118.pdf - Voluntary and Involuntary Minorities A Cultural-Ecological Theory of School Performance with Some Implications for Education Author(s John U

118.pdf - Voluntary and Involuntary Minorities A...

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Voluntary and Involuntary Minorities: A Cultural-Ecological Theory of School Performance with Some Implications for Education Author(s): John U. Ogbu and Herbert D. Simons Source: Anthropology & Education Quarterly, Vol. 29, No. 2 (Jun., 1998), pp. 155-188 Published by: Wiley on behalf of the American Anthropological Association Stable URL: Accessed: 13-01-2018 17:32 UTC JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact [email protected] Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at American Anthropological Association, Wiley are collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Anthropology & Education Quarterly This content downloaded from 128.230.131.185 on Sat, 13 Jan 2018 17:32:03 UTC All use subject to
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Voluntary and Involuntary Minorities: A Cultural-Ecological Theory of School Performance with Some Implications for Education JOHN U. OGBU Department of Anthropology University of California, Berkeley HERBERT D. SIMONS Graduate School of Education University of California, Berkeley This article has three objectives. First, it describes Ogbu's classification of minorities: autonomous, voluntary or immigrant, and involuntary or nonim- migrant minorities. Second, it explains Ogbu's cultural-ecological theory of minority school performance. Finally, it suggests some implications of the theory for pedagogy. The authors regard the typology of minority groups as a heuristic device for analysis and interpretation of differences among minority groups in school experience. Ogbu has studied minority education in the United States and other societies for almost 28 years.1 During the first 15 years he concentrated on the differences in school performance between minority- and domi- nant-group students. He concluded that the differences were caused by the treatment of minority groups in society at large and in school as well as by the perceptions of the minorities and their responses to school due to such treatment (Ogbu 1974, 1978). In the early 1980s the focus of his research shifted toward explaining differences in school performance among minority groups themselves (Ogbu 1987). The focus on differ- ences among minorities has generated a great deal of response from educational anthropologists and other researchers.2 Some have con- ducted important research that either supports or challenges his perspec- tive. But in reviewing these works one finds that some of his main ideas are not always understood.
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