10th Edition

Deculturalization and the Struggle for Equality A Brief History of the Education of Dominated Cultures in the United States

By Joel Spring Copyright 2025
    216 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    216 Pages 12 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Joel Spring’s history of school policies imposed on dominated groups in the United States examines the concept of deculturalization—the use of schools to strip away family languages and cultures and replace them with those of the dominant group. The focus is on the education of dominated groups forced to become citizens in territories conquered by the United States, including Native Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans, Latino Americans, and Hawaiians.

    In seven concise, thought-provoking chapters, this analysis and documentation of how education is used to change or eliminate linguistic and cultural traditions in the United States looks at the educational, legal, and social construction of race and racism in the United States, emphasizing the various meanings of “equality” that have existed from colonial America to the present. Providing a broader perspective for understanding the denial of cultural and linguistic rights in the United States, issues of language, culture, and deculturalization are placed in a global context.

    Revised throughout to reflect the national events and shifts in the field since the prior edition, the 10th Edition includes updated discussion around race and its impacts on college campuses, exploration of the refugee crises, new material on Native American, Alaskan, and Hawaiian boarding schools, and expanded discussion of debates over cultural and racial identity.


    1. Deculturalization, Race and Ethnicity, Attitudes of Cultural and Racial Superiority 

    Classifying Race and Ethnicity in the United States 

    The Meaning of White 

    Origins of Western Attitudes of Cultural Superiority: The Meaning of “Uncivilized” and “Pagan” 

    Anglo-Saxon Concepts of Cultural and Religious Superiority 

    Globalization: Denial of Education, Deculturalization and Acculturation 

    World Refugees 

    Education and Creation of an Anglo-American Culture 

    The Meaning of Equality 

    Genocide and Deculturalization: Native and Alaskan Americans 

    Early Native American Educational Programs Schooling and the Colonization of the “Five Civilized Tribes” 

    Interpreting American History: The 1776 Commission and the 1619 Project  


    2. Native Americans/Alaskan Natives: Institutional Racism and Deculturalization 

    The World’s Indigenous Peoples 

    Early Attempts to Deculturalize Native Americans: Missionary Educators 

    Thomas L. Mckenney: The Cultural Power of Schooling and Deculturalization 

    Native American Development of Written Languages 

    Alaskan Natives: Buying “uncivilized” Tribes 

    Indian Removal and Civilization Programs 

    Native Americans: Reservations and Boarding Schools 

    Alaskan Natives and Mt. Edgecumbe Boarding School 

    The Meriam Report 

    Native American Citizenship 

    Burial Grounds: Investigation of Native American, Alaskan and Hawaiian Boarding Schools 


    3. African Americans: Globalization and the African Diaspora 

    African Diaspora and Slavery 

    Cultural Transformation and the Forced Migration of Enslaved Africans 

    Atlantic Creoles 

    Slavery and Cultural Change in The North 

    Freedom in Northern States 

    Educational Segregation 

    Boston and the Struggle for Equal Educational Opportunity 

    Plantation Society 

    Learning to Read 

    Citizenship for African Americans 

    Fourteenth Amendment: Citizenship and Education 

    The Great Literacy Crusade 

    Resisting Segregation 

    The Second Crusade 


    4. Asian Americans: Exclusion and Segregation 

    Globalization and Diaspora: Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Indian 

    Asian Diaspora to the United States 


    Education: From Coolie to Model Minority and Gook 

    Educating the Coolie, Deviant, and Yellow Peril 

    Institutional Racism 

    Affirmative Action and Asian Students 


    5. Hispanic/Latino/Latina/Latinx Americans: Exclusion and Segregation 

    What’s in a Name? 

    Hispanic/Latino/Latinx Population in the United States 

    Conquest and Deculturalization: Mexico and Puerto Rico 

    The Conquest of Mexican Lands and Mexican American Citizenship 

    Issues Regarding Puerto Rican Citizenship 

    Mexican American Educational Issues 

    Early Bilingual Instruction 

    Protest Against Mexican American School Experience 

    Puerto Rican Educational Issues 

    Methods of Deculturalization and Americanization 


    6. The Great Civil Rights Movement and the New Culture Wars 

    Globalization: The Great Civil Rights Movement and Wars of Liberation 

    Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. 

    Native Americans 

    Indian Education: A National Tragedy 

    Asian Americans: Educating The “Model Minority” 

    Asian Americans: Language and the Continued Struggle for Equal Educational Opportunity 

    Hispanic/Latino Americans 

    Bilingual Education: The Culture Wars Continued 

    Multicultural Education, Immigration and the Culture Wars Cultural and Linguistic Genocide, and Educational Segregation, Are Still Alive in The Twenty-First Century 

    Native and Alaskan Education Today 

    The Continuing African American Struggle for Equal Education: Institutional Racism 

    Institutional Racism: Hispanic/Latino 


    7. Model Students, Religion, White Supremacy and Corporate Culture 

    Asians: The Model Minority 

    Affirmative Action and Asian Students 

    Religion in United States  

    Immigration to the United States 

    The Effect of Immigration on Schools 

    Are Native Americans Reclaiming Their Lands? 

    Resegregation of American Schools 

    What are the Consequences of Segregation for Low-Achieving Students? 

    White Supremacy 

    Corporate Culture: Soft Skills 

    The Ideal Corporate Family Culture 

    Deculturalization for a Global Corporation 



    Joel Spring is Professor Emeritus at Queens College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, USA.

    Deculturalization and the Struggle for Equality is a foundational text for teaching about the history of indigenous and Americans of color in the United States. I will continue to use this text and recommend it for as long as I teach.”

    Lillian Castaneda, California State University Channel Islands, USA.

    "This book provides our students with a range of cultures to learn about and explore. It provides such great context on deculturalization and privilege which has created institutions that have systemic racism. Dr. Spring notes the great weight that systemic racism has impacted our education system, even today."

    Lori Lucas, Wayne State University, USA.