Graduation Year

Spring 2012

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

History

Reader 1

Diana Selig

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Terms of Use for work posted in Scholarship@Claremont.

Rights Information

© 2012 Alexa Teevens

Abstract

This paper will explore the implications of Arizona 2010 House Bill 2281, a vaguely worded piece of legislation which has been identified as an attempt to eliminate ethnic studies programs from Arizona public schools, and particularly the Mexican-American Studies program of the Tucson Unified School District. Specifically, this analysis is concerned with the implications of this law on debates surrounding the legitimacy of ethnic studies, and more broadly, on the purpose of public education in the United States today. While both supporters and opponents of the bill believe that it is inappropriate to indoctrinate students in public school with a singular political agenda, an unraveling of this story makes clear that it is impossible to avoid such a quandary when curriculum insists that an objectivity of knowledge exists. As such, I advocate for a more fundamentally postmodern rethinking of social science curricula in which no single narrative is granted validity at the expense of all others.

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