In Search of Multiculturalism: Uncovering ‘Whiteness’ in Curriculum Design and Pedagogical Strategies

By Sally J. Sayles-Hannon.

Published by The Learner Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks rekindled debates on the validity of academic multiculturalism in U.S. higher education and, as such, signal a call to revisit problems with multicultural curricular design and pedagogical strategies. In reaction, this paper attempts to enrich dialogue surrounding academic multiculturalism by exploring the epistemological foundation, what I call an epistemology of ‘whiteness,’ that guides the design and instruction of multicultural curricula. I examine how ‘whiteness,’ as a way of knowing, is communicated in multicultural education. Specifically, I argue that multiculturalism often propagates rather than eradicates prejudiced understandings of the world because it is rooted in ‘whiteness.’ Curricular reform efforts generally take a surface-level approach to multiculturalism, which strengthens the conceptual errors that maintain ‘whiteness.’ These problems with multiculturalism, then, leave us in search of a multiculturalism that equally values all people and transforms how we, human beings, relate, understand, and interact with each other.

Keywords: Multiculturalism, Whiteness, Curriculum Reform, Pedagogy, U.S. Post-secondary Education

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 16, Issue 10, pp.709-720. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.277MB).

Sally J. Sayles-Hannon

Ph.D. Student, Cultural Foundations of Education, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York, USA

Sally Sayles-Hannon has an M.A. in Women’s Studies from Texas Woman’s University and is currently working on her Ph.D. in Cultural Foundations of Education at Syracuse University.


There are currently no reviews of this product.

Write a Review