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The Language Police: How Pressure Groups Restrict What Students Learnby Diane Ravitch
Synopses & Reviews
If you’re an actress or a coed just trying to do a man-size job, a yes-man who turns a deaf ear to some sob sister, an heiress aboard her yacht, or a bookworm enjoying a boy’s night out, Diane Ravitch’s internationally acclaimed The Language Police has bad news for you: Erase those words from your vocabulary!
Textbook publishers and state education agencies have sought to root out racist, sexist, and elitist language in classroom and library materials. But according to Diane Ravitch, a leading historian of education, what began with the best of intentions has veered toward bizarre extremes. At a time when we celebrate and encourage diversity, young readers are fed bowdlerized texts, devoid of the references that give these works their meaning and vitality. With forceful arguments and sensible solutions for rescuing American education from the pressure groups that have made classrooms bland and uninspiring, The Language Police offers a powerful corrective to a cultural scandal.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Argues that the anti-bias and sensitivity guidelines promoted by the Left and the Right exert so much force on educational
About the Author
Diane Ravitch is a historian of education and Research Professor of Education at New York University and Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. She was assistant secretary in charge of research in the U.S. Department of Education in the administration of President George H. W. Bush and was appointed to the National Assessment Governing Board by President Bill Clinton. The author of seven previous books on education, including the critically acclaimed Left Back: A Century of Battles Over School Reform, she lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Table of Contents
Forbidden Topics, Forbidden Words — The New Meaning of Bias — Everybody Does It: The Textbook Publishers — Everybody Does It: The Testing Companies — Censorship from the Right — Censorship from the Left — The Mad, Mad, Mad World of Textbook Adoptions — Literature: Forgetting the Tradition — History: The Endless Battle — The Language Police: Can We Stop Them? — A Glossary of Banned Words, Usages, Stereotypes, and Topics — The Atkinson-Ravitch Sampler of Classic Literature for Home and School.
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