It was the perfect crucible to be testing the inculcation of multiculturalism through the study of United States history. I know there is much talk all over the world about the failure of multiculturalism in America , and even more so in Europe. For the majority of the class--the international students--it was a chance to see where the American conception of freedom had come from and how it had changed over time, and think about how or whether they wanted to engage with those ideas. Part of what I have loved about exploring the significance of New York City for the past two decades has been exactly that E.
In this theory, America is held together not by ancestry or geography but by ideas and shared beliefs that form a common civic culture. I know there is much talk all over the world about the failure of multiculturalism in America , and even more so in Europe. What was learned was that each of us constructs our world differently and that we can use critical thinking skills to come to understand those constructions. The schools I have worked at have had varying degrees of diversity and various commitments to increasing it. The city has to be tolerant, otherwise it would explode in a radioactive cloud of hate and rancor and bigotry. For the majority of the class--the international students--it was a chance to see where the American conception of freedom had come from and how it had changed over time, and think about how or whether they wanted to engage with those ideas. To teach people to be historians is to give them the skills to empathically understand the psycho-emotional world of someone not like them. For the past fifty years or so independent schools have been consciously becoming more heterogeneous. The citizens of New York are tolerant not only from disposition but from necessity. In my career, independent schools have gone from creating positions for Diversity Coordinators to Deans of Multiculturalism to Directors of Equity and Inclusion. While Lincoln's motive was avowedly to bring a much needed labor force to a country embroiled in a Civil War, he had long believed that the the "electric cord" of the Declaration of Independence could link people from throughout the world. It is, I would venture, the most important work that Americans will ever do. To be a good historian is to be a good traveler. I wonder if what has happened is that we have made multiculturalism a noun, when it must always be a verb or lose its dynamism. We were using diversity as a base to really explore the multicultural views that existed in the room. In my own case, after Cromwell sent my ancestors packing out of Scotland in , I have a choice to be American--or even Scottish-American, if I want. It is dynamic, not static. There are schools that are talking about adding the concept of "Justice" to that equation which would add yet another dimension. We discovered what every historian already knows—that there are no such thing as facts, there are only inferences based on relics. But the paradigms we choose to be the foundation of this work will be vital to its full success. It was the perfect crucible to be testing the inculcation of multiculturalism through the study of United States history. But note that what she says is that the "multicultural concept" has failed. And while the three more "Americanized" students picked things that most of us would recognize, some of the other students were exploring their understandings of the writings of Ataturk, the Rwandan genocide and the "red shirt" protests in Bangkok. One of our projects, for example, was to explore the conception of freedom as it has existed in different eras in American history. Part of what I have loved about exploring the significance of New York City for the past two decades has been exactly that E. When you are trying to design and execute transformation, and particularly when your goal is the cultivation of the ability to self-transform, then there are some paradigms that are more dynamic than others.
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