‘Students should be able to explain how various identities, cultures, and values have been preserved or changed in different contexts of U.S. history, with special attention given to the formation of gender, class, racial, and ethnic identities. Students should be able to explain how these subidentities have interacted with each other and with larger conceptions of American national identity.’

Let’s cut to the chase. The notion that this revision, in the works for seven years, is just disinterested pedagogy is, well, claptrap. In the 1980s, Lynne Cheney, as chairwoman of the National Endowment for the Humanities, threw down the gauntlet over the leftward, even Marxist, class-obsessed drift of American historiography. She lost.

At one point the curriculum’s authors say: “Debate and disagreement are central to the discipline of history, and thus to AP U.S. History as well.” This statement is phenomenally disingenuous. From Key Concept 1.3: “Many Europeans developed a belief in white superiority to justify their subjugation of Africans and American Indians, using several different rationales.” Pity the high-school or college student who puts up a hand to contest that anymore. They don’t. They know the Orwellian option now is to stay down.

via Bye, Bye, American History – WSJ.

Advertisements