Multicultural Education it Is Useless Term Paper

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The fundamentalist White orientation is one often accounted for and met in everyday life, as well as in the education process. We need not refer to extremist and violent groups, but to the uniformed category with which Howard himself identifies for much of his teenage years, up to the college period. Just as he hadn't met a person who wasn't white until then, similarly we may tend to believe that stating the fact that color makes no difference to us is enough to surpass the fact that we indeed have "a mask of dominance" which we unconsciously wear. In this case, we deny the fact that there are racial differences and would rather follow the line "we are all the same," that is a rejection of diversity rather than understanding it.

The integrationist White orientation believes that a condescending approach is right when approaching racial problems. Howard himself identifies with this category in his days in the ghetto in the 60s, helping Black kids. Condescending here means that you tend to believe that you understand the problems that persons from the other cultural communities face. We may rightly assert that many of us have often faced a situation when we thought solving a racial problem meant identifying yourself with it. However, saying that you know how one feels does not provide the level of understanding and cultural solution that would be appropriate.

Thirdly, there is the transformationist category, where people acknowledge racial difference and, further more, the dominant position that the White population has managed to gain throughout history. This category is the most explanatory: not only does it refer to an acceptance of White dominance as a starting point in dealing with race issues, but it also connects to the discovery of one's own white identity, much as Howard has done during his trip to Europe.

As such, we may assert that we all find our own experiences, at one point or another, similar to the author's and we can all place ourselves in one of the categories presented here above. In general, the young ages are periods of time with little interaction with other races. However, growing up in a neighborhood with cultural differences may chance this fact. It is, however, most probable that college has, for most of us, meant a change in the way we see the world and the communities living around us, much the same as the author.

In my opinion, the book itself is all about multicultural differences, about accepting them and dealing with them and indeed, about creating a "competence" in this area. Following Gary Howard's example, we need to acknowledge the fact that a greater multicultural competence is a multiphase evolutionary process, following at least the three categories described here above. Further more, undeniably, accepting cultural differences and racial issues goes hand in hand with discovering and coming to terms with your own identity, as well as with any consequences that your appurtenance to a race may have.

Bibliography

1. Howard, Gary. "We Can't Teach What We Don't Know: White Teachers, Multicultural Schools." New York Teachers College Press. 1999

2. Howard, Gary. How we are white. Southern Poverty Law Journal, Teaching Tolerance. On the Internet at http://www.enidlee.com/white.htm

3. Review of the book on the Internet at http://halleducation.com/store/books_080773800X_We-Can't-Teach-What-We-Don't-Know-White-Teachers-Multiracial-Schools-Multicultural-Education-Series-New-York-N.Y...html

4. Howard, R. Gary. White Americans in a Multicultural Society: Re-thinking Our Role. Greater Rochester Diversity Council. 1993. Adapted from "Whites in Multicultural Education: Rethinking

Our Role," which appeared in the Phi Delta Kappan (September, 1993). On the Internet at http://www.rochesterdiversitycouncil.com/docs/Article-WhiteAmericans01-03.pdf

Howard, Gary. How are we white. Southern Poverty Law Journal, Teaching Tolerance. On the Internet at http://www.enidlee.com/white.htm

Review of the book on the Internet at http://halleducation.com/store/books_080773800X_We-Can't-Teach-What-We-Don't-Know-White-Teachers-Multiracial-Schools-Multicultural-Education-Series-New-York-N.Y...html

Also in Howard, R. Gary. White Americans in a Multicultural Society: Re-thinking Our Role. Greater Rochester Diversity Council. 1993. Adapted from "Whites in Multicultural Education: Rethinking

Our Role," which appeared in the Phi Delta Kappan (September, 1993). On the Internet at http://www.rochesterdiversitycouncil.com/docs/Article-WhiteAmericans01-03.pdf

Also Howard, Gary. How we are white. Southern Poverty Law Journal, Teaching Tolerance. On the Internet at http://www.enidlee.com/white.htm[continue]

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