Molding Mutlticulturalism out of Monocultural Classrooms
Tony Michael, 20 July 1998


    I would like to first point out that some issue could very well be taken with the phrase in my title, "monocultural classrooms."  Some scholars might argue that there is no such thing as a monocultural classroom.  Even I would warn that the phrase is a dangerous one, but I use it to refer to classrooms where the majority of students share the same race, class, and ethnic background.  As I compiled my bibliography, I tried to develop an understanding of the area of multiculturalism, to examine how the concept is implemented in the classroom, and then consider what relationship(s) and effect(s) it would have upon the classrooms within which my colleagues and I find ourselves. The works below help us understand that even classrooms such as these aren't perhaps so homogenous. Even if they are, perhaps it is possible to challenge them through language, writing, and critical thinking.

    It is apparent through a perusal of the texts selected for the following bibliography that some directly reflect the ideals of multiculturalism while others challenge them, and some are by educators with very diverse classrooms while others are in homogenous classrooms.  At the very least, the bibliographical works are concerned with both theory and with practice, some posing questions and challenging us for solutions and some providing proposals for action.

Annotated Bibliography

Kanpol, Barry.  Critical Pedagogy. Westport, Connecticut: Bergin and Garvey, 1994.
[See particularly chapters 3-5, "Tensions of and between Cultures,"  "Coming to Terms with Difference," and "Multiculturalism and the Politics of a Democratic Imaginary" 61-136.]

Klopf, Donald W., and  Catherine Thompson.  Communication in the Multicultural Classroom.  United States of America: Burgess International Group, Inc. 1992. Leverenz, Carrie Shiverly.  "Peer Response in the Multicultural Composition Classroom: Dissensus--A Dream (Deferred)."  JAC 14.2 (Fall 1994):  167-87. Lu, Min-Zhan.  "Professing Multiculturalism: The Politics of Style in the Contact Zone."  CCC  45.4  (Dec.  1994):  442-58. Mahala, Daniel and Jody Swilky.  "Constructing the Multicultural Subject: Colonization, Persuasion, and Difference in the Writing Classroom." Pre-Text: A Journal of Rhetorical Theory 15.3-4 (1994):  182-212. McCoy, Kate.  "White Noise-The Sound of Epidemic: Reading/Writing a Climate of Intelligibility around the 'Crisis' of Difference." Qualitative Studies in Education 10.3 (1997): 333-347. McLaren, Peter.  Critical Pedagogy and Predatory Culture.  New York: Routledge, 1995.
[See particularly chapter 4, "White terror and Oppositional Agency: Towards a Critical Multiculturalism,"  117-144.] Roy, Alice.  "The Grammar and Rhetoric of Inclusion."  College English 57.2 (Feb. 1995):  182-95. Schlesinger, Arthur M., Jr.  "The Disuniting of America: Reflections on a Multicultural Society."  Campus Wars.  Ed.  John Arthur and Amy Shapiro. San Francisco:  Westview Press, 1995.  226-34. Stockton, Sharon.  "'Blacks vs. Browns': Questioning the White Ground." College English  57.2 (Feb. 1995): 166-81.

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