings argues, is "providing teacher candidates with opportunities to critique the system in ways that will help them choose a role as either agent of change or defender of the status quo" (p .132) This, of course, is equally critical to broader goals for education in a democratic society If culturally relevant teaching helps K-12 students develop a critical consciousness and become change-makers, we must offer nothing less to our teacher education candidates Are we educating teachers who comprehend the profound effects of racism and sexism and other forms of oppression on young peoples' lives? Do they understand how the educational system maintains the status quo and that their future job is invariably political in that they must choose to maintain or challenge that system? What kind of role models do we offer them as critical thinkers and promoters of social justice? The practice of these deamkeepers can do much to revitalize our vision of meaningful social education, particularly for children of color, but for all other young people as well If teachers and young people of varied racial backgrounds work to create a community of learners where all could succeed, and if their education provided students the vision, knowledge and tools to create a more just and equitable society, the dream so long deferred could truly become a reality Ladson-Billings and these exemplary teachers of African American children whose stories she tells are to be applauded for rekindling a vision of hope and possibility 4 2 4

PAGE 103

INFORMATION FOR AUTHORS Statement of Purpose 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 and understanding of the purposes, conditions, and effects of schooling and education about society and social relations Manuscripts reporting conceptual or empirical studies of social education are welcomed Submission of Manuscripts All manuscripts submitted will be considered for publication The original and four copies should be sent to : E Wayne Ross Editor, Theory and Research in Social Education P O Box 6000 School of Education and Human Development State University of New York at Binghamton Binghamton, NY 13902-6000 Manuscripts are accepted for consideration with the understanding that they are original material and are not being considered for publication elsewhere Ordinarily, manuscripts will not be returned Specifications for Manuscripts All material submitted for publication must conform to the style of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (4th ed ., 1994) Manuscripts should be typed on 8 .5 x 11-inch paper, upper and lower case, double spaced, with 1 .5 inch margins on all sides All manuscripts should be sent with an abstract of 100-150 words The first text page of the article should have the complete title, but no list of the authors Subsequent pages should carry only a running head Subheads should be used at reasonable intervals to break the monotony of lengthy texts Only words to be set in italics (according to APA style manual) should be underlined Abbreviations and acronyms should be spelled out at first mention unless found as entries in their abbreviated form in Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, Tenth Edition Pages should be numbered consecutively Manuscripts should typically run between 15-30 typed pages Author Identification The complete title of the manuscript and the name(s) of the author(s) should be typed on a separate sheet to assure anonymity in the review process The firstnamed author or the corresponding author should submit a complete address, telephone number and electronic mail address (if available) Notes and References Footnotes are explanations or amplifications of textual material They are distract ing to readers and expensive to set and should be avoided whenever possible When Fall 1996 4 2 5

PAGE 104

Theory and Research in Social Education 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 The author 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 be typed on a separate sheet and attached at the end of the manuscript All tables must be included on the disk that accompanies the manuscript Figure captions also should be typed on a separate sheet One high-quality, camera-ready version of each figure must be submitted with the manuscript Photocopies may accompany the additional copies of the manuscript Review Process Manuscripts will be acknowledged by the editor upon receipt Following preliminary editorial review, manuscripts will be sent to reviewers who have expertise in the subject of the article The review process takes anywhere from 6 weeks to 3 months Authors should expect to hear from editors within that time regarding the status of their manuscript Theory and Research in Social Education uses the blind review system The names of referees are published in the journal periodically Right to Reply The right to reply policy encourages comments on recently published articles in Theory and Research in Social Education They are, of course, subject to the same editorial review and decision If the comment is accepted for publication, the editor shall inform the author of the original article If the author submits a reply to the comments, the reply is also subject to editorial review and decision The editor may allot a specific amount of journal space for the comment (ordinarily about 1,500 words) and for the reply (ordinarily about 750 words) The reply may appear in the same issue as the comment or in a later issue Book Reviews Book reviews are normally solicted, however, unsolicited reviews will be accepted for consideration Book reviews (five copies) should be sent to : Michael Whelan, State University of New York at New Paltz, 75 S Manheim Blvd ., New Paltz, NY 12561-2499 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 parentheses) Title (in italics) City of publication : Publisher, total number of pages, list price (for both hard and softcover, if available) ISBN number Reviewer's name, followed by institutional address, complete with postal code 4 2 6

PAGE 105

Keith C Barton Jane Bernard-Powers Kathy Bickmore Jere Brophy Jeffrey W Cornett O L Davis, Jr Lee Ehman Terrie Epstein Jeffrey Fouts Geneva Gay S G Grant Carol Hahn Robert W Johns Marilyn Johnston Gloria Ladson-Billings Andra Makler Perry Marker Sandra L Mergen Reviewer Acknowledgement The editor would like to thank the following individuals for the time and careful attention given to manuscripts they reviewed for this and upcoming issues of TRSE Merry Merryfield Petra Munro Murry Nelson Fred Newmann Anna S Ochoa-Becker Valerie Ooka Pang Walter C Parker Paul Robinson Peter Seixas James Shaver William Stanley Cynthia S Sunal Stephen J Thornton Bruce A VanSledright Rahima Wade Gregory Wegner Michael Whelan Elizabeth A Yeager 4 2 7 Fall 1996

PAGE 106

Theory and Research in Social Education Executive Committee College and University Faculty Assembly, 1995-1996 Dorothy Skeel (Chair, 1996) Vanderbilt University Wilma Longstreet (Chair-Elect, 1998) University of New Orleans Linda Levstik (Immediate Past Chair) University of Kentucky Ceola Ross Baber (1998) University of North Carolina, Greensboro Clifford T Bennett (19%) University of Virginia Marilynne Boyle-Baise (1997) Indiana University CUFA Program Chair, 1996 Bruce VanSledright University of Maryland, College Park National Council for the Social Studies Officers, 1996-1997 Pat Nickell, President Richard A Diem, President-Elect Gloria Ladson-Billings (1997) University of Wisconsin, Madison Valerie Ooka Pang (1996) San Diego State University Brenda Weikel (1998) Syracuse University Jack Zevin (1997) Queens College, CUNY E Wayne Ross (Ex Officio) SUNY Binghamton

PAGE 107

join the TRSE Electronic Discussion Group (TRSE-L) Readers of Theory and Research in Social Education now have access to an electronic discussion group The TRSE-L is a new way for CUFA members and other social educators to be involved in discussions of issues affecting research and practice in social studies TRSE-L allows participants to post electronic mail messages to all list subscribers and provides an interactive forum for discussion of issues raised in the pages of TRSE To subscribe send the following message : "SUB TRSE-L Your Name" to < l istserv@bingvmb .cc .binghamton .ed u > 4 2 9 Fall 1996

PAGE 108

Theory and Research in Social Education Clarification In Stephen T Woolworth's review of Henry Giroux's Disturbing Pleasures : Learning Popular Culture, which appeared in Volume 24, Number 3, Spring 19%, an analysis of the Disney motion picture The Lion King should have been attributed to the reviewer, not not the author Announcements At the CUFA Annual Meeting in Washington, DC on November 22, 19% the following individuals were elected to three year terms on the CUFA Executive Committee : Merry Merryfield, The Ohio State University Bruce VanSledright, University of Maryland at College Park Rahima C Wade, University of Iowa CUFA extends its appreciation to Clifford T Bennett, Valerie Ooka Pang and Dorothy Skeel who complete their elected terms this year The CUFA Executive Committee announced that the Program Chair for the 1997 Annual Meeting in Cincinnati will be : David Naylor College of Education University of Cincinnati Cincinnati, Ohio 45221-0002 4 3 0

PAGE 109

~~ UNITED STL TES I" POST L SERVICE1 Publication Title Theory & Research in Social Education 4 Issue Frequency Quarterly 7 Complete Mailing Address of Know Office of Publication (Not printer) (Stre 3501 Newark Street N .W Washington, DC t 20016 Statement of Ownership, Management, and Circulation (Required by 39 USC 3685) 2 Publication Number 0 0 3 1 0 5 Number of Issues Published Annually 4 et, city, county, state, and ZIP+4) 8 Com late M lin A1Jdress of Hea uarle s or G neral t ness ffi of P bl bar N f p titer College university g acu~ty kssem% y o~ i%e National eouhcil for the Social Studies 3501 Newark Street N .W Washington, DC t 20016 9 Full Names and Complete Mailing Addresses of Publisher, Editor, and Managing Editor (Do not leave blank) P Ins rr (Name and comp / t lin '' ayne oss t ~ o1Vftf ) School of Education and Human Development State University of New York at Binghamton Binghamton, NY t 13902-6000 Editor (Name and complete mailing address) SAME Managing Editor (Name and complete mailing address) 10 Owner (Do not leave blank If the publication is owned by a corporation, give the name and address of the corporation immediately followed by the names and addresses of all stockholders owning or holding 1 percent or more of the total amount of stock If not owned by a corporation, give the names and addresses of the individual owners If owned by a partnership or other unincorporated firm, give its name and address as well as those of each individual owner If the publication is published by a nonprofit organization, give its name and address .) 11 Known Bondholders, Mortgagees, and Other Security Holders Owning or Holding t Percent or More of Total Amount of Bonds, Mortgages, of Other Securities If none, check box Full Name 12 Tax Status (For comp/ets n by nonprofit organizations authonzed to mad at special rates) (Check one) The purpose, function, and nonprofit status of this organization and the exempt status for federal income tax purposes O Has Not Changed During Preceding 12 Months E] Has Changed During Preceding 12 Months (Publisher must submit explanation of change with this statement) vQ 1-r 3526, SeptPmhPr 1 Qg5 (See Insr ucbons on P--1 I So0 None Complete Mailing Address 3 Filing Date 9/30/96 6 Annual Subscription Price $ 39 .00 Contact Person C Roberts Tel e hone 0202) 966-7841 Full Name Complete Mailing Address College & University Faculty Assembly of 3501 Newark Street N .W the National Council for the Social Studies Washington, DC t 20016

PAGE 110

16 Publication of Statement of Ownership o Publication required Will be printed in the t issue of this publication o Publication not required PS Form 3526, September 1995 (Reverse) Fall 96 17 Signstuy~,~nd Life of Editpr, Publisher Business Manager, or Owner Ma~(t/~ha s'~ a tee ecutive Director Date 9/30/96 I certify that all information furnished on this form is true and complete I understand that anyone who furnishes false or misleading information on this form or who omits material or information requested on the form may be subject to criminal sanctions (including fines and imprisonment) and/or civil sanctions (including multiple damages and civil penalties) Instructions to Publishers 1 Complete and file one copy of this form with your postmaster annually on or before October 1 Keep a copy of the completed form for your records 2 in cases where the stockholder or security holder is a trustee, include in items 10 and 1 1 the name of the person or corporation for whom the trustee is acting Also include the names and addresses of individuals who are stockholders who own or hold 1 percent or more of the total amount of bonds, mortgages, or other securities of the publishing corporation In item 11, if none, check the box Use blank sheets if more space is required 3 Be sure to furnish all circulation information called for in item 15 Free circulation must be shown in items 15d, e, and I 4 If the publicalion had second-class authorization as a general or requester publication, this Statement of Ownership, Management, and Circulation must be published ; it must be printed in any issue in October or, if the publication is not published during October, the first issue printed after October 5 In item 16, indicate the date of the issue in which this Statement of Ownership will be published 6 Item 17 must be signed Failure to file or publish a statement of ownership may lead to suspension of second-class authorization 13 Publication Title Theory & Research in Social Education 14 Issue Date for Circulation Data Belo Sunnier 1996 Vol 24 #3 15 € Extant end Nature of Circulation Average No Copies Each Issue During Preceding 12 Months Actual No Copies of Single Issue Published Nearest to Filing Dote a Total Number of Copies (Net press run) 1,012 962 b Paid and/or Requested Circulation (1) Sales Through Dealers and Carriers, Street Vendors, and Counter Sales (Not mailed) 0 0 (2) Paid or Requested Mail Subscriptions (Include advertiser's proof copies and exchange copies) 891 903 c Total Paid and/or Requested Circulation t (Sum of 15b(1) and 15b(2)) 891 903 d Free Distribution by Mail (Samples, comp imentary, and other free) 25 25 e Free Distribution Outside the Mail (Carriers or other means) 0 0 I Total Free Distnbubon (Sum of 15d aid 15e) t i 29 2S g Total Distnbubon (Sum of 15c and i5f) t 91b 928 h Copies not Distributed (1) Office Use, Leftovers, Spoiled 96 34 (2) Returns from News Agents 0 0 i Total (Sum of 15g, 15h(1), and 15h(2)) t 1,012 962 Percent Paid and/ Requested Circulation (15c / 15g x 100) 97% 97%

PAGE 111

7 eory &Research in Social Education NCSS 3501 Newark Street, NW Washington, DC 20016 Periodicals Postage Paid at Washington, D .C and additional mailing offices


Download Options

Choose Size
Choose file type
Cite this item close


Cras ut cursus ante, a fringilla nunc. Mauris lorem nunc, cursus sit amet enim ac, vehicula vestibulum mi. Mauris viverra nisl vel enim faucibus porta. Praesent sit amet ornare diam, non finibus nulla.


Cras efficitur magna et sapien varius, luctus ullamcorper dolor convallis. Orci varius natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Fusce sit amet justo ut erat laoreet congue sed a ante.


Phasellus ornare in augue eu imperdiet. Donec malesuada sapien ante, at vehicula orci tempor molestie. Proin vitae urna elit. Pellentesque vitae nisi et diam euismod malesuada aliquet non erat.


Nunc fringilla dolor ut dictum placerat. Proin ac neque rutrum, consectetur ligula id, laoreet ligula. Nulla lorem massa, consectetur vitae consequat in, lobortis at dolor. Nunc sed leo odio.