Loewen Readings.docx - Chapters 5-6 Summarize Loewen's...

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Chapters 5-6: Summarize Loewen's arguments regarding racism and anti-racism in textbooks and identify two examples of his evidence for each argument. How does the portrayal of racism and anti-racism in textbooks impact public understanding of these issues? Loewen argues that many textbooks do not make a connection between racism and slavery. He argues that racism stemmed from “taking land from and destroying indigenous peoples and enslaving Africans to work that land.” Textbooks fail to acknowledge the racism, but instead theytry and create this idea of white dominance. Many of the founding fathers, such as George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, owned slaves themselves, yet we do not read these kinds of things in textbooks. Textbooks also downplay important ideas and beliefs. For example, abolitionist John Brown was never depicted as a hero like Christopher Columbus was; he was shown as a mentally ill man. Another example is how textbooks never mention what Abraham Lincoln really believed about slavery. Textbooks make it seem like Abraham Lincoln was an abolitionist himself, but in fact, he was known for his anti-slavery beliefs during his presidential campaign. The portrayal of racism and anti-racism in textbooks gives people a one-dimensional white view on American History. Many textbooks love to talk about a white man leading a groupof people based on their beliefs, but seem to downplay the beliefs once it is a black man, just likeJohn Brown. I think it is important to show how some beliefs can also change or be put aside when it has to do for the greater good. Yes, Abraham Lincoln may not have believed that the slaves should be free, but he thought about the morality of it all and stood up for the right thing.Chapter 7:Identify Lowen’s argument about social class in American history and society. Do you agree or disagree with his assessment? Do you think the United States should have more economic equality? Loewen’s argument is about how students do not learn about how social class works and how they do not understand how not everyone has an equal opportunity for success in America. He argues that students do not know much about these things because of how textbooks tend to neglect the history of social class in America and how social class has

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