Cover image for Black in school : Afrocentric reform, urban youth & the promise of hip-hop culture
Black in school : Afrocentric reform, urban youth & the promise of hip-hop culture
Ginwright, Shawn A.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Teachers College Press, [2004]

Physical Description:
viii, 157 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm

Format :


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LC2717 .G56 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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The author examines the conditions and community forces that thwart or promote Afrocentric education reform in urban schools and explores the context and intent behind the community's effort to improve the school, providing a more comprehensive picture about the limits and possibilities for identity based reform in urban schools.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

This brief volume analyzes with refreshing candor the introduction of a pointedly Afrocentric curriculum into an Oakland, California, high school during the mid-1990s. The curriculum, developed by a recognized group of scholars, was not successful in accomplishing its chief goal of improving the academic achievement of the school's overwhelmingly poor and African American student body. Ginwright (Santa Clara University), who for nearly two decades has worked with these young people to bring about social change, described the Afrocentrism brought to the school as offering a "static view" of African American identity. To be effective with members of the hip-hop generation, a curriculum must relate more to the realities of these students' world. Young people grow up in communities, not programs, the author contends; and transformation of their lives must be rooted in their perceptions. The book includes a review of Afrocentrism's main ideas, a history of Oakland's black community and the various crises faced by its schools, and numerous comments from students and teachers during the implementation of the new curriculum. Ginwright includes an extensive list of references. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through professionals. C. Goddard Roosevelt University

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. 1
The Emergence of Multicultural Educationp. 3
What We Don't Know About Afrocentric Reformp. 5
Overview of the Bookp. 7
1. Say It Loud, I'm Black and I'm Proud! Afrocentric Movement, Past, Present, and Futurep. 9
Urban Protest and the Black Power Movementp. 10
From the Streets to the Ivory Towersp. 12
The Afrocentric Movement Todayp. 16
What Is Afrocentrism?p. 17
2. Hip-Hop Generation vs. Civil Rights Generation: The Challenge of Afrocentric Reformp. 24
Afrocentric Reform in Urban Schoolsp. 25
The Challenge of Afrocentric Educationp. 27
Considering Black Youth Identity and the Promise of Hip-Hop Culturep. 29
Bridging the Generation Gap: The Challenge of the New Black Middle Classp. 32
Piecing the Puzzle Togetherp. 33
3. Black Life and the History of Oaklandp. 35
Black Migration to Oakland, 1869-1939p. 36
Migration During and After World War IIp. 38
Economic Decline and White Flight, 1945-1960p. 40
Stratifying the Black Community: The Creation of Oakland's Black Middle Classp. 42
Class Conflict and the Battle Over West Oakland Communityp. 43
West Oakland Todayp. 46
4. Oakland Schools in Crisisp. 48
District Corruption and Statewide Fiscal Turmoilp. 52
Community Perceptions of McClymonds High Schoolp. 54
Parental Involvementp. 58
Living in West Oaklandp. 59
Community Concern for Safety at McClymondsp. 62
Closing McClymonds High Schoolp. 64
5. Plans to Transform McClymonds High Schoolp. 68
Behind the Effort to Transform McClymonds Highp. 69
Organizing BUFFER for Actionp. 70
The Final Plan to Transform McClymonds Highp. 80
6. Implementing the Afrocentric Programp. 88
Transforming the Schoolp. 88
The New Curriculump. 90
Teachers' Perspective: Tumultuous Timesp. 92
Community's Perspective: How Much Does It Cost?p. 97
From the Students' Perspectivep. 100
How to Become Better at Being Blackp. 105
From Egypt to West Oakland: Outcomes and Expectationsp. 107
7. The Failure of Afrocentric Reform at McClymonds High Schoolp. 108
Outcomes: Was McClymonds Transformed?p. 108
Why Did the Project Fail?p. 110
8. Lessons Learned: A Vision of Afrocentric Reform for the Hip-Hop Generationp. 119
Transforming Schools and Communities Through Youth Engagementp. 121
Youth Organizing: The Promise of New Reform Strategies for Urban Schools and Communitiesp. 125
The Power of Youth in Public Policyp. 131
Hip-Hop Culture and Possibilities for Afrocentric Reformp. 132
The Future of Afrocentric Reformp. 136
Referencesp. 137
Indexp. 147
About the Authorp. 159