The Place of History in Multicultural Education, pp. 14 of 15

As with the nature of History as eternal contestation, so would be attempts to promote multicultural education that can embrace global and multicultural citizenship. Harmonising universal values of global membership with distinct narratives is daunting and it seems easier to submit to seemingly immovable and insurmountable structural forces. Conversely, the hope for outcomes for marginalized groups to attain civic equality and recognition (Banks, 2008, p. 131) are powerful incentives for multicultural educators who consider their efforts not as personal acclaim but as “participants in the creation of a better future” (Howard, 1993, p. 5).

The role of the teacher within and beyond the classroom is crucial both as empowering and oppressive tools ranging from “sharing voices of real people” (Miller, 1998, p. 77) to promoting “just a chorus of voices” (Levstik, 1997, p. 48). Notwithstanding the concerns of introducing a guilt factor (Wills, Sep 1996, p. 366) for privileged groups in the pursuit of empowerment for the marginalised, the pursuit of social justice is a never-ending reformative, transformational process interweaving both history and multicultural education. The latter education cannot hope to challenge hegemonic narratives or effect a process approaching structural equality alone. History as a vehicle of change is an essential partner.

An Inspiring Quote

"[Open-mindedness] includes an active desire to listen to more sides than one; to give heed to facts from whatever source they come; to give full attention to alternative possibilities; to recognize the possibility of error even in the beliefs that are dearest to us."

~ John Dewey, How We Think

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