The Oxford Handbook of Social Justice in Music Education

By Haroutounian, Joanne | American Music Teacher, August-September 2016 | Go to article overview

The Oxford Handbook of Social Justice in Music Education


Haroutounian, Joanne, American Music Teacher


The Oxford Handbook of Social Justice in Music Education, edited by Cathy Benedict, Patrick Schmidt, Gary Spruce and Paul Woodford. Oxford University Press, 2015. global. oup.com; 736 pp., $150.00.

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Oxford offers a comprehensive collection of writings on the topic of social justice, presenting a global perspective that brings research-based and practically oriented guidance to music educators working in classrooms and beyond. Social justice has developed into an educational movement, embracing the need to seek equity, diversity and inclusivity in the classroom and recognize those who have been marginalized or oppressed. This authoritative resource focuses on the problems facing social justice in music education, offering a mixture of studies and opinion papers by 57 experts across both fields.

The book is divided into five sections, with the first section explaining social justice conceptually, historically and politically. Section Two offers chapters focusing on race, feminism, Latino children, disabilities and a study of young refugees in Australia. Section Three approaches epistemological shifts and just practices, while Section Four presents the problems and opportunities of social justice pedagogy. The text closes with a section of research studies from a wide perspective of teaching experiences, including El Sistema, popular culture, Mexican Americans, musical experiences during South African apartheid and youth in detention centers. This section also summarizes a 10-year meta-analysis of studies across music teacher education and social justice or diversity.

The handbook is a wealth of solid information for those researching across the areas of music education and social justice. …

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