American Indians, the Irish, and Government Schooling: A Comparative Study

By Michael C. Coleman | Go to book overview

Notes

Introduction

1. I take the term “resonance” from Nancy Scheper-Hughes, “The Best of Two Worlds, the Worst of Two Worlds: Reflections on Culture and Field Work among the Rural Irish and Pueblo Indians,” Comparative Studies in Society and History 29 (1987): 58. In 2004 I became a dual citizen of Finland and Ireland.

2. Drawing on a 1980 formulation by Harold J. Abramson, historian Russel A. Kazal notes: “I conceive of assimilation as referring to a process that results in greater homogeneity within a society. Such processes may operate at different levels: among individuals, between groups… or between groups and a dominant group in society.” This later version is the concern of the present study. Although he warns against assuming “a rather static Anglo-Saxon 'core' American society to which one was presumed to assimilate,” Kazal also notes: “Assimilation in America amounts to Americanization if it results in the acquisition of a distinct 'American' culture, behavior, or set of values.” Again, this is the usage I employ here. See Kazal, “Revisiting Assimilation: The Rise, Fall, and Reappraisal of a Concept in American Ethnic History,” American Historical Review 100.2 (April 1995): 437–71, with quotations from 438, 470, 439–40. More recently David Crystal defines “cultural assimilation”—my concern throughout—in a similar way: “one culture is influenced by a more dominant culture and begins to lose its character as a result of its members adopting new behaviour and mores… language quickly becomes an emblem of that dominance, typically taking the form of a standard or official language associated with the incoming nation.” Crystal, Language Death (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), 77. On Anglicization, see note 5 below.

3. I summarize and document these developments in Michael C. Coleman, American Indian Children at School, 1850–1930 (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 1993), esp. chap. 3. See also note 16, below, and chap. 2 in the present work.

4. I summarize and document these developments in Michael C. Coleman, “'Eyes Big as Bowls with Fear and Wonder': Children's Responses to the Irish National Schools, 1850–1922,” Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 98C.5 (1998): 177–202. See also chap. 2 in the present work.

5. By “Anglicize” I do not mean that Irish people would become totally English; Scottish and Welsh people enjoyed their own cultural variants and subvariants, while remaining loyal British subjects. “Briticize” might thus be a better term; nevertheless I will use the more common “Anglicize/Anglicization” to describe the assimilatory

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American Indians, the Irish, and Government Schooling: A Comparative Study
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations - Following Page 176 ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Abbreviations xiii
  • Introduction 1
  • 1: Education in Native America and Ireland to the 1820s 11
  • 2: The School as Weapon of State 38
  • 3: The Local Community and the School 66
  • 4: Regimentation 89
  • 5: Curriculum 118
  • 6: School Staff 156
  • 7: Peers and Mediation 188
  • 8: Resistance and Rejection 216
  • 9: Results 240
  • Conclusions 263
  • Notes 273
  • Bibliographical Note 343
  • Index 353
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