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Journal Article

Color Blindness and Basket Making Are Not the Answers: Confronting the Dilemmas of Race, Culture, and Language Diversity in Teacher Education

Marilyn Cochran-Smith
American Educational Research Journal
Vol. 32, No. 3 (Autumn, 1995), pp. 493-522
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1163321
Page Count: 30
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Color Blindness and Basket Making Are Not the Answers: Confronting the Dilemmas of Race, Culture, and Language Diversity in Teacher Education
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Abstract

Although the American educational system is dysfunctional for large numbers of children who are not part of the racial and language mainstream, there are no universal strategies for teaching children who are culturally and linguistically different from one another, from their teachers, or from students whose interests are already well served by the system. Drawing on the inquiries of student teachers working in urban elementary schools, I argue that we need to go beyond color blindness and basket making as responses to cultural diversity. Instead, I propose that we need generative ways for student teachers and teacher educators to reconsider their assumptions, understand the values and practices of families and cultures different from their own, and construct pedagogy that not only takes these into account in locally appropriate ways but also makes issues of diversity an explicit part of the curriculum.

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