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What Shall We Tell the Children? International Perspectives on School History Textbooks


reviewed by Linda Symcox — December 12, 2006

coverTitle: What Shall We Tell the Children? International Perspectives on School History Textbooks
Author(s): Stuart J. Foster & Keith A. Crawford (Eds.)
Publisher: Information Age Publishing, Charlotte
ISBN: 1593115091 , Pages: 264, Year: 2006
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This fine collection of essays, What Shall We Tell the Children?, should be required reading for any national curriculum commission before it takes on the daunting task of redesigning how history is taught in its schools. Contributors to this volume analyze curricular and textbook reforms over the past half century in China, Japan, South Korea, Germany, the U.S., Pakistan, Israel, Palestine, and South Africa, as well as curricular reforms for teaching transnational topics such as the construction of European identity. Each author describes how macro-political events such as the breakdown of Soviet control over Eastern Europe, the rise of Islamic nationalism in countries such as Pakistan, or the end of Apartheid in South Africa shape curricular reforms and how those reforms play out in content selection and narrative construction in textbooks. Although I often find edited volumes unsatisfactory because the chapters tend to be of uneven quality or fail to... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record, Date Published: December 12, 2006
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 12889, Date Accessed: 9/20/2017 3:27:12 AM

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About the Author
  • Linda Symcox
    California State University, Long Beach
    E-mail Author
    LINDA SYMCOX, PhD, is Associate Professor of Teacher Education at California State University, Long Beach, and Co-Director of the CSULB Urban Teaching Academy. Dr. Symcox recently co-convened an international conference on history education at the University of Utrecht. Currently she serves as the lead history education scholar for five Teaching American History grants. Dr. Symcox was formerly the Associate Director of the National Center for History in the Schools at UCLA (1989-1996), where she served as Assistant Director of the National History Standards Project. Professor Symcox is author of Whose History? The Struggle for National Standards in American Classrooms (Teachers College Press, 2002), and she has published numerous articles, book chapters, and curricula in the field of history education and teacher development. She is currently working as co-editor of a book project developing social justice standards in conjunction with 15 Special Interest Groups from AERA, and as co-editor of a forthcoming international collection of essays examining “The Problem of the Canon and the Future of History Teaching."
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