For two years, beginning in 1988, Jonathan Kozol visited schools in neighborhoods across the country, from Illinois to Washington, D.C., and from New York to San Antonio. .
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“It is neither ironic nor paradoxical to call Savage Inequalities a wonderful book—for Kozol makes it clear that there are wonderful teachers and wonderful students in every American school, no matter what ugliness, violence, and horror surround the building.”
Washington Post Book World
“The great virtue of Jonathan Kozol’s new book about inner-city schools is that it overcomes that ‘everybody knows’ problem by bringing an undulled capacity for shock and outrage to a tour of bad schools across the country. As soon as Kozol begins leading the way through a procession of overcrowded, underheated, textbookless, barely taught classrooms, the thought he surely intended to engender begins to take form: How can this be?”
In Savage Inequalities, Kozol delivers a searing examination of the extremes of wealth and poverty and calls into question the reality of equal opportunity in our nation’s schools.
Andrew Hacker, New York Times Book Review
“Poor children of all colors are increasingly looked upon as surplus baggage, mistakes that should never have happened. Indeed, an older view is returning that any attempts to educate the lower orders are doomed to fail. There can be more than one way to read the title of Jonathan Kozol’s depressing—and essential—book.”
For two years, beginning in 1988, Jonathan Kozol visited schools in neighborhoods across the country, from Illinois to Washington, D.C., and from New York to San Antonio. He spoke with teachers, principals, superintendents, and, most important, children. What he found was devastating. Not only were schools for rich and poor blatantly unequal, the gulf between the two extremes was widening—and it has widened since. The urban schools he visited were overcrowded and understaffed, and lacked the basic elements of learning—including books and, all too often, classrooms for the students.
In Savage Inequalities, Kozol delivers a searing examination of the extremes of wealth and poverty and calls into question the reality of equal opportunity in our nation's schools.
This test must be typed in Microsoft Word, size 12 font, spellchecked and properly punctuated.
Choose one of the first three chapters from Savage Inequalities (written for the time period of 1964 to 1991, as a basis for any action or inaction that you feel is prejudicial, discriminatory, or an injustice perpetuated on a certain race, class, gender, or religious group.
(a) Outline the general condition and how the action is biased and/or discriminatory
(b) Describe the group that is harmed and in what ways
(c) Find some current information about those conditions, preferably in the same location and compare the then with the now. Has discrimination and bias changed over the years. Do you think progress has been made and assess the current situation.
(d) As an educated community planner, what recommendations would you make? As a government official, what recommendations would you make? Support your suggestions as if you were asking for approval to implement strategies.
JONATHAN KOZOL received the National Book Award for Death at an Early Age, the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award for Rachel and Her Children, and countless other honors for Savage Inequalities, Amazing Grace, The Shame of the Nation, and Fire in the Ashes. He has been working with children in inner-city schools for nearly fifty years.
Back around 1992 or ’93, I read Jonathan Kozol’s Savage Inequalities, a book about the deteriorating public education system in the United States and how racial and socio-economic lines that inhibit the possibilities for an equal education in this country. It’s two decades later, and not much had changed in the nation’s school systems. There are still inequities, U.S. Students are still falling in the rankings around the world when it comes to proficiency in math, reading, and science, and barely any administrative reorganizing or functional changes have been made in the country’s public schools.