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Critical Literacy: What Every American Ought to Know

reviewed by Sonia Nieto - February 03, 2006

coverTitle: Critical Literacy: What Every American Ought to Know
Author(s): Eugene F. Provenzo
Publisher: Paradigm Publishers, Boulder
ISBN: 159451089X, Pages: 154, Year: 2005
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“Education has been moving in strikingly conservative directions,” writes Michael Apple in his foreword, and with this simple statement he sets the stage for Eugene Provenzo’s Cultural Literacy:  What Every American Ought to Know, a slim volume that is honest, direct, provocative, and a direct confrontation to the “strikingly conservative directions” that currently have a firm grip on education. Provenzo has taken it upon himself to respond directly to E. D. Hirsch’s writings, particularly to his widely popular, yet generally under-scrutinized, books, Cultural Literacy:  What Every American Needs to Know (1987) and The Schools We Need and Why We Don’t Have Them (1996).  It might seem a bit late to be responding to these books, one of which is nearly two decades old, yet the messages they convey are even more influential today than they were when first written.  Moreover, with several hundred schools modeled on the “cultural literacy” model... (preview truncated at 150 words.)

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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record, Date Published: February 03, 2006
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 12316, Date Accessed: 7/24/2021 1:02:33 PM

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About the Author
  • Sonia Nieto
    University of Massachusetts, Amherst
    E-mail Author
    SONIA NIETO is Professor Emerita of Language, Literacy, and Culture at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her publications include the books Affirming Diversity: The Sociopolitical Context of Multicultural Education (2004, Allyn & Bacon), What Keeps Teachers Going? (2003) and Why We Teach (2005), both from Teachers College Press, and the article "Public Education in the Twentieth Century and Beyond: High Hopes, Broken Promises, and an Uncertain Future, in the 75th anniversary issue of the Harvard Educational Review.
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