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* It Ain't Paranoia if They're Really After You
|Posted By: Dick Schutz on December 17, 2005|
|And it ain’t braggin if you’ve really done it. The title of Bracey’s book indicate that he’s going to come out with guns, if not saddles blazing. While Bracey does manage to insert his personal opinions and views into a lot of what he writes, as he says in his post that he doesn’t mince words an doesn’t cotton to the vast majority of educational researchers who do. McEwan does devote a lot of space to the author, his style, and ticky tack questionable-quasi-faults. Comparing McEwan’s review of Bracey with Bracey’ review of Belfield and Levin on information value and balance, I’d say the winner is Bracey.|
But whose book is better and which review is fairer is trivial. (We reserve relative comparisons for important matters, like student academic achievement, as lame substitutes for grounded indicators .) The striking thing about the three books reviewed in this issue is their publication dates. Lieberman’s book was published in 1989 and reviewed in 1991. Bracey’s book was published in 2001 and reviewed in 2002. Belfield and Levin’s book was published and reviewed in 2005. The distance between 1989 and 2005 is a long distance chronologically. It’s a whole schooling generation. But it’s a short distance researchally. (That wasn’t a word before, but it is now.) Substantively, we know little more about “privatization” now than we did then, And methodologically, the discourse has not moved very far from the armchair.