Beyond a Dream Deferred

Beyond a Dream Deferred: Multicultural Education and the Politics of Excellence

Foreword by DERRICK BELL
BECKY W. THOMPSON
SANGEETA TYAGI
Copyright Date: 1993
Edition: NED - New edition
Pages: 304
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5749/j.ctttv02k
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  • Book Info
    Beyond a Dream Deferred
    Book Description:

    “At last, a collection on multicultural education authored by those involved. Ranging from broad reflections to case studies, from feminist and ethnic to gay and lesbian studies, the essays themselves embody the diverse perspectives they analyze. Speaking in different voices, they convey the complexity and conflicts that animate present struggles to democratize institutions of higher learning.” --Renato Rosaldo, Stanford University Contributors include Margaret L. Andersen, Estelle Disch, Troy Duster, Lisa Kahaleole Chang Hall, Evelynn Hammonds, Evelyn Hu-Dehart, Earl Jackson, Jr., Ian Haney López, Carole C. Marks, Chandra Talpade Mohanty, Barbara Omolade, Becky W. Thompson, Sangeeta Tyagi, and Cornel West.

    eISBN: 978-0-8166-8515-8
    Subjects: Education

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Foreword The Power of Prophets
    (pp. ix-x)
    Derrick Bell

    A thousand years from now, anthropologists or their thirty-first-century successors will wonder. Pouring over the recorded remains of what was the United States, they will search for reasons. “How,” they will ask, “could so great a nation with so many advantages over its outside adversaries allow itself to be destroyed from within?”

    In search of answers, social scientists of that new age will undoubtedly discover that ours was a society that preached inclusiveness and equality while vigorously practicing an ever more pernicious and ultimately destructive discrimination that disadvantaged all those not affiliated closely with mainstream, upper-class whiteness. Predictably, the theories...

  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xi-xii)
  5. Introduction: “A Wider Landscape ... without the Mandate for Conquest”
    (pp. xiii-xxxiv)
    Becky W. Thompson and Sangeeta Tyagi

    To say that the past decade has been a tumultuous time in higher education in the United States is to state the obvious. For progressive educators those committed to multicultural educational transformation this has an invigorating time as well as a period of struggle.¹ Engaged in a of reimagining the world and its contours, we have been involved examining the historical configurations of power in all their various expressions and attempting to dismantle those hierarchies in favor of a just and equitable society and academy.

    This revisioning has been met with entrenched and narrowly defined of an “American” identity. As...

  6. Part I Moral and Political Visions of Multicultural Education
    • Chapter 1 Rethinking America: The Practice and Politics of Multiculturalism in Higher Education
      (pp. 3-17)
      Evelyn Hu-DeHart

      Twenty-five years ago, inspired by the civil rights movement and further buoyed by the energies of the antiwar movement, a new generation of students across the nation took to their college campuses, invaded and occupied administration offices, startled and no doubt terrified a few presidents, deans, and professors. Students of color —then called "Third World" students in solidarity with the colonized Third World whence so many of their forebears came as slaves, coolies, or immigrants — demanded some fundamental changes in higher education. Faculties and administrations then were still almost exclusively white and mostly male. The student body, while more women...

    • Chapter 2 The New Cultural Politics of Difference
      (pp. 18-40)
      Cornel West

      In these last few years of the twentieth century, a significant shift in the sensibilities and outlooks of critics and artists is emerging. In fact, I go so far as to claim that a new kind of cultural worker, associated with a new politics of difference, is in the making. These new forms of intellectual consciousness advance reconceptions of the vocation of critic and artist, attempting to undermine the prevailing disciplinary divisions of labor in the academy, museum, mass media, and gallery networks while preserving modes of critique within the ubiquitous commodification of culture in the global village. Distinctive features...

    • Chapter 3 On Race and Voice: Challenges for Liberal Education in the 1990s
      (pp. 41-65)
      Chandra Talpade Mohanty

      “Isn’t the whole point to have a voice?” This is the last sentence of a recent essay by Marnia Lazreg on writing as a woman on women in Algeria.¹ Lazreg examines academic feminist scholarship on women in the Middle East and North Africa in the context of what she calls a “Western gynocentric” notion of the difference between First and Third World women. Arguing for an understanding of “intersubjectivity” as the basis for comparison across cultures and histories, Lazreg formulates the problem of ethnocentrism and the related question of voice in this way:

      To take intersubj activity into consideration when...

    • Chapter 4 Clarence Thomas, Affirmative Action, and the Academy
      (pp. 66-80)
      Evelynn Hammonds

      It is perhaps stating the obvious to note that the Senate confirmation hearings of Clarence Thomas, who was named an associate justice of the United States Supreme Court in the fall of 1991, were a historic event. The testimony of former Thomas employee and current University of Oklahoma law professor Anita Hill that she was sexually harassed by Thomas was for many the most startling event of the confirmation proceedings. Startling indeed were her accusations, as was his response. Nearly a century of racial and sexual tension within African-American communities and in the larger U.S. society crystallized before our very...

  7. Part II Multiple Voices, Ongoing Struggles
    • Chapter 5 The Politics of Inclusion: Reskilling the Academy
      (pp. 83-99)
      Becky W. Thompson and Sangeeta Tyagi

      During the past quarter century there has been an unprecedented progressive movement in the United States charged with fundamentally transforming higher education.² This movement has pushed to increase the representation of people of color, working-class people, gay men and lesbians, and white women at all levels of the academy. It has also helped to foreground issues of power and resistance, examining the consequences that differential access to power has for student and teacher experiences and for the politics of learning. Incorporation of scholarship that has traditionally been excluded from academic inquiry has begun to transform the curriculum, a process that...

    • Chapter 6 Community Ties and Law School Faculty Hiring: The Case for Professors Who Don’t Think White
      (pp. 100-130)
      Ian Haney López

      The stultifying homogeneity of Harvard Law School’s faculty directly and adversely affected my years as a student there. After three years of agitating for change, I wrote this essay to describe and explain the student diversity movement at Harvard Law School and to advance the core diversity arguments as they apply to minority hiring on law school faculties generally.

      Harvard Law School is being sued by its own students. On November 1990, students calling themselves the Harvard Law School Coalition for Civil Rights filed suit in Massachusetts state court against the president and fellows of Harvard College, alleging discrimination on...

    • Chapter 7 The Responsibility of and to Differences: Theorizing Race and Ethnicity in Lesbian and Gay Studies
      (pp. 131-161)
      Earl Jackson Jr.

      In the process of teaching, writing, and thinking “queer theory,” I have come to the conclusion that if lesbian and gay studies is to achieve its full radical potential and intellectual integrity, those of us involved in this process need to pay long-term and committed attention to “Third World” feminisms and the critical and cultural practices of black gay men.¹ This is neither an expression of white guilt nor a goodwill gesture, but an empirically developed observation motivated by practical necessity and self-interest. The writings of feminists of color represent one of the longest and most richly varied critical traditions...

    • Chapter 8 Compromising Positions
      (pp. 162-174)
      Lisa Kahaleole Chang Hall

      Warning: This is not a universal essay. I am writing from a very specific—as a feminist lesbian of color academic, activist, and nonacademic writer with ties in a multitude of communities—to a very specific audience: academics involved with feminist and multicultural theory who are committed to social change. This is the “we” that informs this essay.¹

      What’s politics got to do with it? The last several years have seen increasingly virulent attacks on progressive ideology and academics in the university system. By “progressive,” I mean scholars and scholarship that that the academy is profoundly interconnected with the world...

  8. Part III New Directions for Critical Engagement
    • Chapter 9 Education for a Change: The MOST Program
      (pp. 177-194)
      Carole C. Marks and Margaret L. Andersen

      Throughout the educational process, people of color remain invisible. When they appear, they are distorted through the eyes of dominant groups and are rarely studied on their own terms or seen as active agents in history, society, and culture. How, in the face of invisibility and oppression, can education be developed to educate, support, and empower people of color? Exclusion from the curriculum reinforces a sense of disconnectedness. It robs students and faculty of the ability to think in ways that are centered in multiple experiences and the interrelatedness of all groups. Whites come to see people of color as...

    • Chapter 10 The Politics of Curricular Change: Establishing a Diversity Requirement at the University of Massachusetts at Boston
      (pp. 195-213)
      Estelle Disch

      In the spring of 1988, when a professor of history at the University of Massachusetts at Boston (UMB) got to the section on Africa in her modern world history course, two white male students told her that they did not want to learn about Africa.¹ They argued that they did not believe that Africa had contributed much to civilization. Shocked and dismayed, she began to ask students what they thought the course was about. Many, some of them seniors, said her course was the first in their college experience in which they had ever studied a non-Western culture. A week...

    • Chapter 11 Quaking and Trembling: Institutional Change and Multicultural Curricular Development at the City University of New York
      (pp. 214-230)
      Barbara Omolade

      My 1964 Queens College graduating class had about twelve hundred students, thirteen of whom were African-American.¹ Five years later a student strike and shutdown at City College in Harlem initiated open admissions, and an influx of African-American and Puerto Rican students were admitted into the colleges that constituted the City University of New York (CUNY). Since those student-led struggles, the composition of the CUNY student body has been radically changed.

      Today, CUNY, which encompasses eighteen colleges and graduate, medical, and law schools, “is a sprawling hodgepodge of 21 branches with some 200,000 students, the bulk of them poor and working-class...

    • Chapter 12 The Diversity of California at Berkeley: An Emerging Reformulation of “Competence” in an Increasingly Multicultural World
      (pp. 231-256)
      Troy Duster

      The current national debate about multiculturalism, group identity, and expansion of the curriculum tends to be fierce and binary. It is saturated with a surprising level of mean-spiritedness and apocalyptic forebodings that are, on the surface, hard to explain. For example, in theWall Street Journalin July 1991, Irving Kristol wrote an essay entitled “The Tragedy of Multiculturalism” in which he stated that “multiculturalism is a desperate strategy for coping with the educational deficiencies, and associated social pathologies, of young blacks.” A host of commentators have summarily dismissed courses designed to include more of the contributions of ethnic, cultural,...

  9. Contributors
    (pp. 257-260)
  10. Index
    (pp. 261-267)