ERIC Number: EJ1120393
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
Same Story; Different History: Students' Racialized Understanding of Historic Sites
Burgard, Karen L. B.; Boucher, Michael L., Jr.
Urban Review: Issues and Ideas in Public Education, v48 n5 p696-717 Dec 2016
Museums and historical sites are created to inform the public about our national heritage, yet the contributions of people of color are often excluded from these narratives. Even when they are included, the researchers found that students' understanding and interpretations are often different based on the racial identity of the viewer. This study should lead to a reexamination of the mechanisms for content delivery in historical sites and museums and serve as a caution for historians and history teachers. If we ignore this racialized difference and refuse to acknowledge diversity in students' racialized historical understanding, minority students' voices are excluded and majority students become miseducated about the past. This study investigated a student trip to southern Indiana where students experienced historical sites from the Underground Railroad and racial segregation. During the trip, students connected to the slave experience in different ways, reported different understandings of the history of segregation, and disrupted or reifyed the progressive (slavery to segregation to civil rights) narrative of American history. This article builds on the work on racialized historical understanding in classrooms by Epstein ("Soc Edu" 61:28-31, 1997; "Curric Inq" 28(4):397-423, 1998; "Theory Pract" 40(1):42-47, 2001) and moves the conversation from the classroom to the public spaces that not only "tell" our history but "show" it as well.
Descriptors: Historic Sites, Slavery, United States History, Minority Groups, History Instruction, Racial Segregation, Student Attitudes, Civil Rights, Museums, Cultural Differences, Field Trips
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Indiana
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A