Sociocultural Studies in Education: Critical Thinking for Democracy fills a void in the education of educators and citizens in a democracy. It explores some of the fundamentals around which disagreements in education arise. It presents a process with which those new to these debates can understand often confusing and entwined sets of facts and logics. This book leads the reader through some general concepts and intellectual skills that provide the basis for making sense out of the debates around public education in a democracy.
This book can be seen as a primer on how to read texts about education. It acknowledges that good teachers must be not only trained to teach, but also educated about education. It presents the various themes and currents found within the arguments and narratives that people use to represent public education. It assumes that the more those interested in education know about how to see through the rhetoric, the better they will be at discerning whose interests are served by which texts.
“This book provides a much-needed critical examination of the sociocultural studies in education. Quantz’s rationale goes well beyond the analysis of educational philosophies and ideologies in education by placing the foci within the dynamics of ideological production that change the way we think about education and provoke highly engaging transformative work. An enormously significant work for community activists and teachers.”
—Joâo Paraskeva, University of Massachusetts–Dartmouth
“Quantz’s text should become a core part of any undergraduate’s general education program, regardless of major, as well as an integral part of teacher education programs across the country. Each chapter illuminates complex issues present in the institution of public education and the ways in which we choose to read and understand these issues. This text provides the reader with both theory and practice as it offers a way to read the world of education by analyzing, interpreting, and critiquing texts about education. In the project of democratizing education, this book is necessary as a way to make the reader think about the state of public education, as a lens through which to read about education, and as a tool to question the all-too-common rhetoric around the world of education.”
—Kimberly Haverkos, Thomas More College
“I have seen my students become better, more critical writers and, especially, more critical readers after engaging with Richard Quantz’s text. And just as importantly, my students have a much clearer vision of, and language for, education in and for democracy. This, I think, is the truest power of Quantz’s book—it helps my students understand a fuller range of possibilities as citizens and (for those who plan to teach) as teachers who can make democracy reality.”
—Kevin M. Talbert, The College of Idaho