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Moving Beyond Celebration: Challenging Curricular Orthodoxy in the Teaching of Brown and Its Legacies


by Diana Hess — 2005

The case of Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka holds an esteemed position in the secondary school curriculum. Given prominent attention in virtually all social studies textbooks and included in more state standards documents than any other Supreme Court ruling, the Brown decision is often presented to secondary school students as a democratic achievement of such magnitude that it deserves iconic status. In contrast, scholars and civil rights activists are currently deliberating whether Brown and its legacies should be viewed as an icon, liberation referent, unfulfilled promise, well-intentioned error, or irrelevant. This article explores the incongruity between "academic" and "school" knowledge about Brown and argues for a revisioning of this landmark case and its effects in the secondary school curriculum.


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 107 Number 9, 2005, p. 2046-2067
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 12153, Date Accessed: 12/12/2017 9:12:18 AM

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