Race and Gender in the Classroom

Race and Gender in the Classroom : Teachers, Privilege, and Enduring Social Inequalities

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Race and Gender in the Classroom explores the paradoxes of education, race, and gender, as Laurie Cooper Stoll follows eighteen teachers carrying out their roles as educators in an era of "post-racial" and "post-gendered" politics. Because there are a number of contentious issues converging simultaneously in these teachers' everyday lives, this is a book comprised of several interrelated stories. On the one hand, this is a story about teachers who care deeply about their students but are generally oblivious to the ways in which their words and behaviors reinforce dominant narratives about race and gender, constructing for their students a worldview in which race and gender do not matter despite their students' lived experiences demonstrating otherwise. This is a story about dedicated, overworked teachers who are trying to keep their heads above water while meeting the myriad demands placed upon them in a climate of high-stakes testing. This is a story about the disconnect between those who mandate educational policy like superintendents and school boards and the teachers who are expected to implement those policies often with little or no input and few resources. This is ultimately a story, however, about how the institution of education itself operates in a "post-racial" and "post-gendered" society.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 156 pages
  • 154.94 x 231.14 x 17.78mm | 521.63g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 1 black & white illustrations, 3 tables
  • 0739176420
  • 9780739176429

Review quote

The modernization theories employed to analyze progress in the Global South years ago explained that improvements in living conditions and representative government become catalysts for accelerated expectations among the people affected. The net result and the interesting irony is that people become increasingly less satisfied with their lot even as modernization continues. Probably unintentionally, Stoll provides a case study of that phenomenon as it relates to U.S. schools. With little reference to the progress since, for example, Brown v. Board of Education, she is highly critical of 'the systemic and institutional nature of race and gender in our schools.' The crux of the matter and Stoll's thesis is that race-blind and gender-blind classrooms have actually produced racialized and genderized outcomes. The fault is primarily the use of traditional procedures, such as grouping students according to ability to simplify classroom activities, and the perpetuation of social privilege that educators and white students, particularly males, have historically enjoyed. For those who see schools' first priority as social change rather than, for example, academic accomplishment, this book will provide grist for the mill. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduate, graduate, and research collections. CHOICE Supposedly, this is a post-racial and post-gendered age. And it may well be for people who are neither female nor a member of a minority. Here, Stoll finds many teachers, who care deeply about their students, who are nevertheless oblivious to the opinions they express that reinforce racism and sexism. Stoll astutely finds the differences between classrooms that merely play the tune and ones that truly live the life; she examines constructing the color-blind and gender-blind classroom, multiculturalism and tracking, the problems of gender in the gender-blind classroom, responses to privilege and mapping, learning to locate ruling relationships, and subtle arts of confronting paradox. This should be read by teachers and administrators who are perpetuating the myths so they, their classrooms, and their students can have true racial and gender equality. Stoll is both impassioned and persuasive Book News, Inc. The book is appropriate for students at all levels. In particular, students in education, sociology, ethnic studies, or gender studies would benefit by reading her work as would parents, policy makers, teachers, and educational administrators dedicated to promoting social justice. Stoll strongly advocates that policy makers and administrators speak with teachers, meet families and students, and visit classrooms before making policy decisions. She offers no easy answers to the myriad problems confronting educators. Instead, Stoll provides a compelling argument to examine carefully the lives of students and teachers to do antiracist and antisexist social justice work in education. Gender & Society Ultimately, Race and Gender in the Classroom's biggest contribution to the literature is the exploration of gender-blind sexism and social equality maxim among teachers. Race and Gender in the Classroom is highly accessible, readable, and relies on rich quotes from teachers. Overall, this book would be a must-have book for courses in sociology of race and ethnicity, sociology of gender, and sociology of education. Humanity and Society What if teachers were encouraged to challenge the institutional (and societal) inertia towards color-blind interpretations of existing racial (and gender) realities? An interesting question that, unfortunately, does not reflect the realities of elementary education and the teachers that motivate it in the United States. Laurie Cooper Stoll, in Race and Gender in the Classroom, explores the navigations that elementary teachers are daily engaged in as they teach young children to be anything they can be, regardless of race or gender location in the matrix of experience-despite personally knowing differently. Using a critical institutional ethnography we are transported to the daily paradoxes of elementary education in this stunning achievement. -- David L. Brunsma, Virginia Tech In this wonderfully nuanced book, Laurie Cooper Stoll analyzes how schools and teachers construct the 'color and gender-blind classroom' and fail to confront race and gender inequality. The author skillfully demonstrates how, despite a stated commitment to social equality, educational policies and practices create and reinforce an environment where race and gender do not matter and inequality is not challenged. Race and Gender in the Classroom is an important book for those concerned with educational equity and social justice. -- Ashley "Woody" Doane, University of Hartford Racism and sexism work these days in 'now you see it, now you don't' fashion and Laurie Cooper Stoll deserves praise for showing how these twin monsters operate in the classroom. In a careful and caring way, she shows how by trying not to deal with race and gender, teachers end up reproducing the dominant gender and racial ideologies. This is an important book that parents, teachers, and the public at large should read. Bravo, Professor Cooper Stoll for a job well-done! -- Eduardo Bonilla-Silva, Duke University; author of Racism Without Racistsshow more

About Laurie Cooper Stoll

Laurie Cooper Stoll is assistant professor in the department of sociology and archaeology at the University of Wisconsin, La Crosse.show more

Table of contents

Acknowledgments List of Figures and Tables Chapter 1: Constructing the Color- and Gender-Blind Classroom Chapter 2: Race in the Color-Blind Classroom: Multiculturalism and Tracking Chapter 3: What Problem? Gender in the Gender in the Gender-Blind Classroom Chapter 4: Mapping the Ruling Relations Chapter 5: The Countervailing Forces of Privilege Chapter 6: Confronting Paradox Appendix A: Initial Interview Instrument Appendix B: Final Interview Instrument References Indexshow more

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