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ERIC Number: ED448113
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Dec
Pages: 279
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The West and Ignore the Rest: Conceptualizations of World History in American High School Textbooks, 1875-1934.
Kang, Sunjoo
World history textbooks currently used in U.S. high schools adopt Western civilization as the integrating element of world history. The high school world history approach with Western civilization as the essence was a product of the late 19th century and early 20th century. The historical consciousness of this period continues to influence decision making with regard to the selection and organization of high school world history textbooks. This study traces conceptual origins of the Western-centered approach to world history by undertaking an exploration of conceptualizations of world history in high school textbooks in the late 19th and early 20th century. This research sought to answer the following questions: In the textbooks published during the period between 1875 and 1934, what kinds of themes determined the selection and the organization of world history? How did those organizational themes come into prominence?; Specifically, what kinds of historical experiences--events, ideas, aspirations, and enterprises--gave rise to particular organizational themes and topics? and What assumptions and premises undergirded the conception of world history? To answer these questions, the study analyzed high school textbooks in general history, European history, and world history from 1875 to 1934. Findings reveal the limits of the Western-centered approach to world history and, in the end, suggest a revision of the high school world history course that would be more relevant to contemporary needs. Includes extensive footnotes and 4 figures; contains a 264-item bibliography. Appendixes contain lists of the 38 textbooks analyzed. (BT)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A