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The Graywolf Annual Five: Multi-Cultural Literacy (Graywolf Annual)

by Rick Simonson (Editor), Scott Walker (Editor)

Other authors: Paula G Allen (Contributor), Wendell Berry (Contributor), Michelle Cliff (Contributor), Carolos Fuentes (Contributor), Eduardo Galeano (Contributor)3 more, Ismael Reed (Contributor), Michael Ventura (Contributor), Michele Wallace (Contributor)

Series: Graywolf Annual (5)

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The issue of cultural literacy has been the subject of intense debate in the past two years. Several bestselling books about the deficiencies of our educational system as well as changes in basic curriculum at more than one major university have contributed to the fervor of this debate. Fueling the national controversy is the question of what body of knowledge constitutes cultural literacy. While many argue for a return to a "back to basics" curriculum, equally energetic voices call for a revised curriculum, one which embraces both traditional western classicsand the classics of non-European cultures, among them African, Asian, and Latin American. This volume brings together thirteen essays which suggest the range of knowledgetruly literate individuals need to possess. Essays by such writers as James Baldwin, Carlos Fuentes, Michelle Cliff, Paula Gunn Allen, Ishmael Reed, and Wendell Berry enlarge our perspective to include a variety of voices and heritages which contribute to the vibrant culture of the United States. Also included is a beginning list of names, places, dates, and concepts which are part and parcel of a multi-cultural fabric.… (more)

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Simonson, RickEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Scott WalkerEditormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Allen, Paula GContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Berry, WendellContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Cliff, MichelleContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fuentes, CarolosContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Galeano, EduardoContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Reed, IsmaelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ventura, MichaelContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wallace, MicheleContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed

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The issue of cultural literacy has been the subject of intense debate in the past two years. Several bestselling books about the deficiencies of our educational system as well as changes in basic curriculum at more than one major university have contributed to the fervor of this debate. Fueling the national controversy is the question of what body of knowledge constitutes cultural literacy. While many argue for a return to a "back to basics" curriculum, equally energetic voices call for a revised curriculum, one which embraces both traditional western classicsand the classics of non-European cultures, among them African, Asian, and Latin American. This volume brings together thirteen essays which suggest the range of knowledgetruly literate individuals need to possess. Essays by such writers as James Baldwin, Carlos Fuentes, Michelle Cliff, Paula Gunn Allen, Ishmael Reed, and Wendell Berry enlarge our perspective to include a variety of voices and heritages which contribute to the vibrant culture of the United States. Also included is a beginning list of names, places, dates, and concepts which are part and parcel of a multi-cultural fabric.

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This volume addresses issues surrounding cultural literacy through 13 essays, which suggest the range of knowledge that truly literate individuals need to possess. The following essays (most were written prior to the publishing of "Cultural Literacy" and "The Closing of the American Mind" in 1987) are presented: (1) "A Talk to Teachers" (James Baldwin); (2) "Who is Your Mother? Red Roots of White Feminism" (Paula Gunn Allen); (3) "The Path of the Red and Black Ink" (Gloria Anzaldua); (4) "People, Land, and Community" (Wendell Berry); (5) "A Journey into Speech" (Michelle Cliff); (6) "If I Could Write This in Fire, I Would Write This in Fire" (Michelle Cliff); (7) "How I Started To Write" (Carlos Fuentes); (8) "In Defense of the Word" (Eduardo Galeano); (9)"Documented/Undocumented" (Guillermo Gomez-Pena); (10) "Strangers in the Village" (David Mura); (11) "America: The Multinational Society" (Ishmael Reed); (12) "Invisibility Blues" (Michele Wallace); and (13) "Report from El Dorado" (Michael Ventura). The book concludes with an expanded list of essential names, phrases, dates, and concepts considered to be part of a multicultural fabric. (Contains 18 endnotes.)
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