Read “Schooling in the pre-brown era” in the book The other struggle for equal schools by Rubén Donato and carry out a comprehensive analysis.
In the article “ Schooling in the pre-brown era,” Rubén Donato explores how Mexican-Americans’ language and cultural identity suffered due to education policy biases. In particular, the author identifies segregation and negative ethnic prejudices against Mexican immigrants as the primary cause for contemporary deleterious economic and socio-political relations and outcomes between the Mexican and white communities. Therefore, Mexicans’ difficulty in language comprehension and adverse socio-economic outcomes emanates from white Americans’ superior complexity, which sought to acculturate and Americanize the population.
In the 1950s, American school reformers and social policymakers created pedagogical policies and practices that targeted Mexican immigrants, resulting in segregation and biases that affected education-based outcomes while failing progressivism. Donato notes that while the typical school futurists envisioned an educative environment free of discrimination, the vision failed as Mexican children faced either class- or school-based separation (12). However, the author observes that unlike African-Americans, where seclusion depended on race, the educative institutions and system created a biased process that targeted the Hispanic community, thus affecting their English-language comprehension (Donato 12). The trend happened “as soon as Mexican enrolment became noticeable” (Donato 13). Considering that class, gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, age, and sexuality are phenomena constructs rather than unitary, discordant entities, the cultural and language bias strengthened biased perceptions of Mexican’s “low intelligence” and codified it into American pedagogical and public circles (Collins 1; Donato 33). Similarly, following Labaree’s observation, educating individuals results in the skills development necessary to grow an economy; it follows that the discriminatory pedagogical outcomes for the Latin American youth created a socioeconomic repercussion (39). Therefore, most of the contemporary regressive economic and social consequences emanate from education-based prejudices established in the mid-twentieth century.
Comparable to the effect of language comprehension emanating from harmful pedagogical practices, the Mexican culture also significantly suffered under the US’s bid to Americanize the immigrants. In particular, Americans viewed immigrants as docile, illiterate, and lacking initiative and self-reliance. Thus their culture needed reworking to avoid the dilution of the “national stock and corrupt the national life” (Donato 17). Hence, the school reformers and social policymakers defined the “American values” and created a system that sought to assimilate and indoctrinate the Mexicans to curtail their “barbarous, unambitious, and violent” dispositions (Donato 18). The forced, rapid acculturation created a pushback that resulted in low school performance, attendance, and completion, significantly affecting Latin America’s political, social, and economic outcomes while denoting the community’s indifference to education (Donato 19). Hence, the education system’s bid to Americanize the Latin American immigrants created negative consequences to education outcomes that continually affected their social standing.
Mexican acculturation in the 1950s had a disastrous impact on their language comprehension and cultural integration, which I noticed corresponds significantly with Patricia Collins’ ideology on intersectionality. For example, Collin’s work identifies economic and social outcomes raison d’être correlation between social inequalities and power relations (1). Donato affirms the connection by noting that the Americanization ideology emanates from white Americans’ superior complexity in viewing other cultures (18, 33). Therefore, Collin’s objective explanation represents a viable method of analyzing the failure of Mexican people to succeed in significantly achieving widespread educative or socio-economic success effectively. Hence, by approaching Donato’s assertion and Collin’s analysis, I can conceptualize and understand Latin Americans’ struggles in integrating and succeeding in the United States as immigrants.
The American white community’s belief in the superiority of their ways created regressive outcomes to Mexican language comprehension and socioeconomic consequences through segregation and Americanization. Therefore, Collin’s theory on intersectionality significantly explains the effect of American social power dynamics on Latin American immigrants. Hence, sociologists gain significant insight into the issues plaguing the community and their solutions by examining the Mexican community’s social, political, and economic outcomes through Collins’s lenses.
Collins, Patricia Hill. “Intersectionality’s Definitional Dilemmas.” Annual Review of Sociology, vol. 41, 2015, pp.1-20.
Donato, Rubén. “Schooling in the Pre-Brown Era.” The Other Struggle for Equal Schools: Mexican Americans During the Civil Rights Era, SUNY PRESS 1997, pp. 1-33.
Labaree, David F. “Public Goods, Private Goods: The American Struggle over Educational Goals.” American Educational Research Journal, vol. 34, no. 1, 1997, pp. 39-81.
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Published On: 01-03-2019