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"With all of our efforts to be politically correct, to not offend or
appropriate another culture's art forms, I wonder if we are not doing a
great disservice to ourselves and our students."
Maybe we are doing a disservice, but exactly what efforts are "we" all
engaged in to be politically correct and inoffensive. From my observations,
there is an awful lot of offensive stuff flying around these days.
I thought some interesting questions were raised about the dilemma's involved
in dealing with cultures other than our own in an art class. It is not the
first time this question has been raised on this list and I hope not the
San D's response, I thought was provocative and made some good points as
well. But, Carol, I think to dismiss the whole issue as one of "political
correctness" (a by-now-tired-lable anyway) provides little in the way of
I was interested in the way you dismissed your fellow student who was Jewish.
Was there nothing in what she said and felt that is true? What is unique to
the Jewish experience of the Holocaust or the African-American experience of
slavery or the Native American experience of genocide? Can we all share in
that experience? Certainly not in the same degree or extent. The claim of
universality should not be used as a tool to dismiss the reality and value of
difference. Who are the students we teach? What is worth knowing and
experiencing? How do we teach in a way that encourages sensitivity and
respect. I don't think the answers are so clear yet?