❤❤❤ Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad

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Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad

This chapter draws on the work of educational radicals Swot Analysis Of Evergreeng Company progressives within the field of social studies education for its Comparing Gods In Genesis And Popol Vuh, Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, empirical, and theoretical framework. Slavery helped make America—to Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad it—and through cataclysms, its destruction made possible remaking America. Lewy Ed. Every year the news brings stories of teachers who get into trouble when families complain about this Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad of approach. Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, MA: Heath. Curriculum reform, in other words, whether Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, issues- centered or Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, is highly unlikely by itself to transform the sterile, uninspiring instructional practices that many maintain are all half hanged mary common among social Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad educators Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, And Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad must Essay On Mount Everest these through study Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad learning. But without structured help, teachers and curriculum planners are left to their own devices, with a patchwork Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad advice offered by interpretive Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, museums and professional Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad.


We have elevated the entire conflict to the realm where it is no longer explosive. It is a part of American legend, a part of American history, a part, if you will, of American romance. It moves men mightily, to this day, but it does not move them in the direction of picking up their guns and going at it again. We have had national peace since the war ended, and we will always have it, and I think the way Lee and his soldiers conducted themselves in the hours of surrender has a great deal to do with it. Historians have stated that the "Lost Cause" theme helped white Southerners adjust to their new status and move forward into what became known as "the New South ".

The CMLS founded the Confederate Museum to document and to defend the Confederate cause and to recall the antebellum mores that the new South's business ethos was thought to be displacing. By focusing on military sacrifice, rather than on grievances regarding the North, the Confederate Museum aided the process of sectional reconciliation, according to Hillyer. By depicting slavery as benevolent, the museum's exhibits reinforced the notion that Jim Crow laws were a proper solution to the racial tensions that had escalated during Reconstruction.

Lastly, by glorifying the common soldier and portraying the South as "solid", the museum promoted acceptance of industrial capitalism. Thus the Confederate Museum both critiqued and eased the economic transformations of the New South and enabled Richmond to reconcile its memory of the past with its hopes for the future and to leave the past behind as it developed new industrial and financial roles. The historian Jacquelyn Dowd Hall stated that the Lost-Cause theme was fully developed around in a mood not of despair but of triumphalism for the New South. Much was left out of the Lost Cause:. But the Lost Cause narrative also suppressed the memories of many white southerners. Memories of how, under slavery, power bred cruelty.

Memories of the bloody, unbearable realities of war. Written out too were the competing memories and identities that set white southerners one against another, pitting the planters against the up-country, Unionists against Confederates, Populists and mill workers against the corporations, home-front women against war-besotted, broken men. The Virginian Moses Jacob Ezekiel , the most prominent Confederate expatriate , was the only sculptor to have seen action during the Civil War. From his studio in Rome, where a Confederate flag hung proudly, he created a series of statues of Confederate "heroes" which both celebrated the Lost Cause in which he was a "true believer", [41] and set a highly visible model for Confederate monument-erecting in the early 20th century.

What stands out most is the lasting impact of Ezekiel's tributes to the Confederacy—his homage to 'Stonewall' Jackson in West Virginia; his 'loyal slave' monument in Arlington; his personification of Virginia mourning for her soldiers who died fighting for a treasonous nation created in defense of black chattel slavery. Confederate monuments, including Ezekiel's highly visible sculptures, were part of a campaign to terrorize black Americans, to romanticize slavery, to promote an ahistorical lie about the honor of the Confederate cause, to cast in granite what Jim Crow codified in law.

The consequences of all those things remain with us. A firm believer not only in white supremacy, but also in the "degeneration" of blacks after slavery ended, Dixon thought the ideal solution to America's racial problems was to deport all blacks to Africa. Dixon predicted a " race war " if current trends continued unchecked that he believed white people would surely win, having "3, years of civilization in their favor".

He decried portrayals of Southerners as cruel and villainous in popular works such as Uncle Tom's Cabin , seeking to counteract these portrayals with his own work. He was a noted lecturer, often getting many more invitations to speak than he was capable of accepting. He had an immense following, and "his name had become a household word. There were great beds of solid thought, and timely instruction at the bottom. Between and , he was heard by more than 5,, people; his play The Clansman was seen by over 4,, He bought a "steam yacht" and named it Dixie. After seeing a theatrical version of Uncle Tom's Cabin , "he became obsessed with writing a trilogy of novels about the Reconstruction period.

Lee , and one on Jefferson Davis , The Victim Dixon's method is hard-hitting, sensational, and uncompromising: it becomes easy to understand the reasons for the great popularity of these swiftly moving stories dealing with problems very close to people who had experienced the Civil War and Reconstruction; and thousands of persons who had experienced Reconstruction were still alive when the trilogy of novels was published. Dixon's literary skill in evoking old memories and deep-seated prejudices made the novelist a respected spokesman—a champion for people who held bitter resentments. Their influential spin-off, The Birth of a Nation movie was the first film shown in the White House and repeated the next day to the entire Supreme Court, 38 Senators, and the Secretary of the Navy.

The basic assumptions of the Lost Cause have proved durable for many in the modern South. The Lost Cause tenets frequently emerge during controversies surrounding public display of the Confederate flag and various state flags. The historian John Coski noted that the Sons of Confederate Veterans SCV , the "most visible, active, and effective defender of the flag" "carried forward into the twenty-first century, virtually unchanged, the Lost Cause historical interpretations and ideological vision formulated at the turn of the twentieth".

From the SCV spokesmen reiterated the consistent argument that the South fought a legitimate war for independence, not a war to defend slavery, and that the ascendant "Yankee" view of history falsely vilified the South and led people to misinterpret the battle flag. The Confederate States used several flags during its existence from to Since the end of the American Civil War, the personal and official use of Confederate flags and flags derived from them has continued under considerable controversy. The second state flag of Mississippi , adopted in after the state's so-called " Redemption " and relinquished in during the George Floyd protests , included the Confederate battle flag. The city flag of Trenton , Georgia , which incorporates the Confederate battle flag, was adopted in as a protest against the Georgia General Assembly voting to significantly reduce the size of the Confederate battle flag on their state flag.

Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans centered on whether or not the state of Texas could deny a request by the SCV for vanity license plates that incorporated a Confederate battle flag. The Court heard the case on March 23, In October , outrage erupted online following the discovery of a Texan school's geography textbook, which described slaves as "immigrants" and "workers". Charles Wilson argues that many white Southerners, most of whom were conservative and pious evangelical Protestants , sought reasons for the Confederacy's defeat in religion. They felt that the Confederacy's defeat in the war was God's punishment for their sins and motivated by this belief, they increasingly turned to religion as their source of solace. The postwar era saw the birth of a regional " civil religion " which was heavily laden with symbolism and ritual; clergymen were this new religion's primary celebrants.

Wilson says that the ministers constructed. Lost Cause ritualistic forms that celebrated their regional mythological and theological beliefs. They used the Lost Cause to warn Southerners of their decline from past virtue, to promote moral reform, to encourage conversion to Christianity , and to educate the young in Southern traditions ; in the fullness of time, they related to American values. On both a cultural and religious level, white southerners tried to defend what their defeat in made impossible for them to defend on a political level. The Lost Cause, the South's defeat in a holy war , left southerners to face guilt , doubt , and the triumph of evil and they faced them by forming what C.

Vann Woodward called a uniquely Southern sense of the tragedy of history. Poole stated that in fighting to defeat the Republican Reconstruction government in South Carolina in , white conservative Democrats portrayed the Lost Cause scenario through "Hampton Days" celebrations and shouted, "Hampton or Hell! Chamberlain as a religious struggle between good and evil and called for " redemption ". Among writers on the Lost Cause, gender roles were a contested domain. Men typically honored the role which women played during the war by noting their total loyalty to the cause.

Women, however, developed a much different approach to the cause by emphasizing female activism, initiative, and leadership. They explained that when all of the men left, the women took command, found substitute foods, rediscovered their old traditional skills with the spinning wheel when factory cloth became unavailable, and ran all of the farm or plantation operations. They faced apparent danger without having men to perform the traditional role of being their protectors. The popularization of the Lost Cause interpretation and the erection of monuments was primarily the work of Southern women, the center of which was the United Daughters of the Confederacy UDC.

UDC leaders were determined to assert women's cultural authority over virtually every representation of the region's past. They did this by lobbying for the creation of state archives and the construction of state museums, the preservation of national historic sites, and the construction of historic highways; compiling genealogies; interviewing former soldiers; writing history textbooks; and erecting monuments, which now moved triumphantly from cemeteries into town centers.

More than half a century before women's history and public history emerged as fields of inquiry and action, the UDC, along with other women's associations, strove to etch women's accomplishments into the historical record and take history to the people, from the nursery and the fireside to the schoolhouse and the public square. The duty of memorializing the Confederate dead was a major activity for Southerners who were devoted to the Lost Cause, and chapters of the UDC played a central role in performing it.

Its long-term impact was to promote the Lost Cause image of the antebellum plantation South as an idealized society which was crushed by the forces of Yankee modernization, which also undermined traditional gender roles. The Southern states set up their own pension systems for veterans and their dependents, especially for widows, since none of them was eligible to receive pensions under the federal pension system.

The pensions were designed to honor the Lost Cause and reduce the severe poverty which was prevalent in the region. Male applicants for pensions had to demonstrate their continued loyalty to the "lost cause". Female applicants for pensions were rejected if their moral reputations were in question. In Natchez, Mississippi , the local newspapers and veterans played a role in the maintenance of the Lost Cause.

However, elite white women were central in establishing memorials such as the Civil War Monument which was dedicated on Memorial Day The Lost Cause enabled women noncombatants to lay a claim to the central event in their redefinition of Southern history. The UDC was quite prominent but not at all unique in its appeal to upscale white Southern women. Fitzhugh Brundage. He noted two typical club women in Texas and Mississippi who between them belonged to the United Daughters of the Confederacy, the Daughters of the American Revolution , the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities , the Daughters of the Pilgrims , the Daughters of the War of , the Daughters of Colonial Governors , and the Daughters of the Founders and Patriots of America , the Order of the First Families of Virginia , and the Colonial Dames of America as well as a few other historically-oriented societies.

Comparable men, on the other hand, were much less interested in belonging to historical organizations, instead, they devoted themselves to secret fraternal societies and emphasized athletic, political, and financial exploits in order to prove their manhood. Brundage notes that after women's suffrage came in , the historical role of the women's organizations eroded. These women architects of whites' historical memory, by both explaining and mystifying the historical roots of white supremacy and elite power in the South, performed a conspicuous civic function at a time of heightened concern about the perpetuation of social and political hierarchies. Although denied the franchise, organized white women nevertheless played a dominant role in crafting the historical memory that would inform and undergird southern politics and public life.

Lee ] objected to the phrase too often used—South as well as North—that the Confederates fought for what they thought was right. They fought for what they knew was right. They, like the Greeks, fought for home, the graves of their sires, and their native land. Their strong local and personal attachment secured faithful service The tempter came, like the serpent of Eden, and decoyed them with the magic word of 'freedom' He put arms in their hands, and trained their humble but emotional natures to deeds of violence and bloodshed, and sent them out to devastate their benefactors.

Tenets of the Lost Cause movement include: [88] [89]. The most powerful images and symbols of the Lost Cause were Robert E. David Ulbrich wrote, "Already revered during the war, Robert E. Lee acquired a divine mystique within Southern culture after it. Remembered as a leader whose soldiers would loyally follow him into every fight no matter how desperate, Lee emerged from the conflict to become an icon of the Lost Cause and the ideal of the antebellum Southern gentleman , an honorable and pious man who selflessly served Virginia and the Confederacy.

Lee's tactical brilliance at Second Bull Run and Chancellorsville took on legendary status, and despite his accepting full responsibility for the defeat at Gettysburg , Lee remained largely infallible for Southerners and was spared criticism even from historians until recent times. Although Lee took all responsibility for the defeats particularly the one at Gettysburg , Early's writings place the Confederate defeat at Gettysburg squarely on Longstreet's shoulders by accusing him of failing to attack early in the morning of July 2, , as instructed by Lee. In fact, however, Lee never expressed dissatisfaction with the second-day actions of his "Old War Horse".

Grant with whom he had shared a close friendship before the war and for joining the Republican Party. Grant, in rejecting the Lost Cause arguments, said in an interview that he rejected the notion that the South had simply been overwhelmed by numbers. Grant wrote, "This is the way public opinion was made during the war and this is the way history is made now. We never overwhelmed the South What we won from the South we won by hard fighting. One essential element of the Lost Cause movement was that the act of secession itself had been legitimate; otherwise, all of the Confederacy's leading figures would have become traitors to the United States.

To legitimize the Confederacy's rebellion, Lost Cause intellectuals challenged the legitimacy of the federal government and the actions of Abraham Lincoln as president. That was exemplified in "Force or Consent as the Basis of American Government" by Mary Scrugham in which she presented frivolous arguments against the legality of Lincoln's presidency. The accusations, though thoroughly refuted, gave rise to the belief that the North initiated the Civil War, making a designation of "The War of Northern Aggression" possible as one of the names of the American Civil War. On the title page, Dixon cited Jeremiah "Can the Ethiopian change his color, or the Leopard his spots?

The novel aimed to reinforce the superiority of the "Anglo-Saxon" race and advocate either for white dominance of black people or for the separation of the two races. You can train him, but you can't make of him a horse. The novel, which "blazes with oratorial fireworks", [95] "attracted attention as soon as it came from the press", and more than , copies were quickly sold. In an author's note Dixon says: "In answer to hundreds of letters I wish to state that all of the incidents used in Book 1, which is properly the prologue of my story, were selected from authentic records, or came within my personal knowledge.

The only serious liberty I have taken with history is to tone down the facts — to make them credible in fiction. In The Clansman , the best known of the three novels, Dixon similarly claimed, "I have sought to preserve in this romance both the letter and the spirit of this remarkable period Stoneman's anger towards former slaveholders is intensified after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln , and Stoneman vows revenge on the South. His programs strip away the land owned by whites and give it to former slaves, as with the traditional idea of " forty acres and a mule ". Men claiming to represent the government confiscate the material wealth of the South and destroy plantation-owning families.

Finally, the former slaves are taught that they are superior to their former owners and should rise against them. These alleged injustices were the impetus for the creation of the Ku Klux Klan. Dixon's purpose here is to show that the original formers of the Ku Klux Klan were modern knights errant, taking the only means at hand to right wrongs. The depiction of the Klan's burning of crosses , as shown in the illustrations of the first edition, is an innovation of Dixon.

It had not previously been used by the Klan, but was later taken up by them. To publicize his views further, Dixon rewrote The Clansman as a play. Like the novel, it was a great commercial success; there were multiple touring companies presenting the play simultaneously in different cities. Sometimes, it was banned. Birth of a Nation is actually based on the play, which was unpublished until , [ clarification needed ] rather than directly on the novel. Another prominent and influential popularizer of the Lost Cause perspective was D. Griffith 's highly-successful The Birth of a Nation , which was based on Dixon's novel.

Dixon's vicious version of the idea that blacks had caused the Civil War by their very presence, and that Northern radicalism during Reconstruction failed to understand that freedom had ushered blacks as a race into barbarism, neatly framed the story of the rise of heroic vigilantism in the South. Reluctantly, Klansmen—white men—had to take the law into their own hands in order to save Southern white womanhood from the sexual brutality of black men. Dixon's vision captured the attitude of thousands and forged in story form a collective memory of how the war may have been lost but Reconstruction was won—by the South and a reconciled nation.

Riding as masked cavalry, the Klan stopped corrupt government, prevented the anarchy of 'Negro rule' and most of all, saved white supremacy. In both The Clansman and the film, the Klan is portrayed as continuing the noble traditions of the antebellum South and the heroic Confederate soldier by defending Southern culture in general and Southern womanhood in particular against rape and depredations at the hands of the freedmen and Yankee carpetbaggers during Reconstruction. Dixon's narrative was so readily adopted that the film has been credited with the revival of the Klan in the s and s.

The second Klan, which Dixon denounced, reached a peak membership of million members. The first KKK did not burn crosses, which was originally a Scottish tradition, "Crann Tara", designed to gather clans for war. Gods and Generals reportedly lionizes Jackson and Lee. In his novels about the Sartoris family, William Faulkner referenced those who supported the Lost Cause ideal but suggested that the ideal itself was misguided and out of date. The Confederate Veteran , a monthly magazine published in Nashville, Tennessee , from to , made its publisher, Sumner Archibald Cunningham , a leader of the Lost Cause movement.

The Lost Cause view reached tens of millions of Americans in the best-selling novel Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell and the Oscar-winning film. Helen Taylor wrote:. Gone with the Wind has almost certainly done its ideological work. It has sealed in popular imaginations a fascinated nostalgia for the glamorous southern plantation house and ordered hierarchical society in which slaves are 'family,' and there is a mystical bond between the landowner and the rich soil those slaves work for him. It has spoken eloquently—albeit from an elitist perspective—of the grand themes war, love, death, conflicts of race, class, gender, and generation that have crossed continents and cultures.

From this combination of Lost Cause voices, a reunited America arose pure, guiltless, and assured that the deep conflicts in its past had been imposed upon it by otherworldly forces. The side that lost was especially assured that its cause was true and good. One of the ideas the reconciliationist Lost Cause instilled deeply into the national culture is that even when Americans lose, they win.

Southerners were portrayed as noble, heroic figures, living in a doomed romantic society that rejected the realistic advice offered by the Rhett Butler character and never understood the risk that they were taking in going to war. The Disney film Song of the South is the first to have combined live actors with animated shorts. There is a common misconception that the story takes place in the antebellum period and that the African-American characters are slaves. In fact, they're never called slaves, but they come off more like neighborly workers lending a helping hand for some kind, benevolent plantation owners. The Civil War film Gods and Generals , based on Jeff Shaara 's novel of the same name, is widely viewed as championing the Lost Cause ideology by creating a presentation that was favorable to the Confederacy [] [] [] and lionizes Generals Jackson and Lee.

Woodworth derided the movie as a modern-day telling of Lost Cause mythology. He summed up his reasons for disliking the movie:. Gods and Generals brings to the big screen the major themes of Lost Cause mythology that professional historians have been working for half a century to combat. In the world of Gods and Generals, slavery has nothing to do with the Confederate cause. Instead, the Confederates are nobly fighting for, rather than against, freedom, as viewers are reminded again and again by one white southern character after another. Woodworth criticized the portrayal of slaves as being "generally happy" with their condition.

He also criticized the relative lack of attention given to the motivations of Union soldiers fighting in the war. He excoriates the film for allegedly implying, in agreement with Lost Cause mythology, that the South was more "sincerely Christian". Woodworth concluded that the film through "judicial omission" presents "a distorted view of the Civil War". The historian William B. Feis similarly criticized the director's decision "to champion the more simplistic-and sanitized-interpretations found in post-war "Lost Cause" mythology".

The consensus of film critics for the movie was that it had a firm "pro-confederate slant". Professor Gallagher contended that Douglas Southall Freeman 's definitive four-volume biography of Lee, published in , "cemented in American letters an interpretation of Lee very close to Early's utterly heroic figure". While Longstreet was the most common target of such attacks, others came under fire as well. Richard Ewell , Jubal Early , J. Stuart , A. Hill , George Pickett , and many others were frequently attacked and blamed by Southerners in an attempt to deflect criticism from Lee.

Hudson Strode wrote a widely read scholarly three-volume biography of Confederate President Jefferson Davis. A leading scholarly journal that reviewed it stressed Strode's political biases:. His [Jefferson Davis's] enemies are devils, and his friends, like Davis himself, have been canonized. Strode not only attempts to sanctify Davis but also the Confederate point of view, and this study should be relished by those vigorously sympathetic with the Lost Cause. While not limited to the American South specifically, the Stop the Steal movement in the wake of the US presidential election has been interpreted as a reemergence of the Lost Cause idea and a manifestation of white backlash. Contemporary historians overwhelmingly agree that secession was motivated by slavery.

There were numerous causes for secession, but preservation and expansion of slavery was easily the most important of them. The confusion may come from blending the causes of secession with the causes of the war, which were separate but related issues. Lincoln entered a military conflict not to free the slaves but to put down a rebellion or, as he put it, to preserve the Union. According to the historian Kenneth M. Stampp , each side supported states' rights or federal power only when it was convenient for it to do so. According to Stampp, Stephens became one of the most ardent defenders of the 'Lost Cause' myth. Similarly, the historian William C. Davis explained the Confederate Constitution's protection of slavery at the national level:.

To the old Union they had said that the Federal power had no authority to interfere with slavery issues in a state. To their new nation they would declare that the state had no power to interfere with a federal protection of slavery. Of all the many testimonials to the fact that slavery, and not states' rights, really lay at the heart of their movement, this was the most eloquent of all. Davis further noted, "Causes and effects of the war have been manipulated and mythologized to suit political and social agendas, past and present. The caricature wholly misrepresents and distorts the facts of the matter.

Surely it is time to start again in our understanding of this decisive element of our past and to do so from the premises of history unadulterated by the distortions, falsehoods, and romantic sentimentality of the Myth of the Lost Cause. The historian William C. Davis labeled many of the myths which surround the war "frivolous" and these myths include attempts to rename the war by "Confederate partisans. The historian A.

He wrote that Gallagher. Confederate soldiers were often outnumbered, ragged, and hungry; southern civilians did endure much material deprivation and a disproportionate amount of bereavement; U. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Redirected from Lost Cause. Exculpatory myth concerning Confederate war aims and defeat in the American Civil War. For other uses, see Lost Cause disambiguation. Main articles: Modern display of the Confederate flag and Removal of Confederate monuments and memorials. Further information: United Daughters of the Confederacy. See also: Names of the American Civil War. Main article: The Leopard's Spots. Louis Globe-Democrat. Jackson, Mississippi. June 4, Archived from the original on January 25, Retrieved August 8, — via Newspapers.

The Washington Post. Archived from the original on April 16, Retrieved March 2, Southern Cultures. Los Angeles Times. Associated Press. February 27, Archived from the original on May 23, Retrieved May 23, October 30, Archived from the original on June 2, Retrieved June 2, Archived from the original on April 14, February 11, University of Virginia Press.

ISBN OCLC Archived from the original on August 6, Retrieved July 4, Indiana UP. Archived from the original on May 12, Retrieved December 11, Blight Harvard University Press. Archived from the original on June 10, University Press of Florida. University of Georgia Press. San Francisco Chronicle. Archived from the original on July 8, Retrieved July 8, A Companion to the U. Civil War. Archived from the original on April 20, Retrieved April 19, The Atlantic. Archived from the original on May 13, Retrieved June 13, Cooper, Jr. Terrill The American South: A History. Archived from the original on February 20, Retrieved October 12, National Park Service ". Archived from the original on April 4, Retrieved September 1, Race and reunion : the Civil War in American memory.

Cambridge, Mass. The Myth of the Lost Cause, — Civil War Book Review. Morrissett and Haas used the categories of conser- vative cultural continuity, the intellectual aspects of history and the social sciences, and process of thinking reflectively. They argue that the key element in the dispute over the purpose of social studies in the school curriculum in- volves the relative emphasis given to cultural transmission or to critical or reflective thinking.

When cultural transmission is emphasized, the intent is to use the social studies curriculum to promote social adaptation. The emphasis is on teaching content, behaviors, and values that reflect views accepted by the traditional, dominant society. This approach is politically conservative, valuing stability and common standards of thought and be- havior. When critical or reflective thinking is emphasized the intent is to use the social studies curriculum to promote social transformation. The emphasis is on teaching content, behaviors, and values that question and critique standard views accepted by the dominant society. Wayne Ross action to lead to the reconstruction of society e. It is within the context of the tensions between the relative emphasis on transmission of the cultural heritage of the dominant society or the development of critical thought that the social studies curriculum has had a mixed history—predominately conservative in its purposes, but also at times incorporating progressive and even radical purposes.

Stan- ley and Nelson organize the variations in social studies curriculum and instruction into three broad and not necessarily opposing categories: subject-centered social studies, civics-centered social studies, and issues- centered social studies. Subject-centered approaches argue that the social studies curriculum derives its content and purposes from disciplines taught in higher educa- tion. Some advocates would limit social studies curriculum to the study of traditional history and geography while others would also include the tra- ditional social sciences e. The glue holding these various curricular views together is that each seeks to derive an organizing framework for the so- cial studies curriculum based upon disciplinary knowledge from higher education.

Some subject-centered advocates argue for cultural transmis- sion, without multiculturalism e. For both groups subject matter knowl- edge is paramount. Civics-centered social studies is concerned with individual and social attitudes and behaviors more than with subject matter knowledge. As within the subject-centered approach, there are a wide spectrum of views from in- culcating cultural traditions to promoting social action. Views differ on the relative emphasis that should be given to uncritical loyalty, socially approved behaviors, and to social criticism and improvement, but they share the view that social studies is more than subject matter study and must be tied to civic competence e. Issues-centered approaches propose that social studies is the exami- nation of specific issues.

Social as well as personal problems and contro- versies are the primary content of the curriculum. The views in this category range from personal development to social problems as the pur- pose of the social studies curriculum. Some advocates argue that social criticism or activism is the main reason for studying issues e. The three approaches to social studies described by Stanley and Nel- son are not necessarily separate or opposing. Knowledge from the disci- plines is used in each; none disagrees that one purpose of the social studies is citizenship education; and each accepts social studies as a valuable con- struct. Who Controls the Social Studies Curriculum? Any response to this question hinges on a conception of curriculum.

Indeed, even the curriculum commissions of the late nineteenth century recognized the crucial role of social studies teachers in achieving curricular goals. The formal curriculum is the explicit or official curriculum, embodied in published courses or study, state frameworks, textbooks, tests, and cur- riculum standards efforts e. Wayne Ross harbored a tension between approaches that rely on centralized efforts leading to a standard curriculum and grassroots democratic efforts that provide greater involvement for teachers, parents, students, and other local curriculum leaders in determining what is worthwhile to know and experience. Curriculum centralization has resulted from three major in- fluences: legal decisions; policy efforts by governments, professional asso- ciations, and foundations; and published materials.

Examples of the latter two influences will be sketched below. Educational reform efforts in s attempted to define the nature of the school curriculum and featured efforts by both intellec- tual traditionalists e. Harris and Charles Eliot and developmen- talists e. The social studies curriculum has been heavily influenced by policies of curriculum centralization. The current pattern of topics and courses for secondary social studies is largely the result of recommen- dations of the Committee see Marker, chapter 4 in this volume. Despite the changing demographics of school attendance the pat- tern of course offerings have remained relatively unchanged: K.

Self, school, community, home 1. Families 2. Neighborhoods 3. Communities 4. State history, geographic regions 5. United States history 6. World cultures, Western hemisphere 7. World geography or world history 8. United States history 9. World history United States history. American government Efforts to centralize the curriculum through government mandates also have a long history. Smith-Hughes fostered the transformation of the American high school from an elite institution into one for the masses by mandating that the states specify training needs, program prescriptions, standards and means for monitoring progress.

The dual system of education created by Smith-Hughes was reconceptualized in with the passage of the Perkins Vocational and Applied Technology Act, which provided incen- tives for the development of work education programs that integrate aca- demic and vocational studies. This is an example of how local grassroots initiatives of people who know best the needs and characteristics of economically distressed communities can be effectively supported Wirth, Regents Examinations in New York State are one of the oldest examples of this approach. These curriculum frameworks are intended to influence textbook pub- lishers and establish standards by which students, teachers, and schools will be assessed. Wayne Ross I have just hinted at the large-scale centralizing influence of educa- tion policies on curriculum.

Resistance to curriculum centralization has always existed Ross, , c. There is a strong tradition of local school control in the U. Dewey argued that acquaintance with centralized knowledge must derive from situational concerns; that is, disciplinary knowledge must be attained by the inquiring student in ways that have meaning for her or him.

William H. In the project method, students and teachers took on a greater role in determining the curriculum because they were deemed in the best position to understand the personal and contextual foundations from which a meaningful and relevant curriculum could be constructed. Projects were pursued in small groups or as whole class experiences. Knowledge from the disciplines would be brought to bear on the pro- ject when it was perceived as relevant.

The essence of the project re- quired that teachers and students develop the idea together. If students were fascinated by zoos, for instance all subjects traditional and mod- ern could be related to a deepened understanding of zoos. Schubert, , p. For more than seventy years teachers have relied on textbooks as a pri- mary instructional tool. In , Bagley found that American students spent a significant portion of their school day in formal mastery of text materials Bagley, cited in McCutcheon, The textbook industry is highly competitive and the industry is dominated by a small number of large corporations; as a result, textbook companies modify their products to qualify for adoption in one of these states.

James W. Loewen illustrates this at length in his analysis of U. For example, in a discussion of how history textbooks make white racism invisible, Loewen notes: Although textbook authors no longer sugarcoat how slavery affected African Americans, they minimize white complicity in it. They present slavery virtually as uncaused, a tragedy, rather than a wrong perpetrated by some people on others. However, in the way the textbooks structure their discussion, most of them inadvertently still take a white supremacist viewpoint.

The archetype of African Americans as dependent on others begins. In reality, white violence, not black ignorance, was the key prob- lem during Reconstruction. Loewen, , p. That year the National Defense Education Act helped to import disciplinary specialists to design curriculum packages for schools. In the social studies, these cur- riculum innovations were collectively called the New Social Studies. Although social studies specialists helped in the development of New Social Studies materials, the curricular focus was on the academic disciplines. Wayne Ross experts in academic disciplines, viewed teachers as implementers not active partners in the creation of classroom curriculum.

While the development and dissemination of the curriculum pro- jects in the s were well funded, they failed to make a major impact on classroom practices. In contrast, proponents of grassroots democracy in curriculum offered the expla- nation that the failure was due to the blatant disregard of teachers and students in curriculum decision making. This is especially ironic inas- much as those who promoted inquiry methods with the young ne- glected to allow inquiry by teachers and students about matters most fundamental to their growing lives, that is, inquiry about that which is most worthwhile to know and experience. Curriculum Standards It is clear that government-driven curriculum centralization efforts i.

The standards movement is a massive effort at curriculum centralization. Virtually all of the subject- matter-based professional education groups have undertaken the creation of curriculum standards. Encouraged by the positive response to the de- velopment of standards for the mathematics curriculum and the availabil- ity of federal funding for such projects, social studies educators have taken up the development of curriculum standards with unparalleled zeal. The Struggle for the Social Studies Curriculum 29 Because the aim of these projects is to create a national educational system with uniform content and goals the ongoing debates and divisions within the field of social studies has intensified.

The standards-based cur- riculum movement is a rationalized managerial approach to issues of curriculum development and teaching that attempts to define curricular goals, design assessment tasks based on these goals, set standards for the content of subject matter areas and grade level, and test students and re- port the results to the public. The intent is to establish standards for con- tent and student performance levels. The primary tension in curriculum reform efforts, today and histori- cally, is between centralized and grassroots decision making.

When there are multiple participants and competing interests in the curriculum- making process, the question arises, where does control reside? The standards-based curriculum movement in social studies represents an effort by policy elites to standardize the content and much of the practice of education e. Operationally curriculum- standards projects in social studies are anti-democratic because they se- verely restrict the legitimate role of teachers and other educational pro- fessionals, as well as members of the public, from participating in the conversation about the origin, nature and ethics of knowledge taught in the social studies curriculum.

Resources that might have been directed to assisting teachers to become better decision makers have instead been channeled into a program dedicated to the de- velopment of schemes for preventing teachers from making curricular de- cisions. The circumstances described above leads to the final question addressed in this chapter. A fundamental assumption of most cur- riculum-centralization efforts is that means instruction can be separated from the ends curricular goals and objectives. Many teachers have inter- nalized the means-ends distinction between their pedagogy and the cur- riculum. As a result, they view their professional role as instructional decision makers not as curriculum developers Thornton, Wayne Ross What is clear from studies of teacher decision making, however, is that teachers do much more than select teaching methods to implement formally adopted curricular goals.

As Thornton argues, teacher beliefs about social studies subject matter and student thinking in social studies, as well as planning and instructional strategies, together function to cre- ate the enacted curriculum of the classroom—the day-to-day interactions among students, teachers and subject matter. The difference between the publicly declared formal curriculum and the curriculum experienced by students in social studies classrooms is considerable. This is not to say that social studies classes are not affected by factors such as the characteristics of the students enrolled, but only to emphasize that the teacher plays the primary structuring role.

Teachers are actively in- volved in shaping the culture of schooling. This example illustrates the importance of focusing on the develop- ment of the enacted curriculum instead of the formal curriculum. There are three possible roles for teachers in curriculum implemen- tation Ben-Peretz, This view of teachers was adopted at the turn of the twentieth century as history was becoming established as a school subject. Arthur Schlesinger Sr. This is clearly not a desirable role for professional teachers. The New Social Studies is an exemplar of this role for the teacher. Teachers were viewed as active implementers but not as full partners in the creation of the curriculum.

A third and most desirable role for teachers is as curriculum user- developers. From this perspective teachers are assumed to be full part- ners in development of the enacted curriculum. Teacher inquiry is a key element in the success of the curriculum because it is inquiry directed at discovering curriculum potential that leads to the change and transfor- mation of formal curriculum materials, and most importantly the devel- opment of new alternatives that are best suited for circumstances the teacher is working within.

The current standards-based curriculum movement highlights the contradiction between the views of teachers as active implementers or as user-developers. Ultimately, however, curriculum improvement depends on teachers being more thoughtful about their work see Cornett et al. The most effective means of improving the curriculum is to improve the education and professional development afforded teachers. Teachers need to be better prepared to exercise the curricular decision-making re- sponsibilities that are an inherent part of instructional practice.

Early in this century John Dewey identified the intellectual subservience of teach- ers as a central problem facing progressive educators in their efforts to im- prove the curriculum. Dewey saw the solution to the problem as the development of teaching as professional work. Prospective teachers, Dewey argued: should be given to understand that they not only are permitted to act on their own initiative, but that they are expected to do so and that their ability to take hold of a situation for themselves would be a more important factor in judging them than their following any particular set methods or scheme. Dewey, , pp. Conclusion In this chapter I have posed three fundamental questions about the social studies curriculum: 1 What is the social studies curriculum?

In responding to these ques- tions I identified a series of tensions and contradiction that have shaped the field of social studies historically and that still affect it today. In response to the first question I identified the tension between the study of academic history and efforts of social meliorists as setting the stage for a long-standing conflict between advocates of subject-centered and civics- or issue-centered social studies. In addition, it was argued that the purposes of the social studies curriculum have essentially been de- fined by the relative emphasis given to cultural transmission or critical thinking in the curriculum.

The second question led to an examination of the long-standing ten- sions between curriculum centralization and grassroots curriculum de- velopment. The recent standards-based curriculum movement was discussed in this section and used as a bridge to the consideration of the final question regarding the role of the social studies teacher in relation to the curriculum. In the closing section I argued that teachers are the key element in curriculum improvement and that curriculum change in the social studies will only be achieved through the improved education and professional development opportunities for teachers.

My intention has been to present this series of tensions and contra- dictions as a heuristic for understanding the dynamic nature of the social studies. It would be a mistake to treat them as definitive oppositionals, however; it is the struggles over these contradictions that have shaped the nature of the social studies curriculum in the past and continues to define it today. Notes 1. The balance of this section draws directly upon Ross, E. I am indebted to the work of William H. Schubert for the historical analysis in this sec- tion. See Schubert, W. Historical perspective on centralizing the cur- riculum. Klein Ed. This section draws upon Ross, E. Teachers and texts.

New York: Routledge. Apple, M. The politics of the textbook. Barr, R. Defining the social studies. Ben-Peretz, M. The teacher-curriculum encounter. Black, H. The American schoolbook. New York: William Morrow. Bowler, M. The making of a textbook. Learning, 6, 38— Brooks, M. Centralized curriculum: Effects on the local school level. American Historical Association. The study of his- tory in schools. National Education Association.

Report of the committee on secondary school studies. The so- cial studies in secondary education. Cornbleth, C. The great speckled bird. New York: St. Cornett, J. W Cornett, and G. Mc- Cutcheon Eds. Counts, G. Dare the school build a new social order. New York: John Day. The relation of theory to practice in education, In The relation of theory to practice in the education of teachers: Third yearbook of the National Soci- ety for the Scientific Study of Education, part I.

Engle, S. Decision making: The heart of social studies instruction. Social Education, 24 7 , —, Education for democratic citizenship: Decision making in the social studies. Fullinwider, R. Philosophical inquiry and social studies. Gabbard, D. Defending public schools: Education under the security state. Westport, CT: Praeger. Hunt, M. Teaching high school social studies: Problems in reflective thinking and social understanding.

Wayne Ross Hursh, D. Democratic social education: Social stud- ies for social change. Kesson, K. Kilpatrick, W. The project method. Kincheloe, J. Cultural studies and democratically aware teacher education: Post-Fordism, civics, and the worker-citizen. Kleibard, H. The struggle for the American — 3rd Ed. Kohlberg, L. Moral development and the new social studies. Social Edu- cation, 14 1 , 35— The cognitive-developmental approach to moral education. Phi Delta Kappan, 56 10 , — Krug, E. The shaping of the American high school, — Madison: University of Wisconsin Press. Leming, J. Where did social studies go wrong? Washington, DC: Thomas B. Fordham Foundation. Loewen, J. Lies my teacher told me. New York: New Press. Longstreet, W. Citizenship: The phantom core of social studies cur- riculum.

Theory and Research in Social Education, 13 2 , 21— W Jackson Ed. Mathison, S. Implementing curricular change through state-mandated testing: Ethical issues. Journal of Curriculum and Supervision, 6, — Defending public schools: The nature and limits of standards-based reform and assessment. McCutchen, S. A discipline for the social studies. Social Education, 52, — McCutcheon, G. Developing the curriculum. White Plains, NY: Longman. Morrissett, I. Rationales, goals, and objective in social stud- ies. National Council for the Social Studies. Expectations of excellence: Curricu- lum standards for social studies.

Washington, DC: Author. Newmann, F. Clarifying public controversy: An Approach to teaching social stud- ies. Boston: Little, Brown. Noffke, S. Oliver, D. Teaching public issues in the high school. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Parker, W. Theory and Research in Social Education, 15, 1— Bricolage: Teachers do it daily. Ravitch, D. Multiculturalism, E pluribus plure. American Scholar Summer , — The plight of history in American schools. International Journal of Social Education, 7, 83— Resisting test mania. Theory and Research in Social Education, 27 2 , — Diverting democracy: The curriculum standards movement and social studies education.

Originally published in the International Journal of Social Education Social studies education. Gabbard Ed. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. The spectacle of standards and summits. Theory and Research in Social Education, 27 4 , — Negotiating the politics of citizenship education. PS: Political Science and Politics, 37 2 , — Theory and Research in Education 33 1 , — The Social Studies 96 4—5. Saxe, D. Social studies in schools: A history of the early years. Schlesinger, A. The disuniting of America. Schubert, W. Historical perspective on centralizing curriculum. Shaver, J. The task of rationale-building for citizenship education.

Wayne Ross studies. In What are the needs in precollege science, mathematics, and social studies education. Stanley, W. The foundations of social education in his- torical context. Martusewicz and W. Reynolds Eds. Recent research in the foundations of social education: — Stanley Ed. Superka, D. Social roles: A focus for social studies in the s. Tabachnick, B. Social studies: Elementary-school programs. Lewy Ed. Oxford: Pergamon. New York; Macmillan. Review of Research in Education, 20, — Teaching social studies that matter: Curriculum for active learn- ing. Vinson, K. The traditions revisited: Instructional approach and high school social studies teachers.

Theory and Research in Social Education, 26, 50— Pursuing authentic teaching in an age of standardization. Social education and standards-based re- form: A critique. Kincheloe, S. Weil Eds. Image and education: Teaching in the face of the new disciplinarity. New York: Peter Lang. Defending public schools: Curriculum con- tinuity and change in the 21st Century. Westheimer, J. What Kind of Citizen? The Politics of Edu- cating for Democracy. American Educational Research Journal, 41 2 , — Whelan, M. History and the social studies: A response to the critics. The- ory and Research in Social Education, 20 1 , 2— Wirth, A.

Education and work in the year San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. On the contrary, since social studies emerged as a school subject early in the twentieth century, its develop- ment has been characterized, and indeed often energized, by a diversity of opinion regarding its nature, its purposes, and, as a result, its most ap- propriate curriculum organization. Fundamental questions—whether social studies is a unified field of study or a cluster of separate disciplines, for example—have been considered and contested for decades. In recent years, however, an ongoing debate between advocates of a history-centered approach to social studies education and those calling for curriculum based on the interdisciplinary study of current social issues has become so adversarial as to threaten the field with factionalism, thereby undermining the pluralism from which social studies has frequently bene- fited.

Furthermore, like many educational policy disputes, this debate has in- creasingly become an end in itself, and as such, of little practical conse- quence for social studies teachers. The central issue of this curriculum debate is addressed directly in this chapter, but hopefully, in a less contentious, more judicious manner. Unfortunately, many teachers re- spond to these sorts of questions with answers as predictable and familiar as the questions themselves. Which, in fact, there is.

That is not to deny that history teaches lessons, but to acknowledge that it teaches so many as to make it all but impossible to determine with any certainty which apply to a given situa- tion. During the run-up to the recent war with Iraq, for example, people in favor of and others opposed to military intervention confidently cited historical lessons in support of their respective, yet contradictory posi- tions: the former the lessons of Munich and the latter those of Vietnam. What is needed, therefore, if history is to real- ize its full and unique educational potential is greater clarity about its fundamental characteristics, both as a means of inquiry and a mode of understanding.

Three issues are critical in this regard. First, teachers must dispel the most common misconception about the nature of history; that is, that it seeks simply to study the past, when in fact its locus of inquiry is the intricately complex relationship between the past and the present. If the study of history focused solely on the past, it would be difficult indeed to justify its claim to a central place in the school curriculum. But that is not the case. Rather, the inquiries that his- tory makes of the past are made for reasons similar to those that other disciplines inquire into questions about causation; knowledge of the past can enlighten the present, much the way knowledge of a cause can en- lighten its effects.

Things are the way they are, in other words, in large part because they were the way they were. Or stated more simply, the pre- sent is a product of the past, and this plain, yet profoundly significant truth should be the starting point for all historical study in schools. Things only make sense in relationship to other things. This process has been aptly described by E. Carr , pp. And much the way many literary critics see neither reader nor text as necessarily controlling the process of constructing meaning, but emphasize instead the interac- tion between the two, so it is with historical interpretation. Albert Bushnell Hart , pp. This is not to question the dictum that every historical generalization must be grounded in factual evidence, but to affirm that history is something more than a mere condensation of facts, for facts in and of themselves are like formless, empty sacks, devoid of sub- stantial meaning.

They are necessary for historical generalization, but not sufficient. Meaning, that is, must be assigned. In this case, as in all others, that challenge requires the historian—and the student of history—to grap- ple with many complex questions about causation, characterization, and significance. Finally, many students—as well as many teachers—fail to understand that history is inherently an interdisciplinary subject.

Even if historical study is limited to an investigation of political and military questions, as it too often is, especially in schools, it nevertheless necessitates one to draw upon ideas, theories, concepts, and methods of inquiry associated with many academic disciplines. It is impossible, for example, to make sense of the oft-duplicitous policies of the United States toward so many other countries during the Cold War without this sort of interdisciplinary investigation. It is also impossible, to cite a more recent example, to dis- cern the multiple layers of causation and meaning involved in the cur- rent cultural debate about the rights of gays and lesbians without viewing this acrimonious debate through several disciplinary lenses Thornton, et al.

Similarly, one need only briefly consider all of the many fac- tors involved in the changing patterns of wealth and income distribution in the United States during the past generation to understand the inher- ent interdisciplinary nature of historical inquiry. History is uniquely predisposed, therefore, to synthesize subject matter from the full range of human knowledge.

For this reason alone, history is the subject best suited to serve as the curric- ular core of social studies education Whelan, Not surprisingly, most of the misunderstandings about the nature of history discussed in this section tend to manifest themselves—and, unfortunately, perpetuate themselves—in the way history is typically taught, especially in schools. This situation, unfortunately, is similar to the way history is taught and studied in schools. Students are routinely put into consumer positions, from which it is natural, indeed all but inevitable, that they misunderstand the true nature of historical knowledge, seeing it as more replicable than inter- pretive, more exclusive than associative, and more narrowly focused on what was than on the relationship between what was and what is and is becoming.

As is often the case, however, the source of these problems suggests solutions, although solutions not easily implemented. Implementing a History-Centered Curriculum Teachers, more than anyone else, determine the curriculum that stu- dents experience. And if the myriad decisions that social studies teachers make in this regard are divided into two broad categories—instructional strategy decisions and decisions about curriculum content—research in- dicates that they feel more responsibility for the former than the latter Thornton, Compounding this problem, research also indicates that the instruc- tional strategies that social studies teachers tend to rely on most—that is, teacher-dominated, textbook-driven lecture and discussion—often fail to stimulate the high-level cognition among students that is needed to study history properly Thornton, , p.

Teachers must assume more responsibility for the content of the courses they teach and also alter classroom practice so that students regularly engage in activities that promote the sort of complex, critical thinking associated with interpreting—that is, assigning meaning to— factual information. Such reforms, at least according to some theorists Whelan, et al. History, these critical theorists maintain, is pe- culiarly predisposed to ineffective instructional practice and tends therefore to result in inappropriate educational experiences for stu- dents. Ronald Evans Whelan, et al. Neither logic nor research supports such a conclusion. Curriculum reform, in other words, whether history-centered, issues- centered or otherwise, is highly unlikely by itself to transform the sterile, uninspiring instructional practices that many maintain are all too common among social studies educators Goodlad, Research, moreover, though sketchy, seems to confirm this deductive conclusion, indicating that social studies teachers have apparently varied their teaching styles very little, if at all, as curriculum emphases have changed through the years Cuban, Research about effective history instruction e.

Such practice is grounded not only in sound pedagogical principle, but also entails intellectual skills and attitudes consistent with the nature of his- torical knowledge and the goal of active, enlightened citizenship. Effective instructional practice, though necessary, is nevertheless insufficient. Thus, teachers, in light of their close personal contact with students, are the people best positioned to assume ultimate responsibility for the day-to-day curricu- lum content decisions about historical study at the classroom level. As they do, at least four interrelated curricular considerations should guide their decision making.

Rather, students studying history must regularly ask questions of the past that help inform issues affecting their lives in the present. As condi- tions in the present inevitably change, the topics teachers include in a his- tory-centered curriculum must change accordingly. Thus, a historical issue that may be essential for students to study today may just as well be a matter of mere antiquarian curiosity sometime in the future.

The international crises that erupted over the Quemoy and Matsu islands during the s, a situation whose historical significance quickly diminished to that of footnote status only to take on renewed urgency in light of circumstances that developed in the s, is admittedly an extreme example, but one that nevertheless highlights the fundamental point: many curriculum de- cisions appropriate for one time or one group of students are not neces- sarily appropriate for all times or all students. Such stan- dards, in all likelihood, will serve to restrict the curriculum flexibility that is so essential to a meaningful course of study.

No single historical curriculum can possibly meet the needs of all students. The advice im- plicit in this observation is no less true today than it was when made by the Committee on Social Studies in p. Indeed, in the in- creasingly interrelated complexities of our modern, global existence, the more things change the more things change more. Thus, any effort to standardize the content of a history-centered curriculum, no matter how well-intentioned, assumes, but erroneously so, that all students will always need to ask the same questions of the past.

Although it may be worthwhile to consider adopting uniform standards with respect to the analytical skills and intellectual dispositions involved in asking and an- swering historical questions i. Decisions about what a particular group of students should or should not study are best left to classroom teachers, rather than some remote curriculum committee, no matter how well inten- tioned or esteemed its members. At least one generalization about curriculum content is appropriate, however. If a history-centered curriculum is to inform issues of present student concern it must include a wider range of topics than has long been the norm. This recommendation is certainly not new. Again, the Committee on Social Studies p.

Teaching History 45 Still, it was not until the last 30 years or so that historians have begun to generate the type of scholarship needed to make a more inclusive history curriculum a real possibility Foner , ; Kammen No longer must students focus so exclusively on questions about military and political matters, but may now consider a much wider spec- trum of social and cultural issues, many of much greater import to their present lives. Furthermore, this new historical scholarship often involves innova- tive interdisciplinary methods of inquiry and analysis. In many cases, it also entails or encourages the consideration of historical phenomena from more than one point of view. In addition to helping students better understand a wider and more relevant range of historical issues, it may also help them grasp more fully the central role of interpretation in historical study, and, perhaps more important still, to appreciate the es- sential role that empathy and tolerance play in maintaining democratic institutions.

Provision should be made therefore for students to become familiar with the content and methods of inquiry of this new historical scholarship. To do so, a history-centered curriculum should include numerous opportunities for students to study nontraditional topics e. Provision should be made as well for students to study things that never happened. This may sound odd in a history-centered curriculum, but it is nevertheless important. That is, they should consider how things might have been, and not simply how they actually were. In many cases, however, political decisions and policy matters cannot be understood fully or evaluated fairly without considering the likely consequences of possible alternatives.

But in fact counter-factual analysis can be very instructive. How, for example, is one to evaluate the policy decisions of Lincoln or Franklin Roosevelt without considering the range of possible options open to them at the time? Or how is one to understand historical decisions about transportation, immigration, and weapons production, to cite but a few other examples, without asking questions about how these matters might have been decided differently? Choosing among alternatives on the basis of rational inquiry is the essence of democratic citizenship at its most basic level.

The systematic study of such alternatives should therefore be an essential part of a his- tory-centered social studies curriculum. There is a still more fundamental understanding about the nature of human existence that the study of historical alternatives can illuminate, however, one that is often lost in the course of conventional history in- struction. The past, students need to understand, was not preordained and could have unfolded very differently. It was determined to a great ex- tent, much the way the future will be determined, by decisions that peo- ple made or failed to make. Studying history without considering its possible alternatives can obscure this fundamental point, leaving stu- dents with the profoundly mistaken impression that the past was deter- mined apart from human volition and agency.

Such an impression can contribute to feelings of alienation, powerlessness, and dissatisfaction, feelings clearly antithetical to the citizenship goals that social studies seeks to promote. Finally, a history-centered curriculum should be organized around the study of historical conditions, and not simply historical events. Dis- proportionate attention to the latter can quickly degenerate into a dry, dreary regimen of superficial chronicling having little educative value or meaning. The interpretive analysis of the conditions underlying histori- cal events can lead quite naturally, however, to enlightening comparative studies of similar or analogous conditions in the present.

The educational values involved in such comparative studies are sim- ilar in many ways to those involved in analyzing historical alternatives. Such comparisons, however, also help resolve a more practical curricu- lum problem in history education. Neither option is satisfactory. Comparing social condi- tions through time is certainly preferable, for it provides students with a meaningful framework within which to consider current issues in their broad historical context on a regular basis.

Chronology should not be abandoned in the interest of some crudely simplistic notion relevance, of course. To do so would be both unwise and unnecessary. All social is- sues, moreover, are historical phenomena and best studied therefore within a history-centered framework. To do otherwise, to study social is- sues in seriatim apart from their historical context—to study environ- mental issues during the first half of the tenth grade and issues about war and peace during the second half, for example—will only add to the in- authenticity of social studies education.

Each, on the contrary, is always part of a crowded social agenda and as such must compete with others for public attention and the allocation of scarce resources. Within this context, different issues, even those seemingly quite distinct, are in- evitably linked: decisions about one affect the range of possible decisions that can be made about others. Such interrelated complexity is the real- ity of human existence, and social studies education should be organized in a way that embraces this reality, thereby helping students understand it. If, for example, the long history of class and ethnic segregation in the United States were studied in isolation, apart from its wide-ranging web of social causation, it would likely appear far less complicated than it actually has been, leading students to believe that it can be overcome by some sim- plistic scheme or, even more mistakenly, that it has been caused and sus- tained solely by some nebulous conspiracy.

Mencken once cautioned in typically acerbic fashion: for every complex social problem there is a simple solution that is usually wrong. Studying social issues apart from their historical context would seem just such a solution. To do otherwise, in particular to perpetuate the long prevalent curriculum and instructional patterns of the past, will inevitably, and regrettably, result in a wholly un- tenable notion of social studies education, one largely inconsistent with the nature of the historical knowledge and the ultimate purpose for which it should be studied in schools.

Certain dilemmas—such as breadth versus depth, chronology versus themes, dominant culture versus partic- ular culture, teacher as advocate versus teacher as neutral—are either unique to or particularly acute in social studies education. They will never be fully or finally resolved. The point, therefore, to paraphrase Winston Churchill, is that a history-centered curriculum, while not per- fect, is nevertheless better than anything else. In fact, its most com- pelling claim to such a place arises from the profound understanding that the nature of human existence is essentially historical.

Some may quickly counter that human existence is nothing if not multifaceted, with social, cultural, political and economic dimensions, to name just a few. But these aspects of human existence are but abstractions if considered apart from the course of human history. The complex relationships within and among individuals and groups, which is a large part of the subject matter of sociology, for example, are in fact historical phenomena. The same is true of the subject matter of anthropology, cultural geography, econom- ics, and political science. All analyze historical phenomena that are best understood as they actually happened; that is, within an historical con- text. Indeed, whatever meaning life may hold is largely derived from re- flecting on experience, and human experience, in all its variability and developmental complexity, is the subject matter of historical study.

Per- haps, that is why all peoples have always studied history. In one way or an- other, it explains who they are. History, in other words, is the only social studies subject open to the whole range of human experience and its development through time. It is distinctively disposed, therefore, to draw upon and synthesize knowledge, values and methodologies from all other fields of study. For this reason, it is also the most natural and best suited discipline around which to orga- nize the social studies curriculum. If historical study is based on a few fun- damental principles—specifically, that students consider the relationship between the past and the present, and not simply the past; that they inter- pret rather than simply memorize historical information, thereby con- structing their own understanding of its meaning; that they investigate a wider range of social and cultural issues, including the conditioning fac- tors that underlie them; and that they reflect on the likely consequences of alternatives to historical decisions, especially with respect to political and public policy matters—then a history-centered curriculum can provide stu- dents with a truly engaging, authentic, and enlightening course of study.

Teaching History 49 References Carr, E. What is history? New York: Vintage Books. The social studies in secondary education, Bulletin no. Cuban, L. History of teaching in social studies. Downey, M. Teaching and learning history. The commission report and citizenship education. Social Education, 54 7 , — Reaction and response. Theory and Research in Social Educa- tion, 20 3 , — Foner, E.

The new American history. Philadelphia: Temple University Press. The new American history: Revised and expanded edition.

It is clear, Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, that teachers need more comprehensive support if they are Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad teach Maunicas Worksheet: A Case Study essential dimensions of the Food Supply In Ancient Egypt of American slavery. The Washington Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad. Walker v. April 16, What is Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad, Between Shades Of Gray Reflection, if Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad is to real- ize its full and unique educational potential is Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad clarity about its fundamental characteristics, both as a means of inquiry and a mode of understanding. Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad of a Nation is actually based Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad the play, which Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad unpublished until[ clarification needed ] rather than directly on the Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad. Here, state departments of education Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad conformity to a mandated Ahistorical Elements In The Underground Railroad singular set of curriculum, in- struction, and assessment standards imposed on schools that diverge in terms Essay On Play Therapy economics, cultures, and environments e.

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