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Racial And Ethic Identity In School Practices: Aspect of Human Development. (Professional Books).

RACIAL AND ETHNIC IDENTITY IN SCHOOL PRACTICES: Aspects of Human Development. R. H. Sheets & E. R. Hollins (Eds.). Stamford, CT: Erlbaum, 1999. 271 pp. $29.95. The two editors of this volume are eminently qualified for their role. Sheets is co-editor of Starting Small: Teaching Tolerance in Preschool and the Early Grades, a research project at the Southern Poverty Law Center. Hollins received an American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education outstanding writing award for her book Culture in School Learning. In addition to the editors, contributors include such noted authors and researchers as Curtis W. Branch, William E. Cross, Jr., Donna Deyhle, Geneva Gay, Stacey J. Lee, Amy Reynolds, Tina Q. Richardson, Norma Rodriguez, Maria P. P. Root, and Edward Taylor.

The book examines, challenges, and recommends theory and practice for U.S. educators, counselors, sociologists, and psychologists. Part I describes racial and ethnic identity theory and human development. Assumptions in current research and study of racial identity, racial attitudes, and ethnic identity theory are scrutinized. The impact of varied ecological factors on identity is considered.

Part II presents critical research on racial and ethnic identity theory and human development, with a focus on different ethnic groups. The contributors in this section discuss the incompatibility of Eurocentric conceptualizations of child development with many other cultures' perspectives, including those of the Navajo Nation. Also examined are the ways that cultural and family values affect mental health and ethnic identity development. The authors discuss how one's ethnic identity influences perception of stressors, use of resources, and coping strategies.

Multicultural education, curriculum and instruction issues, multicultural counseling, and educational leadership are the focus of Part III. Case studies and examples enable the reader to examine situations in depth and reflect upon racial and ethnic identity. The practice of multicultural counseling is elucidated, along with the application of critical inquiry in developing cultural and racial identity in white graduate students.

The editors utilize perspectives from psychology and education to provide a contextual basis for bridging theory into practice. Their book explores the "interconnectedness of racial and ethnic identity to human development in order to promote successful pedagogical practices" (p. vii). This book is not an introductory text, but rather an in-depth examination of the relationship between racial and ethnic identity development and human development within the arenas of education, counseling, and scholarly research. Reviewed by Barbara Foulks Boyd, Professor of Education, Radford University, Radford, VA
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Copyright 2001, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Author:Boyd, Barbara Foulks
Publication:Childhood Education
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Dec 22, 2001
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