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The thrust of the most prominent proposals for educational reform in the 1980s has been to make the schools more efficient at servicing the needs of the dominant social order. In the meantime, a backlog of neglected social problems has developed which points up the need for schools to develop the critical faculties of their students. In fact, a wide range of telling statistics on the socioeconomic aspects of American education show that the schools themselves are severely impacted by the inequalities present in the larger society- particularly along racial lines. The need for a critical pedagogy is acute.


This article was originally published in Journal of Education, volume 170, issue 1, in 1989.

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Trustees of Boston University

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.



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