Education at its Best
In his book, The Mis-Education of the Negro, Carter G. Woodson addresses many issues that have been and are still prevalent in the African American community. Woodson believed that in the midst of receiving education, African Americans lost sight of their original reason for becoming educated. He believed that many African Americans became educated only to assimilate to European American culture and attempt to become successful under European American standards. As an Educator, I can certainly relate to many points in this book. Moreover, where did it all begin? How did African Americans begin to have such a thought process? People are taught through life's experiences and whether we believe it or not, racism still exists. It is in our children's classrooms, at our jobs and in our lives in everyday society. "What different method of approach or what sort of people would make the negro child that cannot be made just as well by a white teacher" (Woodson, The Mis-Education of the Negro, page 16)? By no means is he saying a highly qualified European American teacher cannot teach an African American child.
However, in my experiences as a Spanish Teacher of predominantly African American students, I have found that I have a much better understanding of how to relate to students because I was once in their seats, thinking what they are thinking. Also, the thought of the inferiority of the African American is drilled so much into the classrooms, it can and in many cases will become a way of life for the African American. All of these preconceived notions that African Americans are inferior are associated with the inhumane theologies that were never truly abolished after Emancipation.
In William Wells Brown's Clotel or the President's Daughter, Clotel demonstrates the...