In this dialogue with Henry Giroux, we demonstrate that, as old borders and zones of cultural difference become more porous or eventually collapse, questions of culture increasingly become dominant; cultural traditions once self-confidently secure in the modernist discourse of progress, universalism, and objectivism are now interrogated as ideological beachheads used to police and contain subordinate groups, oppositional discourses and dissenting social movements. Struggles over the academic canon, the conflict over Multiculturalism, and the battle for either extending or containing the rights of new social groups dominate the current political and ideological landscape. What is at stake in these struggles far exceeds the particular interests that structure any one of them or the specific terrains in which they are subject to debate, whether they be the academy, the arts, schools, or other spheres of public life. Underlying the proliferation of these diverse and various battles is a deeper conflict over the relationship between democracy and culture, on the one hand, and identity and the politics of representation, on the other.
KeywordsCultural Politics Subject Position Moral Vision Multicultural Education Critical Educator
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- David Shipler, A Country of Strangers: Blacks and Whites in America (New York: Vintage, 1998).Google Scholar
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