Difference Matters Summary

1379 Words6 Pages
Allen, Brenda J. "Difference and Other Important Matters." Difference Matters: Communicating Social Identity. Long Grove, IL: Waveland, 2004. 1-22. Print. In her book, Difference Matters, Brenda Allen discusses the importance of identity in an individual and in society. She addresses specific factors, from age to social class, that affect society. In her first chapter, more specifically, she talks about these factors as a whole in introducing the why differences matter. She then lays out the issues associated with differences in society. There are misinterpretations and misconceptions that become problematic between the relationship with individuals and society. This chapter is perfect for my topic because it shows that people differ from…show more content…
Labaree discusses how the United State’s education is in a school syndrome, as people in America want schools to teach society’s ideals as well as let people express their individuality. These two demands are polar opposites that cannot be achieved. As the focus goes towards balancing these in hopes of improving society as a whole, the bettering of actual student learning is put on pause. Labaree talks about the beginning of education reform, in the 19th century, being the most successful in developing society; however, as education reform continued throughout time, its effectiveness wore off. He then addresses how the desire for education reform is more about improving society than it is about learning. He finishes his argument by providing possible solutions to fixing this problem, but states that fixing this problem will never happen because no one is willing to give up both demands. Overall, Labaree goes in wonderful detail explaining the problems of education reform. What made me choose this article was that he addressed the desire that people have on school systems in promoting both society normality and individuality. This correlates well with my topic in whether public school systems promote conformist ideals or individuality.
Open Document