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ERIC Number: EJ1087416
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0362-6784
Mind the Civic Empowerment Gap: Economically Elite Students and Critical Civic Education
Swalwell, Katy
Curriculum Inquiry, v45 n5 p491-512 2015
Calls to close the civic empowerment gap have traditionally focused on improving and expanding civic education for students in high-poverty urban schools. While important, this recommendation implies that closing the gap is in and of itself a sufficient end and that the civic education of affluent youth is unproblematic. This paper calls for (1) an explicit aim for the gap to close in a way that moves US society towards radical democratic egalitarianism, and (2) a response to the gap that includes consideration of the civic education of affluent students. It suggests that an "activist ally" approach rooted in emancipatory social science, political compassion, affective motivations, and empathic listening may be a useful framework for a critical civic education curriculum with economically elite youth. It concludes with an example from an affluent private school to highlight the affordances and limitations of this framework.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A