ERIC Number: ED247163
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Jun
Reference Count: 0
The Treatment of Peace and Security Issues in Social Studies Textbooks in the United States.
Fleming, Dan B.
This examination of the treatment given to peace and security issues in American social studies textbooks begins by summarizing the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) Curriculum Guidelines and a 1983 study of high school social studies topic priorities. Following a review of past textbook studies and a brief discussion of textbook treatment of foreign policy, the paper uses four major topics (propaganda, U.S./Latin American relations, the war in Vietnam, and nuclear war) to illustrate problems found in textbooks related to peace and security issues. In an examination of 45 textbooks, grades 8-12, the overall treatment of propaganda was rated very good considering the influence of nationalism. However, the topic tended to be ignored after World War II coverage. Overall textbook coverage of U.S./Latin American relations was rated as poor, although nearly all texts offered some criticism of U.S. policies. Moreover, the perspective of Latin countries was given little mention, and the cultures of the region were ignored. Similarly, in an analysis of coverage of the Vietnam war, only 1 of the 10 textbooks reviewed provided any background about Vietnamese cultural settings, with most focusing primarily on political and military aspects of the war. Additionally, the author reports very slight coverage of nuclear war issues in comparison with other topics in his review of 19 U.S. history textbooks. The paper concludes with recommendations for achieving goals stated in NCSS curriculum guidelines. (LH)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Curriculum Balance; Latin America; National Council for the Social Studies; Vietnam War
Note: Paper presented at the Joint Meeting of the Social Science Education Consortium and the Bundeszentrale fur politische Bildung (Irsee, Bavaria, West Germany, June 18-22, 1984).